The famous ‘Pink Lake’ in Melbourne

I met a German girl in my hostel room not too long ago. She wasn’t here for very long, and for this reason was eager to see as much as she could in the city. She asked if I would join her on a bike ride using the Melbourne Bike Share service in the city and for just $3, you can ride for 24 hours. A pretty good deal, the only thing is you have to park the bike within 45 minutes and use another one. I guess this guarantees bikes at every station, and as there were plenty in and around the city it wasn’t an issue.

But back to the beginning, I said yes to joining and off we went.


Now this lake wasn’t too far from the CBD, roughly 7km and would take about 30 minutes to ride there. Much less in a car. It took us around 25 minutes from the bike station we used on the south side of the river and was pretty flat the whole way.


Now to get here from the route we took meant going through an industrial part of the city. And for that I assumed that maybe the pink was the result of some kind of toxic chemical reaction from waste and things. But that isn’t the case.

After giving it a quick Google this ABC News article provides some info on this odd phenomenon, and funnily enough mentions that many people will also probably believe it is from a toxic spill.

Apparently the main cause is salt. When salt levels are higher than usual it changes colour, but a few other factors need to be in place.

The webpage states:

‘Although the lake already has lots of salt — it is a salt lake after all — it only turns pink when salt levels are higher than usual.

There are also a few other ingredients needed to turn the lake pink: high temperatures, lots of sunlight and a lack of rainfall.

It’s in these conditions that algae growing in the lake’s salt crust produce a red pigment, called beta carotene, as part of their photosynthesis process.

The result: a spectacular deep-pink lake.’

And it really is pink! It was funny to go through such an industrial area to find this tourist haven in the middle, busy with people taking selfies and updating their Instagram story. I was one of them of course as some of you that follow me there will have already seen. But I don’t blame anyone for doing so, as this is a surreal sight you would struggle to find anywhere else in the world. Australia is lucky however, it has a few of these dotted around the country.

No filters were used in these pictures, it really was as pink as it looks. I was worried that I may be left disappointed with a slightly pink scene that was overly edited when I looked at other peoples pictures… but I was pleasantly surprised.

We didn’t spend too long here as we needed to find a bike station, and got there with about two minutes to spare. It wasn’t much more of a charge for going over the time, but we tried to sick with the $3 deal and gave us more urgency to ride around and not stay in one place for too long.

Another interesting route we took was the F1 track that was recently used in the Melbourne Grand Prix. Although cars (not many though) were using it and it is accessible to the public, the fences and seating areas were still there. It was pretty cool to ride it and it was fun to imagine what it would be like for a car to take these tight bends at such high speeds.


I really enjoyed this day, what was just going to be a day off work turned into a very productive day indeed. And more exercise than I have done in a long time, talk about killing two birds with one stone. This was one of the first ‘touristy’ things I did in the city, and I am glad I got to share it with you.

What do you think of the Pink Lake? Have you seen it or another one somewhere before? Let me know in the comments!


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61 thoughts on “The famous ‘Pink Lake’ in Melbourne”

  1. I’ve heard of the pink lake just the other week but cant remember where. I hate pink as a colour but strangely find it rather attractive in nature. Great pictures and thanks for sharing 🙋‍♀️🐝

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I think it is attractive in nature as it is so rare in nature. It seems so strange to see in a lake and that is why it is so mesmerizing!

      Thank you for reading and providing the kind feedback 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Never before heard of the pink lske. Now it’s on the list for my next trip to Melbourne. However, I have ridden on the F1 circuit which was kinda cool. It’s used for a bike race in January before the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race which is held in Geelong.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Vibrant. Here in Nevada there is this place called ‘Fly Geyser’ where the thermophilic algae flourishes in in hot environments resulting in hues of green and red colored rock. Crazy world we live in!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. A very colourful world too! That sounds amazing, very beautiful. It is a crazy world, however sometimes the crazy is a good crazy, like your example.

      Thank you for the comment 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Haha well I appreciate your honesty! However check whenever you may be in a ‘pink lake area’ and then consider taking the next exit and taking a look 😉 Worth a photograph for sure!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve been to Melbourne and never knew about the pink lake. I’ve seen pink lakes in South Australia and they extract the salt from these lake beds after the water evaporates – leaving pink salt.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yeah same, maybe it isn’t promoted as much as other areas, which would actually make sense because of the location. Very industrial and not visually appealing.

      Wow, pink salt sounds pretty cool, I want some on my fries 😉

      Liked by 1 person

    1. The bike system was great and made the day more fun for sure. And I finally got exercise so I am grateful for that.

      I didn’t know BC had pink lakes, pretty cool!

      Liked by 3 people

  5. That is an amazing lake! I had to share it with the students (high school seniors) in the class. Sadly, the response was mostly “I don’t like Australia; they keep finding new things that can kill me”.

    Thank you for sharing this.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh wow, if you used my page thank you 🙂 if not that’s cool, there are probably better photos out there haha. And I agree with them, there is plenty that will happily kill you here, however I am still much more concerned by road accidents and things. Much more common.

      Thank you for the kind words 🙂


    1. It is a hidden gem, I didn’t know about it until very recently. If you are in Melbourne or one of the other pink lakes in Australia or the world, take a look! 🙂


  6. Wow! I didn’t know there was such a thing as a pink lake! But your photos were AWESOME! Now I want to see it in real life! And thanks for sharing the information about why it’s pink. I’m always curious as to WHY something is the way it is…always wanting to learn whatever I can about things that pique my interest. Had you not shared the information, I’d probably have googled it later on myself…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Neither did I! But it is a thing and pretty surreal to see. I admire your curiosity, for me it is the same… if something is in a peculiar way I want to know why. It is always good to learn and everyday gives us an opportunity to learn 🙂

      Thank you for reading 🙂


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