Lake Hillier sits like a giant punch-bowl at the edge of Middle Island in Western Australia’s Recherche Archipelago, surrounded by a thick forest of paperbark and eucalyptus trees. A slender strip of shore separates Lake Hillier from the predictably blue Southern Ocean, highlighting the lake’s otherworldly appearance.

Theories differ on the origins of the lake’s bubblegum hue. Some believe it comes from a dye produced by two microorganisms called Halobacteria and Dunaliella salina, while others suspect the red halophilic bacteria that thrive in the lake’s salt deposits. In any case, the lake’s color isn’t a trick of the light — it’s pink no matter the angle you view it from!

lake hillier in australia

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