Tatra tarns – their records and attractions


How well do you know the tarns of High and Low Tatras? Do you know which one is the deepest or most beautiful? We will certainly not bother you with these questions at the moment. If we made you curious and you´d like to find answers to these questions, take a few minutes for yourself, sit back and find out more about the gems among Slovak waters. 

Strbske pleso (tarn) 

The most famous Tatra mountain lake attracts the most tourists every year. Its surroundings will captivate you with stunning views of the sky-high mountain peaks and with many activities such as sailing, hiking, Nordic walking, cross-country skiing, ski mountaineering which can make your time more enjoyable. Since 1929, Strbske pleso has been home to a rare species of maraena whitfish, which were artificially deployed by fishermen. In 2009 the tarn even had a chance to be included in the list of The New Seven Wonders of Nature. It is interesting that Strbske pleso has no visible inflow or outflow.


Accommodation tip: There is a hotel FIS nearby, which will surprise you with its famous gastronomy. You can work out, in any weather, at its gym, which is the best equipped hotel gym in Slovakia. You have a chance to meet one of Slovak well-known athletes there. 

Zelene pleso (Green tarn) 

According to an old legend, at the steep peak of Jastraba veza (tower), precious stone was shining, which a young man had promised to his loved one as a wedding gift. As he touched it, the rocky wall shook and the young man fell into the tarn with the gem. It changed its color to emerald green, which can still be admired today. In fact, the unusual green color is caused by the rising springs at the bottom of the tarnThis fairytale color is an attraction for tourists and families with children who want to recharge their energy in a picturesque mountain environment in every season. 


Skalnate pleso (tarn) 

Skalnate pleso is one of the most visited in the Tatras due to its location directly below Lomnicky peak and an easy access by cable car. There are several buildings near the tarn: Skalnata chata (chalet)an observatory and a cableway interstation. Children can go out and learn more about Tatra animals in the miniature park Svistia krajinka (Marmot village)

The sad thing about this tarn is that it has been steadily shrinking since the 1970s, despite the efforts of conservationists and several concreting actions on its very bottom. Most often, it is possible to see the tarn fully filled in the spring. In the summer months it usually dries out. One of the causes is a climate change and damaged subsoil, which were damaged during the construction of the cable car. An interesting fact is that the tarn was originally called Lomnicke pleso, not Skalnate pleso. 

Adventure tip: You can spend the night in two beautifully furnished rooms on Lomnicky peak. It is the highest situated accommodation in Central Europe. 

Velke Hincovo pleso (tarn)

The largest (20 ha) and the deepest lake (53 m) of the High Tatras lies in the Mengusovska dolina (valley). You can reach it by the blue-marked trail leading from Popradske pleso (tarn). To see the tarn in its full glory, visit it in the summer months. Then you can see up to 12 meters deep. The tarn is covered with a layer of ice for 9 months on average. 

Tip: There are three smaller lakes nearby called Hincove oka (eyes). 

Modre pleso (Blue tarn) 

It is the highest situated still (non-drying) tarn in the High Tatras, which can be found at an altitude of 2192 meters a.s.l. over Teryho chata (chalet)Maly Studeny potok (The Small cold stream) flows from the tarn, which is a tributary of the Poprad river. When you look around, you will get stunning views of Siroka veza (tower)Maly Ladovy stit (peak) and Ladovy stit (peak). 

Interesting fact: About 50 m higher lies Baranie pliesko (little tarn), available only with a mountain guide. The little tarn often dries out due to temperature differences. 


Treasures of the Low Tatras 

Vrbicke pleso (tarn)

The natural gem of Demanovska dolina (valley) can be found only a short walk from the well-known ski resort Jasna, more precisely 15 minutes from Biela Put parking lot. Due to its glacial origin, the tarn is similar to those in the High Tatras. The calm water in the lap of nature has been attractive in the past. In the 1960speople spent undisturbed moments sailing. Unfortunately, nowadays the tarn is threatened by the rapidly growing vegetation, which could cause its extinction.

Accommodation tip: There are several hotels in the area that are worth visiting. The recently opened Hotel Posta attracts guests with its individual approach. Jasna Chalets, on the other hand, attract guests with their comfort and privacy with its own jacuzzi. Granhotel Jasna is ideal for families with children or skiers who want to be on the slope among the first. 


Lukove pliesko (little tarn) 

As a reward for climbing to Chopok, tourists will be pleased by Lukove pliesko. There is no path leading to this little tarn, but it is still clearly visible. Like most of the tarns in the Low Tatras, Lukove pliesko dries out during the hot months. 

Interesting fact: Lukova stream flows from this tarn into the Demanovka stream. 


  • The largest and deepesttarnof the Tatras is Velke Hincovo pleso. Taking into account the Polish side of the Tatras, the largest tarn is Morske oko. 
  • The highestsituatedstill (not drying) is Modre pleso. 
  • The most famous and most visitedtarnis Strbske pleso. 
  • The most beautiful lake of the High Tatras isZelenepleso due to its unique emerald coloring. 
  • The largesttarnof the Low Tatras is Vrbickpleso.