The city of Gorgan is the center of the Golestan Province located in the northeast of Iran, and is home to 269 thousand people, including Turkmen, Azeri Turks, and Fars people. Gorgan used to be one of the Mazandaran Province towns however it became the center of Golestan as a new province in 1997. This city lies 400 kilometres away from Tehran and 30 km from the Caspian Sea, and also it is close to the Gonbad e Kavus town which is home to the UNESCO listed Gonbad-e Kavus Tower.
It is said that after the migration of the Aryans to Iran, a group of them resided in Hyrcanian forest and the current Gorgan area. Astar Abad is the name of a historical city located in the same spot as where Gorgan is located today, and now an archaeological mound which is believed to be remains of a 3000-year-old fortress from Astar Abad is remained in Gorgan from the ancient Astar Abad and the rest of the city ruined throughout history. Astar Abad was an important city during the Islamic era, and weaving silk fabrics was the main industry here. Astar Abad was badly damaged and got ruined during the Mongol invasion of Iran, but later got renovated as an important place during their reign. During the Qajar Era (18th century), Astar Abad was one of the twelve main provinces in Iran. This city was also the birth place of Agha Muhammad Khan, the founder of Qajar Dynasty, and during the Pahlavi dynasty the city’s name was changed to Gorgan. In 1944 the city was badly damaged by an earthquake and then the constructions got renovated.
Gorgan is located in the northern region of Iran situated between the Alburz Mountain Range and the Caspian Sea, with a mild weather and includes different mountains, plains, lush forests, and also dry areas.
The most important attraction in this region is the UNESCO listed Gonbad-e Qabus (Gonbad-e Kavus), which is located in a town with the same name and is located 96 kilometers from Gorgan. This historical tower is the highest brick tower in the world and it is very well-preserved although it was constructed more than thousand years ago. It is also known for its amazing brickworks and ornaments.
Located 8 kilometers away from the city of Gorgan, Nahar Khoran Forest (Nahar Khoran Park) is a part of the UNESCO listed Hyrcanian Forests, known as the ancient forests of the earth stretches in the north of Iran. Nahar Khoran is a 300 hectares area and a recreational park for nature lovers specially during spring and summer. The term Nahar Khoran means having lunch and it is said that this place was actually a place where pilgrims stopped to have a meal during their journey to Mashhad for visiting Imam Reza Holy Shrine.