Khoy is one of the most important cities of West Azerbaijan, bordering Turkey and one of the oldest centers of civilization in northwestern Iran.
Khoy, which seems to have about 3,000 years of history, is the second most important historical city in West Azerbaijan province after the beautiful Urmia.
Traders, merchants, and politicians considered Khoy a valuable city because of its location on trade routes like Trabzon to Jolfa and the Silk Road.
Of course, although in the past, Khoy was mentioned as one of the important economic centers, in different historical periods, for various reasons, including natural disasters, etc., it has lost its importance over time. Slowly with the destruction of the old city, a new city has been established in its vicinity.
Numerous tourist attractions such as historical, natural, and cultural sights have turned Khoy into one of the recreational and tourism points.
Like most Azerbaijan districts, Khoy had engagements with Iranian Christians.
Sorp Sarkis Church is one of the historical and religious buildings of Iranian Christians in Khoy. Some archaeologists believe that this heritage of ancient Iran belongs to the fourth century AD and others believe that the church building was built in the ninth century AH. Of course, depending on the type of architecture used in its construction, the design of the building, the shape of the columns, and the way the walls and skylights are, the possibility of building a church in the fourth century AD is more believable.
Safavid kings restored the Church of Sorp Sarkis, which is the building we see today. Since the early 20th century AD, these Christians have migrated from Khoy and caused the church to be vacant.
As we said, Khoy had a notable economic and market center, but in different historical periods, due to natural and human disasters, it was destroyed and lost its trading position.
The old bazaar of Khoy once had a reputation, which is a sign of when it was one of Iran’s trading polar. This traditional bazaar was built in the late twelfth century AH.
The Khoy Bazaar complex consists of several rows of covered bazaars, inns, well-composed squares, and old passages remnants of a larger texture. Later, a large number of bazaars and caravanserais, and related units were annexed and taken out of the original state.
Khoy bazaar, like the bazaars of Isfahan, Kerman, Arak, lacks specified decorations for bedding and tiling and inscriptions. In the past, the pavement beautifully covered the floor of the bazaar, and drinking water piping passed right through the middle of it, connecting the northern and southern parts of the city.
There are signs that the Qajar dynasty restored some parts of Khoy Bazaar. In particular, when Abbas Mirza, the regent, lived in Tabriz. What he added to the bazaar is an attractive and well-structured complex.
Everyone knows Mohammad Jalaluddin Balkhi, known as Rumi, and he has impressed the world like no other. Rumi has opened a day for himself in the world calendar. As for Shams Tabrizi, a character who is in an aura of ambiguity between good and evil, he was the one who pulled Rumi out of Mohammad Balkhi.
Shams Tabrizi Tower lies in a mausoleum attributed to Shams Tabrizi in the Safavid period. This building exists in the Imamzadeh neighborhood of Seyed Behlool, northwest of Khoy. The tower or minaret of Shams Tabrizi Khoi has many bricks, and architects decorated it with the branches of rams and wild ewes that Shah Ismail Safavid hunted in one day.
Long ago, there were two minarets and a dome of gold on the tomb of Shams Tabrizi, but now only the minaret known as “Deer Head” remains. At the entrance to the minaret, there are rectangular openings with spiral staircases that one could climb up to reach the top of the tower.
Another historical place worth visiting in Khoy is Kabiri House. You can find Kabiri House in the middle of the old neighborhood of Khoy. The owner of this house was the late Haj Mir Ismail Kabiri. Currently, the ownership of the building belongs to the Cultural Heritage Organization of West Azerbaijan Province.
The interior of the first floor of the building is unadorned, and only plaster is visible in the hall. However, the room on the second floor, a significant part of the building, is decorated with paintings of flowers and plants and has beautiful sash windows. Kabiri House belongs to the reign of Muzaffar Al-Din Shah Qajar, and there, among the murals of the first-floor hall, they have carved the date 1282 AH.
Khoy is not just a city of historical sites. The peaceful nature of Azerbaijan did not leave Khoy without a share. One of the curious natural places for tourism is Jahanam Darre which means the Hell Valley. High mountains surround this valley. Jahanam Darre has been a haven for those who have had problems with governments of their time. People say that this is why they call it the valley of Hell. It was also hard to reach this district, and people did not pass this valley, so it was a great place to hide.
Pouria Vali is an Iranian champion who has a long history in Zurkhaneh sports. His personality is known and respected by Iranians. Many children know the story of his life, and in sports, forums try to teach the morals and heroic ideals of Pouria Vali to other athletes.
One of the most conclusive documents related to the birthplace of Pouria Vali is a document obtained from the Safavid era, which says that this hero was from the people of Khoy and Salmas.
Pouria Vali is an exemplary athlete with morals and chivalry. As mentioned earlier, there are many doubts about the burial place of Pouria Vali but based on most documented narrations, the legit tomb of Pouria Vali is the one in Khoy city in West Azerbaijan province.
Khoy is relatively unknown. Particularly in the foreign tourism industry of Iran, most tourists have not heard anything about this city. We hope that, with correct data and advertising, Khoy will become one of the most important tourist destinations in Iran.