Located in the middle of the western part of Iran, Kermanshah province covers an area of 24,434 sq.Km. It is bounded on the north by the province of Kurdistan, in the south by the province of Lorestan and Ilam, on the east by Hamadan, and on the west by Iraq. It is cold in the mountain regions and mild in the plains. The most well known mountains are Kooh-e-Sefid, Paru, Bazi-Draz . The plains are in Kangavar, Sahnah and Islamabad district. These broad plains are watered by rivers such as Dinnor, Khorram Rood, Gamasyab and Gharasu. The mirages and several ponds such as Ravansar, Bistun and Songhor are some of the impressive natural beauties of the province. The beauty of nature in Richap, Taghe-e-Bostan and Bistun catch everyone's eye.
Kermanshah is the center of Kermanshah province. It is the trade center of rich agricultural region that produces grain, rice, vegetable, fruits, and oilseeds.
Manufactures include carpets, canvas shoes, textiles, refined petroleum, refined sugar and other processed foods. Kermanshah has numerous caravansaries that crowded semiannually with shiite pilgrims to Karbala, Iraq. Kurds form the majority of population. Sassanids founded Kermanshah, in the 4th century AD. And then became the secondary royal residence.
History : Evidence indicated that this province has been the home of man since the Paleolithic and Neolithic age. Considering the historical monuments found in Kermanshah, it was very glorious in the Achaemenid and Sassanian eras and was highly regarded by the kings of those times. In the Islamic period, especially in the Safavid period, it made great progress. Kurds, Lors, Arabs, and Turks are peoples living in this province. In addition to the inhabitants of the town and villages, there are nomadic societies throughout the province. The predominant language is Farsi, but other language is also spoken. From the Paleolithic time to the present, this district has been the home of many peoples.
Magnificent Historical monuments.
The monuments belong to the Sassanian era as well as caravansary and bridge from Safavid period, indicate the high importance of this district in different ages.
Bisotoun ( 700-330 BC - 32 Km from Kermanshah ) Darius' inscription: At a site some 4000 feet high in the mountains, one of the most famous sites in Near Eastern archeology has been attracting passersby since time Immemorial. It was, here that Sir Henry Rawlison copied the trilingual inscription of Darius I, caved in 522 BC. In old Persian, Elamite and Akkadian, an important step in the eventual decipherment of cuneiform in the mid 19th century. The Bisotoun relief above the inscription depicts Darius facing the nine rebel kings, whom the Achaemenid rulers uppercased when he came to power.
At the foot of the hill there are three Parthian relief believed to be the oldest Parthian reliefs, badly damaged by ravages of time and land endowment carved by Sheik Ali Khan Zanganeh, the premier of Safavid king Shah Soleiman.
Taghe-e-Bostan (224-651 BC) Sassanian Reliefs
The Sassanian kings chose a sensational setting for their rock reliefs Taghe-e-Bostan, four miles north-East of Kermanshah. A sacred spring gushes forth from a mountain cliff and empties into a large reflecting pool. In writer the entire scene is shrouded in mist and clouds. One of the most impressive reliefs, inside the largest grotto or " ivan " is the gigantic equestrian of Sassanid king, Khosrow II (AD 591-628 ) mounted on his favorite charger, Shabdiz. Both horse and rider are arrayed in full battle armor. There are two hunting scenes on opposite side of the ivan, one depicts the imperial boar hunt and the other in a similar spirit shows the king stalking deer. Elephants flush out the feeling boar from a marshy lake for the king who stands poised with bow and arrow in hand serenaded by female musicians following in other boats. These royal hunting scenes are among the most vivid of all rock reliefs, true narrative murals in stone, Jumping 1,300 years in time the upper relief shows the 19th century Qajar king Fath-Ali shah holding court.
Kangavar (200 BC- 90 Kms East Kermanshah) the temple of Anahita
Kangavar is a small town of great antiquity lying halfway between Hamadan and Kermanshah. In about 200 BC during the seleucid Greek occupation of Kangavar, a major sanctuary was erected to the mother Goddess Anahita who was worshipped in ancient Persia along with Ahura-Mazda and Mithras. This vast temple was built of enormous blocks of dressed stone with an imposing entrance of opposed staircases which may have been inspired by the Apadana in Persepolis.