Europe is the second smallest continent by area and 3rd largest continent by population. Europe has a diverse geography including a number of mountain and river systems. It is also home to a number of lakes, although most of these are considered small by world standards. Despite this, Europe is home to the 14th largest lake in the world.
What is the largest lake in Europe?
The largest lake in Europe is Lake Ladoga, which is located in northwestern Russia close to the border with Finland. This lake covers an area of approximately 17,700 km2 (6,800 sq mi), which makes it the 14th largest lake by area in the world. The lake is about 219 km (139 mi) long from north to south and has an average width of about 83 km (51.5 mi). It is also one of the deeper lakes in the world with a maximum depth of 230 m (750 ft) and average depth of 51 m (167 ft). The lake has an estimated water volume of 837 m3 (201 cu mi).
The catchment area of Lake Ladoga covers an impressive 276,000 km2 and stretches into Finland. This area contains more than 50,000 smaller lakes and 3,500 rivers longer than 10km. Only 13% of the water in the lake comes from precipitation and almost all of the remaining water comes from these rivers and streams.
The second largest lake in Europe is Lake Onega, which is also located in Russia. Onega covers approximately 9,700 km2, which makes it the 18th largest lake by area in the world.
Did you know?
Lake Ladoga is part of the Volga-Baltic Waterway, which connects the Volga River with the Baltic Sea.
There have been 48 species of fish discovered in Lake Ladoga, including the endangered European Sea sturgeon. It is also home to a subspecies of Ringed Seal called the Ladoga Seal.