Iran, Persia, Pars, you have heard them all, they refer to present Iran, a country as old as the history itself and as beautiful as eyes can perceive. Here you can visit glorious ancient structures like Persepolis, you can visit most amazing natural beauties like Harra mangroves, you can climb high mountains like Alborz, or just have a cup of tea in Hāfiz Garden, you can swim in Caspian Sea, or if you want to swim in winter season why not do that in Kish Island while in this free trade zone, you can do your shopping too. In Iran you will experience different cultures and religions, with a hospitability you have never seen before. In Iran you can visit cities like Tehran, a major metropolis, Shīrāz, city of lovers and gardens, or experience half of the world by visiting the legendry city of Esfehān. In Iran you can spot exclusive wild and plant lives in protected forests like Golestān National Park. You can stay in five star hotels and fly domestically to almost all cities, or if you wish stay in an old renovated caravanserai to get that archaic feeling and take road trips to fully enjoy the smaller but wonderful villages like Māsūleh. One thing is sure, if you come, you will be come back.
With an area of 1,648,000 square kilometers, Iran is among twenty biggest countries in the world. Iran is located in southwestern Asia, and shares its entire northern border with the former Soviet Union states. This border extends for more than 2,000 kilometers, including nearly 650 kilometers of water along the southern shore of the Caspian Sea. Iran's western borders are with Turkey in the north and Iraq in the south. In the east lies Afghanistan on the north and Pakistan on the south. To the south, a long coastline borders the Persian Gulf and Oman Sea. Iran consists of rugged, mountainous rims surrounding high interior basins. The main mountain chain is the Zagros Mountains, exceeding from northwest to southeast. The center of Iran consists of several closed basins that collectively are referred to as the Central Plateau. The eastern part of the plateau is covered by two salt deserts, the Dasht-e Kavīr and the Dasht-e Lūt. Tehrān, the capital, is the country's largest and most populated city. Iran's other major cities include Mash’had, Esfehān, Tabrīz, and Shīrāz, all of which had populations of 800,000 or more in 1986. The official language of Iran is Persian (the Persian term for which is Farsi). Iran is divided into thirty provinces each with plenty historical and natural attractions.
Iran’s climate is very varied in different areas. In the northwest, winters are very cold with heavy snowfall. Spring and fall are relatively mild, while summers are dry and hot. In the south, winters are very mild and the summers are very hot and humid, this gives visitors the chance to choose any kind of weather any time of the year. In general, Iran has an arid climate in which most of the relatively scant annual rainfall falls from October through April. In most of the country, yearly rainfall averages 25 centimeters or less. The major exceptions are the higher mountain valleys of the Zagros and the Caspian coastal plain, where rainfall averages at least 50 centimeters annually. In the western part of the Caspian, rainfall exceeds 100 centimeters annually and is distributed relatively evenly throughout the year. This contrasts with some basins of the Central Plateau that receive ten centimeters or less of rainfall annually. Iran is one of the only countries in the world which has the complete four seasons. In summer, the weather can be cool as well as warm, and in the cold winters, it can be mild. A large part of the country suffers great extremes of heat and cold between summer and winter and rainfall is mainly confined to winter and spring. Summers are warm to hot with virtually continuous sunshine, with high humidity on the southern coasts.
As of 2001, there were 13 public and privately owned automakers in Iran, of which two - Iran Khodro and Saipa - accounted for 94% of the total domestic production. Iran Khodro, which produced the most sold car brand in the country - the Peykān, which has been replaced in 2005 by the Samand which is recognized as the country’s national car brand. There are other automakers that produce a widerange of automobiles including motorbikes, passenger cars, vans, mini trucks, medium sized trucks, heavy duty trucks, minibuses, large size buses and other heavy automobiles used in commercial and private activities in the country. Iran ranked the world’s 16th biggest automaker in 2006 and has a fleet of 7 million cars, which translates to almost one car per ten persons in the country. Iran's defense industry has taken great strides in the past 25 years, and now manufactures many types of arms and equipment. Since1992, Iran's Defense Industries Organization (DIO) has produced its own tanks, armored personnel carriers, guided missiles, submarines, and a fighter plane. As of 2006, Iran had exported weapons to 57 countries, including NATO members, and sold $100 million worth of military equipment abroad. The annual turnover in the construction industry amounted to $38.4 billion in 2005. Increased income from oil and gas and the availability of easy credit, however, triggered a subsequent building boom that attracted major international construction firms to Iran. The petrochemical industry has expanded considerably in recent decades. It has been the main element of the post-war industrialization program. The heavy metals industry began in 1972 with the start of steel production at Esfehān National Steel Mill in Esfehān. It was also given priority by the government. Manufactured goods include diesel engines, motor vehicles, television sets, refrigerators, washing machines, and other consumer items. The textile industry has prospered in recent years with increased production of cotton, woolen, and synthetic fabrics. The making of hand-woven carpets is a traditional industry in Iran that flourishes despite acute competition from machine-made products. However, carpet exports declined throughout the war years.
The Rial is the official currency of Iran; however prices are sometimes quoted in Toman. One Toman is equal to ten Rials. As a general guide, written prices are given in Rials and prices quoted in conversation are in Tomans. Central banks in provincial capitals are able to cash Travelers’ check for tourist use. ATMs exist in most cities, and there are pointof- sale devices in some larger stores, but only local bank cards are accepted, having a cash reserve (either rials or foreign currency) is recommended. Central banks in most cities will change money for you and the private exchange offices (sarāfi) scattered around most large cities and major tourist centers. The most widely-accepted currency is the US dollar ($), but euro (€) and UK Sterling Pound (£) are also widely used. Other currencies are harder to change. The maximum working week is 44 hours, with no more than eight hours any single day unless overtime compensation is provided. Friday is the weekly day of rest. Workers are entitled to public holidays and a paid annual one month leave. The employment of workers less than 15 years of age is prohibited. Young workers between 15 and 18 years of age must undergo a medical examination by the Social Security Organization prior to commencing employment. Demographically Iran is a young nation. Nearly 30 Percent of its 73 million populations is under 15 years old. That’s why Iran is called one of the youngest nations in the world. With an annual 6.5 % growth, Iran enjoys one of the liveliest and most vibrant economies in the region. According to the latest reports published by International Institutions, Iran’s Gross Domestic Product in 2009 exceeds $840 billion which ranks the country as the 17th Economy in the world.GDPper Capita at Purchase Power Parity (PPP) in 2009 stands at $ 12 /800. 230 The Economy of Iran is dominated by oil and gas exports which constituted 50% to 70% of government revenues. Due to huge share of oil revenue in economy and vast amount of subsidies, President Mahmud Ahmadi Nejad has proposed replacing energy subsidies with targeted Social assistance. This new Scheme which is called economic surgery by prominent economists will enhance the efficiency of the economy. According to Article 44 of the constitution, the economy of Iran is to consist of three sectors of state, cooperative and private, and is to be based on systematic and sound Planning. An amendment of the Article 44 in 2004 has allowed 80% of state assets to be privatized. In order to reduce the poverty, 40% of these assets is contributed to millions of Iranian families through the “Justice Shares” and the remaining 40% will be released to private sector through Tehran Stock Exchange.The other 20% will remain under government’s control. In 2005, the government’s assets were estimated at about 420 billion, which about $63 billion of that was privatized during the last 5 years, bringing the government’s share in the gross domestic Product (GDP) from 80% to 40%.This border extends for more then 2,000 kilometers, including nearly 650 kilometers of water along the southern shore of the Caspian Sea.Iran ranked the world’s 16th biggest automaker in 2006 and has a fleet of 7 million cars, which translates to almost one car per ten persons in the country.Iran is one of the only countries in the world which has the complete four seasons.