The crescent-shaped lake in China is a fascinating wonder of nature, a miniature oasis with crystal clear emerald water surrounded by magnificent sand dunes.
The Crescent Moon Lake or Yueyaquan is a crescent-shaped lake in an oasis, 6 km south of the city of Dunhuang in Gansu Province, China. The dunes around Yueyaquan Lake as it was called in the Qing Dynasty, reached a relative height of 250 meters. This national scenic spot has become a popular tourist attraction.
The Lake’s emerald water is clear and pristine, clashing pleasantly with the desolate terrain surrounding it. It is about 100 meters long from north to south, and 25 meters wide from east to west. Along the side of Crescent Lake is a traditional red sandstone pagoda with a street lined with souvenir stalls which leads up from the entrance to the complex.
Many tourists ride camels here, guided by a local camel escort, to get to the summit of the sand dunes. At the dunes, a popular activity is to ride sleds down the sand slopes. There are also all-terrain vehicle rides, helicopter tour, and other sand adventures.
China’s geological wonder has existed for thousands of years, and it has never been swallowed up by the desert, even in the harshest of summers. This natural phenomenon keeps the sand dunes and spring in a harmonious and almost paradoxical existence. In 2006, the local and central government started to refill the lake and restore its depth, as it was shrinking fast due to increasing desertification in the region.