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Prefecture-level city
Yantai Skyline
Yantai Skyline
Location of Yantai City Jurisdiction in Shandong
Location of Yantai City Jurisdiction in Shandong
Yantai is located in China
Location in China
Coordinates: 37°32′6″N 121°23′21″E / 37.53500°N 121.38917°E / 37.53500; 121.38917Coordinates: 37°32′6″N 121°23′21″E / 37.53500°N 121.38917°E / 37.53500; 121.38917
Country China
Province Shandong
County-level divisions 12
Townships-level divisions 148
Municipal seat Laishan District
 • CPC Secretary Zhang Jiangting 张江汀
 • Mayor Meng Fanli 孟凡利
 • Prefecture-level city 13,739.9 km2 (5,305.0 sq mi)
Population (2010)
 • Prefecture-level city 6,968,202
 • Density 510/km2 (1,300/sq mi)
 • Urban 2,227,733
 • Metro 2,227,733
Time zone China Standard (UTC+8)
Postal code 264000-265800
Area code(s) 535
GDP ¥435.8 billion (2010)
GDP per capita ¥62,541 (2010)
License Plate 鲁F & 鲁Y
Website www.yantai.gov.cn
YT name.svg
"Yantai" in Chinese
Simplified Chinese 烟台
Traditional Chinese 煙臺 or 煙台
Postal Chefoo
Literal meaning "Smoke tower"

Yantai ([i̯ɛ́ntʰǎi̯]; Chinese: 烟台), formerly known as Chefoo, Chih-fou (芝罘 Zhīfú) or Chi-Fu[1] is a prefecture-level city in northeastern Shandong province, China. Located on the Bohai Strait and the southern coast of the Korea Bay, Yantai borders the cities of Qingdao and Weihai to the southwest and east respectively. It is the largest fishing seaport in Shandong. Its population was 6,968,202 at the 2010 census, of whom 2,227,733 lived in the built-up area made up of 4 urban districts (Zhifu, Muping, Fushan and Laishan).

The contemporary name of Yantai came from the watchtowers constructed on Mount Qi in 1398, during the reign of the Hongwu Emperor, founding emperor of the Ming Dynasty (yan—smoke; tai—tower). The towers served to raise alarms against invasions of Japanese pirates.


The prefecture-level city of Yantai administers 12 county-level divisions, including four districts, seven county-level cities, one county, and one development zone.

These are further divided into 148 township-level divisions, including 94 towns, six townships, and 48 subdistricts.



The region was inhabited by the Dongyi people, who had established the State of Lai by the Zhou dynasty. Lai was annexed by the State of Qi in 567 BC. During the Qin dynasty, Yantai belonged to the Qi Commandery, later renamed Donglai Commandery (東萊郡) during the Han dynasty. The area was known as the Donglai Kingdom during the Jin dynasty (265–420) but later returned to prefecture status (first jùn, then zhōu). In the Tang dynasty and following it was known as the Teng-chou prefecture, part of Henan Circuit. Next, the city became the Laizhou Subprefecture (萊州府) and, eventually, the Dengzhou Subprefecture (登州府) in the time of the Qing dynasty.

A Qing dynasty postage stamp from Yantai, then known as Chefoo

In July 1858 the Chinese empire signed the Treaty of Tianjin and Dengzhou was renamed for the last time. Yantai opened its harbor for business in May 1861, but was not officially designated an international trading port until later that year on 22 August. This decree was accompanied by the construction of the Donghai Pass (東海關). Seventeen nations, including Britain, established embassies in Yantai.[2] The Chefoo Convention was signed there in 1876.

Yantai literally means "smoke tower". In the Ming dynasty, locals used wolf dung to light fires (Langyan) to warn the whole village of approaching Japanese pirates (Wokou). The city was nothing but a small fishing village until the late 19th century when it became a treaty port for the British in 1858,[1] handed over by the falling Qing dynasty, which had been defeated in the Opium War.[3] Then with the Germans' power over the whole Shandong peninsula in the early 20th century, Yantai was also controlled by Germans for about 20 years.[4] After the Germans were defeated by Allied forces in World War I, Qingdao and Yantai were handed over to the Japanese, who turned Yantai into a summer station for their Asian fleet. They also set up a trading establishment in the town.[5] The different foreign influences that shaped this city are explored at the Yantai Museum, which used to be a guild hall. However, the city's colourful history has not left a distinctive architectural mark, there has never been a foreign concession, and though there are a few grand 19th-century European buildings, most of the town is of much more recent origin.[6] After 1949, the town's name was changed from Chefoo to Yantai, and it was opened to the world as an ice-free trade port in 1984.[7]

On 12 November 1911, the eastern division of Tongmeng Hui declared itself a part of the revolutionary movement. The next day, it established the Shandong Military Government (山東軍政府) and, the day after that, renamed itself the Yantai Division of the Shandong Military Government (山東煙台軍政分府). In 1914, Jiaodong Circuit (膠東道) was established with Yantai as the capital. Jiaodong Circuit was renamed Donghai Circuit (東海道) in 1925. On 19 January 1938, Yantai participated as part of an anti-Japanese revolutionary committee.

After the creation of the China, in 1950, Yantai was officially awarded city status with the outlying towns of Laiyang and Wendeng tacked on as "Special Regions" (专区). Wendeng was merged into Laiyang six years later, and this larger Laiyang Special Region was combined with Yantai City to become Yantai Prefecture (烟台地区). Yantai is of strategic importance to China's defence, as it and Dalian, directly across the Bohai Sea from it, are primary coastal guard points for Beijing. In November 1983, the prefecture became a prefecture-level city.[8]


Moon Bay in Yantai

Yantai Region is located north-central on the Shandong Peninsula, south of the Bohai Sea, and parallel to the southern tip of Korea. It has a coast line of 909 km (565 mi). The topographical breakdown consists of:

  • 36.62% mountain
  • 39.7% hill
  • 50.23% plains
  • 2.90% basins

Average mountain height is 500 meters, with the highest point at 922.8 meters on Mount Kunyu (昆崳山). Hills range from 100 to 300 meters.

There are 121 rivers over 5 kilometer in length, the largest being:

  • Wulong River (五龙河)
  • Dagu River (大沽河)
  • Dagujia River (大沽夹河)
  • Wang River (王河)
  • Jie River (界河)
  • Huangshui River (黄水河)
  • Xin'an River (辛安河)

About 2,643.60 km2 (1,020.70 sq mi) is urbanized.

Only Qixia City is located entirely inland. All other county-level entities are coastal, with Changdao consisting entirely of islands.


Climate data for Yantai (1971–2000)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 14.6
Daily mean °C (°F) −1.2
Record low °C (°F) −12.8
Average precipitation mm (inches) 11.5
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm) 6.4 5.0 4.7 6.2 6.2 8.5 11.7 10.3 7.1 6.2 6.2 7.5 86.0
Source: Weather China[9]


Yantai is currently the second largest industrial city in Shandong, next to Qingdao. However, the region's largest industry is agriculture. It is famous throughout China for a particular variety of apple and is home to the country's largest and oldest grape winery, Changyu.[10]

Modern day Chateau Changyu, Yantai, Shandong

The county-level city of Longkou is well known throughout China for its production of cellophane noodles.[citation needed]

Industrial Zones[edit]

  • Yantai Economic and Technological Development Area

Yantai Economic and Technological Development Area is one of the earliest approved state-level economic development zones in China. It now has a planned area of 10 km2 (3.9 sq mi) and a population of 115,000. It lies on the tip of the Shandong Peninsula facing the Yellow Sea. It adjoins downtown Yantai, merely 6 kilometers away from Yantai Port, 6 kilometers away from Yantai Railway Station, and a 30-minute drive to Yantai International Airport.[11]

  • Yantai Export Processing Zone

Yantai Export Processing Zone (YTEPZ) is one of the first 15 export processing zones approved by the State Council. The total construction area of YTEPZ is 4.17 km2 (1.61 sq mi), in which the initial zone covers 3 km2 (1.2 sq mi). After developing for several years, YTEPZ is completely constructed. At present, the infrastructure has been completed, with standard workshops of 120,000 m2 (1,300,000 sq ft) and bonded warehouses of 40,000 m2 (430,000 sq ft). Up to now, owing to an excellent investment environment, YTEPZ has attracted investors from foreign countries and regions such as Japan, Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Sweden, the United States, Canada, etc., as well as domestic investors, to operate in the zone.[12]


The following is a list of prominent Yantai higher education institutions.

It houses a Korean international school, Korean School in Yantai.


Yantai Penglai International Airport provides scheduled flights to major airports in China as well as Seoul, Osaka, and Hong Kong.[13]


Yantai Ship Mast
Temple of the Sea Goddess

Penglai City's Dan Cliffs (丹崖) is said to be the departure point of the Eight Immortals on their trip to the Conference of the Magical Peach.[citation needed]

Twin cities of Yantai[edit]

See also: List of twin towns and sister cities in China[citation needed]
Country City
United States San Diego
Japan Beppu
New Zealand Tauranga
Japan Miyako
Russia Vladivostok
South Korea Gunsan
Thailand Phuket
United Kingdom Angus
South Korea Wonju
South Korea Ulsan
Sweden Örebro
Bulgaria Burgas
France Quimper
France Angers
South Korea Incheon
Hungary Szombathely
South Korea Ansan
United States Omaha
Australia Mackay Isaac Whitsunday
Spain Alcala De Henares

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Wikisource-logo.svg Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Chi-Fu". Encyclopædia Britannica. 6 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 132. 
  2. ^ "烟台概览:烟台名称源于烟台山". 19 June 2008. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  3. ^ Wang, Fujing (24 July 2006). ""烟台" 的由来". Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  4. ^ Zhou, Yingjie (24 July 2006). "开放,三次保全了近代烟台(下)". Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  5. ^ Jin, Long (24 July 2006). "东炮台现日军侵占烟台罪证 大理石上留印记(图)". Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  6. ^ Wang, Xin (24 July 2006). "郭显德:把西方文化传播到烟台". Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  7. ^ Liu, Xinguo (24 July 2006). "中国首批沿海开放城市之一—烟台(图)". Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  8. ^ "优越的地理环境及人文历史造成就旅游圣地烟台". 24 July 2006. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  9. ^ [1]
  10. ^ Will Lyons (5 April 2013). "Indulge in China's Latest Export". Wall Street Journal. 
  11. ^ RightSite.asia | Yantai Economic and Technological Development Area
  12. ^ RightSite.asia | Yantai Export Processing Zone
  13. ^ Yantai Chaoshui International Airport project

External links[edit]