Ethnic Groups in Iran

Ethnic groups in Iran[1]

Ethnic groups Percent
Persians (incl. Gilaks and Mazandaranis) 61%
Azerbaijanis 16%
Kurds 10%
Lurs (incl. Bakhtiari people) 6%
Turkmens (and other tribal Turks in Iran) 2%
Arabs 2%
Baloch 2%
Others 1%


  1. Wikipedia

Korsi: Iranian Traditional Heating System

A korsi is a type of low table found in Iran, with a heater underneath it, and blankets were thrown over it. It is a traditional item of furniture in Iranian culture. A family or other gathering sits on the floor around the korsi during meals and special events, like Nowruz (Persian/Zoroastrian New Year’s Eve). A korsi used to be quite popular for entire families to gather together during yearly Yaldā celebrations.

Korsi is generally heated with electric elements or, traditionally, with a brazier containing hot coals that are placed under the table. The table is covered with a thick cloth overhanging on all sides to keep its occupants warm. The occupants sit on large cushions around the korsi with the cloth over their laps.

A special woven rug called ru korsi is usually placed over any blankets to protect them from food stains.

Source: Wikipedia

Solo Female Traveling in Iran

“Most of the people think Iran is not a safe place to travel and even confuse Iran with Iraq. From my point of view, having spent time in the country, Iran is the best option in the Middle East for a woman to travel alone. People will stare at you because they are curious and for them it is not common to see a girl from any other country travelling alone. But people are very kind and hospitable and don’t have bad intentions.

Traveling around Iran is safe and easy. You can always take a bus or taxi without a problem. Buses provide a seat reservation and the driver will rearrange the passengers so that no woman sits next to an unknown man. So get ready to change your seat several times in a journey. Accommodation in Iran is easy to find. I always booked a hotel or hostel before arriving to each destination. But nowadays CoachSurfing is becoming very popular and it is the best way to find accommodation with local hosts and discover nearby events.” [1]

“Iran is safe, accessible and totally easy to navigate as a solo female traveler. Sure, you might experience some inconviniences, but for every annoying man you get 3 nice ones, just like anywhere else.

Traveling to Iran or anywhere in the Middle East independently, especially as a woman, isn’t perceived well these days.

You’ll be much more likely to get mugged in Europe than in Iran. Violent crimes against foreigners are extremely rare and, indeed, if you do your best to fit in with local customs, you are unlikely to be treated with anything.

People believe that Iran is full of moral police watching your every step, ready to arrest westerners at the slightest provocation. In my experience, this couldn’t be further from the truth. While cases or reporting and arrests occur, it’s not as common as it’s being portrayed outside of the country.Everyone I met was extremely helpful and treated me like I was an expensive piece of jewelry. Escorting from one place to the other, while feeling responsible for me. And that’s the people I met on the street for 5 minutes! So unless you’re planning on running around naked with a bottle of smuggled vodka in hand, don’t be afraid.” [2]

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Rials or Tomans?

No sooner have you arrived in Iran than you will come up against the idiosyncratic local practice of talking about prices in tomans, even though the currency is denominated in rials. One toman is worth 10 rials.

To make matters worse, taxi drivers and shopkeepers will often say ‘one’ as shorthand for IR10,000. However, before you consider cancelling your trip on the grounds of commercial confusion, rest assured that after a few days you’ll understand that the five fingers the taxi driver just showed you means IR50,000. And as you start to get a feel for what things cost, you’ll understand that if something sounds too good to be true – or too bad – it probably is.

In the interim, you can always have the price written down, and then to double-check ask whether it’s in rials or tomans – using a calculator is handy, too, as the numbers show in Western rather than Arabic numerals.

And just when you’ve mastered the rial, remember that there are plans to replace it with the toman as Iran’s official currency over the coming years.

Iranian Turkmen

Iranian Turkmen are a branch of Turkmen people living mainly in northern and northeastern regions of Iran. Their region is called Turkmen Sahra and includes stantial parts of Golestan.

Iranian Turkmens have long time represented a group of semi-nomadic tribes who retained a more traditional way. In Iran lived next Turkmen tribes — Yomut, Goklen, Īgdīr, Saryk, Salar and Teke.

Nearly two million Turkmen can be found living along the northern edges of Iran, just south of the Turkmenistan border. For centuries the Turkmen lived as nomadic herdsmen. In more recent years, however, many have changed to a “semi-nomadic lifestyle,” living in permanent homes as well as in tents. Today most of them are farmers and cattle breeders. Turkmen still live in extended families where various generations can be found under the same roof, especially in rural areas. Many tribal customs still survive among modern Turkmen. Unique to Turkmen culture is kalim, which is a groom’s “dowry” that can be quite expensive and often results in the widely practiced tradition of bridal kidnapping.


Pateh (Needlework) in Kerman

Kermani women use colorful threads on a wide piece of cloth, which they call “Ariz (meaning “wide” in Persian)” to make this scarf which is then decorated with very beautiful designs.

Pateh Kerman Tree, aigrette, pine, peacock, cypress, and armband are major patterns which are used to weave patehs. Pateh is woven in various types and sizes, including a size suitable to be used by brides to put their things in it. Some of them are big enough to be spread at tables, to decorate them.

Pateh is a kind of Iranian needle-works. Color and weven strings are sewed in the wide cloth are Shawl in the designs of Bute, Sarv and Toranj which created beautiful designs that are the result of endeavor of hard-working girls and woman of Kerman.

Pateh consists of two parts; the background of the Shawl named Ariz and the colorful and wooly spinners that called Pateh. Both cloth and spinner are wooden and provided in different colors. Pateh is made only in Kerman moreover; sewing Pateh is current in all township and villages around Kerman province particularly in Sirjan and Rafsanjan.

These designers have root in the Iranian culture and civilization. One of the most beautiful “Patehs” which has a unique sewin is the cover of the renowned Iranian mystic and poet, Shah Nematollah Vali tomb in Kerman’s town of Mahan. It has been sewed in 1285 Ah. It is the result of two year enduring work of sixteen woman of Kerman on a cloth at 355cm in length and 210cm in width. Of course there are other samples of this art throughout Kerman. [1]


Mamghani Needlework (East Azerbaijan province)

The most important handicraft artwork in East Azerbaijan province is needlework. This particular artwork which is popular among girls and housewives has a very old history. In the past, a kind of popular hat was the dominant work for local consumption. But other than hats, they weave table cloths, under glasses, seat belts, shoes, vests and so on. The patterns and designs of the needlework are basically inspired by personal thinking and the surrounding or nature. These artworks are mostly geometric, flowers and moot plants. The basic materials include black satin fabric, metal acetate and rayon which are divided into three types: 1- Thin: three layers convoluted acetate sextuple, 2- Average: Fifteen layers convoluted acetate. 3- Big: Thirty layers convoluted acetate. The work process includes: to provide this three different pes of acetates fabrics and weaving of them, different types of weaves such as “Zangireh doozi, dandan mooshi, dookhte bast’ and so on. The sewing includes two stages: First selection of the fabric for the purse of weaves, hank and sewing of the threads, second: the weaving of the decorating patterns and designs.[1]



Needlework (Souzan Douzi) in Sistan and Baluchestan

Needlework (Souzan Douzi) is an Iranian handicraft artwork that is very common among the women of Sistan and Baluchestan province in southeastern Iran.

It is the art of drawing images on plain fabrics by sewing delicate stitches using a needle and colorful yarns.