Karaj, Iran

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Karaj, Iran

Region: Alborz Province

Geographic Coordinates: 35.827200, 50.948900
Temperature Range: 10.0°C to 35.0°C (50°F to 95°F)
Climate: Seasonal.
Population: 1973470
Language: Persian

Karaj, A city in the Alborz province of Iran, Is situated approximately 20 km west of Tehran. It is a bustling metropolis with a population of over 1.5 million people, Making it the fourth-largest city in Iran. Karaj has an interesting history dating back to the Sassanid era and has been ruled by various dynasties throughout time. The climate in Karaj is mild and pleasant, With warm summers and cool winters. The region is known for its agricultural production, Particularly fruits such as apples and pears as well as vegetables like tomatoes and cucumbers.

The city also boasts several parks and gardens that are popular among locals and visitors alike. One of the most notable landmarks in Karaj is the Karaj Dam which was built on the Karaj River during the Pahlavi era to provide water for irrigation purposes. The dam offers breathtaking views of surrounding mountainscapes attracting many tourists each year. Another popular attraction in Karaj is Golestan Palace which was built during Qajar dynasty rule in Iran serving as a summer residence for Iranian kings until it was converted into a museum after Islamic Revolution.

Karaj also features several historical sites worth visiting including Shah Abbasi Caravanserai dating back to Safavid dynasty rule; Imamzadeh Saleh Shrine; Chaloos Road Tunnel; Kandovan Tunnel; Taleghan Dam; Khorshid Palace Museum; Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s House Museum among others. In addition to its historical landmarks, Modern amenities abound within Karaj such as shopping centers, Restaurants serving traditional Iranian cuisine along with international dishes from around the world including pizza joints , Fast food chains etc., Cinemas showing both local Iranian films as well foreign movies dubbed into Persian language or subtitled versions available too!

Overall, Karaj offers visitors an intriguing mix of ancient culture blended with modern amenities. With its beautiful scenery rich history, And diverse attractions, It is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Iran.

Important Landmarks

  1. Karaj Dam
  2. Amirkabir Dam
  3. Golestan Palace
  4. Shah Abbasi Caravanserai
  5. Alborz Mountains
  6. Imamzadeh Hossein Shrine
  7. Karaj Museum of Anthropology and Archaeology
  8. Mehrshahr Park and Zoo
  9. Jameh Mosque of Karaj
  10. Chalous Road Scenic Drive

Primary Industries

Major Industries and Businesses in Karaj, Iran

  1. Agriculture
  2. Textile Industry
  3. Food Processing
  4. Construction Materials
  5. Chemicals
  6. Pharmaceuticals
  7. Automotive Parts Manufacturing
  8. Education Sector
  9. Retail Trade & Services Sector


Karaj is known for its fertile lands that produce various agricultural products such as fruits, vegetables and flowers.

Textile Industry

The city also has a significant textile industry that produces various fabrics and garments.

Food Processing

There are several food processing companies in Karaj that produce dairy products, canned goods and other food items.

Construction Materials

The thriving construction materials industry produces cement, bricks tiles and other building materials.


Additionally there are several chemical factories in Karaj that produce industrial chemicals such as fertilizers and pesticides.


The city is home to many pharmaceutical companies that produce drugs for domestic consumption as well as export.

Automotive Parts Manufacturing

Moreover there are small-scale automotive parts manufacturing units operating in the city.

Education Sector

Education sector contributes significantly to the economy of the region with numerous universities located within the city limits or nearby areas of Tehran province including Islamic Azad University – Karaj Branch (IAUK), Alborz University of Medical Sciences (AUMS), Payame Noor University – Alborz Province Branch (PNU-APB) among others; thousands of students enroll every year from all over Iran which also creates job opportunities for teachers/professors/lecturers etc.

Retail Trade & Services Sector

Due to its strategic location on highway 2 connecting Tehran with Caspian Sea ports along with being one of the largest cities near Tehran Metropolitan Area; retail trade & services sector is an important contributor to local economy with numerous shopping centers/malls/hypermarkets/supermarkets/restaurants/fast-food chains/hotels etc., catering to needs of residents as well visitors/tourists passing through this area on regular basis.

Noteable History

  1. Karaj witnessed a significant battle in 1779 between the armies of Karim Khan Zand and Agha Mohammad Khan Qajar.
  2. During the early 20th century, Karaj emerged as a vital hub for agriculture and manufacturing owing to its proximity to Tehran.
  3. The city played a crucial role during the Iranian Revolution of 1979, with protests and confrontations between demonstrators and security forces taking place on its streets.
  4. Some prominent personalities linked with Karaj are Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran; Ali Khamenei, current Supreme Leader of Iran; and Ebrahim Raisi, present President of Iran.
  5. The Alborz Mountains near Karaj house several historical sites that hold immense significance such as Sialk ancient ruins and Tappeh Mill (both dating back over 7,000 years), along with several medieval castles like Alamut Castle (associated with Hassan-i Sabbah and his Assassins).

Museums and Things To See

  1. Karaj Museum of Anthropology showcases the cultural heritage and history of the region through exhibits and artifacts.
  2. Shah Abbasi Caravanserai is a well-preserved example of traditional Persian architecture that served as a resting place for travelers on the Silk Road.
  3. Karaj Azadi Tower, built in 1971 to commemorate Iran’s 2,500th anniversary, offers panoramic views of the city.
  4. Imamzadeh Hossein Shrine is a popular pilgrimage site for Shia Muslims with intricate tile work and beautiful gardens.
  5. Karaj Waterfall Park features a stunning waterfall, hiking trails, and picnic areas for visitors to enjoy nature.
  6. Karaj International Exhibition Center hosts trade shows, conferences, and events throughout the year in its modern facilities.
  7. Farhangsara-e Honar Art Center promotes Iranian art through exhibitions, workshops, and cultural events.
  8. Golestan-e Shohada Park in central Karaj features monuments honoring fallen soldiers from Iran’s wars with Iraq.
  9. Alborz Mountains National Park lies just outside of Karaj offering stunning mountain scenery along with wildlife viewing opportunities and hiking trails.
  10. Vahdat Hall Cultural Complex is a multipurpose complex hosting concerts, theater performances, film screenings, and other cultural events throughout the year.

Sports Teams

Karaj Sports Teams

  • Karaj Football Club: This football club was founded in 2014 and plays in the Azadegan League, which is the second tier of Iranian football.
  • Shahrdari Karaj Volleyball Club: The volleyball club was established in 2009 and competes in the Iranian Volleyball Super League.
  • Shahrdari Karaj Basketball Club: The basketball club was founded in 2017 and plays in the Iranian Basketball Super League.
  • Giti Pasand Futsal Club: This futsal club is based in Karaj and has won multiple national championships since its establishment in 2005.

It’s important to note that some of these teams may have changed their names or dissolved over time.

Cultural Events

  1. Karaj International Film Festival
  2. Karaj Book Fair
  3. Norouz (Persian New Year) celebrations
  4. Ashura mourning ceremonies
  5. Mehregan Festival (autumn harvest festival)
  6. Qadir Khom celebration (Shia Muslim holiday)
  7. Sizdah Bedar (outdoor picnic day)
  8. Fajr International Music Festival
  9. National Day of Persian Poetry and Literature
  10. Tehran-Karaj Cycling Race


  • Chelo Kabab, a traditional Iranian dish consisting of grilled meat (usually lamb or beef) served with saffron rice and grilled tomatoes.
  • Ghormeh Sabzi, a stew made with herbs, kidney beans, and meat (usually lamb or beef).
  • Dizi, a hearty soup made with lamb or beef, chickpeas, potatoes, and tomatoes.
  • Baghali Polo, saffron rice mixed with dill and broad beans.
  • Shandiz Restaurant is famous for its Chelo Kabab dishes.
  • Makhsoos Restaurant is known for its variety of Persian dishes including Ghormeh Sabzi and Dizi.
  • Shahre Farang Cafe & Restaurant offers a cozy atmosphere along with delicious Iranian cuisine such as Baghali Polo.
  • Alborz Restaurant specializes in traditional Iranian dishes like Fesenjan (chicken stewed in pomegranate sauce) and Gheymeh (lamb stew).

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Golestan Park
    2. Karaj Waterfall Park
    3. Taleghani Park
    4. Shahid Rajaei Dam Recreational Area
    5. Andisheh Forest Park
    6. Karaj Botanical Garden
    7. Imam Khomeini Square (Kargar Square)
    8. Vakilabad Hill Recreational Area
    9. Amir Kabir Dam Recreational Area
    10. Karaj Zoo


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