Area: 95,385 km²
Population: 768,898
Capital: Birjand
Language: Persian, Balouchi, Arabic

South Khorāsān Province is a province located in eastern Iran. Birjand is the center of the province. The other major cities are Ferdows, Tabas and Qāen. This new province, is but the old Quhistan which was included into greater Khorāsān in the Iranian administrative planning. However, historically Quhistan forms a separate entity, with a distinct culture, history, environment and ecology. South Khorāsān is one of the three provinces that were created after the division of Khorāsān in 2004. The most populated city and the capital of South Khorāsān Province is Birjand, borders Qāen county in the north, the cities of Darmian and Sarbisheh in the east, the city of Nehbandan and Kermān province in the south and the cities of Sarayan and Tabas in the west. Birjand is one of the top producers of saffron, which is known as red gold for its commercial value, in Iran.

About South Khorasan Province

Note: Since Khorasan district was divided into three provinces (Razavi Khorasan, North Khorasan, and South Khorasan) in 2004, you may find some similarities in the wording presented in the history part of these 3 provinces.

Greater Khorāsān has witnessed the rise and fall of many dynasties and governments in  its territory throughout history. Various tribes of the Arabs, Turks, Kurds, Mongols, Turkemen and Afghans brought changes to the region. Ancient geographers of Iran divided Iran (IranShahr) into eight segments of which the most flourishing and largest was the territory of Greater Khorāsān. Esfarāyen, 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 Khorāsān for many years. In Parthians times, Esfarāyen was one of the important villages of Neishābour. During the Sassanid dynasty the province was governed by a Spahbod (Lieutenant General) called “Padgoosban” and four margraves, each commander of one of the four parts of the province. Khorāsān was divided into four parts during the Muslim conquest of Persia, each section being named after the four largest cities, Neishābour, Merv, Herat, and Balkh.

This region was a place of refuge for some movements like the Ismaili, and was the target of Arab refugees who escaped from the tyranny of the Abbasid caliphate. Zoroastrian vestiges also exist in the area. During the Qajar period, Britain supported the Afghans to protect their East India Company. Herat was thus separated from Persia, and Nasseral-Din Shah was unable to defeat the British to take back Herat. Finally, the Paris Treaty was concluded in 1903 and Iran was compelled not to challenge the British for Herat and other parts of what is today Afghanistan. Finally, Khorāsān was divided into two parts: the eastern part, which was the most densely populated region came under British occupation, and the other western section remained part of Iran. Khorāsān was the largest province of Iran until it was divided into three provinces on September 29, 2004. The provinces approved by the parliament of Iran (on May 18, 2004) and the Council of Guardians (on May 29, 2004) were Razavi Khorāsān, North Khorāsān, and South Khorāsān.

The province is located in north of Razavi Khorāsān province, west of the provinces of Yazd, Isfahān and Semnān, from the east with Afghanistan and from the south with the provinces of Sistān & Baluchestān and Kermān. The average annual precipitation in the South Khorāsān province is 134 mm and the average annual temperature is 17.5 ° C. 95 percent of the province’s size is natural.

Factories and workshops for Machinery equipment, motorized vehicles, metal products, transportation equipment, magnesium oxide, rubber and plastic products, machinery and apparatus, non-metallic mineral products, paper and paper products, medical and optical instruments, basic metals, wood and wood products, textiles, furniture, food and beverage industries



Tarkeh Bafi

Food & Drink

Due to its variety of ethnic groups and the neighboring cultures impact, the cuisine of Iran is diverse. vegetables are frequently used, along with fruits such as plums, pomegranate, quince, prunes, apricots, and raisins. To achieve a balanced taste, characteristic flavorings such as saffron, dried lime, cinnamon, and parsley are mixed delicately and used in some special dishes. Onion and garlic are commonly used in the preparation of the accompanying course, but are also served separately during meals, either in raw or pickled form. Iranian best foods include:

Persian Kebabs



Qormeh Sabzi

Persian Rice

Aash-e Reshteh

Khoresht-e fesenjan

Sabzi Polo Ba Mahi

Kookoo or Kuku


Qorout Bademjan

Bulgur Polo