Chaohu Lake: China’s Fifth Largest Freshwater Lake

Chaohu Lake
Chaohu Lake

Chaohu Lake, located in the Anhui province of China, is one of the five largest freshwater lakes in China. The lake is approximately 800 square kilometers and is situated in the center of the Chaohu Basin, surrounded by the Dabie Mountains and the Huangshan Mountains. With its crystal-clear waters, diverse flora and fauna, and rich cultural heritage, Chaohu Lake is a popular destination for tourists and locals alike. In this article, we’ll explore the history, attractions, and activities available here.


The Lake has a long and storied history that dates back over 2,500 years. During the Western Han Dynasty, the lake was known as Hui Lake and was a popular destination for emperors and nobles. It was during this time that the lake gained its reputation for being a place of natural beauty.

In the early 20th century, Chaohu Lake became a center for the production of silverfish, a type of small freshwater fish that is popular in Chinese cuisine. The lake’s abundant fish population and clear waters made it an ideal location for the industry. Today, the production of silverfish is still an important economic activity in the region.


The Lake is home to several popular attractions that draw visitors from around the world. One of the most popular is Flower and Bird Island, a scenic area located on the northern shore of the lake. The island is home to a variety of plants and animals, including rare birds and fish species. Visitors can also take a leisurely walk through the flower gardens or take a boat ride to get a closer look at the island’s natural beauty.

Another popular attraction is the Ancient Huizhou Town, located on the southern shore of the lake. The town is a well-preserved example of traditional Chinese architecture and is home to several historic sites, including the Yuliang Dam, a Ming Dynasty structure that was used to control the flow of water in the lake.

The Shengjin Tower is also a popular attraction at the Lake. The tower, which is situated on the lake’s eastern shore, was built during the Tang Dynasty and has been restored several times over the centuries. Visitors can climb to the top of the tower and enjoy a panoramic view of the lake and surrounding mountains.


There are many activities available to visitors at Chaohu Lake. Boating is a popular activity, and visitors can rent boats and explore the lake’s crystal-clear waters. Fishing is also a popular activity, and the lake is known for its abundance of fish species, including silverfish, crucian carp, and black carp. Visitors can rent fishing equipment and try their luck at catching some of the lake’s prized fish.

Hiking is another popular activity, and visitors can explore the lake’s many scenic trails. The Dabie Mountains and the Huangshan Mountains provide a stunning backdrop for hikers, and there are many trails that offer panoramic views of the lake and the surrounding countryside.

In the winter, the Lake transforms into a winter wonderland, and ice skating and ice fishing become popular activities. The lake’s clear, frozen waters provide an ideal location for these winter sports.


Chaohu Lake is a destination that has something to offer everyone. With its rich cultural heritage, natural beauty, and abundance of activities, it’s a great place to visit for those interested in history, nature, and outdoor recreation. Whether you’re looking to explore ancient historic sites or simply relax and enjoy the natural beauty of the lake, Chaohu Lake is a must-see destination for any traveler.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Chaohu Lake

  1. What is the size of Chaohu Lake?
  • The Lake is approximately 800 square kilometers in size.
  1. What are some of the popular attractions at Chaohu Lake?
  • Some of the popular attractions at the Lake include Flower and Bird Island, Ancient Huizhou Town, and the Shengjin Tower.
  1. What activities are available at Chaohu Lake?
  • Visitors can enjoy boating, fishing, hiking, ice skating, and ice fishing at the Lake.
  1. What is the history of Chaohu Lake?
  • The Lake has a history that dates back over 2,500 years and was known as Hui Lake during the Western Han Dynasty.
  1. Is Chaohu Lake a popular tourist destination?
  • Yes, Chaohu Lake is a popular destination for tourists and locals alike, thanks to its natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and abundance of activities.
  1. What is the best time to visit Chaohu Lake?
  • The best time to visit Chaohu Lake is from March to November when the weather is mild and conducive to outdoor activities.
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