St Anne Lake is the only volcanic lake in Romania and a beautiful oasis of quietness and peace between the mountains. During my days off in Baile Tusnad I have visited this beautiful lake. In the area, there is another must-see: the protected reservation of Mohos Swamp.
How to get there
From Baile Tusnad there are 2 options:
- By foot (app. 4 hours)
- An organized trip by a local company – we chose this option.
First of all, you will find this company in front of Baile Tusnad hotel. There are 2 departures/day (if needed). We found this trip on the internet and booked 2 seats for the 30th of April. I did not receive any reply so I waited to get there and see what`s up. We tried to call a day before but no one responded so we have no other choice than wait for the next day. At 10 AM (as written on the internet) we were waiting in the parking, in front of their office. The funny part is that we were the only persons there, and I was a bit disappointed thinking that the trip will not be organized. Some minutes before 10, the guy that owns the business showed up and from nowhere, other people interested in the trip. As we did not call to book a place, we were placed to the next trip, at 11 o clock, same day (it seems that other people booked in advance so there were no seats left) The bus has only 8 seats.
At 11 AM, we started our trip to St Anne lake. The journey until there was up to 45 minutes and the views are really enjoyable. However, a part of the road was awful, with lots of pits, almost impassable.
We arrived just in time for Mohos Swamp visit. As it is a protected reservation, it can be visited only with the guide and at some fixed hours. The entrance costs 5 RON.
Mohos Swamp is the „older” sister of St Anne Lake. The volcano that has firstly erupted formed this crater. Afterward, the volcano has erupted again, creating St Anne lake and the ash was thrown in this crater. The ash created good conditions for the moss that in time it was expanding a lot, covering almost all the area. This is why it is called „mohos”, meaning in Hungarian „moss”.
The interesting part is that the soil is dangerous as it can sink at any time. This is why people are not allowed to step out of the marked trail (we were stepping only on wooden bridges). The guide has shown us a “demonstration”: he sank his stick in the soil! even if apparently it is soil, in fact, what you will see is the peat that has water in its deep. This is why is very important to follow the guide’s advise: to step only on the marked trail!
From the road to the entrance of the swamp, there are some 5 minutes of relaxing walking through nature and you will even there the soil is unusually soft. Then, the guide will show you some pictures of the protected plants and insects that are living in the area.
My advice is stay near to the guide as he stops from time to time and explain interesting things and if you are in the back, you will not hear anything (as the trail is narrow, there is no place for all people to gather around the guide and listen to his explanations) and you will not understand anything.
In April, when we got there, the trees were dried out due to some insects’ raid.
From the whole crater full of water, there have remained only some small lakes. Also, due to peat, the color of the water is dark blue-black. Also, there is no fish living in the water as the ph of water is 3!
It is possible that in some years, the whole region to be covered by moss, so do not miss this unique beauty!
St Anne lake
What is really amazing about st Anne lake is that it is located on a volcanic crater that has erupted some 30000 years ago! and its water is collected only from rain as there is no other source of water.
Once there, you will find a beautiful lake with incredible nuances of blue and turquoise, surrounded by wonderful forested mountains. You will feel that you can admire it forever.
Regarding the activities that can be done at St Anne lake, well there are not too many: rent a boat and paddle around or have a walk around the lake.
We decided to surround the lake (it takes up to 1 hour), admire the nature and charge our batteries with all the quietness of the place but we ended up in a sprint as we had a limited time there and we should get to the bus in time. So, unfortunately, I did not have time to just sit down and enjoy the nature but at least I have captured some beautiful shots:
We returned at Baile Tusnad very relaxed and with lots of beautiful landscapes kept in our hearts.
Trip cost: 40 RON/person
Entrance to Mohos Swamp: 5 RON/person
Travel. Enjoy. Repeat.