10 Largest Lakes In The World

Published: Jan 01, 2017 20:52

1. Caspian Sea - 371,000 km2 (143,200 sq mi)

The Caspian Sea is the largest enclosed inland body of water on Earth by area, variously classed as the world's largest lake or a full-fledged sea. It is in an endorheic basin (it has no outflows) located between Europe and Asia. It is bounded to the northeast by Kazakhstan, to the northwest by Russia, to the west by Azerbaijan, to the south by Iran, and to the southeast by Turkmenistan. The sea has a surface area of 371,000 km2 (143,200 sq mi) (not including its detached lagoon of Garabogazköl) and a volume of 78,200 km3 (18,800 cu mi).

Caspian Sea

 

2. Lake Superior - 82,103 km2 (31,700 sq mi)

Lake Superior is the largest of the Great Lakes of North America. The lake is shared by the Canadian province of Ontario to the north, the US state of Minnesota to the west, and Wisconsin and Michigan to the south. It is generally considered the largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area. It is the world's third-largest freshwater lake by volume and the largest by volume in North America. Lake Superior has a surface area of 31,700 square miles (82,103 km2), which is approximately the size of South Carolina or Austria. Its average depth is 80.5 fathoms (483 ft; 147 m) with a maximum depth of 222.17 fathoms (1,333 ft; 406 m).

Lake Superior

 

3. Lake Victoria – 69,485 km2 (26,828 sq mi)

With a surface area of approximately 69,485 km2 (26,828 sq mi), Lake Victoria is Africa's largest lake by area, the world's largest tropical lake, and the world's second largest fresh water lake by surface area, after Lake Superior in North America. In terms of volume, Lake Victoria is the world's ninth largest continental lake. Lake Victoria receives its water primarily from direct rainfall and thousands of small streams. The Kagera River is the largest river flowing into this lake, with its mouth on the lake's western shore. Lake Victoria is drained solely by the Nile River near Jinja, Uganda, on the lake's northern shore.

Lake Victoria

 

4. Lake Huron – 59,590 km2 (23,007 sq mi)

Lake Huron is one of the five Great Lakes of North America. It is shared on the east by the Canadian province of Ontario and on the west by the state of Michigan in the United States. The northern parts of the lake include the North Channel and Georgian Bay. The main inlet is the St. Marys River and the main outlet is the St. Clair. By surface area, Lake Huron is the second-largest of the Great Lakes, with a surface area of 23,007 square miles (59,590 km2) — of which 9,103 square miles (23,580 km2) lies in Michigan and 13,904 square miles (36,010 km2) lies in Ontario — making it the third-largest fresh water lake on Earth.

Lake Huron

 

5. Lake Michigan – 58,000 km2 (22,000 sq mi)

Lake Michigan is one of the five Great Lakes of North America and the only one located entirely within the United States. The other four Great Lakes are shared by the U.S. and Canada. It is the second-largest of the Great Lakes by volume and the third-largest by surface area, after Lake Superior and Lake Huron. To the east, its basin is conjoined with that of Lake Huron through the wide Straits of Mackinac, giving it the same surface elevation as its easterly counterpart.

 Lake Michigan

6. Lake Tanganyika – 32,893 km2 (12,700 sq mi)

Lake Tanganyika is an African Great Lake. It is estimated to be the second largest freshwater lake in the world by volume, and the second deepest, in both cases, after only Lake Baikal in Siberia. It is also the world's longest freshwater lake. The lake is divided among four countries – Tanzania, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Burundi, and Zambia, with Tanzania (46%) and DRC (40%) possessing the majority of the lake. The water flows into the Congo River system and ultimately into the Atlantic Ocean.

Lake Tanganyika

 

7. Lake Baikal – 31,500 km2 (12,200 sq mi)

Lake Baikal is a rift lake in Russia, located in southern Siberia, between Irkutsk Oblast to the northwest and the Buryat Republic to the southeast. Lake Baikal is the largest freshwater lake by volume in the world, containing roughly 20% of the world's unfrozen surface fresh water. With 23,615.39 km3 (5,700 cu mi) of fresh water and a maximum depth of 1,642 m (5,387 ft), Baikal is the world's deepest lake. It is considered among the world's clearest lakes and is considered the world's oldest lake — at 25 million years. It is the seventh-largest lake in the world by surface area.

Lake Baikal

 

8. Great Bear Lake – 31,153 km2 (12,028 sq mi)

The Great Bear Lake is the largest lake entirely in Canada, the fourth largest in North America, and the eighth largest in the world. The lake is in the Northwest Territories. The lake has a surface area of 31,153 km2 (12,028 sq mi) and a volume of 2,236 km3 (536 cu mi). Its maximum depth is 446 m (1,463 ft) and average depth 71.7 m (235 ft).

Great Bear Lake

 

9. Lake Malawi – 30,044 km2 (11,600 sq mi)

Lake Malawi, also known as Lake Nyasa in Tanzania and Lago Niassa in Mozambique, is an African Great Lake and the southernmost lake in the East African Rift system, located between Malawi, Mozambique and Tanzania. It is the ninth largest lake in the world and the third largest and second deepest lake in Africa. It is home to more species of fish than any other lake, including about 1000 species of cichlids.

Lake Malawi

 

10. Great Slave Lake – 27,200 km2 (10,502 sq mi)

The Great Slave Lake is the second-largest lake in the Northwest Territories of Canada (after Great Bear Lake), the deepest lake in North America at 614 metres (336 fathoms, 2,014 ft), and the tenth-largest lake in the world. It is 469 km (291 mi) long and 20 to 203 km (12 to 126 mi) wide. It covers an area of 27,200 km2 (10,502 sq mi) in the southern part of the territory.

Great Slave Lake