Saturday, September 13, 2008

Xiang River

The Xiang River , in older transliterations as the Siang River or Hsiang River, is a river in southern China. The river gave Hunan its Chinese abbreviation, the same as ''Xiang'' .


Originating from Haiyang Mountain in of Guangxi, the Xiang is the largest river in Hunan and one of the largest of Yangtze River. It is 856- long and 670-km of it is in Hunan. People say the Xiang and the Lijiang River share the same origination because of connecting the two rivers of the Lingqu Canal that it is located in Xing'an county, and 70 per centage of water in Lingqu flows in the Xiang and 30 percent flows in the Lijiang.

The river passes places such as , , and , Yongzhou, , Hengyang, Zhuzhou, Xiangtan, Changsha, , , and empties into Lake Dongting, where it connects to the Yangtze. The Xiang has 2,157 branches and covers 9,460,000 , and 8,530,000 km? are in Hunan .

* The Xiao River flows into the Xiang near Changsha
* The Zheng River converges with the Xiang in Chengbei District , Hengyang


The river is said to be protected by two goddesses, the Xiang Consorts : Ehuang and Nüying .

They were the wives of the mystical ruler, . Unable to bear the pain of their husband's death, they committed suicide in this river. The spots on the dotted Xiang River bamboos , also known as Xiang Consorts Bamboo , are said to be the drops of the consorts. These bamboos are also known as Marked Bamboos or Tear Bamboos .

The people of the Warring States Period worshipped these Xiang Water Goddesses . The poet Qu Yuan wrote a poem called ''Ladies Xiang'' documented the songs of the rituals.

On June 14, 1919, young Mao Zedong found ''The Shian Kian Weekly Review'' to publicize Marxism theorem in Changsha.

The character Shi Xiangyun from the Chinese novel ''Dream of the Red Chamber'' takes the first character of her given name from this river.

Major cities along the river


West Guan Yong

West Guan Yong is a river located in the west of the city of Guangzhou, and is about five kilometers long, divided into two branches, the Upper West Guan Yong and the Lower West Guan Yong. Because of urban development, it has all been converted into .

During the reigh of Wanli Emperor of the Ming Dynasty, can sail along West Guan Yong up to Qingyun Bridge , which is today's Qingyun Li, Taoshayou, and Wanzhong Li. Since the Qing Dynasty, Daguan River, which is connected to West Guan Yong, has silted up to Guilan . In 1810, Qingyun Li, Taoshadang, and Wanzhong Li went into land. Daguan River is ended at 14-Pu Pier, today's in Ruixing Li. According to the 1872 ''Nanhai County Zhi'', Ruixing Li had gone into land by siltation, and the Daguan River goes only to Guangya Li. Further in 1954 only the waterway in the west of Milk Bridge remains.

Wei River

The Wei River is a river in west-central China and is the largest tributary of the Yellow River. The source of the Wei River is close to Weiyuan County in Gansu province. Weiyuan literally means "Wei's source". At its source, it is less than 200 kilometres from the Yellow River at Lanzhou. However, due to the sharp turn north the Yellow River takes in Lanzhou, the Wei and the Yellow Rivers do not meet for more than 2000 km further along the Yellow River's course. In a direct line, its source lies 700 kilometres west of the main city along its course, Xi'an in the Shaanxi province. The length of the river is 818 kilometres and the area drained covers 135.000 km? Its valley was one of the early cradles of Chinese civilisation, along which the capitals of the , , and were situated. The area in Dingxi City, Gansu Province, around its headwaters, has numerous stone age sites from various early cultures. In September of 2003 extensive rainfall led to flooding that caused over 30 fatalities, and temporarily displaced over 300,000 persons. Ecological aspects of the Wei River have been examined with respect to flow rates in the Wei River.


The headwaters of the Wei River are notable in the ancient history of the Northern Silk Road, one of four "Silk Roads" of antiquity. According to C. Michael Hogan, the Chinese segment of the Northern Silk Road is "the northernmost route of some 2600 kilometres, which connects the ancient Chinese capital of Xian to the west via the Chinese cities of Baoji, Tianshui , Lanzhou, Dunhuang, over the Wushao Ling Pass to Wuwei and emerging in Kashgar, China before linking to ancient Parthia. This route traverses the provinces of Shaanxi and Gansu as well as the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. This most northern of the Silk Roads is characterised by its looping north of the Taklamakan Desert."

The Wei Valley is likely the earliest center of Chinese civilisation, and also the location of China's first major irrigation works.

Wei River (Shandong)

The Wei River of Shandong Province is a watercourse that meets the at Linqing in northwest Shandong province. It more or less parallels the Yellow River at some distance for a few miles. This river is a smaller different river from another watercourse in China named the ''Wei River''.

Ussuri River

The Ussuri River is a river in the east of Northeast China and south of the Russian Far East. It rises in the Sikhote-Alin range, flowing north, forming part of the -Russian border based on the Sino-Russian Convention of Peking in 1860, until it joins the Amur River at Khabarovsk . It is approximately 897 in length. The area of the Ussuri is 193,000 km?. Its waters come from rain , snow and . The Ussuri River is known for its catastrophic floods. It freezes up in November and stays under the ice until April. The river teems with different kinds of fish: grayling, sturgeon, humpback salmon , chum salmon and others.

The Sino-Soviet border conflict of 1969 took place on the Ussuri River.

Also, the Ussuri is a tributary of the Amur River.

Major tributaries of the Ussuri River are:
* Muling River
* Naoli River
* Songacha River
* Arsenyevka River
* Bikin River
* Khor River
* Bolshaya Ussurka River

Tumen River

The Tumen or Duman River is a 521 km-long river that serves as part of the boundary between China, North Korea, and Russia, rising in and flowing into the Sea of Japan.

The river flows in northeast Asia, on the border between China and North Korea in its upper reaches, and between North Korea and Russia in its last 17 kilometres before entering the Sea of Japan. The river forms much of the southern border of Jilin Province in Manchuria and the northern borders of North Korea's North Hamgyong and Yanggang provinces. Baekdu Mountain on the Chinese-North Korean border is the source of the river, as well as of the Yalu River.

The name of the river comes from the word '''', meaning "ten thousand". This river is badly polluted by the nearby factories of North Korea and China; however, it still remains a major tourist attraction in the area. In Tumen, Jilin, China, a riverfront promenade has restaurants where patrons can gaze across the river into North Korea. Russian name of river is ''Tumannaya''. It means ''foggy''.

Important cities on the river are Hoeryong, Namyang and Onsong in North Korea, and in China.

Refugee crossing

The Tumen has been used for years by North Korean refugees defecting across the Chinese border. Most refugees from North Korea during the 1990s famine crossed over the Tumen River, and most recent refugees have also used it.

Although the Tumen is heavily patrolled by armed guards of the DPRK, the river is considered the preferred way to cross into China because, unlike the swift and deep Yalu River which runs along most of the border between the two countries, the Tumen is shallow and narrow. "It is easily crossed in spots on foot or by swimming," according to a 2006 article in ''The New York Times''.

Defectors who wish to cross the Tumen often ignore its pollutants and dangerous border patrol, and spend weeks if not months or years waiting for the perfect opportunity to cross.

"Long, desolate stretches of the Chinese-North Korean border are not patrolled at all," according to ''The New York Times'' article.

Refugees seldom cross the Tumen into Russia because that government patrols its short stretch of the river more actively than China, and the refugees have no large ethnic Korean community in which to hide.

Toshkan River

The Toshkan is a river in the Tien Shan mountains in the border area between and Kyrgyzstan. The Toshkan has its sources in the mountains south of the kyrgyzstani city of Naryn. It then flows towards the east and into the Xinjiang province of China. It continues east, running parallel to the Tien Shan mountains, until its confluence with the . The Toshkan is the main tributary of the Aksu.

Tongtian River

The Tongtian River is one of the five large rivers in the endorheic basin region of the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau in China. Its length is 813 kilometres, draining an area of 138,000 square kilometres. Pilgrims go to the river because it is mythical, but also it is known for its "sutra bridge" and "Gyiana Mani stones."

Suzhou Creek

Suzhou Creek is a river in China that passes through the Shanghai city centre. It is named after Suzhou, a city in neighbouring Jiangsu province which was the predominant city in this area prior to the rise of Shanghai as a metropolis.

One of the principal outlets of Tai Lake, Suzhou Creek has a length of 125 km, of which 54 km are within the administrative region of Shanghai and 24 km within the city's highly urbanized parts. The river flows into the Huangpu River at the northern end of the Bund in .


Strategic significance

Suzhou Creek has played an important role for being the demarkation line between political spheres of influences throughout Shanghai's history. After the Treaty of Nanjing forced China to open up in 1842 and Shanghai became an international trade port, the river formed the boundary between the British concession and the American settlement until both concessions were merged into the International Settlement in 1863. When the Japanese invaded Shanghai in 1937, the river formed the boundary between the International Settlement and the Japanese concession .

Trade route

Due to Shanghai's role as trade port, from the 1930s Suzhou Creek was an important shipping route, facilitating the transport of goods into the interior of China. Along the river banks, a multitude of warehouses and factories were built at this time, making the region close to the river a significant industrial area.

In the course of urbanization, local industries withdrew from the city centre, leaving the warehouses and factories abandoned. Up to this point, the river had been heavily polluted by industries as well as domestic waste water, making Suzhou Creek locally known as ''"the smelly river"'', the most polluted river in Shanghai since the 1920s.

Redevelopment and future

Since 1992, the Shanghai Municipal Government has been pursuing a redevelopment of the area. In 1998, authorities launched the Suzhou Creek Rehabilitation Project, a 12-year-program to improve the water quality, migitate flood impact, introduce wastewater and water resource management and push for urban revalitization and a higher living standard in the desolated areas along Suzhou River. In the meantime, Suzhou River is considered clean enough to host annual rowing competitions.

Originally, most old factories and warehouses along Suzhou River were set be demolished in favour of the construction of modern high-rise buildings in Shanghai's fast-developing city centre, aiming at a social and economic regeneration of the Suzhou River area. However, following initiatives of artists in the late 1990s the riverside has been designated as a protected heritage zone and many warehouses have been conserved, now providing quarters for Shanghai's flourishing art scene.

In 2002, new plans for the redevelopment of the riverfront of Suzhou Creek were approved. These plans, based upon proposals by three international firms, call for the construction of entertainment facilities and 1 square kilometre of parks along the downtown section of Suzhou Creek between and its confluence with Huangpu River, aiming to raise the commercial attractiveness of this central part of the river. New structures include shops, bars and a total of 95 greenbelts at the banks of the river, which are supposed to be planted by 2010, the time the Suzhou Creek Rehabilitation Project is completed.
While some areas already leased to investors will have to be reclaimed and old residential and industrial facilities are supposed to be replaced, authorities assert that the protection of historical buildings, especially warehouses, will be respected.

Places along the river

Due to its location in the former International Settlement, a number of landmarks from that period can be found along or close to Suzhou Creek. Following the river westward from its confluence, important or famous places include:
*Huangpu Park and the northern end of the The Bund
*Shanghai Mansions
*People's Hospital No. 1
*Suzhou Creek Art District
*Sihang Warehouse


Suzhou Creek is crossed by a number of distinctive bridges, often European in style, the most famous one being Waibaidu Bridge right at its confluence with Huangpu River.

Facilitating north-south traffic in the ever-growing metropolis, a number of new bridges are currently being constructed. Gubei Road bridge, to be opened in late 2006, will be the longest bridge over the waterway. By 2007, there will be thirty bridges spanning Suzhou Creek.

In the media

The Suzhou Creek plays a pivotal role in Lou Ye's film ''"Suzhou River"'', which shows the lives of ordinary people living in the old quarters of the northern bank of the river at the turn of the millennium, rather than showcasing modern Shanghai.

Songyuan River

Songyuan River is a river in Guangdong province, China.

Songhua River

The Songhua River is a river in Northeast China, and is the largest tributary of the , flowing about 1,927 km from Changbai Mountains through the Heilongjiang and Jilin provinces. The river drains 212,000 square miles of land. It joins the Amur at the town of . The river has a dam at , which is used for hydroelectricity production. It forms a lake that stretches 62 km upstream. Below the dam, the river flows northwest until its largest tributary, the Nen River, joins it near . The Nen River drains the northern Manchurian Plain. The river travels east until it joins the Hulan River near Harbin. Then it passes between the northern end of the eastern Manchurian mountain system and the Lesser Khingan Range. The river then flows into the Amur River valley. The river from late November until March. It has its highest flows when the mountain snow melts during the spring thaw. The river is navigable up to Harbin by medium-sized ships. Smaller craft can navigate the Songhua up to Jilin and the Nen River up to Qiqihar.

The extreme flatness of the Manchurian Plain has caused the river to meander widely over time. The result of the meandering is that the river is surrounded by a wide plain that is filled with swirls and curves, showing paths the river once took.

In November 2005, the river was , leading to a shutdown of Harbin's water supply and threats of a Russian lawsuit against China.

Cities along the river include:
* Jiamusi

Songacha River

Songacha or Sungacha is border river between Russian Federation and People's Republic of China, a tributary of Ussuri River. It is only outflow of the Khanka Lake.

It is from 180 km to 210 km in length , the area of its basin is approximately 25,600 km?.

Flora and fauna of Songacha are very rich. There is of Far East ''Nelumbo nucifera'' in river's basin.

Its Songacha's waters come from rain, snow and .

The fairway of Songacha River is border between Russian Federation and People's Republic of China.

Shen Nong Stream

Shen Nong Stream is a tributary of the Yangtze River, located in the Hubei Province of central . Originally the Shen Nong Stream watercourse consisted of a wild river traversing a tortuous alignment flanked by almost vertical limestone cliffs; however, since the beginning of the construction of the Three Gorges Dam downstream on the Yangtze, the water level has risen approximately 155 meters at the mouth of Shen Nong Stream. The lower reaches of the Shen Nong Stream are presently a torpidly flowing river, most of whose previously scenic vertical gorge is now submerged. By the completion of the dam construction in 2009, a further 20 meters of gorge will be . Shen Nong Stream is also known by its Chinese name of "Shen Nong Xi".


The banks of the Shen Nong Stream have been inhabited since at least the Han Dynasty; the primary ethnic group of the river valley has been the Thuja people. Early history of in the Shen Nong Gorge is evinced by the hanging coffins stowed in clefts on the high vertical limestone clefts; it is a puzzle to modern man as to how the heavy coffins were stowed on such steep, ostensibly inaccessible places. The coffins themselves were typically carved from a single layer section of a tree trunk, which was approximately 90 centimeters in diameter; although the lid section was split off to be separate. Some of these coffins can be seen presently from canoes traveling along the Shen Nong Stream. The coffins are typically 30 to 150 meters from the bluff top above and 25 to 70 meters above the river surface. Most commonly a coffin rests on two sturdy hewn poles that have been wedged within limestone cleft or cave to form generally level platform. Many of these coffins have been lost or destroyed due to the three Gorges Dam construction, which has led to inundation of many of these river reaches; some coffins, however, have been retrieved for cultural presentation and archeological study. For example, one such coffin was retrieved about 10 kilometers west along the Yangtze River and is preserved on display at the White Emperor's Palace, within an historical Daoist Temple situated high above the inundation level along the Yangtze.

The Shen Nong Stream Valley is also the site of a number of historical battles in Chinese history. In an early battle, Liu Bei, an emperor of the three kingdom dynasty, incinerated the fleet of Lu Xum, Marshall of the Wu Kingdom, effectively cutting off the pursuit of the latter general. This naval battle took place in the lower reaches of Shen Nong Stream in the Longchang Gorge at the Rang Kou Xi tributary.

Parrot Gully within Yingwu Gorge along the Shen Nong Xi exhibits numerous large horizontal incisions carved high on the limestone, which are vestiges of an earlier aerial plank road; moreover, this trace of earlier civilization may be a clue as to how the coffin sites were accessed via an intricate network of aerial planks. At Parrot Gully Liu Chunjum, a general of the Taiping Dynasty fought a number of battles.


The stream depth is over 155 meters at the mouth of the Shen Nong Stream, while 15 kilometers upstream the depth diminishes to its original state uninfluenced by the Three Gorges Dam, i.e. approximately 30 centimeters in depth over riffles with small rounded stones. Turbidity characteristics of the upper Shen Nong Stream are favourable with respect to most Chinese rivers, with Secchi disk measurements clear to at least 30 centimeters in depth;. The pH of the upper stream is in the range of .8.5. or slightly alkaline.

Shaksgam River

The Shaksgam River is located in the Shaksgam Valley in Baltistan, in a part of the disputed territory of kashmir claimed by the People's Republic of China. It flows along the Himalayan ridge line. Average temperature can fall below freezing. It is known mainly to climbers acsending the North face of K2. The shaksgam river is the longest flowing river at 15,000 feet above sea level.

Salween River

The Salween River rises in Tibet , after which it flows through Yunnan, where it is known as the Nujiang river , although either name can be used for the whole river. The river is 2815 km long. It then leaves China and meanders through Burma and Thailand on its way to emptying in the Andaman Sea by Mawlamyaing .

For most of its route the river is of little commercial value, as it passes through deep and is often called China's Grand Canyon. The Salween is navigable for only 89 kilometres from its mouth, and then only in the summer rainy season.

It is home to over 7,000 species of plants and 80 rare or endangered animals and fish. UNESCO said this region "may be the most biologically diverse temperate ecosystem in the world" and designated it a World Heritage Site in 2003.

The Nu people , one of the officially recognized by the People's Republic of China, are named after this river.


The Salween is the longest undammed river in mainland Southeast Asia. Proposals to build several dams along it, mainly in Burma, are controversial.

On April 1, 2004, the Chinese premier halted the construction of 13 dams on the Nu in Yunnan province.

In October, 2006, Chinese water resources minister Wang Shucheng indicated high-level disapproval of the plan to build a string of large dams on the Nu as it flows through the Three Parallel Rivers National Park in Yunnan province.

Mr. Wang said concerns related to the park - parts of which were designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2003 - as well as "downstream national interests," made it impossible to continue with the original plan. However he added that the status quo of no dams on Southeast Asia's largest free-flowing river is not an option either.

There is some controversy over the representation of local opinion in the media. Investigative journalist Liu Jianqiang found little support for the dam projects among locals, who feared they would not get adequate compensation.

The Thai and Burma governments are planning to build several dams. One is said to be larger than the widely controversial Three Gorges Dam. On April 5, 2006 the Thai and Burma governments signed a 6 billion USD agreement to build the Ta Sang dam.

Another Thai-Burma project is for the Hatgyi Dam. A feasibility survey was started in May 2006, but was abandoned until sometime in 2007, due to a military offensive by the State Peace and Development Council against Karen people in the area. The dam's builder, the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand, had hoped to have the feasibility study completed by April 2006, with construction to start in November 2007.


*Moei River
*Pai River

National Parks

The Salween river flows through the following national parks:
*Salawin National Park

Further reading

* The Nature Conservancy
* - copyright by Christophe Lienert, Geographical Institute of the University of Berne and Kunming Institute of Botany
*Wang Yongchen


Red River (Asia)

The Red River, also known as the Hong - Red, Song Cai, Song Ca - Mother River , or Yuan River , is a river that flows from southwestern China through northern Vietnam to the Gulf of Tonkin.

The Red River begins in China's Yunnan province in the mountains south of Dali. It flows generally southeastwardly, passing through ethnic minority areas before leaving China through Yunnan's . It enters Vietnam at . Once reaching the lowlands near Viet Tri, the river and its distributaries spread out to form the Red River Delta. The Red River flows pass the Vietnamese capital Hanoi before emptying into the Gulf of Tonkin.
Tonkin is the former name of the northern provinces of Vietnam and thus the eponymous body of water receiving the main river of "Tonkin".

The reddish-brown heavily silt-laden water gives the river its name. The Red River is notorious for its violent floods with its seasonally wide volume fluctuations. The delta is a major agricultural area of Vietnam with vast area devoted to rice. The land is protected by an elaborate network of dykes and .

In the 19th century, the river was thought to be a lucrative trade route to China. It was the forced opening of the Red River to European commerce that prompted the wars between France and the Vietnamese court , culminating in the conquest of Vietnam.

The and Lo River are the Red River's two chief tributaries.



*, Yunnan
*, administrative seat of Yuanyang County, Yunnan
*, Yunnan


*Ha Noi
*Hai Phong
*Nam Dinh
*Thai Binh

Qiantang River

The Qiantang River is a southeast river that originates in the borders of Anhui and Jiangxi provinces and passes through Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang province, before flowing into the East China Sea through Hangzhou Bay.

The lower stream of Qiantang River is known as Fuchun River, 285 mi long in Zhejiang province. An important commercial artery, it flows NE to the East China Sea at Hangzhou.

The river and bay are known for the world's largest tidal bore, which is up to 9 metres high, and travels at up to 40 km per hour . The tide rushing into the river from the bay causes a bore usually from 5 to 15 ft high, which sweeps past Hangzhou and menaces shipping in the harbor. It is so dangerous that no one attempting to it has managed to remain upright for more than 11 seconds.

The First Qiantang River Bridge in Hangzhou was the first steel bridge to span across a major river in China when it was built in the 1930s.

The river is also the southern terminal of the ancient that links five major rivers in China from north to south, enabling traffic north to Beijing from Hangzhou via the Canal.

The Qiantang was previously known under the names Zhe River, Luocha River, or Zhi River. It was re-named "Qiantang" in honour of the kings of Wuyue , whose extensive hydro-engineering schemes in large part ensured the prosperity of the region in later centuries.


*Puyang River

Puyang River

The Puyang River is one of the three main tributaries of the Qiantang River in Zhejiang Province , China.

At present, the Puyang River is 150 kilometers long and empties into the Qiantang River northwest of Linpu .

The gazette of Xiaoshan County states: "The Puyang River ... tends to flood easily because its catchment area is quite large, the course of the river is winding, the river bed descends in narrow channels, and the flow runs up against the incoming tide of the Qiantang Estuary.

Before the mid-15th century, the river ran east of Linpu to flow in a winding, snakelike course to the south of Xiaoshan and the northwest of Shaoxing , leaving numerous lakes along its course before emptying into Hangzhou Bay.

The frequent flooding of the Puyang River has resulted in it being called the "Little Yellow River." This is a reference to the Yellow River, also known for flooding.

The river has its headwaters in Pujiang County , a mountainous, scenic area in central Zhejiang, and runs through Zhuji , the home of the legendary beauty Xi Shi. Among the scenic sites located along or near the river are Matoushan , which has the shape of a horse's head, Nanshan with many strange rock formations, Changshan , and Guanyenshan , where legend says Yu the Great ordered the opening of a channel for the Puyang River. Some of these names appear to come from the Shanhai Jing 山海经: A Chinese Bestiary).

Pearl River (China)

The Zhu Jiang, , or Pearl River or less commonly, the Canton River, is China's third longest river , and second largest by volume . Located in the south, it flows into the South China Sea between Hong Kong and Macau. Its lower reach forms the Pearl River Delta.

The Pearl is also known as Yue Jiang . It is named after a sandy or stony island in the middle of the river called "Sea Pearl" . This island is now in the bank, due to the river's change of course.

It is formed by convergence of the Xi Jiang , the Bei Jiang , and the Dong Jiang . The river flows through the majority of Guangdong, Guangxi, Yunnan, and Guizhou Provinces, and parts of Hunan and Jiangxi, forming the 409,480 km? Pearl River Basin .

A 500 -power line, suspended from three of the tallest pylons in the world, the Pylons of Pearl River Crossing, crosses the river near its mouth.

The estuary, Bocca Tigris, is regularly dredged so as to keep it open for ocean vessels.

The Pearl River is one of the world's most polluted waterways.

In the 19th century, ships used an anchorage point in the river called Second Bar.


*Hong Kong


*Humen Pearl River Bridge

Zhujiang Brewery

Zhujiang Brewery, one of the three largest domestic breweries in China, is located on the Pearl River Delta within the city of Guangzhou.

Panlong River

Panlong River passes through Kunming City, Yunnan, China. It receives a large quantity of municipal sewage and wastewater from industrial effluent.

Ning River

Ning River is a tributary of Mei River. It originates and runs through Xingning, China.

Nen River

Nen River, also Nonni is a river in Northeast China. It is 1370 kilometres in length, and is the longest tributary of the Songhua River in Heilongjiang province, and join it near Da'an.

Major tributaries of the Nen River are:

- Gan River

- Namoer/Nemor River

- Nuomin River

- Anlun River

- Wuyuer/Nuyur River

- Chuoer River

- Taoer/Chaor River

- Huolin River

The river is prone to flooding, as occurred most recently in 1998 and 2005.

Muzat River

The Muzat River, a tributary of the Tarim River, flows in a steep river valley located north of Kucha in Xinjiang, China. Cut into its walls on its northern bank are 230 caves and grottos, the Kizil Caves archaeological site.

A large, man-made lake has been constructed near the Muzat River Kizil site. It contains 50,000 sq m of water described as "the largest swimming pool" in southern Xinjiang. However, its construction may have destroyed the possibility of future archaeological excavations for the area.

Mung Lai Stream

Mung Lai Stream is located in Laiza, Kachin State, Myanmar. The stream is coming all the way down from Yunnan Province of China and meets with Laiza Stream. It took hundreds of Kachin lives, including well-known Medical Doctor Nlam Awng in 1999 when flood called: "Mung Lai Hka Flood" suddenly broke out.

Min River (Sichuan)

The Min River is a 735km-long river in central Sichuan province, China. It is a tributary of the upper Yangtze River which it joins at Yibin . The Dujiangyan Irrigation System is located on this river.

A survey by biologist Deng Qixiang found that only 16 of the 40 species recorded in the 1950s are to be found today. The Sichuan Taimen, a protected species, has not been seen in one stretch of river, the Wenchuan, for an entire decade.

The name should not be confused with the Min River , which is written 闽江.

Min River (Fujian)

The Min River is a 577km-long river in Fujian province, China. It is the largest river in Fujian, and an important water transport channel.

The name should not to be confused with the Min River , which is written 岷江.

Miluo River

Miluo River is an important river in the Dongting Lake . It is famous as the location of the ritual suicide in 278 BC of Qu Yuan, a poet of during the Warring States period, in protest against the corruption of the era.

Originating in Xiushui county of Jiangxi province, the Miluo river is about 400 km long. It passes Pingjiang county in Hunan and empties into Dongting Lake in Miluo city. The river is formed by the confluence of the and rivers, of which the Mi river is the main branch. The two rivers become the Miluo river after joining in Daqiuwan , Miluo city.


The Mekong is one of the world’s major rivers. It is the 11th-longest river in the world, and 7th longest in Asia. . Its estimated length is , and it drains an area of . From the Tibetan Plateau it runs through China's Yunnan province, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. All except China and Burma belong to the Mekong River Commission. A South Asian regional association, Mekong-Ganga Cooperation is named after this river. The extreme seasonal variations in flow and the presence of rapids and waterfalls have made navigation extremely difficult.


The river was originally named by the local Tai peoples as ''Mae Nam Khong'' meaning "Mother-River Khong"; ''Mae Khong'' for short, meaning "Mother Khong". This was picked up and phoneticised in as ''Méigōng Hé'' for the external part, without realising this translates as "Mother-Khong River", with ''Mae-Nam Khong River'' literally translated as "Mother-River Khong River."

In English it is called "the Mekong River", but in the Tai languages it is essentially the "Khong River." Such is the case with the ''Mae Nam Ping'' in Chiang Mai which is known as the "Ping River", and the ''Tonle Sap'' in Cambodia - where ''Tonle'' translates as "Great lake or river", making the ''Tonle Sap River'' an unnecessary repetition of what is in fact the "Sap River."

In Thai, ??? is a species of crocodile; some believe this is tone-shifted from ?? or ???? , both adjectives to describe curves or meanders of a river or road.
* : ?????? ''rDza chu''
* : 澜沧江, 瀾滄江 ''Láncāng Jiāng'' , 湄公河 ''Méigōng hé''
* : ????????????? ''Mè‘kaung Myit''
* : ????????? , ??????
* : ????????? , ??????
* : ?????? ''Mekongk'', ??????????? ''Tonle Mekongk'', ???????? ''Tonle Thom''
* : S?ng Mê K?ng, S?ng L?n , S?ng C?u Long


The biodiversity of the Mekong mountains is one of the richest in the world. More than 1200 species of fish have been identified and there could be possibly as many as 1700. Fishing is a very important part of the economic activities in the area and a vital source of protein in the local diet. Estimates indicate that some 120 fish species are commercially traded but most of the fishery is based on 10-20 species.

In the Upper Mekong, the northern part of the river down to the Burma-Thai-Laos boarder, the river is relatively clear and fast flowing with the influx snowmelt guaranteeing a relatively uniform circumannual flow in the river. The water tends to be neutral, with a pH of 6.9 ranging to 8.2 and the nutrient level is low. In the Lower Mekong area the river is turbid , especially during the rainy season. Due to bank erosion the water gets a rusty-tan colour from the soil. The river temperature in the Lower Mekong varies between 21.1°C to 27.8°C and the pH fluctuates between 6.2 to 6.5. The two main biotopic areas in the river follow the division between the Upper and Lower Mekong. The fish in the fast-flowing upper reaches are dominated by different loaches , sucker catfish , hillstream loach and carp . The slower middle and lower parts of the river are dominated by species of carp , catfish and murrels .

No other river is home to so many species of very large fish. The biggest include the , which can grow up to 1.5m and weigh 70kg, the Giant pangasius , and the Mekong Giant Catfish , all three of which can grow up to about 3m in length and weigh 300 kg. All of these are in serious decline, both because of dams and flood control and overfishing.

One species of freshwater dolphin, the Irrawaddy dolphin , was once common in the whole of the Lower Mekong but is now very rare.

Among other wetland mammals that have been living in and around the river are the Smooth-coated otter and fishing cat .

The endangered Siamese crocodile is reported to occur along the Mekong but is very rare.


The difficulty of navigating the river has meant that it has divided, rather than united, the people who live near it. The earliest known settlements date to 2100 BCE, with Ban Chiang being an excellent example of that early Iron Age culture. The earliest recorded civilisation was the 1st century Indianised-Khmer culture of Funan, in the Mekong Delta. Excavations at Oc Eo, near modern An Giang, have found coins from as far away as the Roman Empire. This was succeeded by the culture Chenla state by around the 5th century. The Khmer empire of Angkor was the last great Indianized state in the region. From around the time of the fall of the Khmer empire, the Mekong was the frontline between the emergent states of and Tonkin , with Laos and Cambodia, then situated on the coast, torn between their influence.

The first European to encounter the Mekong was the Antonio de Faria in 1540; a European map of 1563 depicts the river, although even by then little was known of the river upstream of the delta. European interest was sporadic: the s and Portuguese mounted some missionary and trade expeditions, while the Gerrit van Wuysthoff led an expedition up the river as far as Vientiane in 1641-42.

The took a serious interest in the region in the mid-19th century, capturing Saigon, from Vietnamese invaders, in 1861, and establishing a protectorate over Cambodia in 1863.

The first systematic exploration began with the French Mekong Expedition led by Ernest Doudard de Lagrée and Francis Garnier, which ascended the river from its mouth to Yunnan between 1866 to 1868. Their chief finding was that the Mekong had too many falls and rapids to ever be useful for navigation. The river's source was located by Pyotr Kuzmich Kozlov in 1900.

From 1893, the French extended their control of the river into Laos, establishing French Indochina by the first decade of the 20th century. This lasted until the and Indochina Wars ended French and involvement in the region.

After the Vietnam War, the tensions between the U.S.-backed Thai government and the new governments in the other countries prevented cooperation on use of the river.


The Thai–Lao Friendship Bridge connects Nong Khai city with Vientiane in Laos. The 1170-metre-long bridge has two 3.5 m-wide lanes with an unfinished single railway line in the middle. On March 20, 2004 the Thai and Lao governments agreed to extend the railway to Tha Nalaeng in Laos

The Second Thai–Lao Friendship Bridge connects Mukdahan to Savannakhet. The two-lane, 12-metre-wide, 1600-metre-long bridge opened to the general public on January 9, 2007.

There is also a third bridge, located in Champasak province, in Laos. Unlike the Friendship bridges, this bridge is not a border crossing. It is long, and was completed in 2000 .

Cambodia has one two-lane bridge located near the city of Kompong Cham, on the road linking Phnom Penh with the remote provinces of Ratanakiri and Mondolkiri, and further away Laos.


China Western Development

Environmental concerns

The two most controversial current issues are the building of dams and the blasting of rapids.

A number of dams have already been built on the river's tributaries, notably the Pak Mun dam in Thailand. This has been criticized on grounds of cost as well as damage to the environment and to the livelihoods of affected villagers, though none have been built on the main part itself.

China is engaged in an extensive program of dam-building on the river itself: it has already completed one at Manwan, a second is under construction at Dachaoshan, and another twelve are under consideration.

Poverty stricken Cambodia is one nation that is completely dependent on the river for food and the vast majority of its fledgling economy. The annual floods provide much needed water for crops of the otherwise dry dusty land, and to refresh Tonle Sap, yet its major cities are all vulnerable to flooding. The Mekong River Commission, a panel of the region's nations, has accused China of blatant disregard for the nations downstream in its plans to dam the river in an effort to stop the dams, but to no avail. Since the building of the first Chinese dam, many species have become endangered including the Mekong dolphin and manatee, water levels have dropped as ferries get stuck, fish caught are small and the catch is less than half of before the dam, the turnover at Chiang Rai port is less than 1/4 of previous years, and crossings from Chiang Rai to isolated Luang Prabang have lengthened from 8 hours to 2 days due to inadequate water levels.

Despite all these problems, new dams planned will have significantly worse impact if carried out as planned. All nations downstream and the environment will suffer from added pollution , river blockage problems as fish cannot swim upstream to spawn, and potentially devastating very low water flow.

Other environmental concerns arise from increased water flow in some parts as well as China clears rocks and sandbars, blasts gorges, and slows water as it dams and floods other sections, and relocates peoples. Cambodia by far the most exposed, depending on a fine balance of water flow, fearing scenarios of mass famine and devastating floods, the likes of which destroyed the Angkor kingdom 700 years ago. Laos' biggest cities all hug the Mekong as does Vietnam's largest city and financial hub, Ho Chi Minh City, which would be vulnerable mostly to low flow and pollution.


* Balls of light are observable from time to time rising from the water's surface in the stretch of the river near Vientiane or Nong Khai. These are sometimes referred to as Naga fireballs. The locals attribute the phenomenon to Phaya Naga, Mekong Dragons.
* According to researchers the river houses more species of giant fish than any world river, most notably the Giant Mekong Catfish.
* The low tide level of the river in Cambodia is lower than the high tide level out at sea, and the flow of the Mekong inverts with the tides throughout its stretch in Vietnam and up to Phnom Penh. The very flat Mekong Delta area in Vietnam is thus prone to flooding, especially in the provinces of An Giang and Dong Thap , near the Cambodian border.

Mei River

The Mei River is a river in Meizhou prefecture in the eastern part of the Guangdong province in southern China. Major bridges over it include the Jianying Jinian Bridge.

Luo River (Henan)

The Luo River is a tributary of the Yellow River in China. It rises in the southeast flank of Huashan in Shaanxi province and flows east into Henan province, where it eventually joins the Yellow River at the city of Gongyi. The river's total length is 420 km.

Although not a major river by most standards, it flows through an area of great archaeological significance in the early history of China. Principal cities or prefectures located on the river include Lushi, Luoning, , Luoyang, Yanshi, and Gongyi. The Luo's main tributary is the , which joins it at Yanshi.

During the era of the Three Kingdoms, Cao Zhi wrote a famous poem to the goddess of the Luo River as an indirect expression of love for a deceased lover .

Luan River

The Luan River is a river in China. It flows northwards from its source in the province of Hebei into the province of Inner Mongolia, and then flows southeast back into Hebei to its mouth on the Bohai Sea. Its length is about 600 km. One subsidiary of the Luan River is the Yixun He, which runs through Hebei.

The largest city on the course of the river is Chengde.

Lishui River

Lishui River is a river in Hunan province of China, one of the Yangtze River's four largest in the province.

Lishui has three origination places, the norh, the middle and the south. The north one is the most important place, origination from Shanmujie of Sangzhi county in Zhangjiajie. The middle one, origination from the east side of the Badagongshan Mountain in Sangzhi and the south place, origination from Longjiazhai of Yongshun County in . The three originations join the main river in Nancha of , then runs east.

It flows into the Dongting Lake at Xiaodukou in . Its total length is 388 kilometres.

Cities along the river include

* Zhangjiajie
* Jishou
* Shimen
* Lixian
* Changde