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Akdamar Island

Lake Van, Van, Turkey
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93%
Ranked #1 of 17 Attractions in Van
Type: Islands, Outdoors
Owner description: This island located in the salty Lake Van is home to the Church of the Holy Cross and some Armenian...
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Attraction details
Type: Islands, Outdoors
Owner description: This island located in the salty Lake Van is home to the Church of the Holy Cross and some Armenian monastery ruins.
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67 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    47
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    3
    0
    1
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Polish first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Cammeray, NSW, Australia
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
24 attraction reviews
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2014

We visited during the week in September and had no problem with crowds. The high relief carvings on the outside of the church and the view back to the shore of the lake with mountains beyond make this a must see attraction if you are in the Van region. Don't miss the graveyard next to the church which has some... More 

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Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
4 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2014

We took the boat to the island and virtually had the whole place to ourselves. There are left over almond trees which were originally planted by the monks, and the whole place had the wonderful aroma of almonds. The church is unrestored, dirty, and dark, but is one of the most fascinating places I have visited. The history here is... More 

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Lake of Bays, Canada
Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
32 attraction reviews
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2014

Boat trip to Akdamar Island takes about 20 minutes and is beautiful. The fine stone Armenian church - Church of the Holy Cross has been restored and is spectacular with stories of the Old and New Testament carved into the exterior walls of the church. Well worth the trip!

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Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 attraction reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2014

I took gorgeous photos of Akdamar, because it was a gorgeous place to begin with. We spent an unforgettable afternoon there. If you're in Van, you HAVE to go to Akdamar.

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London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
13 attraction reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 16, 2014

The Island was so nice. you can find a historical church there. I think it is a better idea to go there when is not weekend, because during the weekend is so busy. Also, I recommend you to go there early morning, in this case you can enjoy the sun and swimming more.

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Sydney, Australia
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
11 attraction reviews
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 14, 2014

We stopped off on our journey from Van to Tatvan, to take a boat ride over to Akdamar Island and check out the church and surrounding scenery. The church is in great condition, considering its age and will definitely grab your attention. Outside you can still see original carvings that show stories from the bible. If you need to break... More 

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Tabriz, Iran
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
27 attraction reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2014

Akdamar (in local language: Akhtamar or Akhtamara) island is a very nice island with a great nature in lake Van. Akdamar church is also in the island is a very nice and wonderful historical church that makes you a different travel to Van, Turkey. nice plants grows in island. you can travel to island by this way: take a taxi... More 

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Gaziantep, Turkey
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 attraction reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2014

The island and the church (Church of the Holy Cross) are the only things worth visiting in this area. we went there on 27th of July 2014. The church is really beautiful. I think that the location of the church on the island protected it from being destroyed as other Armenian historical sites in the area (no exact information but... More 

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Russia
Top Contributor
130 reviews 130 reviews
29 attraction reviews
115 helpful votes 115 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2014

amazing island with small fortress and monastery. There is small beach with brilliantly clean water which requires longer stay)

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Warsaw, Poland
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
11 attraction reviews
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2014

Finding an Armenian church in the middle of Muslim country might be a bit surprising. Should you have a free afternoon in Van area make sure to take a ride to Akdamar Island to meet the history of the region. The church on the island is similar to those in Echmiadzin (Armenia), but currently ongoing reconstruction works prevent you from... More 

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