6 most beautiful lakes in the Tatra Mountains

Although most people associate the Polish Tatra Mountains with mountain peaks, this area can also be proud of 40 permanent lakes. The most well-known one (and the most crowded) is of course the Morskie Oko, but we also recommend getting familiar with other, equally gorgeous places. Let us introduce youto 6 most beautiful lakes in the Tatra Mountains.

The characteristic part of the tatra mountain landscape is the presence of the numerous mountain lakes, often referred to as ponds. There are about 200 lakes in the entire Tatra Mountains, but at the Polish side we can find about 40 of them (excluding the periodic ones). Nearly all of the mountain lakes have a post-glacial genesis, and that means most of them are located at a bigger height than 1500 meters. While going to the Tatra Mountains, you should definitely visit at least one of the Tatra Mountain lakes. And now we will introduce you to 6 most beautiful ones of them.

Czarny Staw Gąsienicowy
Besides Morskie Oko and Czarny Staw this is undoubtedly one of the most popular places in the Tatra Mountains. Czarny Staw Gąsienicowy, the fifth Tatra Mountain Lake in terms of surface, delights tourists with its beauty. Above its waters you can admire the majestic view at the slender shape of Kościelec. Tourists can be delighted not just with the lake itself, but also by trails leading to them. You can choose an easier route through Boczań (the blue trail) or the more steep one through the Jaworzynka Valley (the yellow trail) – in both cases you can begin your journey in Kuźnice – (approx 1 hour and 30 minutes of walking)


An incredibly charming place is of course Hala Gąsienicowa, which can offer postcard-like landscapes with a panorama of the High Tatra Mountains in the background.

Czarny Staw Gąsienicowy:
Height – 1620 meters above the sea level
Surface – 17.79 hectares
Depth – 51 meters

Czarny Staw upon Rysy
This is the second deepest Tatra Mountain Lake, located in the Rybi Potok Valley. The name of this place was created because of the entirely black color of the water. (The effect of the shadows coming from the mountain tops and the cyanobacteria living in the water) Despite its dark color, this lake is characterized with high limpidity – up to 17 meters.


Along the eastern edge the red trail to Rysy is extending. The walls of Kazalnica are towering directly upon the lake (nearly 600 meters high) – this is the most famous and the largest climbing wall in the Tatra Mountains.

Czarny Staw upon Rysy
Surface – 20.54 hectares
Depth – 76.4 meters
hieight – 1580 meters above the sea level

The Smreczynski Pond
This is a small lake in the western Tatra Mountains, located at the height of more than 1200 meters, surrounded by forests and four mountain peaks. Although the route to the Smreczynski Pond leads through the popular and often crowded Kościelisko Valley, there aren’t that much tourists by the lake itself.


After beginning the trip in the Kościelisko Valley you have to get to the mountain shelter at the Ornak alp – from there, getting to the lake itself takes about 30 minutes of following the black trail. (the path leads through the forest). At the edge of the lake there is a rest point with benches, from which you can admire the panorama of the western Tatra Mountains reflecting in the dark dpth of the small lake.

The Smreczyński Pond
Height – 1226 meters above the sea level
Surface – 0.75 hectares
Depth – 5.3 meters

The Great Polish Pond
This is the largest and deepest post-glacial lake in the Tatra Mountains. It is located in the famous Five Pond Valley, which is considered one of the msot interesting landscapes of the Polish side of the Tatra Mountains. This place is beautiul thanks to the granite mountain peaks and the blue waters of the lakes. The largest of the „Five Lakes” is the Great Polish Pond (or just the Great Pond).


The trail to the Great Polish Pond begins in Palenica Białczańska, and passes by the Roztoka Valley and the Siklawica waterfall. (the largest waterfall in Poland). The most beautiful view of the pond can be seen from Świstówka Roztocka, which keeps leading to Morskie Oko (through the blue trail)

The Great Polish Pond
Height – 1665 meters above the sea level
Surface – 34.14 hectares
Depth – 79.3 meters

Zielony Staw Gąsienicowy
The Gąsienicowa Valley can also be proud of the Zielony Staw which is located at the height of 1674 meters above the sea level. This Tatra Mountain Lake has not only a gorgeous, light-green color, but is also not so crowded by tourists.

In order to get to Zielony Staw Gąsienicowy, you’ll have to start at the same place as in case of Czarny Staw (the Murowaniec mountain shleter) When you choose the yellow trail, you will reach the lake after about 30-40 minutes. The views are just marvelous.

Zielony Staw Gąsienicowy
Height – 1672 meters above the sea level
Surface – 3.84 hectares
Depth – 15.1 meters

Morskie Oko
This place needs absolutely no introduction. Morskie Oko is the most frequently visited and at the same time one of the most beautiful lakes in the Tatra Mountains. The crystal clear water, the picturesque nature and its surrounding mountain peaks create a charming, postcard-like scenery.

But this place might lose its charm because of the huge number of tourists – the route from Palenica Białczańska to Morskie Oko is one of the most popular trails in the Tatra mountains.

Morskie Oko
Height – 1395 meters aobve the sea level
Surface – 34.93 hectares
Depth – 50.8 meters

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