Sevan Lake, Armenia
Ancient relict Sevan Lake – “The Jewel of Armenia” or the “Geghama Sea” is one of the largest high-mountainous fresh water lakes in the world and the main attraction not only Gekarkunik, but whole Armenia. This nature's wonder is located in the very middle of Armenian highland in a huge mountain bowl framed with picturesque peaks at the height of 1,900 m. The lake's surface area is 940 sq km, the maximum depth - 95 m; maximum length – about 70 km, width - 30-50 km. Sevan is fed by 28 rivers but only one flows out – the Razdan. The biggest river flowing in the lake is the Mayerik.
Artanish peninsula from the north-east and cape Noraduz from the south-west divide the lake into two parts: the bigger and the smaller one which are interconnected by means of a 8-km strait.
The lake was born as the result of volcanic activities of the Geghama ridge. The eruption diked the ancient river valley about 250 thousand years ago. The resulting kettle was filled with outwash from the surrounding ridges and later with river waters.
The climate in the vicinities of Sevan Lake is terrific. No matter how hot it is in the valley high up there it is always cool. The temperature of water reaches 18-20 С in summer.
The coastline of Sevan Lake is very picturesque with its thick woods, white bare steep rocks, mountain steppes and Alpine meadows, wide bright strip of sea-buckthorn and pine trees, and pebble beaches. This beautiful landscape is added with whipped clouds – they literally touch the snow-capped mountain tops. The territory around Sevan belongs to the National Park.
One can't help admiring these breathtaking views. Besides, the mountain air there is always pure and fresh and comparable to sea breeze.
Sevan repeatedly glorified in verses and prose is enchanting indeed. Its transparent waters are capable of changing color: when it is sunny it gets turquoise, in windy weather the water turns grey, at night – silvery.
The main inhabitant of Sevan Lake is an endangered trout called “ishkhan” by Armenians. Thanks to its excellent taste the trout became the true delicacy for local gourmets. There is a special trout farm where the fish is grown for Armenian cuisine gourmet meals.
The strict and unique beauty of Lake Sevan will stay with you for a long time. All the more so it is surrounded with numerous temples created in absolutely unique style of Armenian architecture.