Qom Province in Iran
About Qom Province
Qom Province is one of the 31 provinces of Iran. It is somehow in the north of the country, and its provincial capital is the city of Qom. It was formed from part of Tehran Province. Qom, also spelled Qum, lies on both banks of the Rud-e Qom and beside a salt desert, the Dasht-e Kavir, 147 km south of Tehran.
In the 8th century, Qom was one of the centers of Shiʿi Islam. In 816 Faṭimah, the sister of the eighth Imam of the Twelver Shiah died in the town and was buried there. It became a place of pilgrimage in the 17th century when the Safavid rulers built a golden-domed shrine over Fatimah’s tomb. The modern city has the largest Madrasa (theological college) in the country, where students can specialize in Islamic Low, philosophy, theology, and logic.
The Religious Capital of Iran
Qom province is located somehow in the north part of Iran. Due to uneven land and different altitudes varying from 600 meters to 3330 meters, it has three different climates such as mountainous, semi-dry and dry. The important attractions of this province are the Salt Lake, Hoz-e Soltan lake, south desert, Salt Hills, Mountains, and beautiful gardens of the west and southwest. The people of this province speak Persian. Nowadays, Qom is a religious city whose economy is based on religious tourism. Archeologists believe that the civilization of this region dates back to the new Stone Age and many objects found in the Qomrud area confirm and prove it.
The plains and the hills to the southwest have been among the most important places where Aryan tribes lived. The fact that many ancient temples, towers, castles, bridges, and caravanserais have been discovered in the area indicates that Qom was an important part of Iran, special during the Sassanid dynasty. After Iranians adopted Islam, Qom flourished into an important city. One of the great-grandchildren of Prophet Mohammad living in the 8th century, Hazrat-e Ma’sumeh (SA) is buried there. Therefore, little by little, Qom’s role changed into the spiritual capital of Iran.
Holy Shrine of Hazrat-e Ma’sumeh (SA)
Hazrat-e Ma’sumeh complex, one of the most important Islamic constructions of all time in Iran, is located in the city center. This structure is built on the tomb of Hazrat-e Ma’sumeh, daughter of Imam Musa Kazem (the seventh Shiite Imam) and the sister of Imam Reza (the eighth Shiite Imam). This structure includes the holy shrine, an old courtyard, a new courtyard, and the tombs of the Safavid and Qajar kings. The decorations of this structure are mirror-works, title-works, plaster-works, stone-works, and calligraphy.
Masjed-e Jamkaran is located to the southeast of Qom and hosts many Iranian and foreign pilgrims. The construction of the mosque dates back to the 8th-century CE.
Atiq Mosque of Qom
An Islamic interpreter and narrator of Hadith constructed the Friday Mosque of Qom in the 19th century. Iranians renovated the mosque many times over the years. It is a symbol of the architecture of different periods.
This market consists of two old and new parts. The old part of the market is adjoining the Arabestan neighborhood which is the Islamic center of the city of Qom. Carpentry is the common activity of the old part and other kinds of businesses are active in the new part. These parts date back to Seljuk and IlKhan dynasties. The internal decoration of this market is simple and is made of plaster and bricks.
Imamzadeh Abdollah Bridge of Qom
The construction of Imamzadeh Abdollah Bridge of Qom (Sepah Bridge) dates back to the Qajar era. It is located in Kahak District, Qal’eh Cham Village in Qom County. The Cultural Heritage Organization has enlisted it as national heritage. The bridge has a stone inscription.
The Salt Lake
This lake which is the remaining part of a sea in the past is, in fact, a part of the salt desert in Iran and is located to the east of Qom. Only in winters, there is water in the lake and all through the other times of the year, the bed is covered with layers of salt.
Aqa Mosque and School of Qom
Aqa Mosque and School are located in Gozar Qal’eh Alley, near Tekiyeh-ye Chahar Mardan District. The construction of this building dates back to approximately 1902. The mosque building consists of a 10 × 30 meters Shabestan with 16 covering arches (Taq-e Cheshmeh Poosh) constructed on cylindrical stone columns.
Jafariyeh Salt Dome
This natural attraction of Qom, the Jafariyeh Salt Dome, is 20 km northwest of Qom. Salt domes are geological attractions worth visiting. They are shaped because of geological corrosion and permanent pressure on salt layers.
At around 60 km away from Qom on Ardehal Mountain, there are four caves collectively referred to as Veshnaveh Cave. One of the caves has a huge source of water flowing from the gap of the mountain which erupts like a fountain. This cave is one of the most famous natural attractions in Qom Province.
Howz-e Soltan Lake
With an area of about 330 km2, Howz-e Soltan Lake is also famous as Qom Lake, Shahi Lake, and Saveh Lake. It is located in the north of Qom Province and the northwest of Namak Lake and is stretched in the west-eastern direction.
Followings are the most valuable monuments of Qom Province: The historical house of Imam Khomeini, Haj Gholi Khan Mollasadra, Caravanserai of theologians, Stone Palace, Atabaki, Bagher Abad, Dalak and Pasangan bridges, old bazaar, Mausoleums of Iranian kings such as Fat’h Ali Shah Qajar, Mohammad Shah, Mohammad Olya Shah Abbas II, Shah Soleyman, and Shah Safi, and Gharah Tappeh and Green domes ancient areas, and Gholi Darvish ancient hill.
Saheb Azzaman and Imam Hassan Mojtaba Mosques, Friday-Prayer Mosque of Qom, the holy shrine of Hazrat Ma’sumeh and Emamzadeh Esmail holy shrines (Shahzadeh Esma’il, Musa Mobargha, Shah Hamza, Khadijeh Khatun, Shahzadeh Ebrahim holy shrines, and Shahzadeh Zakaria) are some of the most important religious sites of Qom Province.