Van City Guide

Van City Guide

The province constitutes 2.5% of Turkey’s territory with an area of ​​19,069 square kilometers. Van is Turkey’s 6th largest city in terms of area. Van was built on a very slightly sloping land, 5 km from the eastern shore of Lake Van, which is located in the hollow part of the Eastern Anatolia region covered with volcanic mountains. The altitude is about 1725 m. Lake Van, Turkey’s largest lake, is in a depression in the middle of high mountains. The surrounding high mountains form the border of Van province.

The province of Van is Agri province, Dogubeyazit, Diyadin and Hamur districts from the north; from the west, Lake Van and Patnos district of Ağrı province, Adilcevaz, Tatvan and Hizan districts of Bitlis; It is neighbor to Siirt’s Pervari, Hakkari province, Beytusebap and Yuksekova districts from the south. Iran is located in the east.

Van, like all other provinces in the Eastern Anatolia region, has an important potential in terms of history, nature, culture and winter tourism. In addition to these, there is also a potential for sea tourism in Van, where a wide variety of tourism activities can be organized in four seasons with appropriate investments.

There is 1 university in Van. Van Yuzuncu Yil University was established on 20 July 1982.

The most beautiful of cats, the Van Cat, is a purebred cat species that lives only in the Van Sea Basin. The most important feature is two different eye colors, which are the result of a genetic disorder. Some have both eyes blue; some have both eyes amber in color. It was officially registered on 22.04.2006 that the Van Cat is a property of Van.

Check out the most comprehensive Van city guide now. You will find the answers of many questions like “Places to see in Van” or “How to get to Van ?” in this guide.

City Name



Population Density

Population Growth Rate

Surface Area

Number of Districts

Postal Code

Area Code

GDP (Per Capita)


Eastern Anatolia Region


52 / km²


20,921 km²





Van, which has an extremely high tourism value, hosts tourists from many places. It is one of the most important features that there are many places to visit in the lands where many civilizations rule. It attracts a lot of tourists with the Pearl Mullet Festival held in spring. However, Van is one of the most crowded cities in terms of local population. Van districts are as crowded as the center.

The city of Van has 13 districts and municipalities. There are also 692 neighborhoods connected to these municipalities. It is possible to list the names of the districts as follows:

  • Ipekyolu
  • Ercis
  • Tuspa
  • Edremit
  • Ozalp
  • Caldıran
  • Muradiye
  • Baskale
  • Gurpinar
  • Gevas
  • Saray
  • Catak
  • Bahcesaray

You will find detailed information for all districts of Van in this guide.

Short History of Van

Van has traces of many civilizations from past to present. In this context, rock and cave paintings belonging to prehistoric times have an important place. Tilkitepe and Dilkaya Mounds and the finds obtained in various excavations show the existence of cultures that have continued uninterruptedly since the Neolithic period in the region. The Urartians were the first to raise Van to a high level of civilization. Many castles, temples, rock tombs, waterways and other earth and metal artifacts from the Urartians prove this. With the collapse of the Urartians in the middle of the 6th century BC, Van was buried in silence for about 1500 years, and no important remains from that period have survived, except for the Persian inscription engraved on the rocks on the south face of the Van Castle. This shows that the region has been used as a transit point for a long time and has not been the scene of the settlement of great civilizations. The revival of Van begins with the Vaspurakan Kingdom after the 8th century AD. Akdamar Church is the most important witness of this. Religious buildings of Christian architecture in the surrounding area have become increasingly widespread since this period and have gained an important place in the cultural heritage of the region. The region, which was the scene of Turkish raids since the beginning of the 11th century, came under the domination of the Seljuks with the Battle of Manzikert, and Turkish-Islamic works began to be seen with the Seljuks, followed by the dominance of other Turkish states. After the Seljuks, Van and its surroundings were dominated by İlhanlı, Karakoyunlu, Akkoyunlu, Safavid and Ottoman states and dynasties. The dark days that started with the invasion of the Russians and the uprising of the Armenians in the First World War, which started in 1914, lasted until April 2, 1918.

If you are looking for real estate for sale in Van or real estate for rent in Van, you are on the right page. In recent years, the real estate sector is growing in Van. Van is one of the leading agricultural, commercial and cultural centers of Turkey. The fact that the city is the nineth largest metropolitan area in Turkey increases the value of the residences. Also, Van is the nineth biggest city of Turkey in terms of population. The population of Van is growing every year with migration to work for agricultural and industrial sectors in the city . So, the city much more attractive and preferred for branded housing manufacturers. It is possible to see housing projects of various construction brands in most parts of the city. In Van, where branded housing projects increase, housing prices are valued and rising accordingly.

Do you want to get detailed information about hospitals in Van? If you’re, our special health guide will be helpful for you. In Van, there are 4 state and 3 private hospitals. Almost all districts have hospitals in different regions of the city. You can get high-quality health services in many health instutitions in Van.

Being one of the most developed and largest cities of the Eastern Anatolia Region, Van has a deep-rooted heritage. Founded in the lands ruled by the Urartians, Van is located on an important transit route connecting Anatolia with Iran and Central Asia. The means of transportation you prefer to go to Van will vary depending on which city in Turkey and how you will go.

Transportation to Van can be provided by highway, as well as by air and rail. To reach Van faster, you can choose Van Ferit Melen Airport, which is 8 km away from the city center.

You will find the answers of the “Best places to visit in Van” or “Top 10 things to do and see in Van” questions in this guide. Choose your destination, click on the guide and start discovering Van deeply now.

In the city of Van, there is a place that will attract the attention of every visitor. It is possible to reach historical artifacts, natural beauties and valuable visual feasts. Getting to know the city of Van, which has these values, will give its visitors good feelings. With these features, it is seen as one of the most valuable cities of the Eastern Anatolia region.

With many points worth seeing in the city of Van, visitors are offered a full excursion. At every point in the list of places to visit in Van, it gives its visitors the opportunity to have a pleasant time.

In addition to many natural beauties and historical monuments such as Van Castle, Akdamar Island and Church, Lake Van, Hoşap Castle, Muradiye Waterfall, you can also see museums and mosques if you wish. If you need a more detailed travel guide, there are many places to visit on our site…


Ece Nagihan

Hi, I'm Ece. I am a writer for Expat Guide Turkey and I strive to create the best content for you. To contact me, you can send an e-mail to Happy reading!

One Comment

  1. I will be in Van this weekend, arriving 09:30 Saturday morning, 10 December, leaving next day, Sunday, 11 December at 16:00. I would like a day tour in the city, ride the ferry to Tatvan (if running!) and possibly a tour on Sunday morning, the 11th December.
    Do you perhaps know of people who could put something together for me?
    I know this is short notice, but if you can assist, I would very much appreciate it!
    Thanks very much and looking forward to hearing from you.
    Best regards,
    Tom Kennedy

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