Derived from the name "Leinemasch" ("the River Leine swamp" in English) - or just simply "Masch" - this artificial lake is situated south of the centre of Hanover. It spans an area of around 80 hectares in total and is hence the largest body of water in Hanover.
As early as the end of the 19th century, the plans to create Lake Maschsee were presented to the city of Hanover by the architect Theodor Unger, since the historic centre of Hanover and some city districts were regularly threatened with flooding and deluges. At the time, however, the funds to build Lake Maschsee were not available. It was not until decades later that the national socialist regime used the lake project for propaganda purposes, having hundreds of unemployed people laboriously dig out the lake basin by hand in exchange for a very meagre wage, lauding it as a "feat of the people". On 26th November 1935, the lake basin was flooded with water from the adjacent River Leine.
Today, Lake Maschsee is a popular place for water sports and recreation. It also serves as a fish farming preserve, where pike, perch and carp are fished and traditionally sold by the lakeside at Christmas and New Year.
The location has been host to the multiple week Maschsee festival since 1986, which now sees visitor numbers reach in excess of two million.