The Serene Lakes of China

Taking time to relax by one of the many serene lakes in China is a great way to get rid of stress and tune into nature. Here are some of our top picks for lakes to see in China:

West Lake

Located near Hangzhou City in the Zhejiang Province, this lake has been named “Paradise on Earth” and is a UNESCO heritage site. It is known to be one of China’s top 10 attractions, and for good reason. This beautiful, charming area with an incredible landscape is only bettered by its cultural richness and history.  According to legend, a divine jewel fell to earth and thus created this shimmering wonder of a lake.

Sunset at the West Lake

In summer, enjoy the beautiful lotus flower blossoms above these crystal blue waters. If you wish to explore more of the lake, take a cruise boat and do a bit of sightseeing around the area. In the evening, head towards Nanping Hill and listen to the bells at Jingci Temple as they echo across this tranquil scene.

Tianchi Lake

This natural alpine lake is located in the XinJiang Province and sits at an altitude of almost 2000 meters (6500 feet). Its name literally translates to ‘Heavenly Lake’, and it is easy to see why. The incredible sapphire waters glisten in the sunlight and the surrounding green mountains create an incredible effect. It has been compared to being on one of the Swiss lakes.

Tianchi Lake

Rising above this placid scene is Bogda Peak. This peak is snow-covered all year round, and gives off the appearance of wearing body armor. For this reason, the Mongolians gave it its name, which means ‘God’.  If you’re looking for a little adventure during your trip to the lake, this is a place where you can climb.

Erhai Lake

This tranquil scene is set by incredible blue waters that reflect views of the majestic Cangshan Mountain. It is said that the moon and stars can be seen better from this lake, so make sure your visit includes staying after dark!

Take a boat ride out onto the lake itself and enjoy the different kinds of Bai tea that are served. You can see the different islands that are perched in the lake, and watch the fisherman as they collect what might be your dinner!

Erhai Lake

Exploring the surroundings of the lake is easily done by hiking or bicycling. There are some great bicycle trails nearby, and it is easy to rent a bicycle in the area. There are also many different historical sites to visit within close proximity, including the ancient city of Dali. Or, visit the nearby fishing villages of the Bai people and get a closer look at this tranquil culture on the lake.

Namtso Lake

This beautiful Tibetan lake is the second largest salt lake in China and has a very high elevation. The clarity of the water comes from the fact that it is mostly made of melted ice from nearby Mt. Nyenchen Tonglha, flowing down through little crooked-streams to create this mirror-like lake. The blue of the sky is seemingly absorbed by the water, making the two seem as if they were one. Taking a stroll by this lake is a great way to experience it. Horse or yak rides are also available, and this is a wonderful way to soak in the scenery of this sacred area.

Namtso Lake

If your trip hits in June or July, you may catch the Shoton Festival, also known as the Yogurt Festival.  During this time there are many grand opera performances and the ceremony of Sunning the Buddha.

Lugu Lake

This ancient, unpolluted lake sits between lush, evergreen mountains in the Yunnan Province. Taking a boat or canoe onto the lake is a great way to see it and explore the five islands that sit in the middle of the water.

rigby-island

The cultural scenery of the local Mosuo people is also interesting to see, with graceful canoes and the singing of the fishermen. To really get an in-depth view at the well-preserved culture of this minority, visit the Mosuo village and see if you can catch some of the many interesting festivals that they hold.

Lugu Lake

We hope you’ve enjoyed exploring some of the many different lakes that China has to offer. Of course, the best way to explore them is to go see them for yourself! Take in the natural beauty that these incredible places have to offer.

Learn How To Book The Cheapest Flights To China

Download FREE eBook

Follow Cez

Cez Krol

Travel blogger at eTramping
Cez lives in China like a local for the past 4 years. Apart from speaking the language, he loves to discover more about this unique country of extreme contrasts. He shares his China experiences here at Sublime China and on his blog eTramping, so go and check out what's out there for you in China.
Follow Cez