Isfahan City has a long civilization and historical background. This city is probably constructed in Achaemenian era. During the reign of Ardavan V (222-24 BC.) Sepahan or Espehan has been the center of one of the states of Iran. In Sassanian time, Isfahan was a garrison city and was conquered by Moslems i n the year 19 AH. Since then, it was divided into two sections of Moslem dweller (Shahrestan) and Jewish dweller (Yahoodieh). In the year 1,000 AH the capital of Safavid was transferred from Qazvin to Isfahan.
Isfahan holds a treasury of tourist attractions:
- Isfahan Jame' mosque which is a collection of architectural styles of different periods after Islam;
- Imam (Naghsh-e-Jahan) square, constructed in Safavid time, surrounded by Imam and Sheikh Lotfollah mosques as well as Ali-Ghapoo palace;
- Chehel Sotoon (40 pillars) palace with a beautiful edifice is constructed in a wide ground and there are so many paintings on its interior walls;
- Menar Jonban (shaking minarets), with unknown date of construction of its two minarets, is very interesting due to the shaking ability of the minarets as well as its dome;
- Two churches in Jolfa (Vang and Maryam) which are monuments belonging to Safavid era;
- Zoroastrian fire-temple which is from a pre-Islamic time;
- Khajoo and Siosehpol (33 arches), and Shahrestan bridges constructed across Zayandeh Rood river and connect Jolfa district to Isfahan city (these bridges are important from architectural point of view).
Zayandeh Rood, which crosses the city, is a natural habitat and the people use its banks as recreational places. Some parks were constructed on its banks like Boostan, Mellat, and Ayneh Khaneh.
Bazaar of Isfahan, of having important parts with chambers (old type of commercial offices) and caravansaries, historically valuable, is one of the worth-seeing places of this city. This Bazaar is the main place for transaction of Isfahan handicrafts which some of them have worldwide reputation and mostly their names are synonym to Isfahan. The most important of these handicrafts with high artistic values always are demanded by tourists are: inlaid work, enamel work, miniatures, painting an illumination work, embossment work, turnery work, carpet, rug, silver work, engraving work, crocheting, and ceramics.
Isfahan carpet for its color, design and ornaments is amongst the bests in the world and has an international fame. Today, in addition to being the center of the province, Isfahan is one of the most industrialized cities of Iran. The main mills of steel industry of the country are centered in Isfahan. The other cities of this province are Kashan, Shahreza (Ghomsheh), Golpayegan, Natanz, Na'een, Ardestan, and Abyaneh.
Chahar Mahal and Bakhtiari province, which is located in the western part of the country, is the main residence of Bakhtiari nomads. This province enjoys a wonderful nature with the landscapes of mountains, wetlands, rivers, springs, and caves which have totally changed this province into one of the most worth-seeing provinces of the country. The beautiful natural landscapes of this province can be compared with those of Alps slopes in Switzerland and Austria.