The most spectacular lakes across Australia and New Zealand

There’s something magical and calming about gazing across the mirrored glass of a tranquil lake. Maybe it’s the endless reflection of sky or the peaceful stillness of the water. From the serene shores of Lake Taupō in New Zealand to the vibrant colour of Pink Lake Dimboola in Australia, each lake tells its own unique story that draws you in. Here we showcase some of the best lakes in Australia and New Zealand to add to your travel bucket list.

Pink Lake Dimboola, Vic

The Pink Lake in Dimboola. Image from Visit Victoria and Anne Morely.

Just north of the Grampians in northwestern Victoria, you’ll find the enchanting Pink Lake Dimboola. The famous salt lake’s rosy hue, which can vary from bright bubblegum to salmon pink depending on seasonal rainfall, is a natural phenomenon caused by an algae living in the salt crust. Though you can’t swim here due to the high salt levels, the captivating pink waters ringed by yellow gumtrees and salt paperbarks creates a surreal and dreamy landscape. Perfect for photography and nature lovers. 

Where to stay

After you’ve experienced the wonder of the Pink Lake in Victoria, enjoy warm country hospitality at the Comfort Inn May Park in nearby Horsham. The largest town in the Wimmera region, Horsham is a great base for exploring the stunning beauty of the Pink Lake and the Grampians National Park.

Blue Lake, SA

The gorgeous Blue Lake in SA. Image from Jaxon Foale.

Formed in the crater of an ancient volcano, South Australia’s Blue Lake Mount Gambier is a geological wonder, so named for its mesmerising cobalt-blue waters. Dissolved limestone particles give the water its distinctive colour, making it one of the best blue lakes to visit in Australia. During the summer months, the lake lives up to its name, showcasing an intense blue that changes throughout the year. Explore the Blue Lake Circuit, a scenic walking trail with breathtaking panoramic views of the crater and its surroundings. 

Where to stay

Comfort Inn The Lakes is located on the edge of the Crater Lakes with spectacular views and easy access to the Blue Lake, Valley Lakes Precinct and other Mount Gambier attractions.

Lake Bonney, SA

Lake Bonney is stunning by day and gorgeous by night! Image from Brian J Hatchard.

Another South Australian aquatic jewel, Lake Bonney is a large coastal lake in the heart of the Riverland region, fed by the Murray River. A picturesque spot with tranquil waters perfect for water sports, it also has wetlands teeming with wildlife where you can watch for native birds. Don’t miss Lake Bonney at night, when the night sky above explodes with stars making it a renowned destination for stargazing and astrophotography.

Where to stay

Base yourself in nearby Barmera and enjoy spacious and comfortable accommodation at the Comfort Inn & Suites Riverland. Make the most of peaceful golf course views, a seasonal outdoor pool, and tennis courts.  

Lake Taupō, NZ

Lake Taupo is a magnificent lake! Photo by Sergio Otoya on Unsplash.

In the centre of the North Island, you’ll find one of the top lakes to visit in New Zealand. Lake Taupō is the country’s largest lake and a true marvel of nature. Inside a vast crater formed over 2000 years ago in a volcanic eruption, the lake is surrounded by lush greenery and dramatic mountains. Don’t miss the extraordinary 14m-high ancient Māori rock carvings at Mine Bay or the majestic Huka Falls where the Waikato River thunders through a narrow volcanic gorge and into the pool below.

Where to stay

You’ll find accommodation options for a restful stay at Lake Taupō New Zealand, centrally located in the heart of Taupō or amid the landscaped gardens of a rolling vineyard.

Lake Tekapo, NZ

Visit stunning Lake Tekapo. Photo by Niklas Ohlrogge on Unsplash.

Not to be outdone, New Zealand’s South Island also lays claim to its own spectacular body of water. Lake Tekapo is a glacial lake, renowned for both its remarkable turquoise waters and a night sky that transforms into a celestial masterpiece after sundown. Set against the stunning backdrop of the Southern Alps, Lake Tekapo is a designated UNESCO Dark Sky Reserve, making it an ideal destination for Lake Tekapo stargazing or experiencing the magic of the Southern Lights.

Where to stay

Relax in a well-appointed suite or apartment at the Comfort Hotel Benvenue in nearby Timaru. Located right on Caroline Bay, it’s an easy walk to the waterfront and other great attractions.

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