West Azerbaijan Province
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Mahabad is a green and cool city in the northwest of Iran dating back to thousands years ago. The city had a vicissitudinous history experiencing various conditions; it was a small village in the past which has been transformed into a developed city and the governing center of a tribe (Mokri tribe). The natural attractions, the pleasant weather, especially in the spring, along with the border markets has increased the reputation of Mahabad.

The main population of this city is the follower of Sunni Islam and a minority of Armenian Christians, Jews, and Shia’ Muslims live with them, too.  

Mahabad shares land border with Miandoab to the north and is restricted to Sardasht to the south. The center of it city is Mahabad city. Most of people are occupied with agriculture here, however, the prevalence of the market of imported items and establishing the biggest market of second hand items in Iran have attracted a part of work force in recent years. 

Mahabad has cold winters and pleasant springs and summers. The best time for traveling to this city is the spring. In addition to the historical attractions remained here related to different centuries, the main attraction of Mahabad is the beautiful nature.

The most accessible and spectacular natural attraction of Mahabad is Mahabad River passing through the city. Sahvalan Cave, the second biggest water cave in Iran after Alisadr, is placed in the neighborhood of Mahabad where you can visit the cave riding on the boat.

The most popular local food in Mahabad is a traditional sandwich named Shour Mazeh Kolouche (meaning a salty cookie) made like a bread fried in the oil within which the baked peas (shour Mazeh) are arranged and served.

Mahabad has many other local foods, too; interesting among them are Dokolio pottage, Dolmeh Kalam, Mashineh, Sangeh Sir and Shami Kebab.  The main souvenirs of Mahabad are handicrafts and agricultural products. Different local and Kurdish customs, Kalash and Giveh, Guipure weaving, hook weaving, leather artefacts, coin sewing and embroidery are those handicrafts popular among the travelers. 

Most of rituals related to the ceremonies have been gradually faded in this region; however, the Kurdish dance is a part of people’s identity in this city which is never forgotten in Kurdish regions. Dionysian dance along with the Kurdish musical instruments such as Ney, fife and Serena are inseparable parts of the ceremonies in Mahabad. 


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