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Published on May 17, 2014
Iran...What does come to your mind, when you hear this name!? Do you think of a dry, hot, ugly and non-civilized place? Is Iran a place that you may want to visit some day? In this video, we will talk about some interesting facts about Iran that you probably didn't know!
With its inception in 3200 BC, Iran is argued to be the oldest country in the world. It is currently the second-largest country in the middle east and is amongst the top 20 countries in the world in terms of both size and population. As one of the world's oldest and at times biggest civilizations, it is of great importance for historians and archeologists. Iran owns the largest proven natural gas supply in the world as well as the 4th-largest proven petroleum reserves, making it of considerable influence in the world's economy & energy markets. Finally, its central location in Western Asia, as the neighbor of Russia, Iraq, Pakistan, Turkey and Afghanistan makes it of great geostrategic importance.
The name "Iran" is derived from the word Aryānā, meaning the "Land of the Aryans". It has been used for a long time by the native people of Iran. However, historically Iran has been referred to as Persia by the Western world. This is mainly due to the fact that Greek historians had called Iran Persis, meaning "the land of the Persians". Nowadays, although, "Iran" is the official name, in many cultural contexts such as Persian Carpet & Persian food, the word "Persia" is widely used.
Iran is home to one of the world's oldest civilizations, going back to at least 3200 BC. Around 500 BC, Iran became the biggest empire in the world. At its greatest extent, it included the modern territories of Iran, Iraq, Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, Libya, Turkey, Bulgaria, Greece, Azerbaijan, Pakistan, Afghanistan amongst others. A series of devastating wars, incompetent leaders and the empire building competition between Britain and Russia, resulted in a significant loss of its territory and now Iran is ranked only 18th in the world in terms of area.
Iranians are credited with many groundbreaking innovations including beer, the first real post and mail system, qanats, windmills, teaching hospitals, the first charter of human rights, amongst others. Nowadays, Iran is mostly known for its Oil and Gas, Carpets, Pistachios, Caviar, & Saffron as well as leading the world in terms of brain drain with more than 150,000 academic elite leaving Iran every year. It might also surprise you that Iran is amongst the top 10 countries in the world based on the number of books published per year. Also, according to a recent study, Iran has the fastest rate of increase in the number of scientific publications in the world.
The general perception is that Iran is dry and hot. Well, although you can definitely find some very hot places in Iran, it also has large areas with subtropical weather in the north along the Caspian coast with dense rain forests and heavy rainfalls. The western parts of Iran have much colder weather and in some areas, they experience heavy snowfalls due to the presence of Zagros Mountains. You can even find very good ski resorts in Iran including the popular resorts Tochal, Dizin and Shemshak. Tehran, the capital of Iran, has four distinct seasons, with very hot summers, cold winters and mild weather during spring and fall.
Iranians have long been known for their hospitality and you don't need to hear it from us, but from those who have visited Iran in the past. At the same time, there is no shortage of beautiful and must-see places in Iran that will definitely wow you. Dense forests in Northern parts, warm beaches in the south, many natural wonders in various parts of the country, and finally the artifacts of a civilization with thousands of years of history that are must-see for any tourist.