| Peoples Republic of China|
1.724 million (2000)
| Meng Fanli ???|
| Yantai University, Ludong University, Shandong Institute of Business and Technology, Binzhou Medical College|
Yantai (Chinese: ; pinyin: ), formerly known as Chefoo or Chih-fou, is a prefecture-level city in northeastern Shandong province, Peoples Republic of 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 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 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 () 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 jun, then zhou). 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 () and, eventually, the Dengzhou Subprefecture () in the time of the Qing dynasty.
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 August 22. This decree was accompanied by the construction of the Donghai Pass (). 17 nations, including Britain, established embassies in Yantai. 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, handed over by the falling Qing dynasty, which had been defeated in the Opium War. Then with the Germans power over the whole Shandong peninsula in early 20th century, Yantai was also controlled by Germans for about 20 years. After the Germans were defeated by Allied forces in World War I, Qingdao and Yantai were handed over to the Japanese who turned it into a summer station for their Asian fleet. They also set up a trading establishment in the town. The different foreign influences that shaped this city are explored at the Yantai Museum, which used to be a guild hall. However, the colourful history has not left a distinctive architectural mark, there has never been a foreign concession, and though there are occasional grand 19th-century European buildings, most of the town is of much more recent origin. After 1949, the towns name was changed from the Chefoo to Yantai and was opened to the world as an ice-free trade port in 1984.
On November 12, 1911, the eastern division of Tongmeng Hui declared itself a part of the revolutionary movement. The next day, it established the Shandong Military Government () and, the day after that, renamed itself the Yantai Division of the Shandong Military Government (). In 1914, Jiaodong Circuit () was established with Yantai as the capital. Jiaodong Circuit was renamed Donghai Circuit () in 1925. On January 19, 1938, Yantai participated as part of an anti-Japanese revolutionary committee.
After the creation of the Peoples Republic of China, in 1950, Yantai was officially awarded city status with the outlying towns of Laiyang and Wendeng tacked on as "Special Regions" (). Wendeng was merged into Laiyang six years later, and this larger Laiyang Special Region was combined with Yantai City to become Yantai Prefecture (). Yantai is of strategic importance to Chinese 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.
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
Average mountain height is 500 meters, with the highest point at 922.8 meters on Mount Kunyu (). Hills range from 100 to 300 meters.
There are 121 rivers over 5 kilometer in length, the largest being:Wulong River ()
Dagu River ()
Dagujia River ()
Wang River ()
Jie River ()
Huangshui River ()
Xinan River ()
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.
Yantai is currently the second largest industrial city in Shandong, next only to Qingdao. However, the regions largest industry is agriculture. It is famous throughout China for a particular variety of apple and is home to the countrys largest and oldest grape winery (Changyu).
Because of its fair weather and extensive coasts Yantai is a popular summer retreat. Like many other cities in China, Yantai has improved and upgraded many tourist sites targeted at both national and international tourists. An example of these improvements is the remodeling of the beach area to better accommodate patrons.
Penglai Citys Dan Cliffs (??) is said to be the departure point of the Eight Immortals on their trip to the Conference of the Magical Peach.