Being called “Ghāh Ghāh Ghālāsi” by the locals, Ghahghaheh Castle is located 85 kilometers northeast of Meshgin Shahr, in Ardabil, the province. Ghahghaheh means both a loud sound of laughing and the song of partridge. The castle is considered as one of the environs of Meshgin Shahr, in Moradlu Arshaq district, placed between two villages of Kanchubeh and Ghara Aghaj Kalan.
Archaeologists attribute the construction date of this castle to the era before Islam, however, it became especially important during Safavid empire. The castle was a place of jailing some of the main political individuals such as Safavid princes. The most famous person arrested here was Ismail Mirza, the Safavid Tahmasp I’s son, who was brave and warrior. He was jailed in this place for 19 years as the consequence of ignoring his father’s commands. When he became king after his father, he killed lots of his relatives who made no attempt to save his life.
In addition to its fortified walls, the approximate height of the castle from the surrounding grounds, that is 300 meters, made it difficult to access. The castle is about five hectares of area (500 * 100 meters). The highest point of the building is placed in the south. The remains of a building made of plaster-lime mortar and brick is seen here that is now completely ruined. This building had probably been the guardian’s place.
You need to travel to Ardabil, in order to reach this castle. There is a three-way on the road of Meshgin Shahr-Pars Abad, after Kankarlu village. It is about 45 kilometers to the downhill, from the left side of the three-way. The only way to ascend the peak is the northeast route through which one needs about one-hour climbing to reach the top.
Water supply was an issue for Ghahghaheh Castle that may had been besieged by the enemy for months. Drinking water for inhabitants was supplied by storing the surface rain and snow water inside the hand-dug holes and reservoirs. Four reservoirs in five meters of diameter in the northeast and eleven stores in the west side of the castle were used for water supply.
Due to being located in the mountainous region, the weather is terribly cold during the winter, although it is fairly warm in the summer. Therefore, the best time for visit this historical attraction is the spring.