Razavi Khorasan province

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Razavi Khorasan Province (Persian: استان خراسان رضوی, Ostân-e Xorâsân-e Razavi) is a province located in northeastern Iran. Mashhad is the center and capital of the province. Other cities are Bardaskan, Binalud, Chenaran, Dargaz, Fariman, Gonabad, Kalat, Kashmar, Khaf, Nishapur, Quchan, Rivash, Roshtkhar, Sabzevar, Salehabad, Sarakhs, Shahr Jadid-e Golbahar, Taybad, Torbat-e Heydarieh, and Torbat-e Jam. Razavi Khorasan is one of the three provinces that were created after the division of Khorasan province in 2004. In 2014 it was placed in Region 5[4] with Mashhad as the location of the region's secretariat.

Razavi Khorasan Province
استان خراسان رضوی
1 (معماری حرم امام رضا (ع.jpg
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From top to bottom and from left to right: Mashhad, Nishapur, Kalat, Chenaran, Sabzevar, Sarakhs and Kashmar
Razavi Khorasan counties
Razavi Khorasan counties
Location of Khorasan-e Razavi Province in Iran
Location of Khorasan-e Razavi Province in Iran
Coordinates: 36°17′53″N 59°36′21″E / 36.2980°N 59.6057°E / 36.2980; 59.6057Coordinates: 36°17′53″N 59°36′21″E / 36.2980°N 59.6057°E / 36.2980; 59.6057
RegionRegion 5
 • Governor-generalYaghob-Ali Nazari
 • Total118,884 km2 (45,901 sq mi)
Highest elevation3,211 m (10,535 ft)
Lowest elevation299 m (981 ft)
 • Total6,434,501
 • Estimate 
 • Density54/km2 (140/sq mi)
DemonymKhorasani (Persian: خراسانی)
Time zoneUTC+03:30 (IRST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+04:30 (IRST)
Area code051
Main language(s)Persian
HDI (2017)0.781[3]
high · 19th


The Greater Khorasan has witnessed the rise and fall of many dynasties and governments in its territory throughout history. Various tribes of the Arabs, Turks, Kurds,[5] Turkmens, and Mongols brought changes to the region time and time again.

Ancient geographers of Iran divided Iran ("Ērānshahr") into eight segments of which the most flourishing and largest was the territory of Greater Khorasan. Esfarayen, among other cities of the province, was one of the focal points for residence of the Aryan tribes after entering Iran.

The Parthian Empire was based near Merv in Khorasan for many years. During the Sassanid dynasty, the province was governed by a Spahbod (Lieutenant General) called "Padgošban" and four margraves, each commander of one of the four parts of the province.

Khorasan was divided into four parts during the Muslim conquest of Persia, each section being named after the four largest cities, Nishapur, Merv, Herat, and Balkh.

In the year 651, the army of the Rashidun Caliphate conquered Khorasan. The territory remained under the rule of the Abbasid Caliphate until 820, followed by the rule of the Iranian Tahirid dynasty until 873, and the Samanid dynasty in 900.

Mahmud of Ghazni conquered Khorasan in 1994, and Tuğrul in the year 1037.

In 1507, Khorasan was occupied by the Uzbek tribes. After the death of Nader Shah in 1747, it was occupied by the Afghan Durrani Empire centered in Qandahar.

In 1824, Herat became independent for several years when the Afghan Empire was split between the Durranis and Barakzais. The Persians sieged the city in 1837, but the British assisted the Afghans in repelling them. In 1856, the Persians launched another invasion and briefly managed to recapture the city; it led directly to the Anglo-Persian War. In 1857 hostilities between the Persians and the British ended after the Treaty of Paris was signed, and the Persian troops withdrew from Herat.[6] Afghanistan reconquered Herat in 1863 under Dost Muhammad Khan, two weeks before his death.[7]

Khorasan was the largest province of Iran until it was divided into three provinces on 29 September 2004. The provinces approved by the parliament of Iran (on 18 May 2004) and the Council of Guardians (on 29 May 2004) were Khorasan-e Razavi, North Khorasan, and South Khorasan.

Archaeological sitesEdit

Among the archeological sites discovered in this province:

Kohandezh hillsEdit

Excavations conducted by an American team between 1935 and 1940 in Nishapur discovered museum-worthy objects, which were shared with the government of the Shah. The Metropolitan Museum of Art's publications[citation needed] document its own Nishapur ceramics from those excavations. For half a century after 1945 the site of Nishapur was ransacked to feed the international market demand for early Islamic works of art. Nowadays, the Kohandezh hills reveal the remains from those excavations.[citation needed]


Shadiyakh was an important palace in old Nishapur up to the 7th century, and became more important and populated after that. The palace was completely ruined in the 13th century. It was the home of notables such as Farid al-Din Attar, whose tomb is found in Shadiyakh.

Administrative divisionsEdit

The counties of Khorasan-e Razavi province are Bajestan County, Bakharz County, Bardaskan County, Chenaran County, Dargaz County, Davarzan County, Fariman County, Firuzeh County, Golbahar County, Gonabad County, Joghatai County, Joveyn County, Kalat County, Kashmar County, Khaf County, Khalilabad County, Khoshab County, Kuhsorkh County, Mahvelat County, Mashhad County, Nishapur County, Quchan County, Roshtkhar County, Sabzevar County, Salehabad County, Sarakhs County, Sheshtamad County, Taybad County, Torbat-e Heydarieh County, Torbat-e Jam County, Torqabeh and Shandiz County, Zaveh County, and Zeberkhan County.


The following sorted table lists the most populous cities in Razavi Khorasan according to 2016 Census results announced by Statistical Center of Iran.[8] Aftar Mashhad, Fariman, Nishapur, Sabzevar, and Torbat-e Heydarieh are the most populous cities of the province.

Most populous urban areas in Razavi Khorasan Province




Rank City County Population  



Torbat-e Heydarieh

1 Mashhad Mashhad 3,001,184
2 Nishapur Nishapur 264,375
3 Sabzevar Sabzevar 243,700
4 Torbat-e Heydarieh Torbat-e Heydarieh 140,019
5 Kashmar Kashmar 102,282
6 Quchan Quchan 101,604
7 Torbat-e Jam Torbat-e Jam 100,449
8 Taybad Taybad 56,562
9 Chenaran Chenaran 53,879
10 Sarakhs Sarakhs 42,179
Sources: Statistical Center of Iran[8]



This province contains many historical and natural attractions, such as mineral water springs, small lakes, recreational areas, caves and protected regions, and various hiking areas.

Besides these, Khorasan encompasses numerous religious buildings and places of pilgrimage, including the shrine of Imam Reza, Goharshad mosque and many other mausoleums and Imamzadehs which attract visitors to this province.

The Cultural Heritage of Iran lists 1179 sites of historical and cultural significance in all three provinces of Khorasan.

Some of the popular attractions of Khorasan-e Razavi are:






Torbat-e JamEdit







Colleges and universitiesEdit


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "جمعیت". amar.org.ir.
  2. ^ "Census of the Islamic Republic of Iran, 1395 (2016)" (Excel). Islamic Republic of Iran.
  3. ^ "Sub-national HDI - Area Database - Global Data Lab". hdi.globaldatalab.org. Retrieved 13 September 2018.
  4. ^ "همشهری آنلاین-استان‌های کشور به ۵ منطقه تقسیم شدند (Provinces were divided into 5 regions)". Hamshahri Online (in Persian). 22 June 2014. Archived from the original on 23 June 2014.
  5. ^ "CSKK - Kurds in Khorasan". cskk.org.
  6. ^ Avery, Peter; Hambly, Gavin; Melville, Charles, eds. (1991). The Cambridge History of Iran (Vol. 7): From Nadir Shah to the Islamic Republic. Cambridge University Press. pp. 183, 394–395. ISBN 978-0521200950.
  7. ^ Ewans (2002). Afghanistan: A short History of its People and Politics. Perennial. pp. 77. ISBN 006-050508-7.
  8. ^ a b "Statistical Center of Iran > Home".
  9. ^ "Home". asrar.ac.ir.
  10. ^ "مؤسسه آموزش عالی غیرانتفاعی بهار مشهد – مؤسسه آموزش عالی غیرانتفاعی بهار مشهد – دانشگاه بهار مشهد".
  11. ^ "Welcome to ISATC 1". 11 February 2005. Archived from the original on 11 February 2005.
  12. ^ "دانشگاه فردوسی مشهد - دانشگاه فردوسی مشهد". www.um.ac.ir.
  13. ^ "دانشگاه علوم پزشکی و خدمات بهداشتی درمانی گناباد". www.gmu.ac.ir.
  14. ^ "دانشگاه حکیم سبزواری – دانشگاه حکیم سبزواری پویا در عرصه ملی پیشرو در مسیر توسعه".
  15. ^ "دانشگاه بین المللی امام رضا (علیه السلام)". دانشگاه بین المللی امام رضا (علیه السلام).
  16. ^ "دانشگاه آزاد اسلامی گناباد". iau-gonabad.ac.ir.
  17. ^ "دانشگاه آزاد اسلامی سبزوار". www.iaus.ac.ir.
  18. ^ "دانشگاه علوم پزشكي سبزوار - صفحه اصلی". www.medsab.ac.ir.
  19. ^ "دانشگاه صنعتی سجاد". www.sadjad.ac.ir.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Razavi Khorasan Province at Wikimedia Commons