Crater lakes are created in volcanic craters or human-caused artificial explosions. Depending on how they are formed, they can be called volcanic, impact, or crater lakes. However, no one makes distention whether a lake is created within a caldera. Volcanic lakes are mostly greenish and acidic due to the volcanic gases. On the other hand, lakes formed within dormant volcanoes mostly have fresh water. Nature is a magnificent and incredible power that never ends. These world’s most stunning crater lakes will leave and give travelers a great deal of magnificent experience.
9 Kelimutu Crater, Indonesia
The three Kelimutu Crater lakes on Flores Island's eastern side are must-visit destinations in Indonesia. They are one of Indonesia’s most striking sights. The magnificently colored crater lakes are spectacular, especially during sunrise. Situated on Kelimutu summit at 1,639 m above sea level, these lakes are famous for their mysterious behavior of changing colors. From white, the lake's waters have turned to turquoise, red, black, and walnut, and now to beautiful green shades due to the volcanic explosions.
- How to get there: Travelers can fly into either of the two cities with airports in Flores – Maumere or Ende. Starting a journey from Ende is more convenient as the city is closer to Kelimutu Crater.
8 Quilotoa Crater Lake – Ecuador
Ecuador’s Quilotoa Crater Lake is a breathtaking sighting that every traveler should explore. Situated in Cotopaxi province, 178 kilometers southwest of Quito, Ecuador's Capital City, the large volcanic crater lake has an enchanting emerald green color. Visitors touring around its surrounding are rewarded with some of the world's most breathtaking views. This is a perfect spot for travelers looking for a photo opportunity and blow their friends away on Instagram. Want to visit Quilotoa Crater Lake? Well, the good news is – that travelers just need a little planning to get to Quilotoa. The destination has a lot to offer to travelers, including plenty of outdoor activities to spice up their safari experience of the lake.
- Time: 3 hours drive passing through Panamericana Highway to Quilotoa village.
7 Heaven Lake, North Korea
Located along the border of China and North Korea, Heaven Lake is one of the world's most beautiful crater lakes, lying within a caldera at the volcanic Mount Paektu’s summit. Koreans – from both North and South, regard this mountain as sacred, their spiritual home. The crater was created as a result of a major volcanic eruption in 969 AD. In winter season, the crater lake is covered in ice.
The most mesmerizing views of the crater lake are found to the West and Northside, with the Western region receiving the highest number of tourists. The region is highly developed so travelers should expect crowds.
6 Okama Crater Lake, Japan
Situated in Mount Zao’s Caldera, Okama Crater Lake receives thousands of travelers to experience the spectacular views the lake offers. The lake is surrounded by preserved area, covering 155 sq miles – and includes the whole of the Zao volcanic complex. Also referred to as Goshiki Numa (Five Color Pond), Okama Crater Lake is Quasi-National Park's crown jewel, displaying spectacular views as the lake changes into different beautiful colors. The colors change in this highly-acidic lake because of alterations in minerals.
5 Katmai Crater Lake, Alaska, USA
Alaska’s Katmai Crater Lake formed at the summit of Mount Katmai is an expression of nature’s beauty at its best. The crater is found within the Katmai Park and Wilderness area and was created in 1912 when Novarupta Volcano erupted. This crater lake is regarded as one of the world’s most stunning crater lakes – thanks to the magnificent blue-turquoise color of its waters. The best way to experience the beauty of Katmai Crater Lake is through flightseeing tours.
4 Deriba Crater Lake, Sudan
Located on the Jebel Marra’s summit in Darfur, Sudan, Deriba Crater Lake is another breathtaking lake. The lake was created in a caldera, which measures approximately 8 km in diameter from the outside. Jebel Marra Volcano's explosive eruption, which occurred over 3500 years ago, led to the formation of the caldera. This lake, though not visited so much, displays some of the most spectacular views worth exploring.
3 Lonar Crater Lake, India
The largest and most ancient crater lake on earth, Lonar Crater Lake has located in Maharashtra, India in Buldana province, which is about 550 kilometers from Mumbai. The saltwater lake is both alkaline and saline in nature and was created as a result of the formation of basaltic rock. Around this stunning crater lake are spectacular forests with diverse species of birds, including owls, peacocks, ducks, and Red-wattled lapwings. Both aromatic and medicinal vegetation thrive around this place. Travelers have a lot to experience at Lonar Crater lake.
- Best time to visit: In winter (November-January) because the climate is splendid and travelers can spend almost a whole day exploring the world’s largest crater lake.
2 Lake Taupo, New Zealand
Covering a 616 km surface area, Lake Taupo is located on New Zealand's North Island – and is the country's largest lake. Lake Taupo lies in a caldera created about 26500 years ago as a result of a supervolcanic eruption. It is famous for its rainbow fish exhibiting beautiful coloring patterns that widely vary. Travelers choosing to explore this crater lake has a lot more to experience. The lake is surrounded by vibrant villages and towns, making it a perfect spot for outdoor enthusiasts.
1 Yugama Crater Lake, Japan
Yugama is one of Mount Shirane’s three crater lakes and is the largest. Yugama Crater Lake is one of the world's most stunning crater lakes for a reason – the beautiful turquoise color and the yellow sulfur rafts on the lake's surface explain it all. The lake has a very high acid level because of the volcanic gases, making it impossible for vegetation to survive here. This crater is so beautiful – a lot more spectacular than any picture can express.
- How to get there: Head to the bus terminal at Kusatsu and go through a 20-minute easy hike.