Chaharmahal & Bakhtiari province, with an area of 16328 square kilometers is the 25th biggest province of the country, which borders the provinces of Isfahan, Lorestan, Khuzestan, and Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad. Chaharmahal & Bakhtiari has nine counties including the center Shahr-e-Kurd (formerly Deh Kord).
The province consists of two parts: Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari. Chaharmahal interfacing between Isfahan province and the Bakhtiari tribe district consists of four areas: Lar, Kiar, Mizdej, and Gandoman. The people of the province are also divided into the inhabitants of Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari. The common language in Chahar Mahal is Farsi (with local and Turkish accents), while Lori (Bakhtiari dialect) is common in Bakhtiari areas.
Shahr-e Kurd, with an altitude of 2060 meters, is the highest province center in the country, and therefore, it is known as the “Roof of Iran”. The Zagros Mountains cover all parts of the province and its highest summit is entitled Zard-Kuh. Two major rivers of Zayanderud and Karun originate from the mountains of this province. In terms of climate, Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari have mountainous weather. Historically, floral and animal design of clays, copper and bronze instruments, as well as coins and several inscriptions discovered in the excavations in Kian city (former Shahrak) belonging to the Parthian (247 B.C. – 224 A.D.) and Sassanid (224-651 A.D.) Empires reflect the ancient history of this province.
Because of the existence of Zagros highlands surrounding all over the province, it was hard to pass through this region and therefore, it was protected from the invasion of the Greeks, Mongols, and Tatar throughout history. The remains of some castles from the Achaemenid (550-330 B.C.) and Sasanian (224-651 A.D.) Empires in the Bazoft River region are a testimony to this claim. Ibn Battuta (1304-1368), a famous Moroccan explorer has recorded his journey through these areas in his travelogue.
The beautiful nature of this province attracts tourists every year. For example, winter sports enthusiasts find this place a popular destination during winters. The plains of Fritillaries, Kuhrang Tunnel Waterfall, Zaman Khan Bridge, Chaleshtar Castle, Sar Aqa Seyyed Village, and natural landscapes of Zayanderud bank are among other attractions of the province. Locals’ hospitality and Bakhtiari nomads have also boosted tourism in this province. Among the most important handicrafts of this region, it can be pointed out to carpets, Khersak, Gabbeh, Kilim, Jajim, Choqa, Khorjin (Saddle), Musical Instruments, lock and firearm accessories.
Furthermore, Bakhtiari honey, Boldaji Gaz, Kakuly (local cookies), Kashk (Curd), and Qara Qhorot (Black Kashk) are the most famous edible souvenirs of Chaharmahal & Bakhtiari. Most common foods in the area are made of meat and dairy products, most notably Bakhtiari kebabs. Ash-e-Shir (Milk & Rice), Ash-e-Mast, Ash-e-Dough, Ash-e-Kashk, Ash-e-Barg (Ash-e-Reshteh), Kachi, and Kufteh are the native foods in the province.