12. Islam is the dominant religion in Iran. Other religions, such as Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Christianity, and the Baha’i have their fans in Iran.
13. The capital of Iran is Tehran, that means, “warm slope.” More than 14 million people live there.
14. The Elburz Mountains in the north rise to 5,670 m (18,603 ft) at Mount Damavend. From northwest to southeast, the country is crossed by a desert 1,287 km (800 mi) long.
15. Iran ranks seventh among countries in the world as regards number of World Heritage Sites recognized by UNESCO.
16. Iran ranks second in the world in natural gas and third in oil reserves.
17. Iran shares borders with ten countries, namely Armenia, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Iraq and Turkey.
18. The largest ethnic group of Iran is Persian, constituting about 61 percent of the population.
19. Alexander’s wife, Roxanne, was an Iranian. “Roshanak” in Farsi
20. Iran’s constitution and Parliament were created on Aug 5th, 1906.
21. Famous biblical people buried in Iran: Daniel, Cyrus The Great, Queen Esther, Darius The Great, St. Thaddeus.
22. Iran birth rate is 19 births/1,000 population
23. In Iran, the family is the basis of the social structure.
24. Iranians take their responsibilities to their family quite seriously.
25. Loyalty to the family comes before other social relationship, even business.
26. Iranians give gifts at various social occasions such as returning from a trip or if someone achieves a major success in their personal or business life.
27. If you are invited to an Iranian’s house, bring flowers, or pastry to the hosts. When giving a gift, always apologize for its inadequacy!
28. If you are invited to an Iranian’s house check to see if the host is wearing shoes. If not, remove yours at the door.
29. Satellite television is banned in Iran, but receiver dishes sit in plain view on top of many houses!
30. Iran is one of the world’s biggest producers of luxury foods. Iran has world’s best caviar.
31. The current Iranian flag was adopted in 1980 and has three equal horizontal bands of green, white, and red.
32. Nearly half of Iran has an arid desert climate. It receives less than 4 inches of precipitation each year.
33. Iran first participated in the Olympics in 1948 and has sent athletes to every Summer Olympic Games since then, except for 1980 and 1984. Iran has also participated in the winter Olympics multiple times since 1956.
34. The Persian Gulf holds 60% of the world’s oil reserves. Iran alone has reserves of 125 billion barrels of oil, or 10% of the world’s total reserves. Iran pumps nearly 4 million barrels of oil each day.
35. Iran is one of the youngest countries in the world. Approximately 70% of Iran’s population is under the age of 30.
36. In Iran, men who do not marry usually stay with their natal family for their entire life.
37. In Iran, couples that want a marriage license are required to take an hour-long lecture on contraception.
38. Since ancient times, people in Iran have used a water supply system called a qanat (or kanat). It collects underground water and moves it through tunnels to places where people need it.
39. In Iran, females over the age of 13-15 must wear a hijab in public.
40. The Persian cat is one of the world’s oldest breeds. They originated in the high plateaus of Iran where their long silky fur protected them from the cold.
Improve your reading skill and discover the art, culture and history of Iran: For Intermediate to Advanced (Volume 1)
41. Poetry holds a special place in Iranian culture. All Iranians can recite lines from famous Persian poems, such as the most famous poem in Iran called Shahnameh or The Epic of Kings.
42. Persian culture is famous for its beautiful poetry, luxurious rugs, and lush gardens.
43. In December 2003 earthquake struck the southeastern city of Bam, Iran, killed more than 30,000 people.
44. Men often wear Western styles, although traditional robes and turbans or hats are also worn in parts of the North and West, especially by religious.
45. Iran experiences four seasons each year. Spring and fall are mild, while winters bring heavy snowfall to the mountains. In the summer, temperatures routinely top 38°C (100°F).
46. Iran’s majority centrally-planned economy depends upon oil and gas exports for between 50 and 70% of its revenue.
47. The currency of Iran is the Rial. However, Iranians commonly express amounts of money and prices of goods in “Toman”. 1 Toman = 10 Rial
48. Iran GDP was $987.1 billion in 2013.
49. The war between Iran and the Republic of Iraq, lasting from September 1980 to August 1988, was the 20th century’s longest conventional war.
50. Only one river in Iran, the Karun, may be navigated by boat, only for short distances.