Baotu Spring – Culturally Important Artisan Karst

Baotu Spring is also known as Spurting Spring or Jet Spring. It is one of the culturally important artesian karst springs situated in Jinan city in Shandong province of China. This spring has been mentioned in one among 5 classics of Chinese literature, Spring and Autumn Annals. It was considered as the number one spring under heaven by Emperor Qian Long of the Qing dynasty. This spring is the most reputed among the seventy named artisan springs in the region of Jinan.

The water of these springs begins from Ordovician karst aquifer. The entire terrain in city slopes form south to north. The aquifer recharge region is situated in area of mountain to city’s couth. The springs’ recharge area covers about one thousand and five hundred square kilometres. In this, five hundred and fifty square kilometres offer direct recharge. Nine hundred and fifty square kilometres offer indirect recharge.

In total, the springs which are fed by aquifer are having a discharge of approximately three hundred thousand to three hundred fifty thousand cubic meters each day. From seventies, springs have ceased flowing many times as too much of water is taken out from aquifer for consumption by humans. It is over two hundred and seventy thousand cubic meters a day in seventies. This spring is part of a cluster of nearly twenty named springs.

 The age estimates of water propose that the origin of water is from the shallow circulation. Baotu Spring’s pool is fed by one underwater limestone water via 3 outlets. The water volume comes out of spring and can even reach high values to maximum of 1.6 cubic meters a second. The jets of spring water are supposed to reach to maximum of twenty six meters. The temperature of water is constant of eighteen degree Celsius the whole year.

There are many springs in Baotu group such as Wuyou spring, Jinxian spring, Shuyu spring, Wangshui spring, Shiwan spring, Huanghua spring, Mapao spring, Liuxu spring, Zhanlu spring, Dukang spring, Woniu spring, Dengzhou sping, and more. the existence of Baotu spring is supposed to be over three thousand years back during the period of Shang dynasty. Li Daoyuan, a geographer has described this spring in commentary on waterways classic in period of northern Wei dynasty. The current name refers mainly to gushing up of water and it dates long back to period of song dynasty. Earlier, it has various names like Lanquan and Baoliu.  

Classic Literature References

The region of this spring and surrounding springs in the whole Baotu group are well protected by a popular public park created in the year 1956. Thus park covers an area of ten and half hectares. This spring possesses a recurring subject in classic literature of China. It has been written about by many authors like Pu Songling of Qing dynasty, Zeng Gong of song dynasty and Zhao Mengfy of Yuan dynasty. It was even visited by well known emperors like Qian Long and kang Xi, who have left their inscription at this spot.

Travel Tip

Baotu Spring is in right to southwest of Jinan city centre. It is neat to Quancheng road’s west end. The opening hours are from 7am – 6pm. The admission fee is 40 Yuan.


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