The Stunning Pink Lagoon of Las Coloradas

The pink color of Las Coloradas is caused by tiny marine microorganisms.
The pink color of Las Coloradas is caused by tiny marine microorganisms.

Located in the top of the Yucatan Peninsula is a small fishing village called Las Coloradas. The coast of Les Coloradas was once Mexico’s most beautiful hidden secret but today, it is one of the most visited places in the country. What makes it special is the existence of a pink-colored lake known as the Pink Lagoon of Las Coloradas that covers the landscape; a truly stunning beauty to behold. The entire beach and the surrounding area are part of the Rio Lagartos Biosphere reserve protecting over 100,000 acres of beaches, dunes, and forests and which is also home to animals such as flamingos. This article gives insight into the Pink Lagoon of Las Coloradas and how to access the place.

History of Las Coloradas

Before becoming a destination of choice, Las Coloradas was just a simple fishing village on the coast of Yucatan. The production of salt in the area dates back to the Mayan Period. The Mayans had discovered that the village was ideal for the production of salt since the nearby mangroves are surrounded by saltpans. The salt was used for both preservation and trade. Today, Las Coloradas is home to some of the stable salt production in the Yucatan region. A large company owns the area and salt is produced in large scale.

The water from the nearby mangrove often floods the dry plain, leading to the formation large, shallow lakes. The water from the shallow lakes is then evaporated by the sun, leaving behind the much-needed salt. Sometimes, the lakes take time to dry or do not dry at all. While the process of gaining soil is natural, the numerous lakes in Las Coloradas are man-made.

Where Does the Pink Color Come From?

What makes the Pink Lagoon of Las Coloradas attractive is the pink-water coloration. While it may appear as a product of black magic, the reason for the pink coloration is quite ordinary. The coloration is as a result of tiny marine microorganism containing beta-carotene. These microorganisms include shrimps, algae, and plankton. As the water from the lagoon begins to evaporate, the organisms become highly concentrated, creating the intense pink color. Some of the organism also becomes visible as the water continues to evaporate. Interestingly, the flamingos in Las Coloradas are pink because they feed on the creatures found in these lakes.

How To Access the Pink Lagoon of Las Coloradas

The surrounding beach and the lakes, and the tiny village are collectively referred to as Las Coloradas. The closest town to Las Coloradas is Rio Lagarto which is approximately 30 minutes away. The nearby cities are Playa del Carmen and Cancun. Anyone interested in visiting the pink lakes can drive from Merida and drive down for approximately two hours. Alternatively, one can pick a touring car from Rio LaPorta which drives directly to the place.

Are Pink Lakes Only Found In Las Coloradas?

Las Coloradas is not the only place on earth with the pink water body. The waters of Koyashskoye Salt Lake located in Crimea alternate from red to pink due to the high concentration of algae. Also, several Australian lakes are also pink due to the presence of these organisms. But of all the pink lakes, Las Coloradas is the prettiest.


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