Bâlea Lake

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Lacul Bâlea
Bâlea Lake, October 2006
Lacul Bâlea is located in Romania
Lacul Bâlea
Lacul Bâlea
LocationFăgăraș Mountains
Coordinates45°36′07″N 24°37′01″E / 45.602°N 24.617°E / 45.602; 24.617Coordinates: 45°36′07″N 24°37′01″E / 45.602°N 24.617°E / 45.602; 24.617
Basin countriesRomania
Max. length360 m (1,180 ft)
Max. width190 m (620 ft)
Surface area4.7 ha (12 acres)
Average depth11.35 m (37.2 ft)
Surface elevation2,034 m (6,673 ft)

Bâlea Lake (Romanian: Lacul Bâlea or Bâlea Lac, pronounced [ˈbɨle̯a]; Hungarian: Bilea-tó) is a glacier lake situated at 2,034 m of altitude in the Făgăraș Mountains, in central Romania, in Cârțișoara, Sibiu County. There are two chalets opened all the year round, a meteorological station and a mountain rescue (Salvamont) station. It is accessible by car on the Transfăgărășan road during the summer, and the rest of the year by a cable car from the "Bâlea Cascadă" chalet.

On 17 April 1977. an avalanche killed 23 skiers gathered near the lake; 19 of those were high school students from the Samuel von Brukenthal National College in Sibiu. This was the deadliest avalanche ever in Romania,[1][2] with the 41st highest death toll in the world.

In 2006, the first ice hotel in Eastern Europe was built in the vicinity of the lake.[3] The hotel has opened for 15 years since then, but not during the 2019–2020 season, due to higher than usual temperatures.[4]


  1. ^ "40 de ani de la cea mai gravă avalanșă din România" [40 years since the deadliest avalanche in Romania]. Digi24 (in Romanian). 24 April 2017. Retrieved 9 June 2020.
  2. ^ Găină, Ramona (17 June 2013). "Povestea avalanșei din 1977, cea mai mare tragedie montană din România" [The story of the 1977 avalanche, the greatest mountain tragedy in Romania]. Adevărul (in Romanian). Retrieved 9 June 2020.
  3. ^ "Chill Out in The Ice Hotel at Bâlea Lac". AllTipsAndTricks.com. December 9, 2006. Archived from the original on January 6, 2009. Retrieved June 9, 2020.
  4. ^ Buciu, Laura (16 December 2019). "Motivul pentru care nu poate fi construit Hotelul de Gheață de la Bâlea Lac" [The reason why the Ice Hotel at Bâlea Lac cannot be built]. mediafax.ro (in Romanian). Retrieved 9 June 2020.

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