The Lake Van Monster is a cryptid seen in Lake Van in south of Mount Ararat, in Eastern Turkey. Some of the first documented sightings of the creature appeared between 1995 and 1997 in Lake Van, the largest lake in Turkey. Its Turkish name is Van Gölü Canavarı.
The Lake Van Monster has allegedly been sighted by over a thousand eyewitnesses. The monster is said to resemble ancient marine reptiles such as a plesiosaur, which also shares characteristics with the famous Loch Ness Monster. Sightings have been reported to international since November 2,1995 on Daily Telegraph article, but some research suggests that the creature has been seen prior to that time. A supposed short video of the Lake Van Monster was filmed in 1997 by 26 year old Van University teaching assistant, Unal Kozak. This Controversial video has baffled researchers as to the identification of the creature in the film. Some claim to have seen a beak; others seem positive it is nothing more than a swimming elephant, where as skeptics refuse to see anything other than a pile of garbage bags being dragged through the deep waters of the lake. In late 1997 the film was aired on CNN and since then has become the center of a firestorm of cryptozoological controversy. The Turkish scientific community is at a loss to explain the identity and origin of the animal and Biology professor at Ataturk University in Erzurum, Orhan Erman, claims that there is nothing that even remotely resembles the Van Lake Monster capable of living in the lake, stating "It is simply not possible for a creature of the size claimed by witnesses to live in a closed lake like Van."Also Like Van is a soda lake so nothing can live there.
Possible explanations for the sightnings are ancient creatures such as a Plesiosaur or a Mosasaur, and even a squid as some suggest, have never been confirmed.