The concentrations of 16 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons ( 16PAHs) were measured by gas chromatography equipped with a mass spectrometry detector (GC-MS) in 56 topsoil samples around Guanting Reservior (GTR), which is an important water source for Beijing. Low to medium levels of PAH contamination (mean=394.2580.7ngg-1 dry weight (d.w.)) was evident throughout the region. In addition, localised areas of high PAH contamination near steel and cement factories were identified, with 16PAHs concentrations as high as 4110ng/g, dry weight (d.w.). There was a significant positive correlation (r2=0.570, p0.01) between total organic carbon content and 16PAHs concentrations. Phenanthrene was the predominant compound, accounting for 27.2% of the PAH concentration, followed by chrysenepyrenebenzo[a]anthracene benzo[b]fluoranthene benzo[a]pyrene. Four-ring PAH homologues (39%) were dominant. The higher proportion of 4-6 ring homologues, molecular indices, and the spatial distribution of PAH indicated that industrial discharges, incineration of wastes and traffic discharges were the major sources of soil PAHs around the water reservoir.