Khuzestan Province, with an area of 64055 square kilometers, is the tenth province of Iran in terms of its area. Lorestan, Chaharmahal & Bakhtiari, Kohgiluyeh & Boyer-Ahmad, Ilam, Bushehr, the Persian Gulf and Iraq border it. The province includes 27 cities that Ahwaz, Dezful, Andimashk, Izeh, Behbahan, and Hendijan are the most populated of them. The center of Khuzestan is Ahvaz city. Arabs, Lars and Fars, are the residents of this province, each speaking in their own language (or dialect).
The Zagros Mountains cover the northern areas of the province, and the southern regions are hills and plains. Therefore, in highlands, the province has a mountainous climate, and in the lower regions, the arid desert climate is seen.
The province includes 27 cities that Ahwaz, Dezful, Andimashk, Izeh, Behbahan, and Hendijan are the most populated of them. The center of Khuzestan is Ahvaz city. Arabs, Lars and Fars, are the residents of this province, each speaking in their own language (or dialect).
The land of Khuzestan is the place where in ancient time the powerful state of Ilam ruled, and the ancient city of Susa is an indication of its greatness. Shapur I of Sassanid dynasty built the famous city Shushtar and the Jondishapur (Gandhi Shapur). This educational center had an international reputation with professors from Greece, Egypt, India and Rome teaching there. After the capture of Khuzestan by the Arabs, the region was invaded and ruined. The city of Ahvaz, one of the oldest cities in Iran and one of the most important cities of Khuzestan, was called “Hormuz Ardeshir” in ancient times. The city experienced its boom in the time of Ardeshir the first of Sassanid dynasty, and became the capital of the Susiana instead of Susa.
After Arabs invasion, the Arabs called it “Soq-Al-Ahvaz”, which means the Khuzi market (Hozi). Khuzi were a local ancient tribe of warriors that the name of the province is taken from them as well.
when Naser-al-Din Shah of Qajar Dynasty took the throne, the peace returned to Khuzestan, and by his command, Naseri port (Ahwaz Novin) was built for the ships on Karun River, along with the old Ahwaz port. Khuzestan suffered irreparable damage after the Islamic Revolution and during the imposed war of Iran.
Important natural attractions of the province includes the Karoon, Karkheh, and Dez rivers that annually brings tourists to Khuzestan province. The many bridges made over these rivers has turned the city to be known as the city of Bridges. Shrine of Khezr, Ashkoft Kool Farah (Izeh), Shahsavar ancient site and Shevi Waterfall are among the prominent attractions of the province. Watching the religious rituals of the Mandaean Sabaeins who follow John the Baptist, and live along the Karoon River is also one of the unique tourist attractions of Khuzestan. The three sites of Choqa Zanbil holy temple from the Elamite civilization, the ancient city of Susa, and the Shushtar Hydraulic Structures, have been registered at the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
From Khuzestan’s handicrafts, Carving on Gold and Silver, Woodcarvings, Handmade Fabric, Mat Weaving, and Abba Making can be named. Different kinds of Dates and southern fishes are souvenirs of the province. Fish and shrimp is the main ingredient of most Khuzestani dishes since they live near the sea. Samosa, Falafel, Qalyeh Mahi, Fried Shrimp, Shushtari rice, and Hariseh are the most notable of these dishes.