Sevan, Armenia

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Coordinates: 40°33′18″N 44°57′13″E / 40.55500°N 44.95361°E / 40.55500; 44.95361

From top left: Sevan landscape • Vaskenian Theological AcademySevan peninsula • Sevan MonasterySevan skyline • Lake SevanPanoramic view of Sevan beach
From top left:

Sevan landscape • Vaskenian Theological Academy
Sevan peninsula • Sevan Monastery
Sevan skyline • Lake Sevan
Panoramic view of Sevan beach
Sevan is located in Armenia
Coordinates: 40°33′18″N 44°57′13″E / 40.55500°N 44.95361°E / 40.55500; 44.95361
Country Armenia
Marz (Province) Gegharkunik
Founded 1842
 • Mayor Gevorg Malkhasyan
 • Total 8.5 km2 (3.3 sq mi)
Elevation 1,905 m (6,250 ft)
Population (2011 census)
 • Total 19,229
 • Density 2,300/km2 (5,900/sq mi)
Area code(s) +374(261)
Sources: Population[1]

Sevan (Armenian: Սևան), is a town and popular resort in Armenia, located in the Gegharkunik Province on the northwestern shores of Lake Sevan. The town is located at a height of more than 1,905 metres (6,250 feet) above sea level, 64 km (40 mi) northeast of the capital Yerevan, and 35 km (22 mi) north of Gavar, the administrative centre of Gegharkunik Province.

Sevan was founded as Yelenovka (Armenian: Ելենովկա, Russian: Еленовка) in 1842 to become a Russian-populated village. It was known as Yelenovka until 1935 when it was renamed Sevan, after Lake Sevan.

The town is surrounded by Sevan National Park, which extend from the northeastern parts of the town to the southwest, while Lake Sevan forms the natural border of the city to the east.

As of the 2011 census, the population of the town is 19,229.


The settlement was founded as Yelenovka in 1842 by exiled members of Russian religious factions. Since its foundation until 1935, it was known as Yelenovka, named after Yelena Pavlovna the daughter of Tsar Paul I of Russia.

The settlement of Yelenovka remained a Russian-populated village until the end of the 19th century.

The cyclopean fortress of Metsep stands just north of Sevan.

The Sevan peninsula, which is located 3 kilometres (2 miles) east of the city is home to one of the most notable samples of medieval Armenian architecture, the Sevanavank Monastery of the 9th century. The monastery was mainly intended for monks from Echmiadzin who had sinned. Currently, the monastery consists of two churches: Surp Arakelots (Holy Apostles) and Surp Astvatsatsin (Holy Mother of God). The monastery is famous for its variety of the medieval Armenian Khachkars (cross-stones). Initially the monastery was built at the southern shore of a small island. After the artificial draining of Lake Sevan during the period of Joseph Stalin's rule, the water level fell about 20 meters, and the island was transformed into a peninsula.

Another important religious structure in the peninsula is the Vaskenian Theological Academy of Sevan, opened in 2004.

Sevan National Park[edit]

Sunset over the town

Sevan National Park was founded in 1978 to protect the Lake Sevan and the surrounding regions, under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Nature Protection, managed as a research centre, monitoring the ecosystems and undertakes various conservation measures. Licensed fishing around the lake is also regulated.

The national reserve occupies major territories around the Lake Sevan, extended from the northeastern parts of the town to the southwest. The area comprises 1,501 square kilometres (580 sq mi), of which 24,900 hectares (61,529 acres) are lakeside lands. It is surrounded with the slopes of mountain chains of Areguni, Geghama, Vardenis, Pambak and Sevan. Some 1600 plant and 330 animal species are found here. The park is divided into 3 zones: national reserve, recreation zone and economic use zone.

The basin of Lake Sevan is a crossroad for mezophile and Armenian-Iranian xerophile flora belts.

However, scientific researches about the mammals of the Sevan basin are quite poor. Wolf, jackal, fox, marten and cat, are usually found in the national reserve.


Church of the Holy Archangels

The 2011 census of 2001 showed a significant decline in the population of Sevan, which went down from 27,000 reported in the 1989 census to 19,229.

The majority of the Sevan population are involved in agricultural activities, fish-hunting and tourism services, especially during the summer season.

The nearby village of Gagarin with a population of 1,379, is part of the municipality of Sevan.

As of 2008, The town is home to 7 public education schools and 4 kindergartens.

The majority of the population of Sevan belongs to the Armenian Apostolic Church. The church of the Holy Archangels is the main church of the town. It was consecrated on 31 May 2015.[2]


Water park in Sevan
Summer resort in Sevan

During the brief summer of the region, Sevan tuns into a popular beach resort. Many professionals and amateurs visit the city to practice their favourite types of sports on the shores including beach soccer, beach volleyball, windsurfing and other types of water sports through numerous swimming beaches and facilities along the entire Sevan shore, such as the aqua-park, the horse club, the tennis courts, the mini football and basketball fields.

Between 1990 and 1994, the Akhtamar Sevan football club had represented the town in the domestic competitions.

The town is home to the beer manufacturers Lihnitis Sevan Brewerey LLC. The factory produces a variety of lager beer under the brand Kellers.


The climate of Sevan is characterized by short mild summers and long, cold, and snowy winters. Despite its southern location, due to elevation and continentality, climate of Sevan is similar to Eastern Finland.

Climate data for Sevan
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) −2.8
Daily mean °C (°F) −8.0
Average low °C (°F) −13.0
Average precipitation mm (inches) 16
Average precipitation days 8 9 12 14 19 15 10 8 8 9 8 8 128
Source: World Meteorological Organisation (UN) [3]
Panoramic view of the Sevan Peninsula

International relations[edit]

See also List of twin towns and sister cities in Armenia

Twin towns – Sister cities[edit]

Sevan is twinned with: