Trans-Iranian Railway


Railway history


Trans-Iranian railway: The railway as a means of public transportation is an invention of George Stevenson, which was first started in 1825 AD between two English cities, Stockton-Darlington.

Since the time of Amir Kabir’s ministry, due to the fame of the railway reaching Iran, the government was trying to acquire this technology and start the Iranian railway, but it faced major problems.

The first problem was the opposition of the Russian government in order to prevent the possibility of British access to the borders of Russia through the Iranian railway.

 The British government was also against the construction of a railway in Iran. If the railway was built in Iran, the Russians could bring their forces to the Persian Gulf and then to the border of India.

The most important and last problem was lack of money. The construction of the railway required a huge budget and the Iranian government did not have this possibility.


The Trans-Iranian Railway is the name of the railway that was built during the reign of Reza Shah. The Trans-Iranian Railway connects the Caspian Sea to the Persian Gulf through the Port of Turkmen (Bandar Shah) and the Port of Imam Khomeini (Bandar Shapur).

During the time of Mohammad Reza Shah and during the expansion of the railway, Tehran was also connected to Semnan, Mashhad, Qazvin, Zanjan, Tabriz, Isfahan, Yazd and Kerman.

The construction of the Trans-Iranian Railway was approved in 1305. On the 4th of March 1305, the bill for the establishment of Iran’s trans-national railway was approved by the representatives of the National Council.

  One year after the approval, the construction of this 1,394-kilometer route began.

The history of the first construction and successful operation of the railway in Iran dates back to the Qajar period (1848 AD) on the way from Rasht to Pirbazar Port and Anzali Port. On the way from Rasht to Pirbazar, there is a steam locomotive in Gilan Port Authority, which is left over from that time.

The mapping contract for the construction of Trans-Iranian railway lines was signed with a consortium consisting of an American company and German companies in 1306 at a maximum price of 368 tomans per kilometer.


Financing the construction of the project was one of the concerns of Iranians. This problem was solved by imposing a tax on items such as tea, sugar and salt at the suggestion of Sani al-Doulah, the speaker of the parliament at the time.


The construction of the Trans-Iranian railway was completed in 1317. Two north and south railway lines are connected to each other at the Sefid Cheshme railway station in Arak, and on this day this railway was put into operation in this province.

The length of this railway is 1394 km and it has about 230 tunnels and 4100 bridges. The highest point of this railway is in the west of Arak with a height of 2200 meters above the sea level.

Completion of the railway

The role of Nazi Germany in helping to build the railway was great. Especially when Hitler needed Iran’s railway lines to attack Iran’s northern neighbor, the Soviet Union.

 Versk Bridge, one of the masterpieces of Austrian engineers, which is still standing, was built on the north-south railway route at that time.

 When the construction of the railway was finished, by the order of Reza Shah, two railway stations were named after Hitler, thanks to the services and help of Germany. One of these stations in the south was named “Rahbar” and the other one in the north was named “Pishwa”, both of which were Hitler’s nicknames. It was also ordered that the famous symbol of Nazi Germany, the swastika, be engraved on the ceiling of the Tehran railway station, which still remains.


Registered in the UNESCO World Heritage List

According to the UNESCO report, the 1394 km north-south railway, the construction of which began in 1927 AD and was completed in 1938 AD, has been a successful collaboration between the Iranian government and 43 contractors and companies from various countries.

According to UNESCO, the engineering of this project is very significant with many difficulties, especially in mountainous areas. There are 174 big bridges, 186 small bridges and 224 tunnels on the Trans-Iran railway route. Instead of borrowing or handing over control of the project to foreigners, the Iranian government completed this project through tax revenues.

 This railway, which connects the Caspian Sea to the Persian Gulf, passes through two large mountainous regions and passes over bridges, rivers, hills, forests and plains.

 Iran’s railway route is important not only in terms of technique and quality of construction and having special natural sights and attractions in the world, and for this reason, UNESCO at the China Summit voted for the internationalization of this route full of natural attractions, buildings and bridges and stations and historical locomotives.

Trans-Iranian Railway is registered in the world list of UNESCO. By joining the UNESCO tours organized by Oak Travel Agency, visit this unique Railway and experience a pleasant travel experience.

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