Van, located on the south eastern shores of Lake Van, the largest lake in Turkey, was known as Tuşpa and was the capital city of the ancient Urartian State (1000 B.C.). Van
Citadel was first built by the Urartian King Sardur I, in the 9th century B.C. It is 80 metres above the level of the lake and extends 1800 metres from east to west, and 120 metres from north to south. The city is known for its rugs, coloured with natural dyes. Silver melting has also been developed.
The world famous Van cats have two different coloured eyes and a thick white fur.
Lake Van is one of the scenic wonders of Eastern Anatolia.
Around the lake there are picturesque mountain silhouettes, coves, beaches, islands, waterfalls and also settlements which date back to ancient times. The lake is 1,720 metres above sea level. The fish in the lake are lean and extremely delicious, but they are only available in the mouths of the rivers due to the abundant soda in the main lake water. Among the islands in Lake Van, Akdamar Island is the most beautiful one. In spring, the island is blanketed in emerald green before any other place in the region.