Synevyr Lake. Ukraine. Carpathians

Synevyr Sea Eye

Synevyr is the largest mountain lake in Ukraine. It is surrounded by legends and mysteries. Tourists from all over Europe come to the Carpathian Mountains to admire its blue waves.

Lake Synevyr is literally the legend of the Carpathians. It is the largest and most mysterious lake in the mountainous Ukraine. You have to look for this pearl among the rocks and forests of the Inner Gorgany mountain range, in the lands of the national park of the same name.

Lake Synevyr

Lake Synevyr, photo by Dmytro Kosmenko

Sea Eye of the Carpathians is located at an altitude of about a thousand meters above sea level, its maximum depth is 24 meters. Synevyr is located high in the mountains and its waters are so deep that the lake is not warm even in summer. On the hottest days only a meter or two of water is warm, but you should dive deeper – and you will be burnt by icy cold.

When you dive deeper into the lake, you’ll get burnt by the icy cold. The lake was created by an earthquake, and three mountain streams flow into it, keeping the water level high at all times of the year. The smooth surface of the lake sparkles with blue, but a small island protrudes from the water exactly in the middle. This picture looks like a blue eye with a dark pupil in the center, so Synevyr got its second, very romantic name: the Sea Eye.

Lake Synevyr

Lake Synevyr

Synevyr is a cult place for tourists. Here come hikers with backpacks and tents. They go to the lake by cars and buses to admire the beauty of the Sea Oka. Arrange excursions from nearby villages. Therefore, the area around Synevyr is well equipped: built viewing platforms, installed decorative sculptures. But all these “signs of civilization” are so skillfully integrated into the landscape that they do not spoil it.

The lake is surrounded by old Carpathian firs – Smerek, it is very easy to breathe here due to the scent of pine, which fills the air. Although the surroundings of this tourist gem are always crowded, it is quite possible to meet wild animals here. The territory of the nature park is under protection, hunting, logging and any other interference with wildlife is prohibited in this area.

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Tears of Love

The sculpture that adorns the lake depicts two lovers: a boy named Vir and a girl Xin – according to the legend, it is from their names that the name of the lake was formed. The height of the monument is 13 meters. Who are the legendary lovers, in whose honor was named the large Carpathian lake?

The sculpture at Lake Synevyr

The sculpture at the lake Synevyr

Legend tells of the daughter of a local count, whose eyes were blue and deep as the sky. One day while gathering flowers in the forest, she met a shepherd who played the flute and fell in love with him. The count’s daughter began to come into the woods more and more often to listen to the shepherd play the flute. The lovers continued to meet even after the count’s explicit prohibition – and then the enraged father ordered the shepherd to be killed by throwing a stone over him from a mountain. When Xing learned of her lover’s tragic fate, she embraced the stone and wept bitterly. Her tears formed an entire lake that still hugs that ill-fated rock to this day.

How to get to Sea Eye

If you come to one of the local villages to ski or just relax with your family, you are likely to be offered a day trip. In the village of Nizhny Studeny it’s easy to take an excursion to Synevyr – you’ll be taken to the lake and shown where you can have a picnic and where it’s better to just admire the views.

It is not difficult to get to the lake by your own car – you just need to get to Mezhigorie, and then turn to the village Synevyrska Polyana. The lake will appear a few kilometers to the north. You shouldn’t rely on public transportation, because the bus goes to Synevyr Glade only once a day. However, there is a hotel with a restaurant near the lake, so if you won’t manage to get out of the woods before dark, you will have a tasty dinner and a warm bed.

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Lake Synevyr

Lake Synevyr

Hiking Routes

Synevyr attracts hikers, but there is one huge problem: camping around the lake is not allowed, not to mention making a fire – an attempt to get in the protected forest fire will turn out to you a huge fine. That is why you can come to Synevyr only to admire it, to dream and leave without littering. However, there are many ecological trails leading to the lake, and you can include it in your hike plan. But you should take into account that you are going to spend several hours on Snevir.

To get to the lake is not difficult from Gicha mountain valley – from there you should go down to Sloboda village and find a blessed spring with drinking water – and from the spring to the Sea Eye of the Carpathians will not be far at all. If you don’t plan to go back to Sloboda, you can draw drinking water from the spring. Where you can stay for the night? From the lake it is easy to get to the Ozirna meadow, it’s a beautiful view and no one will stop you from making a fire. In addition, from the meadow you can see Synevyr – photo lovers can make some impressive shots.

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