Your guide to being an expatriate in Iran

Caffeinate Your Iran Expat Journey: Find Essential Info and Connect with Expatriates Today!

Located at the crossroads of Asia, Europe, and Africa, Iran has a rich history dating back over 4,000 years. From the ancient Persian Empire to the contemporary Islamic Republic, Iran has played a significant role in shaping the world we know today. Today, Iran is a multi-ethnic and multi-lingual country, known for its cultural and intellectual contributions to art, literature, and science.


Expat destinations in Iran

Demographics of Iran:

Ethnic groups

Persian (51%), Azerbaijani (24%), Kurds (10%), Lurs (6%), Arabs (2%), Balochs (2%), Turkmen (2%), other (3%)


Persian (Official) (58.4%), Kurdish (11.5%), Turkish (7.1%), Arabic (2.5%), Luri (1.5%), Balochi (1.2%), Turkmen (1%), other (10.3%)

Religion Overview

Iran is an Islamic Republic, with Shia Islam being the dominant religion. According to estimates, the majority (99%) of the population adhere to Islam, with the remaining 1% being Bahá'ís, Christians, Jews, and Zoroastrians.

Major Religions


Iran has a mostly dry climate, with hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters. The southern and southwestern coast has a Mediterranean climate, while the north is cooler and more humid due to its proximity to the Caspian Sea.

Economy Overview

Iran has a large economy, with a focus on petroleum, gas, and petroleum products. The country is rich in mineral resources, including iron ore, copper, lead, and zinc. With a growing population and a young workforce, Iran is attracting foreign investment in various sectors.

Key Industries

  • Petroleum and Gas

Major Companies

  • National Iranian Oil Company
  • National Petrochemical Company
  • Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines

Culture and Language Overview

Iranian culture is known for its rich history, literature, and art. Persian poetry, music, and architecture have had a significant influence on Middle Eastern and Central Asian culture. Iran's unique cuisine, traditional clothing, and social customs are also worth exploring.

Cultural Highlights

  • Persian New Year (Nowruz)
  • Celebrating the birth of Imam Ali (Ali's Birthday)
  • MesAAk Special Exhibitions (International Museum of Contemporary Art)
  • The tehran book fair
  • The Māzandarān Great Desert
  • The historic Chtroud Arch Bridge

Geography and Landmarks Overview

Iran spans over 1.6 million square kilometers, and its diverse landscape includes mountains, deserts, forests, and grasslands. Iran is also home to several historic and cultural landmarks, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Persepolis.

Notable Landmarks

  • Persepolis (Marvy's Archaeological Center of Isthmus of Persopolis)
  • Naqsh-e Rustam
  • Isfahan Historic City Center
  • Hafez Tomb
  • Alborz Mountains
  • Kashan Bazaar
  • The Qanat of Gonbad-e Kavus

National Holidays

  • New Year's Day (Nowruz) (March 20)
  • Islamic Republic Revolution Day (April 1)
  • National Shroud Day (April 9)
  • Ashura (Shia Mourning Day) (varies)
  • Geological Sciences Day (May 26)
  • Kargash Blvd Explosion Anniversary (June 7)
  • World Environment Day (June 5)
  • Desertification Day in the Iran (Yavarnasia Khuzestan) (July 12)
  • Imam Ali's Birthday (Rajab 13) (July 29)
  • Tehran University Day (November 12)
  • Eid al-Adha (Eid ul-Fitr) (varies)
  • Army Day (December 22)

Political Stability

Iran is classified as an authoritarian regime, with a republican political system and a highly centralized government. The country has been governed by an Islamic theocracy since the 1979 Iranian Revolution, and politics remain a sensitive topic for foreigners.

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