List of lakes by depth

This page lists the world's deepest lakes.

Lakes ranked by maximum depthEdit

This list contains all lakes whose maximum depth is reliably known to exceed 400 metres (1,300 ft)

Geologically, the Caspian Sea, like the Black and Mediterranean seas, is a remnant of the ancient Tethys Ocean. The deepest area is oceanic rather than continental crust. However, it is generally regarded by geographers as a large endorheic salt lake.


Continent color key
Africa Asia Europe North America Oceania South America Antarctica
Name Country Region Depth Depth2/area
(meters) (feet)
1. Baikal[1]   Russia Siberia 1,642 5,387 9.22×10^−6
2. Tanganyika   Tanzania
  Democratic Republic of the Congo
  Burundi
  Zambia
Central Africa 1,470 4,823 8.1×10^−6
3. (Caspian Sea[2])   Iran
  Russia
  Turkmenistan
  Kazakhstan
  Azerbaijan
1,025 3,363 1.68×10^−6
4. Vostok[3]   Antarctica ~1000 ~3300 8.94×10^−6
5. O'Higgins-San Martín[4]   Chile
  Argentina
Aysén (Chile), Santa Cruz (Argentina) 836 2,742 2.63×10^−5
6. Malawi/Nyasa/Niassa   Mozambique
  Malawi
  Tanzania
706 2,316 4.1×10^−6
7. Issyk Kul   Kyrgyzstan 668 2,192 8.46×10^−6
8. Great Slave   Canada Northwest Territories 614 2,015 3.72×10^−6
9. Crater[5]   United States Oregon 594 1,949 8.16×10^−5
10. Matano   Indonesia South Sulawesi 590 1,936 4.61×10^−5
11. General Carrera-Buenos Aires[6]   Chile
  Argentina
586 1,923 1.36×10^−5
12. Hornindalsvatnet   Norway Vestland 514 1,686 7.2×10^−5
13. Quesnel   Canada British Columbia 511 1,677 3.13×10^−5
14. Toba   Indonesia Sumatra 505 1,657 1.5×10^−5
15. Sarez   Tajikistan 505 1,657 5.66×10^−5
16. Tahoe   United States California, Nevada 501 1,645 2.26×10^−5
17. Argentino   Argentina Santa Cruz (Patagonia) 500 1,640 1.33×10^−5
18. Kivu   Democratic Republic of the Congo
  Rwanda
480 1,575 9.24×10^−6
19. Salsvatnet   Norway Trøndelag 464 1,523 6.93×10^−5
20. Nahuel Huapi   Argentina Rio Negro, Patagonia 464 1,523 2.02×10^−5
21. Hauroko   New Zealand Southland (South Island) 462 1,516 5.82×10^−5
22. Cochrane / Pueyrredón[6]   Chile
  Argentina
Aysén (Chile)
Santa Cruz (Argentina)
460 1,509 2.55×10^−5
23. Lake Tinn   Norway Vestfold og Telemark 460 1,509 6.41×10^−5
24. Adams   Canada British Columbia 457 1,499 3.9×10^−5
25. Chelan   United States Washington (state) 453 1,486 3.9×10^−5
26. Van[7]   Turkey 451 1,480 7.36×10^−6
27. Poso   Indonesia Sulawesi 450 1,476 2.5×10^−5
28. Fagnano   Argentina
  Chile
Tierra del Fuego 449 1,473 1.77×10^−5
29. Great Bear   Canada Northwest Territories 446 1,463 2.53×10^−6
30. Manapouri   New Zealand Southland (South Island) 444 1,457 3.73×10^−5
31. Mjøsa   Norway Hedmark, Oppland and Viken 443.5 1,455 2.33×10^−5
32. Como   Italy Lombardy 425 1,394 3.52×10^−5
33. Te Anau   New Zealand Southland (South Island) 425 1,390 2.29×10^−5
34. Tazawa   Japan Akita Prefecture 423 1,387 8.31×10^−5
35. Wakatipu   New Zealand South Island 420 1,378 2.47×10^−5
36. Superior   Canada
  United States
Ontario, Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin 406 1,332 1.42×10^−6

Lakes ranked by mean depthEdit

Mean depth can be a more useful indicator than maximum depth for many ecological purposes. Unfortunately, accurate mean depth figures are only available for well-studied lakes, as they must be calculated by dividing the lake's volume by its surface area. A reliable volume figure requires a bathymetric survey. Therefore, mean depth figures are not available for many deep lakes in remote locations.

The Caspian Sea ranks much further down the list on mean depth, as it has a large continental shelf (significantly larger than the oceanic basin that contains its greatest depths).


Continent colour key
Africa Asia Europe North America Oceania South America Antarctica
Name Country Region Depth
(meters) (feet)
1. Baikal[1] Russia Siberia 744.4 2,442
2. Tanganyika Tanzania, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Burundi, Zambia Africa 570 1,870
3. Vostok[3][8] Antarctica 430 1,411
4. Crater[5] United States Oregon 350 1,148
5. Tahoe United States California, Nevada 301 989
6. Adams Canada British Columbia 299 981
7. Malawi Mozambique, Tanzania, Malawi 292 958
8. Tazawa Japan 280.0 918.6
9. Issyk Kul Kyrgyzstan 278.4 913.4
10. Kivu Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda 240 787
11. Matano[9] Indonesia Sulawesi 240 787
12. Hornindalsvatnet[9] Norway Vestland 237 778
13. Toba[9] Indonesia Sumatra 216 707
14. Karakul Tajikistan 210 689
15. Sarez Tajikistan 202 662
16. Lake Tinn[9] Norway Vestfold og Telemark 190 623
17. (Caspian Sea[2]) Iran, Russia, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan 184 604
18. Lake Teletskoye Russia 174 571
19. Ranau Indonesia Sumatra 174 571
20. Slocan Canada British Columbia 171 561
21. Como[10] Italy Lombardia 161 528
22. Azure Canada British Columbia 157.2 515.7
23. Quesnel Canada British Columbia 157 515
24. Ohrid Macedonia and Albania 155 508
25. Mjøsa Norway Hedmark, Oppland and Viken 155 508
26. Salsvatnet[9] Norway Trøndelag 154 505
27. Geneva[9] Switzerland, France 153 502
28. Singkarak Indonesia West Sumatra 149 489
29. Lake Superior United States, Canada Ontario, Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin 147 483
30. Loch Ness[9] Scotland Highlands and Islands 133 436
31. Great Central Canada British Columbia 124 407
32. Garibaldi Canada British Columbia 119 390
33. Dead Sea Jordan, Palestine, Israel 118 387
34. Titicaca Peru, Bolivia 107 351
35. Gander Canada Newfoundland 105.4 346
36. Kauhakō Crater[11][12] United States Hawaii 105 344

Greatest maximum depth by continentEdit

Greatest mean depth by continentEdit

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

Note: Lake depths often vary depending on sources. The depths used here are the most reliable figures available in recent sources. See the articles on individual lakes for more details and data sources.

  1. ^ a b Lake Baikal is also the largest freshwater lake by volume.
  2. ^ a b The Caspian Sea is generally regarded by geographers, biologists and limnologists as a huge inland salt lake. However, the Caspian's large size means that for some purposes it is better modeled as a sea. Geologically, the Caspian, Black, and Mediterranean seas are small oceans, remnants of the ancient Tethys. Politically, the distinction between a sea and a lake may affect how the Caspian is treated by international law.
  3. ^ a b c d Lake Vostok in Antarctica is a subglacial lake with a depth ranging from 400 to more than 900 meters.
  4. ^ *CECS, Depth sounding of Lake O'Higgins/San Martín[permanent dead link]
  5. ^ a b Crater Lake in Oregon has a maximum depth of 594m, based on its USGS benchmark surface elevation of 1883m. The US National Park Service publishes different values (1881m for surface elevation, and 592m for the maximum depth). The technical basis of the values determined by the USGS is documented in   Bacon, C. R.; Gardner, J. V.; Mayer, L. A.; Buktenica, M. W.; Dartnell, P.; Ramsey, D. W.; Robinson, J. E. (2002). "Morphology, volcanism, and mass wasting in Crater Lake, Oregon". GSA Bulletin. 114 (6): 675–692. Bibcode:2002GSAB..114..675B. doi:10.1130/0016-7606(2002)114<0675:MVAMWI>2.0.CO;2. ISSN 0016-7606. OCLC 4642976847, 196656627. Retrieved 2013-07-08. (subscription required)
  6. ^ a b Murdie, Ruth E.; Pugh, David T.; Styles, Peter; Muñoz, Miguel (1999), "Heatflow, Temperature and Bathymetry of Lago General Carrera and Lago Cochrane, Southern Chile" (PDF), Extended Extracts of the Fourth International Symposium on Andean Geodynamics, Gottingen, Germany 04-06/10/1999, Paris: Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, pp. 539–542
  7. ^ Degens, E.T.; Wong, H.K.; Kempe, S.; Kurtman, F. (June 1984), "A geological study of Lake Van, eastern Turkey", International Journal of Earth Sciences, Springer, 73 (2): 701–734, Bibcode:1984GeoRu..73..701D, doi:10.1007/BF01824978, S2CID 128628465
  8. ^ Dow, Christine; McCormack, Felicity; Cook, Sue (July 17, 2016). "What Lies Beneath Antarctica's Ice? Lakes, Life and the Grandest of Canyons". The Conversation. Retrieved June 25, 2018.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g Walter K. Dodds; Matt R. Whiles (23 September 2010). Freshwater Ecology: Concepts and Environmental Applications of Limnology. Academic Press. pp. 141–142. ISBN 978-0-12-374724-2. Retrieved 22 February 2012.
  10. ^ Buzzi (1997), Documento dell'Istituto italiano di idrobiologia
  11. ^ Maciolek, J. A. (April 30, 1982), Lakes and Lake-like Waters of the Hawaiian Archipelago (PDF), Occasional Papers of Berenice P. Bishop Museum, 25[permanent dead link]
  12. ^ Coombs, C. R.; Hawke, B. R.; Wilson, L. (1990), "Terrestrial analogs to lunar sinuous rilles - Kauhako Crater and channel, Kalaupapa, Molokai, and other Hawaiian lava conduit systems", Lunar and Planetary Science Conference Proceedings, 20: 195, Bibcode:1990LPSC...20..195C

SourcesEdit

External linksEdit