In spite of the fact that Armenia has no access to the sea, it has its Blue Pearl, Lake Sevan. It is the place. where almost all Armenians head to during summer vacations.
Lake Sevan is the largest one in Armenia and Caucasus region. It is situated in the Gegharkunik Province and covers over the 1.360km2 area. 28 rivers and streams feed the lake.
Historical names of the lake include Gegharkuni, Sea of Gegham, Gelaqunis and Lychnitis.
Because of human intervention, the ecosystem of the lake drastically changed. Once it was 95m deep, had a volume of 58km3 and a perimeter of 260km.
The pride of Sevan is Sevan trout (Salmon ishkhan), which is endangered because of latest changes.
The name “Sevan” means “Black Van” and refers to the Lake of Van. When Armenians came to Sevan, it was so dark and similar to Lake Van that they named it Black Van.
Together with Lake Urmia and Lake Van Sevan was considered one of the historical lakes of Armenian Kingdom and all of them collectively referred as “Seas of Armenia”. Unfortunately, now it is the only one in the territory of today’s Armenia.
The Sevan peninsula homes a medieval monastery. The monastery of Sevanavank is built on an island and is made from three churches. The monastery was constructed in 874 by the first king of the Bagratid Kingdom, King Ashot I. This monastery is a famous cultural monument situated on the northwestern shore of the lake. Another monastery is Hayravank, located in the village of Noraduz, on the western shore of Lake Sevan. It is like a cemetery of 900 khachkars.
There are numerous beaches and resorts alongside the lake shore. They offer a wide range of activities; jet skiing, sunbathing, sailing, fishing, swimming, etc.