The protected area “Durankulak Lake” is situated 15 km north from the town of Shabla, and about 6 km from the border between Bulgaria and Romania.
The locality was declared a protected area by Order No 123/21 February 1980 of the Council of Ministers. It covers an area of 446.54 hectares. The lake is one of the best protected seashore wetlands in Bulgaria. The preservation of more than 260 endemic, rare and protected species of plants and animals, which can be seen in the locality, is of international importance.
12 mammal species, 23 fish species, 7 amphibian species and 5 reptile species have been registered in the Durankulak lake. The lake is the only habitat of wild carp in Bulgaria, proven to date.
The greatest importance of the Durankulak lake is for bird protection. The migratory route Via Pontika passes through here, which turns it into a suitable destination for ornithology tourism. 256 bird species have been registered within the protected locality, as 92 of them are nesting birds. The species Ixobrychus minutus, Lanius minor, Aythya nyroca, Charadrius alexandrinus, etc. nest in the lake.
The Durankulak lake was declared a Ramsar site because of the populations of three species of water birds – white-headed goose, red-necked goose and green-headed goose which spend the winter here, as well as the multiple species of small cormorant and pink pelican.
The protected area “Durankulak Lake” is guarded, but access is free. It is compulsory for the visitors to comply with the established rules.