Thekla Ma

Written by Thekla Ma

Modified & Updated: 29 May 2024

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith


Welcome to this fascinating article where we will uncover 45 intriguing facts about Orumiyeh. Orumiyeh, also known as Urmia, is a vibrant city located in the northwestern part of Iran. It is the capital of West Azerbaijan Province and is nestled near the mesmerizing Lake Urmia, which is one of the largest saltwater lakes on Earth.

Orumiyeh is a city steeped in history and culture, with a rich heritage that dates back thousands of years. From its ancient archaeological sites to its bustling bazaars and picturesque landscapes, there is something for everyone in this enchanting city.

In the following sections, we will delve into 45 fascinating facts about Orumiyeh, covering its history, landmarks, culinary delights, and much more. So let’s embark on this journey to explore the hidden gems of Orumiyeh and discover what makes it such a unique and captivating destination.

Key Takeaways:

  • Orumiyeh, also known as Urmia, is a city in Iran with a rich history, stunning natural landscapes, and a vibrant cultural scene. It’s famous for its beautiful mountain, Lake Orumiyeh, and diverse population.
  • Visitors to Orumiyeh can enjoy a wide range of activities, from exploring historical sites and vibrant bazaars to birdwatching, skiing, and experiencing the city’s delicious local cuisine. The city’s diverse culture and natural beauty make it a must-visit destination.
Table of Contents

The name Orumiyeh means “Beautiful Mountain” in the local language.

Orumiyeh, also known as Urmia, derives its name from the combination of the words “oru” meaning beautiful and “miah” meaning mountain.

Orumiyeh is the capital city of West Azerbaijan province in Iran.

As a major regional center, Orumiyeh serves as the capital city of the West Azerbaijan province in Iran.

The city is located on the shore of Lake Orumiyeh, one of the largest saltwater lakes in the world.

Lake Orumiyeh, often referred to as the “Salt Lake,” is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and attracts visitors with its unique ecosystem.

Orumiyeh is surrounded by beautiful mountain ranges, offering breathtaking natural landscapes.

The city is nestled amidst the stunning beauty of the Zagros Mountains and Sahand Mountain, providing unforgettable scenery for visitors.

Orumiyeh is known for its rich historical and cultural heritage.

The city boasts a long and fascinating history, with archaeological sites, ancient buildings, and museums that showcase the region’s cultural significance.

Orumiyeh’s climate features hot summers and cold winters.

The city experiences a continental climate, with temperatures reaching over 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) in summer and dropping below freezing in winter.

The people of Orumiyeh are predominantly of Kurdish and Azerbaijani descent.

The city is home to a diverse population, with the Kurdish and Azerbaijani communities comprising the majority of its residents.

Orumiyeh is a hub for trade and commerce in the region.

The city’s strategic location and well-connected transportation infrastructure make it a center for business and economic activities.

Orumiyeh University is one of the leading educational institutions in the city.

The city is home to Orumiyeh University, renowned for its academic programs and research initiatives.

Orumiyeh is known for its delicious local cuisine.

The city offers a wide range of mouthwatering dishes, including kababs, ash-e reshteh (a traditional Persian soup), and various rice-based dishes.

The West Azerbaijan Museum in Orumiyeh showcases artifacts from ancient civilizations.

Visitors can explore the rich cultural heritage of the region by visiting the West Azerbaijan Museum, which houses a vast collection of archaeological finds.

Orumiyeh has several beautiful parks and green spaces.

Residents and tourists can enjoy the picturesque beauty of parks such as Shahid Chamran Park and Orumiyeh City Park.

The city is a popular destination for birdwatching enthusiasts.

Orumiyeh’s proximity to Lake Orumiyeh attracts a wide variety of bird species, making it a paradise for birdwatchers and nature lovers.

The bazaars of Orumiyeh are vibrant marketplaces bustling with activity.

Exploring the city’s colorful bazaars provides an opportunity to shop for local handicrafts, spices, and traditional clothing.

Orumiyeh is home to the iconic Jameh Mosque.

The Jameh Mosque, with its beautiful architecture and intricate tilework, is a significant religious site in the city.

The annual Orumiyeh Lake Festival attracts visitors from around the world.

The festival celebrates the natural beauty of Lake Orumiyeh and includes various cultural events, water sports, and entertainment.

Orumiyeh is a gateway to the mesmerizing landscapes of the nearby Miyaneh Wetland and Zab River.

Nature enthusiasts can explore the breathtaking Miyaneh Wetland and enjoy outdoor activities along the scenic Zab River.

Orumiyeh offers a range of recreational activities, including hiking, mountain climbing, and skiing.

The surrounding mountains provide opportunities for adventurous pursuits, with numerous trails and slopes for enthusiasts.

The traditional handicrafts of Orumiyeh reflect the city’s cultural heritage.

Local artisans produce intricately woven carpets, handmade pottery, and traditional woodwork, showcasing the region’s artistic talent.

The Azarbaijan Museum in Orumiyeh houses a remarkable collection of ancient artifacts.

History buffs can explore the Azarbaijan Museum, which features archaeological finds from prehistoric to Islamic periods.

Orumiyeh is a center of medical tourism.

The city is renowned for its medical facilities, attracting patients from across the region for specialized treatments.

The Shahar Yeri Island in Lake Orumiyeh is a popular tourist spot.

Visitors can take a boat ride to Shahar Yeri Island and explore its stunning scenery, rocky landscapes, and ancient ruins.

Orumiyeh is home to the famous Urmia Bazaar, a bustling marketplace filled with local goods.

Visiting the Urmia Bazaar offers a glimpse into the city’s vibrant trading culture and an opportunity to buy traditional handicrafts.

The city has numerous historical mosques, including the Blue Mosque and the Sheikh Tusi Mosque.

Architecture enthusiasts can marvel at the intricate designs and stunning architecture of these historical Islamic landmarks.

Orumiyeh is a significant center for traditional music and dance.

The city hosts various cultural events where traditional music and dance performances showcase the region’s artistic traditions.

The vibrant Javaher Deh Cultural Complex in Orumiyeh offers a platform for artistic exhibitions and performances.

Art lovers can immerse themselves in the local arts scene by visiting the Javaher Deh Cultural Complex.

Orumiyeh is home to numerous historical churches and synagogues.

The city’s religious sites, such as the Saint Mary Church and the Orumiyeh Synagogue, showcase the diverse religious landscape of the region.

Orumiyeh is a center for silk production and traditional carpet weaving.

The city’s textile industry plays a significant role in the local economy, with artisans creating intricate silk fabrics and exquisite carpets.

The Sahand Ski Resort near Orumiyeh offers thrilling skiing and snowboarding experiences.

During the winter season, adventure enthusiasts can hit the slopes and enjoy winter sports at the Sahand Ski Resort.

The Tabriz-Orumiyeh railway connects the city with other major cities in Iran.

Orumiyeh’s railway network provides convenient transportation options, connecting the city to Tabriz, Tehran, and other important destinations.

Orumiyeh has a vibrant art scene, with numerous art galleries showcasing local and international works.

Art enthusiasts can explore the city’s art galleries, where contemporary and traditional artworks are displayed.

The iconic Orumiyeh Grand Mosque attracts visitors with its stunning architecture and religious significance.

The Grand Mosque is a prominent Islamic place of worship, characterized by its impressive domes and intricate decorations.

Orumiyeh is known for its traditional handicrafts, including copperwork, pottery, and wood carving.

Local artisans skillfully produce exquisite copper utensils, handmade pottery, and intricately carved wooden items.

The stunning Kabudan Island in Lake Orumiyeh is a popular tourist destination.

Surrounded by turquoise waters, Kabudan Island offers a serene getaway with its sandy beaches and untouched natural beauty.

The annual Orumiyeh Handicrafts Exhibition showcases the region’s diverse artistic traditions.

Artisans from across the province gather to exhibit their traditional crafts at this vibrant event.

Orumiyeh is famous for its saffron production, known as the “red gold” of the region.

The city’s ideal climate and fertile soil contribute to the cultivation of high-quality saffron, which is widely sought after worldwide.

The majestic Mount Sahand near Orumiyeh offers breathtaking hiking trails.

Hikers and nature enthusiasts can embark on unforgettable journeys through the picturesque landscapes of Mount Sahand.

Orumiyeh is a melting pot of different cultures, with influences from various ethnic groups.

The city’s diverse population contributes to its vibrant cultural scene and rich traditions.

The International Orumiyeh Cycling Tour attracts professional cyclists from around the world.

The annual cycling tour showcases the city’s commitment to sports and celebrates the beauty of its surroundings.

Orumiyeh is a center for traditional herbal medicine.

Traditional healers and herbalists utilize the city’s diverse flora to offer natural remedies to residents and visitors.

The historical Ghare Kelisa (Black Church) is a significant religious site near Orumiyeh.

Ghare Kelisa is an ancient Armenian church complex, attracting pilgrims and tourists alike.

Orumiyeh played a role in the development of the Iranian national railway network.

The city’s strategic location contributed to the expansion of the railway system in Iran, connecting various regions.

The picturesque Haji Zeynalabedin Waterfall is a popular natural attraction near Orumiyeh.

Nature lovers can witness the beauty of Haji Zeynalabedin Waterfall, located just a short distance from the city.

Orumiyeh is known for its vibrant traditional festivals.

The city celebrates various festivals throughout the year, showcasing the cultural diversity and traditions of its people.

Orumiyeh serves as a gateway to the beautiful Aras Free Zone, offering opportunities for trade and commerce.

The Aras Free Zone, located near the city, promotes economic development through trade partnerships and investments.


In conclusion, Orumiyeh is a fascinating city full of history, culture, and natural beauty. From its ancient landmarks to its diverse wildlife, there is something for everyone to enjoy in this Iranian gem. Whether you are interested in exploring its historic sites, indulging in its delicious cuisine, or simply taking in the breathtaking views of Lake Orumiyeh, you will not be disappointed. With its warm hospitality and various attractions, Orumiyeh truly is a city worth exploring.


1. What is the best time to visit Orumiyeh?

The best time to visit Orumiyeh is during spring (April to May) and autumn (September to October) when the weather is mild and pleasant.

2. How can I get to Orumiyeh?

You can reach Orumiyeh by air through Orumiyeh Airport or by road through various highways connecting the city to other parts of Iran.

3. Are there any accommodations options in Orumiyeh?

Yes, Orumiyeh offers a range of accommodation options including hotels, guesthouses, and resorts to suit different budgets and preferences.

4. What are some must-visit attractions in Orumiyeh?

Must-visit attractions in Orumiyeh include the Urmia Grand Mosque, Orumiyeh Castle, Armenian Church of St. Mary, and the beautiful Lake Orumiyeh.

5. Is Orumiyeh a safe city for tourists?

Yes, Orumiyeh is generally a safe city for tourists. However, it is always advisable to take standard precautions and follow local guidelines for a safe and enjoyable trip.

6. Are there any unique local dishes or delicacies in Orumiyeh?

Yes, Orumiyeh is known for its delicious local cuisine, including dishes like “Dandeh Kabab” (lamb kebab), “Koofteh Tabrizi” (Tabriz-style meatballs), and “Ash-e Doogh” (a refreshing yogurt-based soup).

7. Can I engage in outdoor activities in Orumiyeh?

Absolutely! Orumiyeh offers several opportunities for outdoor activities, such as hiking, boating, and bird watching near Lake Orumiyeh.

Orumiyeh's enchanting beauty extends beyond its city limits. Uncover the mysteries of Lake Urmia, a natural wonder that will leave you in awe. Journey to Salt Lake City, where a vibrant culture and stunning landscapes await. Explore the hidden gems of Khoy, a city steeped in history and tradition. Each destination offers a unique experience, promising unforgettable memories and a deeper appreciation for the world's diverse wonders. So, pack your bags and embark on an adventure that will broaden your horizons and ignite your wanderlust.

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