Dojran Lake, Macedonia

Dojran Lake is shared between Macedonia and Greece and covers an area of 16.6 sq miles.

The legend about the formation of Dojran Lake says that in the old times, there was a well from which the people pumped water. Whenever people filled their buckets with water, they locked the well with 9 padlocks always after they are finished.

One day a beautiful girl called Dojrana headed to the well to pump water. The boy that she loved was waiting for her near the well. After she filled her buckets with water, Dojrana forgot to lock the last padlock, distracted by the boy’s caressing. The water overflowed the well and the whole district. A lake was formed and people named it after the beautiful girl Dojrana.

The lake is shallow, rich in minerals and nutrients and with extensive reedbeds. Due to the overuse of the lake’s water for agricultural purposes, Dojran’s water was nearly drained out. The disaster was avoided after both countries took measures to replenish and sustain water levels. Frequent and heavy rainfall in later years helped restore water levels in the lake.

The southern shore became the site of the various battles between allied troops and Bulgarian troops during World War I. A monument to one of the battles and two cemeteries for Greek and British troops stand on a hill a few hundred meters south of the lake.

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