Mount Damavand, Iran

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Damavand Mountain

Mount Damavand, a striking stratovolcano, is a significant natural landmark located in the Alborz mountain range in northern Iran. It is known for its perfect conical shape and impressive presence, dominating the landscape near the southern coast of the Caspian Sea. Situated about 70 kilometers northeast of Tehran, Damavand is not only a natural wonder but also a cultural icon deeply embedded in Persian mythology and literature. Legends speak of the mountain as the prison of the mythical dragon Zahhak, adding to its mystical allure. This peak has inspired poets and writers for centuries, symbolizing endurance and resilience in Iranian culture.

The Beauty of Mount Damavand, Iran
The Beauty of Mount Damavand, Iran

Capturing the Beauty of Mt. Damavand: A Photographer's Guide
Mount Damavand is a great place for nature lovers and photographers. The best time to visit is from June to September when the weather is good and the trails are open. It's important for hikers and photographers to follow environmental guidelines to protect the delicate nature around them.

Photographers will find many beautiful spots to capture, including wide landscapes, rivers, and hot springs. The summit offers stunning views of the Alborz mountain range, especially during sunrise and sunset. Notable places like the nearby towns and villages provide unique and picturesque scenes perfect for photos.

Mount Damavand Iran
Mount Damavand Iran

Damavand Mountain is home to diverse plants and animals, making it a perfect spot for wildlife photography. In the lower areas, you can photograph wildflowers, while the higher regions have tough alpine plants. Wildlife enthusiasts can capture images of wolves, colorful Eurasian golden orioles, mountain goats any may more birds and animals. By taking detailed photos and notes, photographers can document the rich biodiversity.

To protect Mt. Damavand's natural beauty while taking photos, it's important to stay on marked trails, avoid disturbing the wildlife, and carry out all your trash. By sharing your photos and findings with local conservation groups, you can help preserve this beautiful mountain for future generations.

Mount Damavand Iran
Mount Damavand, Iran

Damavand Location in the Alborz Mountains

Mount Damavand is a prominent volcanic peak located in the Alborz mountain range in northern Iran. It stands majestically near the southern coast of the Caspian Sea, about 70 kilometers northeast of Tehran, the capital city of Iran. Damavand is the highest peak in the Alborz Mountain Range and the highest volcano in Asia, reaching an impressive altitude of 5,670 meters (18,600 feet). Its strategic location makes it a significant landmark and a natural beacon that is visible from far distances on clear days, dominating the surrounding landscape with its snow-capped summit.

Alborz Mountain Range
Alborz Mountains, Iran

The Alborz Mountains, stretching from the borders of Azerbaijan along the western and southern Caspian Sea to the northeastern parts of Iran, are a vital geographic feature that influences the climate and ecology of the region. The range acts as a natural barrier, trapping moisture from the Caspian Sea, which results in lush, green foothills on the northern slopes and arid conditions on the southern slopes. Damavand, situated in the central part of this range, benefits from this climatic diversity, contributing to its rich biodiversity and unique environmental conditions. Its location in the Alborz Mountains not only makes it a key natural feature in Iran but also an important cultural and historical symbol in Persian mythology and literature.

The Caspian Sea, the world's largest inland body of water, is often referred to as both the world's largest lake and a sea. This endorheic basin is located between Europe and Asia.

Alborz Mountain Range
Alborz Mountain Range
By Views of the Earth

Discover the Beauty Around Mount Damavand

Mount Damavand is more than a towering peak in Iran; it's a destination for both adventurers and nature lovers. This majestic mountain not only draws climbers from around the world but also offers a variety of attractions for all kinds of visitors.

Experience the Wild Beauty of Iran

Whether you are a climber, a hiker, or someone who simply enjoys beautiful landscapes, the area around Mount Damavand has something to offer. From the soothing hot springs of Larijan to the vibrant meadows of Lar National Park, this region invites you to connect with nature and discover the raw beauty of Iran

The Healing Hot Springs of Larijan

On the southern slopes of Damavand, you'll find the Larijan Thermal Hot Springs or Larijan SPA. These natural springs are famous for their therapeutic properties, attracting many visitors looking to relax and rejuvenate. The warm, mineral-rich waters provide a soothing experience, especially after a day of hiking. Nearby, traditional villages offer a chance to enjoy local cuisine and experience the warm hospitality of the Iranian people.

A Hiker’s Paradise

Mount Damavand is not just for climbers; it's also a paradise for hikers and trekkers. The area offers trails that weave through meadows filled with wildflowers, dramatic rock formations, and stunning natural landscapes. Whether you're looking for a gentle stroll or a challenging trek, you'll find paths suited to your abilities.

Exploring the Surroundings

For those who love to explore, the foothills of Mount Damavand offer rivers, lakes, and panoramic views that stretch across the vast Iranian plateau. The diverse terrain makes this area a haven for nature enthusiasts, providing a chance to experience the unique ecosystems of this part of the world.

Lar National Park: More Than Just Scenery

West of Mount Damavand lies Lar National Park, a beautiful area known for its green valleys, flowing rivers, and the serene Lar Dam, which creates a picturesque lake. This park is perfect for picnics, hiking, and wildlife watching. In spring, it becomes especially stunning with colorful wildflowers in full bloom, making it a perfect spot for nature photography and relaxation.

While Mount Damavand is the highlight, Lar National Park at its base offers even more for nature lovers. In spring, the park bursts into a colorful display of wildflowers, transforming the meadows into a vibrant tapestry. It's also a paradise for birdwatchers, with over 100 species, including the majestic golden eagle, calling it home. Hikers can choose from a variety of trails, ranging from gentle paths suitable for families to challenging treks through canyons and across rivers.

Damavand Mountain, Iran
Damavand Mountain, Iran

The Geological Features and Geography of Mount Damavand

Mount Damavand, a towering presence in northern Iran, stands as a striking feature of the landscape. Dormant for over 7,000 years, this stratovolcano is renowned for its nearly perfect conical shape, with slopes that rise dramatically from the Alborz mountain range. Its proximity to the southern coast of the Caspian Sea gives it a unique climatic influence. The Alborz Range, including Damavand, serves as a natural barrier, separating the arid central plateau of Iran from the lush Caspian coastal plains. This division creates diverse ecosystems on Damavand's slopes, ranging from temperate forests at lower elevations to a harsh alpine environment near the summit. Visit also details about Damavand Mountain Trekking Tour.

Natural Beauty of Mount Damavand
Natural Beauty of Mount Damavand

Is Mount Damavand Asia's Highest Volcano?

In this topic, we aim to address the question regarding" the confirmation and clarification about Mount Damavand's status as the highest volcano in Asia.

Mount Damavand stands at an altitude of 5,670 meters (18,600 feet) above sea level, making it the tallest volcano in Asia. It also has a topographic prominence of 4,667 meters (15,312 feet), ranking it as the 12th highest prominence peak globally, just below Mount Everest in the Himalayas.

Officially recognized in many documents as Asia's highest volcano, Mount Damavand's status has recently been questioned. Websites like Volcanolive and Summitpost suggest that Kunlun Mountains in Tibet might be taller, sparking debates and uncertainties. These discussions often revolve around the definition and classification of what constitutes a true volcanic mountain.

The most important point of the matter lies in defining a "true volcano." According to sources like Wikipedia and discussions in the context of the Volcanic Seven Summits, a genuine volcanic mountain is defined by having a prominence greater than 1,000 feet (305 meters).

Amidst these debates, Mount Damavand remains a prominent natural landmark and a subject of ongoing geological inquiry and fascination. Visit also Damavand Mountain versus Kunlun Mountains.

Volcano Damavand
Volcano Damavand, Iran

Mount Damavand Flora and Fauna

The Damavand Volcano is home to a wide variety of plants and animals, thanks to its different climates and unique geography. The lower slopes are covered in lush vegetation, including juniper trees, wildflowers, and shrubs. In spring and early summer, the meadows are filled with colorful flowers. This area has a mild and wet climate that helps many plants grow.

As you climb higher, the vegetation becomes sparse, with tough alpine plants and grasses that can survive the colder and harsher conditions.

The animals on Mount Damavand are also diverse. On the lower and middle slopes, you might see wild goats, foxes, and hares, as well as many birds like eagles, hawks, and songbirds. There are also reptiles and amphibians in these areas. Higher up, there are fewer animals because of the extreme conditions, but you might still find rare species like the wolf and the brown bear. Insects and small mammals also live in the alpine zones.

This mountain's ecosystem shows how plants and animals adapt to different climates and altitudes, adding to its natural beauty and charm

Natural Beauty of Mount Damavand
Natural Beauty of Mount Damavand

Mount Damavand, Iran vs. Mount Fuji, Japan

Mount Damavand in Iran and Mount Fuji in Japan are iconic volcanoes that dominate their respective landscapes. However, they differ significantly in height, activity, and cultural significance.

Mount Damavand, standing at over 5,670 meters, is the highest peak in the Middle East. It is a dormant volcano, having not erupted in over 7,000 years. Damavand's majestic presence and challenging slopes make it a popular destination for climbers and nature enthusiasts. It also holds cultural and historical significance in Persian mythology and literature.

In contrast, Mount Fuji, at 3,776 meters, is slightly shorter but remains one of the most famous peaks in the world. Unlike Damavand Montain, Fuji is an active volcano, with its last eruption occurring in the early 1700s. Mount Fuji is not only a prominent climbing destination but also a symbol of Japan, deeply ingrained in Japanese art, culture, and religion. Its nearly symmetrical cone has inspired countless works of art and attracts millions of visitors each year.

Despite their differences, both mountains are revered for their natural beauty and hold a special place in the hearts of their nations. They offer unique climbing experiences, breathtaking views, and a glimpse into the geological and cultural histories of Iran and Japan.

Mount Fuji, Japan
Mount Fuji, Japan
Mount Fuiji Lenticular Cloud Cap

Fuji or Damavand: This is the Question!
You may have seen a beautiful picture on the internet, and some Iranians believe it depicts Mount Damavand in Iran. However, the presence of a lake and a town at the base of the mountain suggests otherwise. There is no large town near Damavand. In fact, this picture is of Mount Fuji (Fujiyama or Fujisan), Japan's highest mountain, standing at 3,776 meters.

Mount Fuji and Mount Damavand share a striking resemblance, often leading to confusion. Fuji, often called the "little sister" of Iran's peak, boasts a similar symmetrical cone shape. This similarity causes some people to mistake one for the other. Despite their differences, these two majestic volcanoes are celebrated in their respective countries and continue to captivate people worldwide.

Mount Damavand Lenticular Cloud Cap
Mount Damavand Lenticular Cloud Cap

Mythology of Damavand Mountain, Iran

Damavand Myth 1

Damavand Mountain is in the centre of Iranian mythology. This distinguished volcano has a special place in Iranian legend. Arash, the Archer (in Farsi آرش کمانگیر Āraš-e Kamāngīr) is a heroic archer of the Iranian mythology. The name Arash is one of the most popular in the Farsi-speaking world. The legend "Arash Kamangir" put all his force and life energy in drawing a powerful bow to transferred to an arrow, a shot which flew a very long distance.

Arash the Archer, Arash Kamangir or Arash Tirandaz
Heroic Archer Arash the Archer
Arash Kamangir or Arash Tirandaz
Arash the Archer, Āraš-e Kamāngīr
آرش تیرانداز جنگاوری از سپاه منوچهر یکی از اسطوره‌های کهن ایرانی

At the end of war between Iran and the invaders Turan, Turan had advanced close to Mount Damavand Iran. To declare cease fire, Iranians were to shoot an arrow towards Turan and wherever the arrow landed, the new border between Iran and Turan would be drawn. An old man called Ârash volunteered to shoot the arrow. On the morning of Tirgan, Arash took off his shirt, faced north-east and let the arrow fly, the legend heroic archer became one with the arrow and disappeared. The arrow fell near the Oxus River in what is now Central Asia. The Oxus river was the traditional border between the Iranian and outer central Asia or Turan.
Read more enormous article to increase your experience in Damavand Info.

Arash put his life on an arrow and threw it by a bow from the top of Iran's highest peak Damavand to demarcate Iran's border with Turan. The legend describes that Arash died immediately after shooting that arrow. Many Iranian children read this story and are sad about the tragic end of it and are proud of the heroic act of Arash Kamangir. Arash's body was never found. There are still stories from climbers who lost in Damawand Mountain, hear Arash Kamangir's voice who helps them find their way! (arch, archer and the archery may come from the name of Iranian hero Arash). Damavand Ski Touring.

Mount Damavand Iran
Damavand Peak, Iran

Damavand Myth 2

There are many mythological tales associated with Damavand Mountain. But in fact it is a superb volcano that emits powerful sulphuric smoke and gas. This prominent mountain has a great impression in Iranian legend. Ferdowsi Tousi, the great Iranian poet, tells a story in his epic book "Shahnama" how the dictator Zohak was overthrown by the Feridun and kept in prison in chains to die in a large cave on the slops of Mount Damawand.

Mount Damavand Iran & Arash Tirandaz
Mount Damavand is a well-known symbol of Iran and has a great place in Iranian legend, mythological tales, art and photography. In reality it is a magnificent dormant volcano that sends out some sulphuric smoke. Many myths and tales are related to Damawand Iran.

Arash the Archer (Āraš-e Kamāngīr, Arash the Shooter)

Arash is a warrior archer (shooter) from manouchehr's army, one of the ancient Persian myths, as well as the name of the main character of this myth. Arash Kamangir was chosen as an Iranian archer to determine the border between Persia (Iran) and Turan after the end of the Iran-Turan War and went to the summit of Mount Damavand and, with all his power, released an arrow to Mount Juannont in the East. Farsi speakers of Turkestan believe that the arrow landed in the walnut tree in that land, which is called the "Arash tree", and therefore calls Mount Afrasiab and the Xingan Valley, which is next to it, "The Border of Iran and Turan".

Āraš-e Kamāngīr is a historical mythical figure. It is mythical because it belongs to a time when its temporal and spatial nature is not yet known, and because its life and death are obscured. And it is historical because over the past two thousand years, Persian-speaking people have believed in him and he has been mentioned in many historical sources.
Find out more about Damavand hiking and trekking tours at Mount Damavand hiking tours. It has everything you need to know.

Damavand in Winter, Photo Ardeshir Soltani
Damavand in Winter
View from Polour Village
Photo Ardeshir Soltani

Legend of Arash

During the reign of King Manouchehr Pishdadi and during the battle with turanians, Afrasiab surrounded the Iranian army in Mazandaran. Finally, Manouchehr offers a compromise and Turanian accepts the offer of reconciliation and agrees that one of the Iranian heroes will go over the highest peak of the Alborz Mountain Range, Mount Damavand, and throw an arrow and replace it with the arrow, the border between Iran and Turan. Among the Armies of Iran, no one dared to do so. Arash, a simple army courier, delivered a message to the Army of Turan. In order to shrink Iranians, King Turan chose Arash himself, and Arash was forced to accept this. On the other hand, in the Iranian army, everyone was stymied by Arash as to why you accepted the offer and that it would disgrace Iran.

Arash Kamangir, an ancient Iranian hero, went to the Damavand Mountain and put the arrow in the bow and threw it. Arash the Shooter, known as Arash Kamangir, who had given all his life and power to throw the shot, died of exhaustion after the launch, his body was torn to shreds and spread out on Iranian soil, and his psyche was blown away. The arrow flew from morning to evening and landed on a walnut tree along the Jeyhun or Amu darya River, where the border between Iran and Turan was called. According to some beliefs, when arash was given a bow and arrow, he was told that the arrow would fly far away, but the person with whom the arrow was thrown would die. Arash, however, was ready to sacrifice himself and took that bow and arrow. Arash is an Iranian myth of unique examples in the myths of the world. In Iran, he is a symbol of sacrifice on the way to the homeland.

Heroic Iranian archer Arash put his life on an arrow and threw it by a bow from the top of Iran's Highest Peak Damavand to demarcate Iran's border with Turan. The name Arash remains a popular name among Iranians.

Arash the Shooter. Arash is a warrior shooter the ancient Iranian myths. Arash Kamangir went to the to[ of Mount Damavand. Arash tree. Arash is a historical mythical figure. Legend of Arash. Arash an Iranian hero went to peak of the Alborz Mountain Range, Mount Damavand. Arash Kamangir, an ancient Iranian hero. Arash the Archer.

Other Names and spellings
آرش کمانگیر‎ Āraš-e Kamāngīr heroic archer-figure of Iranian mythology. Persian folklore. Arrow launched by Arash. Persian folklore. Arash/Aarash kaman-gir, Arash, bow-expert. Persian Modern legend, ancient Persian myth. Arash's heroic sacrifice to liberate his country from foreign domination.

Āraš-e kamāngīr. Arash Kamangir's golden arrow. Damavand-Mythology. Mythology of Mt Damavand. Archer and archery may come from Iranian hero name Arash. Arash the Archer. Âraŝ, the Archer (Persian: آرش کمانگیر Āraš-e Kamāngīr). Arash kamangi, arash tirandaz. دماوند ایران

Damavand Volcano, Photo Ardeshir Soltani
Damavand Volcano
Photo Ardeshir Soltani

FAQs Damavand Myths

What is the significance of Damavand Mountain in Iranian folklore?
Damavand Mountain, also known as Mount Damavand or Damavand Volcano, holds a special place in Iranian folklore and is considered a significant cultural symbol. It is often associated with ancient legends and tales that highlight its majestic beauty and mythical importance.

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Mount Damavand Iran
Damavand Peak, Iran

آرش تیرانداز

آرش تیرانداز جنگاوری از سپاه منوچهر یکی از اسطوره‌های کهن ایرانی و همچنین نام شخصیت اصلی این اسطوره‌است. آرش کمانگیر پس از پایان جنگ ایران و توران به عنوان کماندار ایرانی برای تعیین مرز ایران و توران برگزیده شد و بر فراز کوه دماوند رفت و و با تمام توان تیری را به سوی کوه «خوانونت» در خاور رها کرد. فارسی ‌زبانِان کشور ترکستان معتقدند که این تیر در درخت گردویی در آن سرزمین فرود آمده که آن را «درخت آرش» می‌نامند و به همین دلیل کوه افراسیاب و درهٔ شینگان را که در کنار آن است «مرز ایران و توران» می‌خوانند.

آرش شخصیتی اسطوره‌ای ـ تاریخی است. اسطوره‌ای است چون به زمانی تعلق دارد که امروزه هنوز ماهیت زمانی و مکانی آن مشخص نیست، و نیز از آن‌رو که زندگی و مرگش در ابهام است. و تاریخی است چون طی دو هزار سال گذشته مردمان پارسی زبان به او باور داشته‌اند و در بسیاری از منابع تاریخی از او یاد شده است.
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Mount Damavand Mythology 24DIC0720B