Ukrainians are flocking to what they call the Ukrainian Dead Sea, a saltwater lagoon in the southern Kherson region, which has turned into a recreational site due to its supposed therapeutic qualities.
Oleksandr Nikitin, a tourist from western Ukraine, came to Lemuriyske Lake to improve his health after going through surgery.
He said he felt better due to the healing effect of the lake’s therapeutic mud, in which he covered himself.
“(I have problems) with my left shoulder joint. I am raising my hand and it feels better. It does not hurt anymore. I could not raise my arm before,” he said.
According to local media, spas in Austria and Germany use mud and salt gathered at the lake in their treatments.
Aside from its purported benefits for health, the lake has earned fame thanks to its unusual pink colour, caused by blossoming of water plants which grow in its salty environment.
Tourists taking a dip cannot sink no matter how hard they try, as the lake’s salty waters keep them floating on the surface.
The lake is located around 5 kilometres to the south of the village of Hryhorivka and attracts around 10,000 tourists annually.
Local residents say the lagoon first appeared at a spot where a fighter jet crashed in the 1960s and created a hole 40 metres wide, which was later filled by the waters of the nearby Lake Syvash.
According to another legend, the lake is a remnant of the ancient Lemuriyske Sea.