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Lake Sevan is Armenia's largest lake and is located at an altitude of 1,900 m - which should make it the second highest commercially navigable lake after Titicaca (3,811 m). It is deep blue and fringed by green fields, abandoned Soviet buildings, local villages and ancient churches - and popular for holidaying Armenians. In pre-Soviet times, the water level was 20 m higher with a surface 50% larger than today, but a Soviet-engineered irrigation project (similar to the one that made the Aral disaster) shrunk the lake and turned Sevan Island into a peninsula. Recent attempts have been made to save the delicate ecosystem by raising the water level to its original level, but it will be interesting to see how far they will get since farmers, resorts and even the president's summerhouse (behind Savanavank) are located right at present water level.
Lake Eyre, South Australia
Located in South Australia lies the Lake Eyre Basin. A large majority of the time it's actually dry and so its classification as a lake can sometimes be a stretch. However, once in a generation or so water will travel some 1500km from Australia’s north-east, flooding the lake and bringing with it birds, fish and flora. Right now (2010) happens to be one such occasion.
Looking out across the lake in to the vast flatness that characterises central Australia, you could be forgiven for thinking you've reached the coast and aren't still in the centre of one of the driest continents on earth. Camping alongside is the best way to absorb the amazing scenery.
Chittagong Hill Tracts
Though Boga Lake is beautiful, it is not so much the place itself than it is the journey to get there that is the real attraction. The trip from Bandarban is just stunning and takes you down the Sangu river and through what must be some of the finest hill country. Rolling green hills dotted with tribal villages, sloping fields and the occasional bamboo hut on stilts. The different tribes which inhabit the area are Marma and Bawn people, where the latter lives right at Boga Lake. The trip to the lake can be combined with a trek up to the highest mountain/hill in Bangladesh, Mt Keokradang (986 m... and not 1230 m as stated other places).
For travel information how to get there, check out the photo gallery.
Glacier Lake Yihun Lhatso
10 km from Manigango, Sichuan Province
Yihun Lhatso is a holy alpine lake located at 4010 m at the foot of the mountain Cholan Shan (6168 m). It is picture-perfect with a milky turquoise color with a gorgeous backdrop of rigged mountains crowned with snow. Along the shore, boulders have Tibetan mantras, like om pani padme um, carved into them and there are colorful prayer flags hanging down from the pine trees and even a stupa. The trail, used by yaks, on the east side of the lake will take you to the far end, where the views are even more breath taking - and it is not just because of the high altitude. This place is seriously pretty, and you will very likely have it all for yourself, beside the yaks.
China certainly likes to tout its beautiful lakes. And while many lakes closer to the interior of the country are quite nice, few can compare to Karakol Lake. About as far west in China as you can go, this beautifully set lake sees very few tourists, domestic or foreign. And the old adage of "getting there is half the fun" certainly applies to Karakol, as anyone coming to the area is forced to travel along the Karakoram Highway, arguably the most beautiful stretch of road on Earth. Whether opting for a brisk hike in the hills, or merely sitting by the lakeside taking in the spectacular scenery, Karakol is one lake not to be missed.
Alt. 4441 m, Tibet Province
The lack of freedom to travel independently in Tibet means that getting to know the locals is nearly impossible. However, given just how jaw-dropping the scenery is, most people are willing to sacrifice that independence for a little while.
After spending the day winding your way up the mammoth mountains, avoiding potholes and massive drops, you finally reach the viewpoint above one of the world's highest lakes (4441 m).
Yamdrok Lake is the most stunning turquoise and, given the view of towering massif Mt. Nojin Kangtsang in the distance, it's definitely worth hanging around for a while. That is of course, if you can handle the altitude!
The Colombian altiplano
The largest lake in Colombia, located at the semi-high elevation of 3000 m. It is an enchanting place, where clouds come rolling in from the surrounding hills to lie low over the cold water. Any road to here is winding and takes you through tough farmland and rough villages (like Cuitiva, Iza and Tota). The local farmers all sport ponchos, wide brim hats and sunburned cheeks. There even is a "Playa Blanca" at the shore of the lake with sand and space for camping under the pine and eucalyptus trees.
Often celebrated as one of the most beautiful lakes in the world, Guatemala's Lake Atitlan (Lago de Atitlán) lives up to the billing. Surrounded by 3 conical volcanoes, the lakes magnificent setting is the thing of legends. The best part is there is no "must see" view. Instead, exploration of the lake and it's villages (if for nothing more than different views) is part of the charm. Any number of traditional villages surround the lake. Here, locals speak their indigenous languages and dress in traditional clothes. A visit to one of the local markets will most certain cause your camera to overheat as amazing photo opportunities lie around every corner. Atitlan is special!
Honduras' largest lake, Lago do Yojoa, sits in the middle of the country. And for the most part, it sits alone. Despite the enormous tourism and recreational potential of the lake, it see very few visitors, either local or international. With over 400 birds species and 800 plants species, it has wonderfully rich biodiversity. Taking out a row boat and throwing in a fishing line is a great way to spend the day. But for those needing a little more, there are a few sites in the region. Archeological sites like Parque Eco-arqueologico de los Naranjos, waterfalls like Pulhapanzak Falls and even a natural spring resembling the Blue Hole of Belize. Go now before developers figure out what a gem the place is.
Kelimutu volcano lakes
At the summit of volcano Kelimutu (1640 m) are three different coloured crater lakes. The colours are slowly changing and are caused by the dissolving of minerals. One of the lakes is apparently always turquoise, while the two others can be anything from black, emerald green to chocolate brown or even red – together or separately. Seeing the sunrise from the summit is often hyped as a "must see"-thing and while the first rays of light certainly will bring some warmth to the freezing cold, the lakes can be equally enjoyed later in the day when the rays of sun actually reach the surface of the lakes.