Huai'an (Chinese: 淮安; pinyin: Huái'ān), formerly called Huaiyin (simplified Chinese: 淮阴; traditional Chinese: 淮陰; pinyin: Huáiyīn) until 2001, is a prefecture-level city in central Jiangsu province of Eastern China. Huai'an is situated almost directly south of Lianyungang, southeast of Suqian, northwest of Yancheng, almost directly north of Yangzhou and Nanjing, and northwest of Chuzhou (Anhui).
Huai'an is a relatively small city in Chinese terms, but it produced two of the most important people in Chinese history: Wu Cheng'en (1500–1582), Ming Dynasty novelist, author of the Journey to the West; and Zhou Enlai (1898–1976), prominent Communist Party of China leader, Premier of the People's Republic of China from 1949 till death. As of the 2010 census, the municipality had 4,799,889 inhabitants, of whom 2,494,013 lived in four urban districts. Most parts of the Huai'an city area lie in the Jianghuai Plain, whose landscape tends to be flat. There are a few hills inside Xuyi County, and the highest altitude in Huai'an is 200m. Huai'an is notable for its large number of lakes, rivers, and canals. The most famous waterways include the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal and the Huai River. Hongze Lake, the fourth largest freshwater lake in China, is to the southwest of Huai'an city. Towards the south, there are also several smaller lakes.