Iran: Practical Information...



Iran's economy is a mixture of central planning, state ownership of oil and other large enterprises, village agriculture, and small-scale private trading and service ventures. In 2011 GDP was $482.4 billion ($1.003 trillion at PPP), or $13,200 at PPP per capita. Iran is ranked as an upper-middle income economy by the World Bank. In the early 21st century the service sector contributed the largest percentage of the GDP, followed by industry (mining and manufacturing) and agriculture. The Central Bank of the Islamic Republic of Iran is responsible for developing and maintaining the Iranian Rial, which serves as the country's currency.

Money Chenger...

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. 





Since the ancient times, Iran has been called a land of religions. For hundreds of years, adherents of various religious faiths have been living peaceful lives in this country. This is reflected in numerous religious building that survive to our time from different ages. Iran is the birthplace of the world’s earliest know monotheistic faith, i.e. Zoroastrianism. It has also been home to many other religions such as Mithraism, Manichaeism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Iran’s Jewish community, for example, is one of the oldest Jewish communities in the world. Religious buildings are the embodiment of love, faith and devotion of the followers and for this reason one can find the finest examples of each era’s art in these buildings. Iran is an incredibly rich country in terms of religious art. Iranian religious art stretches from the pre-historic times right to the present day. It began from cave paintings and pottery works of prehistory to cuneiforms of Achaemenid times and continues to the present-day as wonderful architecture and ornamentations of churches, synagogues and mosques. 





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. 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.

Iran's climate ranges from arid or semiarid, to subtropical along the Caspian coast and the northern forests. On the northern edge of the country (the Caspian coastal plain) temperatures rarely fall below freezing and the area remains humid for the rest of the year. Summer temperatures rarely exceed 29 °C (84.2 °F). To the west, settlements in the Zagros basin experience lower temperatures, severe winters with below zero average daily temperatures and heavy snowfall. The eastern and central basins are arid, with less than 200 mm (7.9 in) of rain, and have occasional deserts. Average summer temperatures exceed 38 °C (100.4 °F). The coastal plains of the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman in southern Iran have mild winters, and very humid and hot summers.





Air: Many international visitors to Iran arrive by air, with IKA International Airport in Tehran having excellent worldwide connections including to destinations such as London, Paris, Milan, Amsterdam, Berlin, Stockholm, Moscow, Istanbul, Dubai, Beijing, Seoul, Bangkok and New Delhi. Airline companies operating flights to IKA International Airport include: Lufthansa, Alitalia, Turkish Airlines, KLM, Emirates, Etihad and British Airways as well as domestic airlines such as Iran Air, Mahan Air and Caspian Airlines. Facilities at the airport include outlets for dining and refreshments, basic passenger services and limited transport options for getting into the city. Arriving passengers can choose from taking a taxi or a bus into the city, or natively, those with pre-booked accommodation can arrange to be met by a hotel representative. In addition to the airport at Tehran, the following Iranian airports offer some limited international flights: Mashhad International Airport (Mashhad), Shiraz International Airport (Shiraz), Bandar Abbas International Airport (Bandar Abbas), Esfahan International Airport (Esfahan), Tabriz International Airport (Tabriz) and Zahedan International Airport (Zahedan).

Car: Iran can be reached by car from various neighbouring countries, although drivers are encouraged to research their journey well in advance. Visitors are not advised to travel overland to Iran from Pakistan and anyone who must travel in this area should exercise extreme caution. We advise that you only travel on main roads and avoid travelling at night if you inting on reaching Iran by car via an international border. The border areas with Afghanistan and Iraq are considered insecure and visitors are strongly advised to avoid travel in these areas. The border with Turkey is frequently used by visitors wanting to access Iran by road.

Rail: Two international train routes are available to Iran one is from Istanbul to Tehran, with a once weekly departure (72 hours) and the other is from Damascus to Tehran, again a once weekly departure (64 hours). Journeys are long, but prices are reasonable and most overnight services offer sleeping cars that have a capacity for four people.

Sea: Although it is possible to arrive in Iran by using a sea route across the Persian Gulf, this method of arrival is rarely used nowadays, with air travel being considered much more convenient.

Bus: Travelling by bus from Turkey to Iran is feasible, although journey times can be very lengthy. Prices of bus tickets are cheap and there are various levels of comfort available, with first class coaches offering reclining seats, air conditioning and free water.



Iran has a reasonable choice of accommodation, from tiny cells in noisy guest house to luxury rooms in world-class hotels. Hotels are available in most towns and they are classified according to the star tem. During the summer months and Nowruz, prices t to be higher and hotels are busier. A guest house can offer anything from a bed in a noisy, grotty, male-only dorm to a small, simple, private clean room. However they are the best option for those on the tightest budgets. Along the Caspian Sea coast and in rural resort-villages you can find local, renting out rooms in their homes. Such options include "suits", which are furnished, self-contained apartments or bungalows. Villas are also popular there.



The cuisine of Iran is diverse, with each province featuring dishes, as well as culinary traditions and styles, distinct to their regions. The main Persian cuisines are combinations of rice with meat, chicken or fish and some onion, veges, nuts, and herbs. Herbs are frequently used along with fruits such as plums, pomegranates, quince, prunes, apricots, and raisins. Iranians also usually eat plain yogurt with lunch and dinner it is a staple of the diet in Iran. To achieve a balanced taste, acteristic flavourings such as saffron, dried limes, cinnamon, and parsley are mixed delicately and used in some special dishes. Onions and garlic are normally used in the preparation of the accompanying course, but are also served separately during meals, either in raw or pickled form. Iranian cuisine has also greatly inspired its neighbors. Iran is also famous for its caviar.




General info...


Capital and largest city: Tehran  

Calling code: +98

Currency: Rial (﷼) (IRR)

Population: 77,176,930 (2013 estimate)

Area: 1,648,195 km2 

Government: Unitary presidential Islamic republic 

Supreme Leader: Ali Khamenei 

President: Hassan Rouhani 

Official language: Persian 

Time zone: IRST (UTC+3:30)         

Summer (DST): IRDT (UTC+4:30) 


Weekend in iran: Friday

Electricity: 220/240 volts AC, 50 Hz.

Using sockets square two-pin.





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