Black Lake (Crno Jezero) in Montenegro is the largest and most famous lake out of 18 located on Mount Durmitor.
It is made up of two separate lakes – the Big Lake and the Little Lake, which are connected by a narrow channel. In summer, it dries up, and in spring, when the snow melts from the surrounding mountains, the two lakes increase significantly in size and turn into one.
Together, two lakes create a resemblance of eyes, for which the locals call them “eyes of the mountains “. The lake is called black because the surrounding mountains are densely covered with coniferous forests, which reflect in the water and make the lake look dark and “black”. In reality, the water in the lake is more of an emerald color because of the greenish stones at the bottom.
The photo of Black Lake
Black Lake is located in the northern part of the country, on the territory of Mount Durmitor, at an altitude of 1416 meters. The lake has a glacial origin. Its surface is not particularly large, the maximum depth of the Big Lake is almost 25 meters, and the maximum depth of the Little Lake is 49 meters. Water in the lakes is transparent and in some places can be viewed at a depth of up to 9-10 meters.
1. How to get to the lake?
It is easily accessible by car or on foot and is only 3.5 km from the center of Žabljak.
2. What to wear?
There is a hiking trail around the lake, although in some places it is quite narrow with a steep slope. It is better to wear comfortable shoes, rather than flip-flops.
Going to the Black Lake or any other lake in the north of the country, remember about the temperature difference! The average summer temperature there is about +20ºC, or even less in the shade.
3. How much time will I spend there?
Walking along the entire Black Lake will take around 2-3 hours, depending on your physical condition.
4. Is it free?
There are many comfortable benches on the sides of the lake. You can just sit there and enjoy the view. However, the entrance to the protected area around the lake is paid – it costs 3 euros, you do not need to pay for the car separately.
5. Can people swim in it?
Black Lake in Montenegro is poorly warmed up, so even in July the water is suitable only for tough people, but you can try it. The temperature of water in the lake is always lower than the air temperature by 4 degrees.
6. What else can you do at the lake?
It is possible to rent a boat or an Aleutian kayak. You can also entertain yourself by fishing (for an additional fee). Ask the guardians what size of fish you are allowed to catch and how much you will be allowed to take with you. It may be easier to go to the nearest restaurant and order both fish and fish soup there.
7. Are there any restaurants by the lake?
There is one restaurant called “Nacionalni Restoran Crno Jezero” right by the side of the lake.
8. Should I take a tour, or is it cheaper to be on my own?
There are several hiking trails leading from the Black Lake. You can find a detailed map of the area on the way to the lake.
But going to Bobotov Kuk – the highest point of Mount Durmitor – to the Ice Cave or just for a walk in the National Park is not exactly worth it without a guide and necessary equipment.