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Akdamar Island

Discover Turkey, home of Akdamar Island

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Akdamar, Island of Tolerance

Akdamar is the largest of the islands in Lake Van, located is off the shores of the district of Gevas to the south. Akdamar Island is roughly four kilometers from the shore, home to the famous Akdamar Church.

Akdamar Island

Akdamar Island is the largest island in Lake Van. Its highest point is 1912 m high. It is surrounded with steep rocks that go as high as 80 m. Its territory is 70.000 m2 and has a coastal length of 3 km. The island offers a mesmerizing view with almond trees blooming in spring months.

Akdamar Island; the island of tolerance, the church on the island is renovated and opened to prayer once a year. The island is invigorated. After sightseeing, swimmers and picnickers can enjoy themselves around the island's almond groves.

The island is located along the migration paths of several birds, most notably the white winged tern. Three islands neighbour Akdamar in Lake Van; namely, Carpanak Island, Kus Island, and Adir Island.


Akdamar Cathedral

Lake Van is home to Akdamar Island, an island with unique churches. The island was designated as a protected area due to its archaeological importance.

Akdamar Cathedral stands atop a serene island in the middle of Lake Van. The portrayal of David and Goliath is among the extensive array of bas relief carvings that adorn the external walls. Although the cathedral has been converted to a monument museum, its religious heritage is still unmistakable.

Akdamar Cathedral was renovated faithfully to its original structure between 2005 and 2007 auspices of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. The cathedral was opened for museum visits on 27 March 2007. In September 2010, Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism opened the Akdamar Church for prayer for a single time in a year.

How to Get There

Akdamar Island, which is reachable in roughly twenty minutes by boat from Gevas. There is a small pier off the shore of the island.


Akdamar Island, Turkey

Akdamar Church, Van


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