How to get to Akhtamar Church by train?

Akhtamar Church (the Church of the Holy Cross) is located on Akhtamar Island (Akdamar in Turkish) in Van Lake within borders of Gevas district of province of Van.

The church was built between 915 and 921 AD by Architect Bishop Manuel, under the supervision of Gagik I Ardzruni, an Armenian King who reigned over the Kingdom of Vaspurakan as a vassal under the Abbasids (see more at Wikipedia). The church is in the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The Akhtamar Island is 13 km from Gevas where there’s service by boats. You can wait until boat is full, or pay for the all seats not to wait.

Tatvan is 80 km away from Gevas. There’s a main line train service to Tatvan from Ankara. Tatvan Train Station is next to Tatvan Bus Station, where you can find bus to Gevas.

Here are travel options by rail to Akhtamar Church:

Akhtamar Church by Rail

İstanbul to Akhtamar Church

Go to Pendik Train Station.

Take İstanbul-Ankara high speed train to Ankara Train Station (4.5 hrs).

Take Vangolu Express overnight train to Tatvan Station (25 hrs). Keep in mind that train is running twice a week.

Walk to Tatvan Bus Station (10 min).

Take Tatvan-Van bus to Gevas (1 hr). Tell that you’d like to get off at Akhtamar Boat Pier (9 km before Gevas).

Take boat to Akhtamar Island.

Ankara to Akhtamar Church

Go to Ankara Train Station.

Take Vangolu Express overnight train to Tatvan Station (25 hrs). Keep in mind that train is running twice a week.

Walk to Tatvan Bus Station (10 min).

Take Tatvan-Van bus to Gevas (1 hr). Tell that you’d like to get off at Akhtamar Boat Pier (9 km before Gevas).

Take boat to Akhtamar Island.

Bursa to Akhtamar Church

Go to Bursa Bus Terminal.

Take TCDD’s connected bus service to Eskişehir Train Station (2 hrs).

Take connected İstanbul-Ankara or Eskişehir-Ankara high speed train to Ankara Train Station (1.5 hrs).

Take Vangolu Express overnight train to Tatvan Station (25 hrs). Keep in mind that train is running twice a week.

Walk to Tatvan Bus Station (10 min).

Take Tatvan-Van bus to Gevas (1 hr). Tell that you’d like to get off at Akhtamar Boat Pier (9 km before Gevas).

Take boat to Akhtamar Island.

Akhtamar Church

İzmir to Akhtamar Church

via Eskişehir

Go to İzmir Basmane Station.

Take İzmir Mavi overnight train to Eskişehir Train Station (13 hrs).

Take İstanbul-Ankara or Eskişehir-Ankara high speed train to Ankara Train Station (1.5 hrs).

Take Vangolu Express overnight train to Tatvan Station (25 hrs). Keep in mind that train is running twice a week.

Walk to Tatvan Bus Station (10 min).

Take Tatvan-Van bus to Gevas (1 hr). Tell that you’d like to get off at Akhtamar Boat Pier (9 km before Gevas).

Take boat to Akhtamar Island.

via Konya

Go to İzmir Basmane Station.

Take Konya Mavi overnight train to Konya Train Station (12 hrs).

Take Konya-Ankara high speed train to Ankara Train Station (2 hrs).

Take Vangolu Express overnight train to Tatvan Station (25 hrs). Keep in mind that train is running twice a week.

Walk to Tatvan Bus Station (10 min).

Take Tatvan-Van bus to Gevas (1 hr). Tell that you’d like to get off at Akhtamar Boat Pier (9 km before Gevas).

Take boat to Akhtamar Island.

Akhtamar Island

Konya to Akhtamar Church

Go to Konya Train Station.

Take Konya-Ankara high speed train to Ankara Train Station (2 hrs).

Take Vangolu Express overnight train to Tatvan Station (25 hrs). Keep in mind that train is running twice a week.

Walk to Tatvan Bus Station (10 min).

Take Tatvan-Van bus to Gevas (1 hr). Tell that you’d like to get off at Akhtamar Boat Pier (9 km before Gevas).

Take boat to Akhtamar Island.

Antalya to Akhtamar Church

Go to Antalya Bus Terminal.

Take TCDD’s connected bus service to Konya Train Station (5 hrs).

Take Konya-Ankara high speed train to Ankara Train Station (2 hrs).

Take Vangolu Express overnight train to Tatvan Station (25 hrs). Keep in mind that train is running twice a week.

Walk to Tatvan Bus Station (10 min).

Take Tatvan-Van bus to Gevas (1 hr). Tell that you’d like to get off at Akhtamar Boat Pier (9 km before Gevas).

Take boat to Akhtamar Island.

Adana to Akhtamar Church

Go to Adana Train Station.

Take Firat Express to Elazig Station (11 hrs). Check Firat Express’ arrival time and Vangolu Express’ departure time before buying the tickets. Keep in mind that Vangolu Express is running twice a week.

Take Vangolu Express overnight train to Tatvan Station (7 hrs).

Walk to Tatvan Bus Station (10 min).

Take Tatvan-Van bus to Gevas (1 hr). Tell that you’d like to get off at Akhtamar Boat Pier (9 km before Gevas).

Take boat to Akhtamar Island.

***

Cover photo by By MishukderoOwn work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link, first photo in text by Lostinafrica at English Wikipedia, second photo in text by gozturk

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