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Updated:Monday 13th October 2014

Karaj Definition

Karaj is a City NW of Tehran.It is in Tehran province, situated 20 km west of capital Tehran, at the foothills of the Alborz mountains.Karaj is the fifth-largest city in Iran after Tehran, Mashhad, Isfahan and Tabriz. Karaj city is increasingly becoming an extension of metropolitan Tehran and efforts are underway to make it part of a separate province called Alborz. Karaj used to be mostly famous for its fruit gardens which have become victim of fast urbanization.Historical Attractions:-The Zoroastrian fire temple of Takht-e-Rostam, made of stone from the Parthian era is a testament that Karaj is an ancient settlement. -The Soleymanieh palace (currently housing a college of Agriculture)-The mausoleum of Shahzadeh Soleyman- Imamzadeh Rahman.- Zeid Palang Abad-e-Eshtehard.-The Morvarid Palace, constructed in nearby Mehrshahr district, designed by the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation.-The Amirkabir Dam.Major districts of Karaj: * Gohardasht * Mehrshahr * Kian-mehr * Hesarak * Azimiyeh * Ouj * Shahin Vila * Bonyad * Baghastan * Garmdare * Jahanshahr * Mesbah * Mehr Vila * Dehghan Vila * Mahdasht * Fardis * Vahdat * Kalak & Hesar * Islam Abad * Golshahr * Zibadasht * Zob-e-Ahan * Sasani * Homayoonvila * Astara * Mohammad Shahr * Mehdi Abad * Shahrak-e-Khatam (Wikipedia) - Karaj For other places with the same name, see Karaj (disambiguation). Karaj Karaj Country Province County Bakhsh Area  • Total Elevation Population (2011 Census)  • Total  • Density  • Population Rank in Iran Time zone  • Summer (DST) Area code(s)
Coordinates: 35°50′08″N 51°00′37″E / 35.83556°N 51.01028°E / 35.83556; 51.01028Coordinates: 35°50′08″N 51°00′37″E / 35.83556°N 51.01028°E / 35.83556; 51.01028
858 km2 (331 sq mi)
1,312 m (4,304 ft)
2,300/km2 (5,900/sq mi)
IRST (UTC+3:30)
IRDT (UTC+4:30)

Karaj  pronunciation (help·info) (Persian: Karaj‎ pronounced ; Azerbaijani: ﮐﺮﺝ, ﮐَﺮَﺵ , Kәrәc ) is a city in and the capital of Karaj County, Alborz Province, Iran. At the 2006 census, its population was 1.61 million in the latest 2011 census, making it the fourth-largest city in Iran after Tehran, Mashhad and Isfahan. It is situated 20 kilometres (12 mi) west of Tehran, at the foothills of the Alborz mountains. The city has effectively become an extension of metropolitan Tehran.

Karaj is mostly famous because of its academic and educational complexes along with tourist attractions.

  • 1 History
  • 2 Climate
  • 3 Karaj today
    • 3.1 Special Economic Zone and airport
    • 3.2 Higher education and research
  • 4 Sports
  • 5 Tourism
    • 5.1 Recreation
    • 5.2 Cultural attractions
  • 6 Economy
  • 7 Transportation
    • 7.1 Roads and freeways
    • 7.2 Railway
  • 8 Notable people
  • 9 Photo gallery
  • 10 See also
  • 11 References
  • 12 External links


The history of Karaj dates back many centuries. The stone built Zoroastrian fire temple of Takht-e-Rostam from the Parthian era is a testament to this.

The Soleimanieh palace (currently housing a college of Agriculture), the mausoleum of Shahzadeh Soleiman, Imamzadeh Rahman and Zeid Palang Abad-e-Eshtehard are other historical relics of the Karaj area.

During the Pahlavi dynasty era, the Morvarid Palace was constructed in nearby Mehrshahr district, designed by the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation.


Köppen-Geiger climate classification system classifies its climate as cold semi-arid (BSk).

Climate data for Karaj Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year Average high °C (°F) Daily mean °C (°F) Average low °C (°F) Precipitation mm (inches)
5.2 (41.4) 8 (46) 12.7 (54.9) 19.4 (66.9) 27.3 (81.1) 31.5 (88.7) 33.6 (92.5) 34.5 (94.1) 29.5 (85.1) 24.1 (75.4) 15 (59) 9.1 (48.4) 20.83 (69.46)
0.1 (32.2) 2.7 (36.9) 7 (45) 12.9 (55.2) 20 (68) 23.7 (74.7) 25.9 (78.6) 26.9 (80.4) 21.8 (71.2) 17.2 (63) 9.2 (48.6) 4 (39) 14.28 (57.73)
−4.9 (23.2) −2.5 (27.5) 1.3 (34.3) 6.4 (43.5) 12.7 (54.9) 15.9 (60.6) 18.2 (64.8) 19.4 (66.9) 14.2 (57.6) 10.4 (50.7) 3.5 (38.3) −1 (30) 7.8 (46.03)
44 (1.73) 37 (1.46) 41 (1.61) 36 (1.42) 18 (0.71) 5 (0.2) 3 (0.12) 2 (0.08) 3 (0.12) 14 (0.55) 26 (1.02) 33 (1.3) 262 (10.32)
Source: Climate-Data.org, altitude: 1314m
Karaj todayKaraj in winter

The economical base for Karaj is its proximity to Tehran, where transportation of products between the capital and the Caspian Sea is central. Chemicals, fertilizers and processed agricultural goods are also produced here.

The majority of the population of the city is composed of ethnic Persians who are natives to the city but there are also a minority of Persianized Lurs, Persianized Azeris and Persianized Kurds.

It is connected by freeway, railway to Tehran 40 km east and Qazvin 100 km northwest, and by commuter rail to Tehran subway system (Metro).

Amir Kabir dam and small lakes are based here. Karaj''s climate is a bit cooler than Tehran and it receives 260 mm of rain annually.

The downtown of Karaj is usually referred to Karaj Square, located hundred of meters to the West of Karaj River and the old Karaj Bridge.

Karaj''s major districts include:

  • Gohardasht
  • Mehrshahr
  • Kian-mehr
  • Karaj no
  • Hesarak
  • Derakhti
  • Azimiyeh
  • Ouj
  • Shahin Vila
  • Bonyad
  • Baghestan
  • Dowlatabad
  • Garmdarreh
  • Jahanshahr
  • Mesbah
  • Mehr Vila
  • Dehghan Vila
  • Mahdasht
  • Shahrake Banafsheh
  • Fardis
  • Vahdat
  • Kalak & Hesar
  • Islam Abad
  • Golshahr
  • Golshahrvila
  • Zibadasht
  • Zob-e-Ahan
  • Sasani
  • Homayoonvila
  • Asara
  • Mohammadshahr
  • Mehdiabad
  • Shahrak-e-Khatam
  • Mian Jaddeh
  • heydar abad
Karaj Azadi Blvd. 
Central Karaj 
Special Economic Zone and airport
  • Payam Special Economic Zone and Payam international cargo airport outside Mehrshahr
Higher education and researchKaraj Azad University
  • Islamic Azad University of Karaj
  • University of Environment
  • Karaj Payam Noor University
  • Kharazmi University
  • Art University
  • Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources of University of Tehran, located in Karaj
  • Center for Research in Agriculture and Nuclear Medicine of Karaj
  • Razi Vaccine and Serum Research Institute at Hesarak
  • Alborz High School (Alborz college)

Sports See also: Sport in IranKaraj Enghelab Stadium

Karaj has introduced several national players for a wide range of national teams.

Karaj has a multi-purpose stadium; the Enghelab Stadium, with capacity of 15,000 people. It is currently used mostly for football matches and is the home of football team, Saipa F.C.

Karaj is home to Saipa F.C. one the IPL major Football teams as of 2001. The team is registered in Tehran, but plays its games in Karaj and is called "Saipa Karaj". It is known to have one of the best youth training programs in Iranian football.

Karaj also has a Tennis Park in Jahanshahr.

The ski resorts of Dizin and Khur are situated close to Karaj in the Alborz Mountains. Besides Skiing facilities in Dizin, there are tennis courtyards, slope for skiing on turf, some altitudes for mountain climbing and walking as well as riding and some routes for cycling.

The high altitude mountains have made it easy for people in Karaj to use them as mountain trail for hiking and mountain climbing. There are also many private gyms and clubs that are being utilized.

Tourism See also: Tourism in IranPearl Palace, Karaj

Karaj has traditionally been considered as a tourism area particularly for the people from Tehran. Karaj has a pleasant climate throughout the year. It is famous for its natural attractions. The Alborz Mountains provide a natural beauty to the landscape of Karaj.

The stony fire-temple of Takht-e-Rostam belong to Parthians and Sassanian eras, as well as the Soleimanieh palace (which is currently part of the Agriculture faculty of University of Tehran), Shah Abbasi Caravanserai, a pre-Islamic bridge and the mausoleum of Shahzadeh Soleiman are among Karaj''s cultural heritage.

Karaj is also the starting point for a drive along road forced north through the Alborz mountain to the Caspian Sea.

The following are the lists of some places for outdoors activities in Karaj:

RecreationAmir Kabir Dam (aka Karaj Dam)
  • Amir Kabir dam lake in the road of Chalus. This area is used for sports such as canoeing, fishing, water skiing, swimming and gliding.
  • Atashgah
  • Khanevadeh Park - biking roads
  • Road to Chaloos, which is the most beautiful road in Iran
  • Jahanshahr Gardens
  • Tulip Garden in Gachsar
  • Tennis Park
  • Iranzamin Park
  • Park of Madar
  • Golha Garden
  • Majmue Zendegi ,Shopping Center & Coffeeshop Restaurant
  • Arangeh Valley
  • Varian Village – the only means of accessibility to the village of Varian is by canoe from the lake of the dam.
  • Baraghan Village
  • Taleghan Gardens
  • Taleghan dam lake
  • Agasht
  • Dizin ski resort at an attitude of 3,800 m above sea-level in the Chaloos road
  • Khuradj|Karaj River]], This river is about 220 km in length
  • Yakh Morad Cave is situated in the district of Gachsar. Low temperature within the cave is as such that even till the months of May/June icicles can be still observed there.
  • Pole khab valley
  • Jey and Charan Villages
  • Sijan Village
  • Vineh
  • Kordan Gardens
  • Pich Adran Waterfall, at 15 km Chaloos road
  • Wallah spring water
  • Gila-gila spring water
Ahmad Shamlou is buried in Emamzadeh TaherCultural attractions[edit]A medieval Caravanserai in Karaj
  • Shah Abbasi Caravanserai; The medieval Caravanserai in Karaj
  • The stony fire-temple of Takht-e-Rostam[9]
  • Kakh-e Morvarid or kakh-e Shams (Pearl Palace) in Mehrshahr
  • Ancient bridge of Karaj
  • Ghale'' Dehshad (Dehshad citadel)
  • Ghale'' Faramarz (Faramarz citadel)
  • Emamzadeh Taher
  • Soleimanieh palace, which is currently part of the Agriculture faculty of University of Tehran
  • Emamzadeh Rahman Palang Abad,
  • The mausoleum of Shahzadeh Soleiman
Economy[edit] See also: Economy of Iran
This section requires expansion. (March 2014)
Transportation[edit] See also: Transport in IranKaraj Special road

Karaj is connected by Highways and railway to Tehran 40 km east and Qazvin 100 km northwest, and by commuter rail to Tehran subway system (Metro). The highway system includes three highways: Tehran-Karaj Freeway, Karaj special road (highway), Karaj old road (Fat''h highway). Tehran-Karaj Freeway (also known as the Autobahn) is the most high traffic highway in Iran.

Roads and freeways[edit]Karaj-Chalus road

Freeway 2

Road 32

Road 59


Karaj is served by Karaj railway station.[10]

Notable people[edit]
  • Mahmoud Bahmani (b. 1947) - politician
  • Isa Saharkhiz (b. 1953) - political activist
  • Shadi Amin - political activist
  • Hossein Sanapour (b. 1960) - writer
  • Ahmad Sanjari (b. 1960) - football coach
  • Saied Reza Ameli (b. 1961) - scholar of communication
  • Mehran Rajabi (b. 1962) - actor
  • Fatemeh Ajorlou (b. 1966) - politician
  • Farshad Falahatzadeh (b. 1967) - football player
  • Mojtaba Taghavi (b. 1968) - football player
  • Naeim Saadavi (b. 1969) - football player
  • Leila Esfandyari (1970-2011) - mountain climber
  • Alireza Heidari (b. 1976) - wrestler
  • Ali Karimi (b. 1978) - football player
  • Ebrahim Sadeghi (b. 1979) - football player
  • Mohammad Nosrati (b. 1981) - football player
  • Rouhollah Dadashi (1982-2011) - powerlifter
  • Ebrahim Masoudi (b. 1982) - futsal player
  • Mehdi Mahdavi (b. 1984) - volleyball player
  • Ali Mohammadi (b. 1984) - wrestler
  • Saeed Kamali Dehghan (b. 1985) - journalist
  • Afshin Kazemi (b. 1986) - futsal player
  • Amin Manouchehri (b. 1986) - football player
  • Reza Mohammadi (b. 1986) - football player
  • Ali Kiaei (b. 1987) - futsal player
  • Mehrdad Pooladi (b. 1987) - football player
  • Milad Farahani (b. 1988) - football player
  • Mohammad Maarefvand (b. 1990) - businessman
  • Kaveh Rezaei (b. 1993) - taekwondo athlete
Photo gallery[edit]
  • Material and Energy Research Institute, Meshkin Dasht

  • Karaj A view from karaj city

  • Karaj Azad University

  • Karaj Azad University

  • Mehrshahr in spring

  • Mehrshahr in winter

  • Varian Village

  • One of the Experess Ways linked to north of Iran

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