The "Bloody" or Red Lake near the village of Elshitsa, Pazardzhik, has become quite a popular place to visit in the last year because of the unusual color that its waters have acquired. You can reach it after turning off the Trakia highway and shortly before entering the village you have to turn left. You can leave your vehicle at the end of the road, but think once again about whether you want to do this.
The village itself is located in a mountainous area, among the southernmost branches of Sashtinska Sredna Gora. Its old name is Arnautkyoi or Arbanasi and it was probably founded by Orthodox Albanian settlers.
Copper and pyrite ore were mined in its area. The underground mining began in 1936, and since 1999 the mine has been liquidated. As a result of the activity over the years and the pollution, however, an unusual color has been formed, combining in itself bloody red, and even yellowish-brown shades. Undoubtedly enchanting at first sight, but the warnings from the authorities are that: “Direct contact with the water surface can cause burns on the body. The health risk is high."
The fauna and flora in the vicinity have been completely destroyed, and due to the highly acidic and toxic water, the locals advise tourists not to visit the lake at all. The municipality has a plan to empty it by 2026.