Exploring the Secret World of Uniquely Colored Lakes
October 18, 20173 min read
By all respects, the only color of water in the world should be blue. With the clear water reflecting blue light and absorbing other colors, that is why we see it that way. So all lakes should be blue, right? Yet, not all lake water is blue. In fact, it can run the gamut of colors in the right conditions. Are you sick of your typical blue lakes? Then it may be time for a trip to some of these colored lakes around the world.
Lake Hillier, Australia
Pepto-Bismal pink in color, Like Hillier is easily one of the most famous colored lakes in the world. This saline lake is perched on the middle island of the Recherche Archipelago off the coast of Australia. Unlike some other pink lakes, Lake Hillier maintains its color all year round, and scientists aren’t quite sure why. Some argue that it is caused by bacteria while others think it is salt crusts. Regardless, the only way to see this uniquely colored lake is by air. Unfortunately, this lake sits right in the middle of a protected reserve where visitors are not allowed. So, sadly, you can’t swim in a big lake of bubble gum pink water.
Kelimutu Lakes, Indonesia
Located on top of the volcanic peak Kelimutu in Indonesia are three equally stunning crater lakes, volcanic craters that collect rainwater to form secluded mountain lakes. This is the only place on Earth where you can see three different colored lakes in one spot. Not only that, but if you visit more than once, the lakes are likely to change colors on a whim. Colors range from red, green, blue, black, and even white. Scientists believe that this color change is due to different species of algae that populate the water and cause each lake to take on a different hue. While it takes a bit of a trek to get up to the crater lakes on Kelimutu, it is well worth the walk.
Emerald Lakes, Tongariro, New Zealand
New Zealand’s oldest national park has its fair share of secrets, but the most stunning is the Emerald Lakes on the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. However, as the most popular day hike in the country, it is not much of a secret anymore. Regardless, the lakes in this area all feature a unique shimmering green color, not unlike an emerald. The unique color can be accredited to the leaching of minerals from the surrounding rock. Unfortunately, you will only want to get so close to these lakes. The nearby steam vents not only vent some hot steam, but a whole lot of sulfur as well. The Emerald Lakes are smelly, but beautiful.
Lake Retba, Senegal
Known as Lac Rose by the locals, you can probably guess what color Lake Retba is – it is rose-colored! However, unlike some other pink lakes, this is one that you can actually take a dip in. The lake is given its color by a series of microorganisms that turn pink in order to better absorb sunlight. Of course, they are completely harmless to humans. If you have second thoughts, just watch the shea butter-slathered local salt harvesters wade through the waters day after day. While the red water is beautiful, it also has a huge salt content, so get ready to float.
As these uniquely colored lakes more than prove, the world is a color palate just waiting to be explored. Why not try to match the colors of these great sights with your own perfectly curated wardrobe.
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