We took a side trip to Band-e Amir, five bright blue lakes hidden in the mountains northwest of Bamiyan. It's another bumpy ride along slivering unpaved roads in the desert. This was our first glimpse of the lakes.
The lakes are large tiered pools that spill one into the other, as can be seen in these small rivulets from the light green lake that pour into the larger bright blue one. These are the actual colors of the waters, which seem too saturated to be real.
We hiked from one side of the lakes across to the other, stopping for a brief dip in one of the shallower pools, which were extremely chilly.