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Zanjan is one of the most important provinces in the central region of western north of lran and since being located  on the transit corridor is the linking point between the central, western and western north of the country. Tourist  attractions are located all across the province and can be classified as natural, social, historic, and cultural. In this  regard, towns such as Zanajn and Abhar are hosts to the most number of these attractions. Perhaps the most  prominent site in the province is the magnificent edifice of Soltanie Dome which is one of the most exceptional and  famous Islamic sites dating back to 700 years ago. The Dome is listed in UNESCO world heritage and plays a great  role in the tourism of the region. According to the last state divisions this province has 3 provincial districts, 13  regions, and 8 towns. The districts are Zanjan, Abhar, and Khodabande. The handicrafts have enjoyed a  tremendous prosperity in the province. The crafts include knife making, carpets, Charog making (a traditional and  ornamental shoe made of leather), Malile works (a type of silverwork to make ornamental  dishware with delicate patterns) just to name a few. These hand works are now the pride and glory of many museums around the world
Zanjan is known for its beautiful handcrafts such as knives, traditional sandals, called Charoogh, and Malileh, a handcraft made with silver wires. Zanjani artists make many things like various decorative dishes and their special covers as well as silver jewelry. In ancient times, Zanjan was known for its stainless and sharp knives. Many villagers today are traditional carpet weavers, perhaps Zanjan's most popular handcraft. Zanjan's population boasts the highest level of happiness among the people of 30 other provinces in Iran.

 

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The province of Zanjan covers an area of 39,370 sq.km. To the east of this province is the province of Hamadan, to the west is the province of West Azarbaijan and to the south is the province of Kurdestan. To the north of the province are the provinces of Ardabil and East Azarbaijan. This province is actually located in the plateau north-west of central Iran. The townships of Zanjan, Abhar, Ijrud, Khoda Bandeh, Khoram Dareh, Tarom and Mah Neshan are the constituents of the said province. In November 1996, the population of this province was approximately 901,000; out of which about 47% resided in urban areas, around 52% were rural dwellers, and a number were non-residents.

Zanjan province comprises of two regions-plain and mountainous. The former spanning various areas of the province, and the latter is the northern sector, enveloping many high peaks or summits. In the southern territory of Zanjan there is an alluvial plain, to the north of this vast plain are the Soltanieh heights and to the south of which stand the Qeydar heights. These form the limits of the said plain. There are many rivers flowing in this province-the most important of which being the Qezel Ozan River.

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Climatically, Zanjan province, being under the influence of indirect air-currents, named as humid north-western ones, enjoys two different types of climate. A mountainous climate with cold and snowy winters, and temperate summers. Whilst the Tarom Olya region experiences a warm and semi-humid climate with warm summers and mild winters. The percentage of rainfall and humidity is always higher than the mountainous terrain, the spring and winter seasons have more rainfall than other periods of the year. 

There are long spells of 'dry' months in the province and two of the most important air-currents are the 'Sormeh' and 'Garn' or in other words 'Harah' and 'Warm'. The most suitable seasons are spring and summer for spending time in this province regarding sight-seeing.


Climate
Zanjan has a cold semi-arid climate with hot, dry summers and cold, moist winters, often with snowfall. Precipitation is very low, and mostly falls between October and May.

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Zanjan province is said to be one of the regions of Iran, rich in historical background. That is remnants from the pre-historic period (7th millennium BC. till early 3rd millennium BC.), are evident here. Moreover, in the (2nd and 3rd millennium BC.) in the Ijrud (Zanjan) region distinctive elements portraying a thriving and progressive civilization in this central plateau of Iran has come to light. The evaluation of the black colored engravings on the buff or cream colored earthenware brings to focus a link and continuity between the civilizations of the Damqan Hessar Hill, Sialk Hill (Kashan) and the Ijrud (Zanjan) civilizations.

In most prominent and spectacular historical vestiges of this period is a kind of gray black earthenware which complies with the period of Aryan migration to this region. This type of earthenware discovered can be said to be similar to a teapot with a long spout, found in all the tombs of that age and can be related to the funeral ceremonies.

In accordance with Assyrian documents, this region was called Andya in the 9th century BC. and the inhabitants were probably in communication with the Lulubi and Gouti tribes residing on the slopes of the Zagross Mountain Range. Coins such as Derik and Riton discovered in Khoda Bandeh are the remnants of the Achaemenian era. During the Parthians and Sassanian periods, the valleys of Zanjan Road and Qezel Ozan proved to be flourishing and thriving areas of the region. Here the most important historical remnant that can be pointed out is the Tashvir Fire Temple.

But advancing towards the Islamic period that is from the (7th to 19th century AD.) equivalent to the (1st century to 14th century AH.); brought about the Osman conquests in Iran. Existing texts and evidences reveal that during the Islamic period throughout ,i.e., during the reigns of the various dynasties such as, the Karganian, Saljuqian and Ilkhanan, specially from the (4th to 8th century AH.) this region thrived from economic, cultural and artistic point of view. One of the reasons that Soltanieh was chosen as the capital was due to the fact that this region was at its economic peak in the (7th and 8th centuries AH.). This territory was disheveled and ruined during the Mongol attack, but regained its importance during the reign of Soltan Mohammad Khoda Bandeh and became a renounced capital for the Ilkhan government.

In accordance to the orders of Oligaito, a rampart was built around Soltanieh in the midst of which a huge fort was created. Oljaito also constructed a large dome which was to house his tomb and this dome is the renounced 'Gonbad ' or dome of Soltanieh. During the reign of Oljaito, Soltanieh was counted as one of the most important cities of the Ilkhanans. 

In the 9th century AH. after the decline of Ilkhanans, the Sarbedarans came to power. But during the attack of Teimoor the Lame, the region of Zanjan fell to ruins and it was only during the reigns of Shah Tahmasb Safavid and earlier in the reign of Mohammad Khan Qajar that this territory made relative advancement both culturally and economically. 

 

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