nam ngum (ນ້ຳງືມ) lake/reservoir, vientiane

Nam Ngum Reservoir is the largest water impoundment in Laos; it was created in 1971 by the construction of a dam 75m in height across the Nam Ngum River, about three km upstream from its confluence with the Nam Lik. The reservoir was conceived primarily for the production of hydro-electric power and flood control. It is fed by five rivers, the Nam Ngum, Nam Sane, Nam Ke, Nam Pat and Nam Xi, and many smaller streams rising in the surrounding hills. It overflows into the Nam Ngum River which joins the Mekong River about 60 km to the southeast. The impoundment created numerous small islands in five major island groups varying in size from about 75 ha to 500 ha. The timber was not removed from the basin before the closure of the dam and so the entire water surface is dotted with emergent dead trees. (Source: ARCBC)

The lake is situated about 80km to the North of Vientiane. The beautiful scenery over the Nam Ngum river and its green valley is enhanced by the presence of a vast, spectacular lake. This is a man-made reservoir of an hydroelectric power dam, generating most of the electricity sold to Thailand. The forests with a big variety of woods is still there on the thousands of islands dotting the lake. It is a rewarding experience to cruise around by motor-boat or spend the day or the week-end at the many bungalows or on the "floating restaurant boat" to enjoy the picturesque scenes of water, island, forests and charming fishing-villages. (Source: NTALao)

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