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Van

  • General information

    Official language: Turkish
    Time zone: UTC +3
    Currency: Turkish lira (TRY)

  • For a fan of history

    A Tilkitepe mound, that is situated by shores of the lake Wan, is the only source of information about the oldest civilization inhabiting these areas centuries ago.

  • Three times the best

    Wan is the biggest and deepest lake of turkey and the biggest soda lake in the world. Lives there only one species of fishes – the endemic one from the carp family.

  • Wan’s cats

    In the city, there is an unusual species of long-haired cat with white fur. It loves to swim and dive and has one eye blue and one eye green.

What’s worth seeing in Wan?

Situated in the eastern part of Turkey, around five kilometers from a lake with the same name, Wan is a marvelous, fertile oasis along the rocky mountains of Anatolia. The city is often referred to as the pearl of the East due to its charming landscape. It is confirmed by the old Armenian saying that goes: “Wan in this life, paradise in the nest one”.

Archaeological findings prove that today lands of Wan were inhabited already 5000 years B.C. the city can boast of long and rich history – it was a main urban area in the first century B.C. originally, it served as the capital of the Kingdom of Urartu in the 9th century, later tumultuous history made it pass from hands to hands, belonging, among others, to Alexander the Great, Seleucids, the Kingdom of Armenia, and then becoming a centre of the Ottoman Kingdom of Vaspurakan and get under the reign of Seljuks and Ottoman rulers. What is worth to see there?

It is best to start sightseeing by visiting the impressive citadel Çavuştepe from the 9th century B.C., to which lead sculptured in stone stairs. Climbing them, it is worth to pay attention to cuneiform writings from the 5th century B.C., that praise the King of Persia Xerxes. Inside there are tombs from the time of the Kingdom Urartu. In the old city of Wan, there are plenty of mosques, among others, Ulu, Hüsrev Paşa, Kaya Çelebi and Ikiz Kümbet, and the archaeological museum in the newer part of the city present findings from Urartu. In the neighborhood, you can go to trekking to the second biggest mountain of Turkey – Süphan or visit islands on the lake of Wan. A good idea is a trip to Edremit, from where there are plenty of trekking routes, also to Gevaş, where is situated a Seljuk cemetery with a lovely tomb of Halime Hatun Kümbeti from the 14th century.

How does Wan taste like? The titbit of the area is kürt köfte, balls made of bulgur and herbs. It is worth also to try milk products, especially very well-seasoned soft, brut cheese. Popular are also kebabs with liver and sucuk, a spicy sausage from beef meat. Where is it worth to eat? Local dishes are served, among others, in restaurants Kervansaray and Asiyan Ev Yemekleri.

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Alicante Van

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Alicante Van

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