Counties of Iran

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Counties of Iran
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This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Government of Islamic Republic of Iran

The counties of Iran, called shahrestan (Persian: شهرستانšahrestân), are administrative divisions of larger provinces (ostan). The word shahrestan comes from the Persian words šahr ("city, town") and stân ("province, state"). "County", therefore, is a near equivalent to shahrestan.

Iranian counties are divided into one or more baxš (بخش), or districts. A typical county includes both cities (شهر šahr) and rural agglomerations (دهستان dehestân), which are groupings of adjacent villages. One city within the county serves as the capital of that county.

Each county is governed by an office known as farmandari, which coordinates different public events and agencies and is headed by a farmandar, the governor of the county and the highest-ranking official in the division.

Among the provinces of Iran, Fars has the highest number of shahrestans (23), while Qom uniquely has only one, being coextensive with its namesake county. In 2005, Iran had 324 shahrestans.


To better understand these subdivisions, the following table is useful. Assume that province P is divided into two counties: A and B. County A has 3 districts: Central, X, and Y. The Central district is the district that contains City M, the capital of the county. Each district contains one or more cities and/or one or more RAs (rural agglomerations). In our example, the Central district contains City M, City N, and RA T, which is composed of the villages V1, V2, V3, and V4; district X contains City O and RA U; and district Y has no cities and one RA V. The minimal county consists of only one city as the only district, named Central. The county B in the following table is of such type, containing only one city Q.

Ostan (province) Shahrestan (county) District City / RA* Villages
P A Central City M (c)
City N
RA T V1, V2, V3, V4
X City O
RA U V5, V6
Y RA V V7, V8, V9
B Central City Q

The counties are listed below, by province:

Alborz Province

Counties of Alborz

Ardabil Province

Counties of Ardabil

Bushehr Province

Counties of Bushehr

Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari Province

Counties of Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari

East Azerbaijan Province

Counties of East Azerbaijan

Isfahan Province

Counties of Isfahan

Fars Province

Counties of Fars

Gilan Province

Counties of Gilan

Golestan Province

Counties of Golestan

Hamadan Province

Counties of Hamadan

Hormozgan Province

Counties of Hormozgan

Ilam Province

Counties of Ilam

Kerman Province

Counties of Kerman

Kermanshah Province

Counties of Kermanshah

Khuzestan Province

Counties of Khuzestan

Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad Province

Counties of Kohgeluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad

Kurdistan Province

Counties of Kurdistan

Lorestan Province

Counties of Lorestan

Markazi Province

Counties of Markazi

Mazandaran Province

Counties of Mazandaran

North Khorasan Province

Counties of North Khorasan

Qazvin Province

Counties of Qazvin

Qom Province

Razavi Khorasan Province

Counties of Razavi Khorasan

Semnan Province

Counties of Semnan

Sistan and Baluchestan Province

Counties of Yazd

South Khorasan Province

Counties of South Khorasan

Tehran Province

Counties of Tehran

West Azerbaijan Province

Counties of West Azerbaijan

Yazd Province

Counties of Yazd

Zanjan Province

Counties of Zanjan

See also


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