a section of Hutt Lagoon from the air showing the bright pink water of the lake and a path alongside with three people walking on it

At least one of the fairytale pink lakes of Western Australia should be a must-see destination on your visit to the sunset state.

The guide below will help you choose which pink lake you should visit based on location, how reliably pink it is, and how expensive it is to get there.

Hutt Lagoon

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Hutt Lagoon from the air: a large pink lake in Wester Australia slightly inland from the beach and ocean, with a small village between the lake and beach
Image credit: westernaustralia.com

Hutt Lagoon is a very popular (and photogenic!) tourist destination in Western Australia’s Coral Coast region.

Visiting the lake is free and going for a dip is allowed, making this one of the most visitor-friendly pink lakes in WA.

This reliable, year-round pink lake is a must-see on your WA road trip. Hutt Lagoon is only a 5.5-hour drive north of Perth and one of many natural highlights on the west coast of Australia, alongside Lancellin Sand Dunes, The Pinnacles, and Nature’s Window in Kalbarri National Park.

Pink Lake Rottnest

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an aerial view of Pink Lake on Rottnest Island near Perth Western Australia. There are two bodies of water, one is deep pink and the other is pale. On either side of the water is vegetation.
Image credit: westernaustralia.com

Pink Lake on Rottnest Island is the closest pink lake to Perth, WA, but still not easy to get to, with the journey involving a ferry ride followed by a hike around the island. But don’t let that put you off, there’s so much to do and see on Rottnest Island that Pink Lake is bound to be only one of the memorable sights you’ll see on that trip!

You can see the pink salt lake during most of the year except for dry, rain-free summers when it is likely to have dried out. Although you can’t swim in the lake, the recently built wooden boardwalks on the trail give you an up-close and personal experience.

This lake is often overlooked when people talk about the pink lakes of Western Australia, but this means you can enjoy fewer crowds and more photo opportunities than the more popular options around.

Pink Lake of Quairading

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pink water in Quairading Pink Lake in Western Australia with multiple branches from trees sticking out. In the blue sky above are thin, whispy clouds.
Image credit: State Library of Western Australia via Facebook

The pink(ish) Pink Lake of Quairading is not the most reliable lake on the list. But, if you catch it on a good day you’ll be treated to a 2-tone lake with one dark pink side and one pale pink side, with a road running right through it!

The least likely time to see the pink hues is during summer when the water levels drop, but it’s not a certain bet during the rest of the year either. It’s a little unpredictable so you may want to check with the Shire of Quairading if you plan on visiting just to see the lake to avoid disappointment.

However, the local area is beautiful and the character-filled town of Quairading is a lovely place to take a wander. Most people visiting the lake are doing so on their way to Wave Rock from Perth as a welcome mid-journey break.

The Pink and Rainbow Lakes

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many small, pink, circular lakes dotted across green and yellow fields, seen from the view of a small aircraft.
Image credit: flyesperance.com

These incredible lakes are not only pink, but at different times of the year they change colour and can be anything from yellow, red, brown, or blue, giving them the accurate name of the Rainbow Lakes.

The lakes are on private land so the only way to see them is from the air, making this an expensive, but unforgettable option for a pink lake experience.

With the Esperance ‘Pink Lake’ permanently no longer pink, and Lake Hillier temporarily (we hope) no longer pink, the Pink and Rainbow Lakes are a reliable option if you’re in the Esperance region and looking to tick pink lakes off your bucket list.

Lake Hillier

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the pink water of Lake Hillier on a tree covered island in Western Australia, where a thin stretch of land separated the pink lake from the beach and ocean
Image credit: nationalgeographic.nl

Lake Hillier is not currently pink! See the full travel guide above for other options in the area.

A year-round fairytale pink lake on the remote and pristine Middle Island, 150km offshore from Esperance in Western Australia.

Lake Hillier gets its bubblegum pink colour from the salt-loving bacteria and algae in its waters. Don’t expect to spot any marine life in this extreme environment though, the pink water is eight times more salty than the nearby ocean!

Lake Hillier can only be reached by boat or plane so chartering a licensed tour operator is essential. There are several to choose from, but keep in mind that the colour looks its brightest and most vibrant when seen from the air.

Dishonourable Mention – ‘Pink Lake’ Esperance

With multiple local businesses named after this once vibrant pink lake, you’d be forgiven for thinking it’s still a popular tourist destination… think again.

Various theories fault the loss of the pink colour, including commercial salt removal, or the building of the nearby South Coast Highway, resulting in changing salinity levels (slow clap). So, disappointingly, the lake hasn’t been pink since 2017.

Fortunately for Esperance, Pink Lake was by no means the only insanely beautiful destination there, so it’s still 100% worth visiting.

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