20 Interesting And Fun Facts About Iran [Explained]

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Iran is not the top destination that comes into most people’s minds when they think of traveling. However, it is an underrated country rich in literature, art, music, poetry, and much more. You will understand why as you learn some interesting facts about Iran and what it has to offer.

You will have a great time in this country if you love the arts. The secret is to boost your knowledge about Iran and decide whether it is the right travel destination for you. So, if you are contemplating traveling here, you are in the right place.

Here are all the Iran facts that will help guide your decision.

Historical Facts About Iran

Iran has a long history that is steeped in religion, art, literature, and much more. Here are some of the top historical facts about Iran that will help you understand what the country has been through.

Persia Is The Old Name Of Iran


Persia used to be the old name of Iran. However, it was Reza Shah who changed the name of Persia to Iran in 1935. He used to be king of Iran, and the reason for the name change was because Iran translates to the Land of Aryans.

Iran Has One Of The Oldest Religions

Zoroastrianism is one of the oldest religions in the world, and Iran is home to it. The religion was founded during the sixth century BC by Zoroaster, the prophet. People from this religion still exist in Iran, but the majority of the population there right now is Muslim.

It Is The Home Of One Of The Oldest Civilizations In The World

Some of the oldest civilizations in the world include the Elamite Kingdoms, and Iran is its birthplace. However, since then, many civilizations have come and gone on this land.

This includes the Sasanian Empires, Parthian Empires, Hellenistic States, and much more before the Arabs came in the seventh century.

Cultural Facts About Iran

The culture of Iran is mostly guided by religious values. However, you will also find a mix of rituals, art, poetry, and much more. Here are some of the top facts about Iranian culture that will give you a glimpse into the people and the place.

The Weekend Consists Of Thursday And Friday

Not everyone’s weekend is Saturday and Sunday in the world. For example, the weekend for the people of Iran falls on Thursday and Friday.

You can think of Thursday being Saturday, as that is when shops and banks are open, but offices remain closed. On the other hand, Friday is off for everyone, as the Friday afternoon prayer is an important part of the religion and culture that nobody misses.

Taarof Is An Important Part Of The Culture

Taarof is an important part of Iranian culture, which means the people can be extremely polite to you. You can be someone’s guest and politely decline what they offer to you, but they will definitely offer it to you again. Because of this, you will find that the people are highly kind and humble to everyone.

Tea Is Served At Each Gathering


If there is one thing you will see at every gathering and meal, it is tea. The people of Iran love drinking black tea without any milk. On the other hand, most people also drink after consuming their meals.

The Pahlevani And Zourkhaneh Rituals Are Unique

These rituals are part of the ancient culture in Iran that was used to train warriors and people in combat. It has also been listed by UNESCO as an intangible heritage. Don’t forget to learn more about it whenever you get the chance to visit Iran.

Interesting Facts About Iran For Kids

Iran has a lot to offer, which is why kids also need to be familiar with various things that the country is known for. It will boost their knowledge and broaden their horizons. Here are some of the top Iran facts for kids you must know.

The Country Is Known For Its Fossil Fuel Reserves


Iran has a significant amount of fossil fuel reserves. This includes natural gas, oil, and much more. Besides that, Iran is also working on creating more renewable sources of energy so that it can sustain its needs in the future.

Persian Cat Breed Originated Here


As the name suggests, the origin of Persian cats lies in Iran. That is because the breed was brought to Rome and then Italy by the Persians during the seventeenth century. After that, the Europeans began breeding this cat, which made it highly popular throughout the world.

Mount Damavand Is The Highest Mountain


Mount Damavand is the highest mountain in Iran, and it is located in the Alborz Mountains.

These towering mountains are situated in Northern Iran and are easily some of the most famous natural landmarks in Iran. They are an impressive sight to behold that will leave you breathless.

Useful Iran Facts For Travelers

As a traveler, you are probably looking for unique things to explore and find in Iran. Here are some Iran fun facts to give you an idea of the best things to do in Iran.

It Has The 3rd Highest Number Of UNESCO Sites In Asia


Iran has around twenty-four UNESCO World Heritage Sites, making it a country with the third-highest number of UNESCO sites on the continent. There are only two natural sites, and the rest of them are cultural sites. If you plan on visiting, make sure that you cover some of these sites.

Don’t Forget To Check Out The Carpets


Iran is known for producing some of the best carpets in the world. That is because carpet weaving began in the Bronze Age and grew incredibly large due to the trade. So, whenever you visit, check out the carpets, and don’t forget to buy one for your home.

The Country Has The Highest Volcano On The Continent


Mount Damavand is the highest peak, and it is also the highest volcano in all of Asia. That is because it is more than 5,600m tall. It is also the twelve most prominent peak in the world, so don’t forget to check it out when you visit.

Common Facts About Iran

There are some things everyone knows about Iran but can forget from time to time. Here are some of the general facts about Iran to refresh your memory:

The Country Has Its Own Calendar

Yes, Iran has its own calendar, which is according to the sun. It is known as the solar calendar, and the time is based on the movement of Earth around the sun. Of course, they also do follow the regular, global calendar.

The Population Is Young

The population of the country is around eighty million, and more than 60% of this population is less than thirty years old. The baby boom was a result of the overthrow of the monarchy in 1979. That is when having more children and large families was encouraged.

There Are Various Delicacies In The Cuisine


Iran is known for not one but many delicacies that you can try in the country. This includes pilaf, kebabs, torshi, and much more.

All of these dishes are important to the culture and are prepared with lots of spices for incredible flavor. You will be foolish to miss out on all the traditional Iranian food the country has on offer. Come hungry and indulge!

It Is Home To The Rare Persian Cheetah


The Persian or Asiatic Cheetah is from Iran, and it is an endangered species. This majestic animal used to be spread in the Indian and Eastern subcontinent along with the Arabian Peninsula. However, Iran is now home to this animal, and they are located in protected regions.

Other Interesting Facts About Iran

Here are some other fun facts about Iran that make it a unique country

The Majority Of Muslims Are Shia

Iran has a majority Muslim population, and in this population, most people are Shias. Between 90 and 95% of the people are Shia, while the rest are Sunni. Besides that, the remaining population includes Zoroastrians, Christians, Jews, etc.

There Are More Females In The Universities Than Males


Most of the students in universities are females. However, there are a lot of restrictions as more than 70 subjects are not offered to women. On the other hand, they are encouraged to study close to home, which is why the percentage is also high.

Iran Produces The Most Saffron Worldwide


Iran is the largest producer and exporter of saffron in the world. It is one of the highest qualities of saffron that you will find. Around 90% of the saffron in the world comes from Iran.

Discovering More Fun Facts About Iran

These are just some of the incredible facts about Iran to know to appreciate the country better. However, this barely scratches the surface of what this country is about. You will be pleasantly surprised by the art, culture, and everything else this place has to offer when you visit.

Just make sure to respect the customs and traditions. You will love the incredible hospitality and generous spirit of the Iranian people as you uncover more fascinating facts about Iran.



Book Your Flight

I usually use a combination of 2-3 of the following search engines to find cheap flights: Skyscanner, Momondo, Google Flights

Find Your Accommodation

Booking.com is my usual platform for finding accommodation options as they have one of the largest selections. Hostelworld is great for booking hostels. For more private or long term accommodation, Airbnb is my go-to platform.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is important for to protect yourself against unforeseen circumstances. I usually look at a few insurance companies depending on my travel needs.
  • SafetyWings for Travel Health Insurance
  • IMG Global for added Insurance when doing activities outside of usual coverage
Packing for your trip? Check out the packing list for ideas on what to bring

For more travel resources, check out my resources page for best platforms and companies to use when you travel.

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Welcome To NomadsUnveiled
This is Rax. For over a decade, I have traveled to over 60 countries - from a budget backpacker to a business traveler, expat and then a digital nomad. You can find insights and perspectives from myself and other world travelers that will inspire your journey of discovery.


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