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Geography of Hunan

Hunan Province is one of the most charmful provinces in China. Located in south central China, Hunan has beautiful landscapes,such as mountains, karst caves, crystal rivers, fresh water lakes, and vast plains,breathtaking canyons and gorges.On this page, VisitAroundChina will introduce Hunan Geography so that you can know a beautiful Hunan.

Hunan Position MapPosition of Hunan

Hunan, abbreviated as "Xiang", lies at 108°47' to 114°45' east longitude, and 24°39' to 30°28' north latitude; it is 667 km wide and 774 km long. As an inland province adjacent to the coastal areas, Hunan has an area of 211,800 sq km, 2.2% of the national total, ranking 11th largest in China.

Hunan is a province of China located in the middle reaches of the Yangtze River. Its position south of Lake Dongting provides it with its name, Hunan, which means "south of the lake." Hunan is also sometimes referred to as Xiang, after the Xiang River which runs through the province.Hunan borders Hubei to the north, Jiangxi to the east, Guangdong to the south, Guangxi to the southwest, Guizhou to the west, andChongqing to the northwest. The capital city of the province is Changsha.

Geography of Hunan

Hunan Province is located on the south bank of the Yangtze River (Changjiang, 长江), about half way along its length. Shanghai lies 1000 kmaway, Beijing 1200 km away, and Guangzhou 500 km away.

Hunan is situated between 109°-114° east longitude and 20°-30° north latitude. The province is surrounded on its east, south and west sides by mountains and hills, with the Wuling Mountains to the northwest, the Xuefeng Mountains to the west, the Nanling Mountains to the south, andClick here to enlarge the Luoxiao Mountains to the east. The province's numerous mountains and hills occupy more than 80 percent of its area and the plains comprise less than 20 percent of the total area. The center and northern parts are somewhat low and come together to form a U-shaped basin, open in the north and with Lake Dongting as its center.

Hunan has a total cultivated area of 3.92 million hectares, 18.5 percent of the province’s total area. Over half of the soil in the province is red or yellow earth, and nearly 20 percent of the cultivated areas are suitable for paddy planting. The province has a complete water system, fed by the Xiangjiang, the Zijiang, the Yuanjiang and the Lishui Rivers, which have a total waterway length of 2,200 km and have nearly 5,000 tributaries. These four major rivers converge together on the Yangtze River at Lake Dongting in the north of Hunan. Lake Dongting is the largest lake in the province and the second largest fresh water lake in China, with a water area of 2,691 square km. It gathers the waters of the Xiangjiang, the Zijiang, the Yuanjiang and the Lishui Rivers from the southwest, and then flows into the Yangtze River at Chenglingji.

Due to the reclamation of land for agriculture, Lake Dongting has been subdivided into many smaller lakes, though there is now a growing trend to reverse some of the reclamation, which had damaged wetland habitats surrounding the lake. Hunan's climate is subtropical, with mild winters and plenty of precipitation. January temperatures average 3 to 8 °C while July temperatures average around 27 to 30 °C. Average annual precipitation is 1200 to 1700 mm.

Please click and see the Map of Hunan Geography

Famous Mountains in Hunan

Hunan is province with many mountains. Hunan's highest mountain Huping Mountain in Shimen County, Changde, reaches an elevation of 2,009 meters, while its lowest area Huanggai Town in Yueyang is only 21 meters above sea level. The most 10 famous mountains in Hunan are as below.

▲ Langshan Mountain    ▲ Hengshan Mountain

▲ Huping Mountain

▲ Badadong Muntain

▲ Dawei Mountain

▲ Tianmen Mountain

▲ Wulei Mountain

▲ Tianzi Mountain

▲ Mangshan Mountain 

▲Xingde Mountain

Famous Lakes & Rivers In Hunan

Surrounded by mountains and hills in the east, west and south, Hunan comprises of hills and basins in the center and plains in the north. The center and northern parts are a somewhat low and a U-shaped basin, open in the north and with Dongting Lake as its center. Dongting Lake is the largest lake in the province and the second largest freshwater lake in China. Xiangjiang, Zijiang, Yuanjiang and Lishui Rivers are the four main tributaries of Yangtze River flowing through Hunan, and into Dongting Lake at Chenglingji, Yueyang City.Hunan has an extensive network of rivers, with a fresh water area covering 13,500 square kilometers.

Some of rivers and lakes have been opened as scenic spots, such as Baofeng Lake, Dongjiang Lake, Mengdong River. And they have attracted more and more toursists to visit from home and abroad in recent years.

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