Hunan (UK: /hˈnæn/, US: /hˈnɑːn/;[5] 湖南) is a landlocked province of the People's Republic of China, part of the South Central China region. Located in the middle reaches of the Yangtze watershed, it borders the province-level divisions of Hubei to the north, Jiangxi to the east, Guangdong and Guangxi to the south, Guizhou to the west and Chongqing to the northwest. Its capital and largest city is Changsha, which also abuts the Xiang River. With a population of just over 67 million as of 2014 residing in an area of approximately 210,000 km2 (81,000 sq mi), it is China's 7th most populous province and the 10th most extensive province by area. Its 2018 nominal GDP was more than US$500 billion, which is among the top 30 largest sub-national economies in the world with its PPP GDP being over US$1 trillion.

Hunan Province
Name transcription(s)
  Chinese湖南省 (Húnán Shěng)
  AbbreviationHN / (pinyin: Xiāng)
Map showing the location of Hunan Province
Coordinates: 28°06′46″N 112°59′00″E
Named for,   lake
, nán  south
"South of the lake"
(and largest city)
Divisions14 prefectures, 122 counties, 1,933 townships (2018), 29,224 villages (2018)
  BodyHunan Provincial People's Congress
  CCP SecretaryXu Dazhe
  Congress chairmanXu Dazhe
  GovernorMao Weiming
  CPPCC chairmanLi Weiwei
  Total210,000 km2 (80,000 sq mi)
Area rank10th
Highest elevation
(Mount Lingfeng)
2,115.2 m (6,939.6 ft)
  Density320/km2 (820/sq mi)
  Density rank13th
  Ethnic compositionHan – 90%
Tujia – 4%
Miao – 3%
Dong – 1%
Yao – 1%
Other peoples – 1%
  Languages and dialectsChinese varieties:
Xiang, Gan, Southwestern Mandarin, Xiangnan Tuhua, Waxiang, Hakka
Non-Chinese languages:
Xong, Tujia, Mien, Gam
ISO 3166 codeCN-HN
GDP (2018 [3])CNY 3.64 trillion
USD 549.00 billion
$1.038 trillion (PPP)[3] (9nd)
 • per capita¥57,540
$ 8,341(16th)
$16,454 (PPP)
HDI (2018) 0.751[4]
high · 15th
"Hunan" in Chinese characters
Xiangɣu˩˧ nia˩˧ (fu-lã)
Literal meaning"South of the (Dongting) Lake"

The name Hunan literally means "south of the lake".[6] The lake that is referred to is Dongting Lake, a lake in the northeast of the province; Vehicle license plates from Hunan are marked Xiāng (Chinese: ), after the Xiang River, which runs from south to north through Hunan and forms part of the largest drainage system for the province.

The area of Hunan first came under Chinese rule around 350 BC, when the province became part of the State of Chu. Hunan was the birthplace of communist revolutionary Mao Zedong,[7] who became the founding father of the People's Republic of China. Hunan today is home to some ethnic minorities, including the Tujia and Miao, along with the Han Chinese, who make up a majority of the population. Varieties of Chinese spoken include Xiang, Gan and Southwestern Mandarin.

Hunan is located on the south bank of the Yangtze River. The site of Wulingyuan was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992.[8] Changsha, the capital, is located in the eastern part of the province; it is now an important commercial, manufacturing and transportation centre.[9]