Don’t miss to visit natural phenomenon nearby Rogoznica, the center of numerous legends. It is actually a lake filled with sea water. Every thirty years the lake changes it’s colour into pink or purple and all life inside it dies. Because of these interesting emersions, people devised various theories. Aliens, dragons, witches,…

 Legend of three brothers

Dragon's Eye RogoznicaThe local legend says that three brothers used to live here. After they inherited fertile land they should divide the crops among their selves. However, one brother was blind, and other two corrupted. They decided to deceive the blind brother. They gave him one piece of dry land. Although he was blind, he could smell the deceit. He told them: “If you deceived me and divided the land wrong, the earth will open and our land will sink in the water. Then the dragon will rise from the water and swallow you.”

Next thing that happened was that land shook, cracked and the huge dragon came from within. It swallowed dishonest brothers and returned to depths of the lake. People believe that it is still there. Sometimes it’s breath poisons all living things inside a lake and smell of it can be felt all over the town.

Legend about dragon Murin and hero Aristoles

Some people believe that a dragon lived here thousand years ago. His name was Murin, son of Poseidon and Hera. He protected Rogoznica and surrounding areas from invaders and marauders. However, in return every year the people had to give him the most beautiful girl for a wife. He took them as wife, not as food, but none of the girls survived the first wedding night. One day came Aristoles, a hero who fell in love with the most beautiful girl. Her destiny was to be dragon’s wife the next day. Aristoles couldn’t let that happen so he challenged the dragon for a duel.

Gods Athena and Hephaestus interfered because they were touched by Aristoles‘s love. They forged a spear which could penetrate dragon’s skin. Aristoles’s love gave him strength and he overpowered the dragon and pierced his heart. The dragon showed his anger at gods by digging his eyes and threw them further he could. He threw one in a place which is today’s deepest point of Adriatic sea, and the other just slipped from his claws and created a pit. The pit filled with water and formed a lake.

It is believed that the lake has supernatural powers because it was created from a great and strong love of Aristoles and town girl.

Scientific explanation

Zmajevo oko RogoznicaThere are also stories from people who don’t believe in dragons or gods so there are also theories about aliens and spaceship which crashed into the lake. But there is also scientific explanation which says that the lake was created because the ceiling of the underwater cave collapsed. Then it filled with water after the last ice age and sea level increase.

The surface of the lake is green-blue colour, turning into yellow-green in the middle area. The next layer has no oxygen (9-11m depth). Here are large amounts of sulfur bacteria which make this layer purple. Deeper, more to bottom, the sea is grey-olive up to dark brown colour. Sometimes the layers mix so the water colour changes. Almost the entire lake loses oxygen and all living things die. This emersion is called “awakening of the dragon” or “boiling of the lake”. This phenomenon is a reason why the lake is researched by numerous Croatian and foreign scientists for almost 20 years.

Don’t be surprised if you see sea life animals in the lake. It is possible that they are much larger than ones living in the sea. The reason is that fishermen threw their catch into the lake only to re-catch the larger fish year later.

I hope you are intrigued with these legends and that the stories will take you to see the lake in person. I’m recommending for your vacation accommodation. If you already visited the place, please leave a comment. Can’t wait to hear your story.

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