Major lakes of the world

A lake is an area filled with water, localized in a basin, that is surrounded by land, apart from any river or other outlet that serves to feed or drain the lake. Lakes lie on land and are not part of the ocean, and therefore are distinct from lagoons, and are also larger and deeper than ponds, though there are no official or scientific definitions. Lakes can be contrasted with rivers or streams, which are usually flowing. Most lakes are fed and drained by rivers and streams. Many lakes are artificial and are constructed for industrial or agricultural use, for hydro-electric power generation or domestic water supply, or for aesthetic or recreational purposes or even for other activities.

Following is the list of major lakes of the world:


LakeLocationCharacteristic features
Caspian SeaKazakhastan, Turkmenistan, Iran, Azerbaijan and RussiaLargest and third deepest lake; Largest inland water-body; and Largest saline lake
Maracaibo LakeVenezuelaa bay lake; Catatumbo lightning at the lake produces maximum lightning in the world
Michigan-Huron LakeUSA and CanadaFreshwater lake; Joined by strait of Mackinac; Largest lake if considered a single lake
Superior LakeUSA and CanadaLargest lake if Michigan-Huron considered as separate lakes;
3rd largest freshwater lake by volume
Victoria LakeUganda, Tanzania, and KenyaLargest lake in Africa and 3rd largest freshwater lake in the world
Tanganyika LakeTanzania, Burundi, Zambia, and CongoDeepest lake in Africa; 2nd oldest freshwater lake; 2nd largest lake in volume; and 2nd deepest lake
Baikal LakeRussiaDeepest and largest lake by volume in the world; largest lake in Asia if Caspian sea considered as sea
Great Bear LakeCanadaLargest lake in Canada and 4th largest in North America
Malawi (Nyasa) LakeTanzania, Mozambique and Malawi3rd largest and 2nd deepest lake in Africa
Great Slave LakeCanada2nd largest lake in Canada and deepest in North America
Erie LakeUSA and CanadaShallowest lake in North America
Winnipeg LakeCanada
Ontario LakeUSA and Canada
Balkash LakeKazakhstanhalf of the lake consists of freshwater and the other half is saltwater
Ladoga LakeRussiaLargest lake in Europe
Vostok LakeAntarcticaLargest lake in Antarctica
Onega LakeRussia2nd largest lake in Europe
Titicaca LakePeru and BoliviaLargest lake in South America
Nicaragua LakeNicaraguaLargest lake in Central America
Athabasca LakeCanada
Turkana LakeKenya and EthiopiaLargest permanent desert lake and largest alkaline lake in the world
Taymyr LakeRussia
Reindeer LakeCanada
Issyk-Kul LakeKyrgyzstan2nd largest saline lake; it never freezes while surrounded by snow-capped peaks
Urmia LakeIran
Vanern LakeSwedenLargest lake in Sweden; largest lake in European Union and 3rd largest lake in Europe
Winnipegosis LakeCanada
Mweru LakeZambia and Congo
Aral SeaUzbekistan and Kazakhstan
Great Salt LakeUSALargest salt water lake in western hemisphere
Qinghai LakeChinaLargest lake in China
Wular LakeIndiaLargest fresh water lake in India
Chilka LakeIndiaLargest saline water lake in India
NagarjunaSagar LakeIndiaLargest man-made lake in India
Khanka LakeChina and Russia
Eyre LakeAustraliaLargest lake in Australia
Ojos de Salado LakeArgentinaHighest volcanic lake
Dead SeaIsrael, Jordan and PalestineSaltiest water-body of the world; world's lowest lake
Taal LakePhilippinesfreshwater lake; Largest lake on an island
Wollaston LakeCanadaLargest bifurcation lake in the world that drains naturally in two directions
Enriquillo LakeDominican RepublicHyper-saline lake; only saltwater lake in the world inhabited by crocodiles