37°27′53″N 121°26′52″E / 37.4646°N 121.4478°E / 37.4646; 121.4478

From top, left to right: Yantai Skyline; Port in Longkou; Yantai Mountain; Three Harmony Taoism Pagoda, Taishan; Tianhou Temple; Moon Bay
Location of Yantai City Jurisdiction in Shandong
Location of Yantai City Jurisdiction in Shandong
Yantai is located in China
Location in China
Coordinates (Yantai Museum): 37°32′14″N 121°23′36″E / 37.5371°N 121.3932°E / 37.5371; 121.3932
CountryPeople's Republic of China
County-level divisions12
Townships-level divisions148
Settled as a barrack1398
Open as a trade port (CHEFOO)22 August 1861
Settled as a city19 January 1938
Settled as a prefecture level city30 August 1983
Municipal seatLaishan District
 • CPC SecretaryJiang Cheng (江成)
 • MayorZheng Deyan (郑德雁)
 • Prefecture-level city13,739.9 km2 (5,305.0 sq mi)
 (2023 census)
 • Prefecture-level city7,102,100
 • Density520/km2 (1,300/sq mi)
 • Urban
 • Metro
 • Prefecture-level cityCN¥ 1.0162 trillion
US$ 147.176 billion
 • Per capitaCN¥ 143,971
US$ 20,254.54
Time zoneUTC+8 (China Standard)
Postal code
Area code535
ISO 3166 codeCN-SD-06
License Plate鲁F & 鲁Y
"Yantai" in Chinese
Simplified Chinese烟台
Traditional Chinese煙臺
Hanyu PinyinYāntái
Literal meaning"Smoke Tower"
Former names
A Qing-era postage stamp from Zhifu ("Chefoo")
Hanyu PinyinZhīfú

Yantai, formerly known as Chefoo, is a coastal prefecture-level city on the Shandong Peninsula in northeastern Shandong province of People's Republic of China. Lying on the southern coast of the Bohai Strait, Yantai borders Qingdao on the southwest and Weihai on the east, with sea access to both the Bohai Sea (via the Laizhou Bay and the Bohai Strait) and the Yellow Sea (from both north and south sides of the Shandong Peninsula). It is the largest fishing seaport in Shandong. Its population was 6,968,202 during the 2010 census, of whom 2,227,733 lived in the built-up area made up of the 4 urban districts of Zhifu, Muping, Fushan and Laishan.


The name Yantai (lit. "Smoke Tower") derives from the watchtowers constructed on Mount Qi in 1398 under the reign of the Hongwu Emperor of the Ming dynasty. The towers were used to light signal fires and send smoke signals, called langyan from their supposed use of wolf dung for fuel. At the time, the area was troubled by the Japanese pirates (Wokou), initially raiders from the warring states in Japan but later principally disaffected Chinese. It was also formerly romanized as Yen-tai.[2]

The major district of Yantai is Zhifu, which used to be the largest independent city in the area. It was variously romanized as Chefoo[note 1], Che-foo,[2] Chi-fu,[3] and Chih-fou. Although this name was used for the city by foreigners prior to the Communist victory in the Chinese Civil War, the locals referred to the settlement as Yantai throughout.[2][3]


Moon Bay in Yantai

During the Xia and Shang dynasties, the region was inhabited by indigenous people vaguely known to the Chinese as the "Eastern Barbarians" (Dongyi). Under the Zhou, they were colonized and sinicized as the state of Lai. Lai was annexed by Qi in 567 BC. Under the First Emperor (Shi Huangdi), the area was administered as the Qi Commandery. Under the Han, this was renamed as the Donglai Commandery (). Following the Three Kingdoms period, the area was organized by the Jin as the Donglai Kingdom or Principality, later returning to prefecture status as a jùn and then zhōu. Under the Tang and during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period, it was known as Deng Prefecture and organized with the Henan Circuit. It was then organized as the Laizhou () and then, under the Qing, Dengzhou Prefecture ().

Up to the 19th century, however, the Zhifu area consisted of nothing but small unwalled fishing villages of little importance.[2] Under the Ming, these were first troubled by the "Dwarf Pirates" and then by the overreacting "Sea Ban", which required coastal Chinese to give up trading and most fishing and relocate inland upon pain of death.

Following the Second Opium War, the Qing Empire was obliged to open more treaty ports by the unequal 1858 Treaty of Tianjin, including Tengchow (now Penglai). Its port being found inadequate, Zhifu—about 30 miles (48 km) away—was selected to act as the seat of the area's foreign commerce.[2] The mooring was at considerable distance from shore, necessitating more time and expense in loading and unloading, but the harbor was deep and expansive and business grew rapidly.[2] The harbor opened in May 1861, with its status as an international port affirmed on 22 August. The official decree was accompanied by the construction of the Donghai Customs House (東海).[4] It quickly became the residence of a circuit intendant ("taotai"), customs house, and a considerable foreign settlement located between the old native town and the harbor.[2] Britain and sixteen other nations established consulates in the town.[4] The town was initially expanded with well-laid streets and well-built stone houses, even for the poorer classes, a Catholic and a Protestant church were erected, and a large hotel did business with foreigners who employed the town as a summer resort.[2]

Original German Post Office in Yantai's old town

The principal traders were the British and Americans, followed by the Germans and Thais.[note 2] In the 1870s, the principal imports were woolen and cotton goods, iron, and opium and the principal exports were tofu, soybean oil, peas, coarse vermicelli, vegetables, and dried fruit from Zhifu itself, raw silk and straw braid from Laizhou, and walnuts from Qingzhou. The town also traded Chinese liquors and sundries for the edible seaweed grown in the shallows of the Russian settlements around Port Arthur (now Dalian's Lüshunkou District).[2] In 1875, the murder of the British diplomat Augustus Margary in Tengchong, Yunnan, led to a diplomatic crisis that was resolved in Zhifu by Thomas Wade and Li Hongzhang the next year.[5] The resultant Chefoo Convention gave British subjects extraterritoriality throughout China and exempted the foreign merchants' enclaves from the likin tax on internal commerce. Its healthy situation and good anchorage made it a favorite coaling station for foreign fleets, giving it some importance in the conflicts over Korea, Port Arthur, and Weihaiwei.[5]

Lacemakers in Chefoo, 1902

Award-winning Chefoo bobbin lace was produced following the introduction of the craft by British missionaries,[6] reportedly becoming a popular export.[7] Chefoo lace was exhibited at the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair.[8]

Yantai received German economic activities and investments for about 20 years.[9] In the run-up to the First World War, its trade continued to grow[note 3] but was limited by the poor roads of the area's hinterland and the necessity of using pack animals for portage.[5] The trade items remained largely the same as before.[5] After the Germans were defeated by Allied forces in World War I, Qingdao and Yantai were occupied by the Japanese, who turned Yantai into a summer station for their Asian fleet. They also set up a trading establishment in the town.[10] 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.[11] 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.[12]

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 People's Republic of China, Yantai was officially awarded city status with the outlying towns of Laiyang and Wendeng tacked on as "Special Regions" (专区) in 1950. 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 defense, 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.[13]


Yantai (labelled as YEN-T'AI (CHEFOO) 煙台) (1953)
Map of Yantai (labeled as YEN-T'AI (CHEFOO))

Yantai is located along the north coast of the Shandong Peninsula, south of the junction of Bohai Sea and Yellow Sea and parallel to the southern coast of Liaoning. The topographical breakdown consists of:

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. The total coastline of the prefecture is 909 kilometers (565 mi).

The summits in the hill country vary from 100–300 meters (330–980 ft); the average peak in the mountainous region is 500 meters (1,600 ft), and the highest point of elevation is the summit of Mount Kunyu () at 922.8 meters (3,028 ft).

There are 121 rivers over 5 kilometers (3.1 mi) in length, the largest being:

The core of the old town of Zhifu was located above the mouth of the Yi (, Yí Hé).[2]


Yantai has a monsoon-influenced climate which under the Köppen climate classification, Yantai falls within either a hot-summer humid continental climate (Dwa) if the 0 °C (32 °F) isotherm is used or a humid subtropical climate (Cwa) if the −3 °C (27 °F) isotherm is used. Summers are hot, humid, and rainy while winters are cold and dry.

Climate data for Yantai (1991–2020 normals, extremes 1971–2010)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 15.5
Mean daily maximum °C (°F) 2.4
Daily mean °C (°F) −0.9
Mean daily minimum °C (°F) −3.4
Record low °C (°F) −12.8
Average precipitation mm (inches) 15.5
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm) 6.4 4.5 4.0 5.4 6.8 7.9 10.6 10.1 6.1 5.6 5.5 8.0 80.9
Average snowy days 10.9 6.5 2.4 0.2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2.4 10.9 33.3
Average relative humidity (%) 61 59 53 53 58 69 80 81 70 62 61 61 64
Mean monthly sunshine hours 156.0 174.2 233.5 240.4 267.7 244.1 202.0 215.4 217.0 202.8 163.4 141.7 2,458.2
Percent possible sunshine 51 57 63 61 61 56 46 52 59 59 54 48 56
Source 1: China Meteorological Administration[14][15]
Source 2: Weather China[16]


The prefecture-level city of Yantai administers 12 county-level divisions, including 5 districts, 6 county-level cities, and one development zone. (开发区)

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



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 Laiyang pear, and is home to the country's largest and oldest grape winery, Changyu.[17]

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]


Yantai derives most of its energy from a large coal power plant using bituminous coal, and fitted with coal gasification technology to minimize pollution.[18] The plant is located close to Yantai port.[19] An attempt to switch northern China from coal to natural gas resulted in shortages, and in 2017 the Chinese government implemented a new plan to convert half of northern China to clean energy for winter heating.[20] Haiyang, a city under Yantai's prefecture, is anticipated to meet its total winter heating needs with nuclear power by 2021.[21]

Industrial zones

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 and 6 kilometers away from Yantai Railway Station (not to be confused with Yantai South Railway Station).[22]

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.[23]


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

China Agricultural University and Binzhou Medical College house campuses in Yantai.

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

Chefoo School previously educated foreign children.


Yantai Penglai International Airport provides scheduled flights to major airports in China as well as Seoul, Osaka, and Hong Kong.[24] The Lancun–Yantai railway ends at Yantai.[25] The Qinggrong Intercity Railway, the first intercity high-speed railway in Shandong Province, has been put into operation, cutting the travel time of the fastest train from Qingdao to Yantai from about 4 hours and 30 minutes to about 1 hour and 15 minutes.


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] It is important to note that Penglai is around 80 km from the city centre of Yantai.

Yangma Island[26] is located in the north of Muping District, Yantai and has a large area. The climate on the island is pleasant, with no severe cold in winter and no scorching heat in summer, making it suitable for leisure and vacation. It can be called the Maldives in China. Yangma Island has a long history. It is said that Emperor Qin Shihuang raised royal horses here during his eastward tour and was named the "Royal Horse Island", hence the name of Yangma Island.

Twin towns – sister cities

See also: List of twin towns and sister cities in China

[citation needed]

Country City
Brazil Vitória
United States San Diego
Japan Beppu
New Zealand Tauranga
Japan Miyako
South Korea Gunsan
Thailand Phuket
Scotland Angus
South Korea Wonju
South Korea Ulsan
Sweden Örebro
Bulgaria Burgas
France Quimper
France Angers
South Korea Incheon
South Korea Ansan
United States Omaha
Australia Mackay
Spain Alcala De Henares

Notable people

See also: category:People from Yantai

See also


  1. ^ Postal Map Romanization
  2. ^ In 1872, 233 British vessels entered the port with 97,239 tons of cargo valued at £144,887 and 348 ships of all other nationalities entered with 149,197 tons of cargo valued at £177,168.[2]
  3. ^ Total imports and exports were valued at £2,724,000 in 1880, £4,228,000 in 1899, and £4,909,908 in 1904. The 905 vessels in 1895 had a total tonnage of 835,248; the 1842 in 1905 held 1,492,514 tons.[5]



  1. ^ "Shandong Statistical Yearbook-2016". www.stats-sd.gov.cn.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k EB (1878).
  3. ^ a b EB (1911), p. 132.
  4. ^ a b 烟台概览:烟台名称源于烟台山, QQ News (in Chinese (China)), 19 June 2008, archived from the original on 15 November 2012, retrieved 19 November 2012
  5. ^ a b c d e EB (1911), p. 133.
  6. ^ ""CHEFOO" LACE: SHANTUNG CLUNY AND TORCHON". The North - China Herald and Supreme Court & Consular Gazette (1870-1941). 19 July 1919. p. 188. ProQuest 1369871292. Archived from the original on 24 February 2023. Retrieved 24 February 2023.
  7. ^ "Lengths of bobbin lace, export goods from China". collection.maas.museum. Archived from the original on 24 February 2023. Retrieved 24 February 2023.
  8. ^ Skiff, Frederick (1904). Official Catalogue of Exhibitors, Universal Exposition of St. Louis, USA (PDF) (Department D Manufactures ed.). St. Louis: The Official Catalogue Company, Inc. p. 69. Archived (PDF) from the original on 11 June 2023. Retrieved 24 February 2023.
  9. ^ Zhou, Yingjie (24 July 2006). 开放,三次保全了近代烟台(下). Sina Finance (in Chinese (China)). Archived from the original on 19 November 2012. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
  10. ^ 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). Archived from the original on 16 April 2014. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
  11. ^ Wang, Xin (24 July 2006). 郭显德:把西方文化传播到烟台. Retrieved 19 November 2012.[permanent dead link]
  12. ^ Liu, Xinguo (24 July 2006). 中国首批沿海开放城市之一—烟台(图). Retrieved 19 November 2012.[permanent dead link]
  13. ^ 优越的地理环境及人文历史造成就旅游圣地烟台. 24 July 2006. Archived from the original on 18 April 2014. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
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  15. ^ "Experience Template" 中国气象数据网 (in Simplified Chinese). China Meteorological Administration. Archived from the original on 4 April 2023. Retrieved 12 August 2023.
  16. ^ "烟台 - 气象数据 -中国天气网". Archived from the original on 16 November 2018. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  17. ^ Will Lyons (5 April 2013). "Indulge in China's Latest Export". The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on 27 August 2016. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  18. ^ "China's Coal Future". www.technologyreview.com/. MIT Technology Review. Archived from the original on 7 September 2018. Retrieved 17 July 2018.
  19. ^ Fairley, Peter (1 January 2007). China's coal future. USA: MIT Technology review. Archived from the original on 7 September 2018. Retrieved 17 July 2018.
  20. ^ "China unveils 2017-2021 winter clean heating plan: media". Reuters. Retrieved 1 December 2020.[dead link]
  21. ^ "Haiyang nuclear plant furthers nation's green push - Chinadaily.com.cn". www.chinadaily.com.cn. Archived from the original on 30 November 2020. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  22. ^ "RightSite.asia | Yantai Economic and Technological Development Area". Archived from the original on 9 May 2010. Retrieved 6 May 2010.
  23. ^ "RightSite.asia | Yantai Export Processing Zone". Archived from the original on 10 May 2010. Retrieved 6 May 2010.
  24. ^ "Yantai Chaoshui International Airport project". Archived from the original on 8 February 2012. Retrieved 25 October 2011.
  25. ^ (Chinese) "蓝烟铁路电气化工程完工 时速提高到120公里" 齐鲁网 Archived 8 October 2011 at the Wayback Machine 30 August 2010
  26. ^ Bbkaishan (26 November 2013). "养马岛旅游简介" [Yangma Island Tourism Introduction]. 本地宝 (in Chinese). Retrieved 24 September 2023.