trains in Iran

Iranian trains offer safe and comfortable connections to almost every major destination in the country. Most long distance trains are operated by private companies which offer different standard from average to highest. A state-of-the-art highspeed train service connects to several destinations. Local trains used to be the domain of second hand European rolling stock but are replaced step by step with new and comfortable trainsets of domestic production.

How does it work?

Iran is a huge country with extended arid and desert plains. Settlements are concentrated in areas where abundant water is available, with distances of hundreds of kilometers between the major cities. According to this pattern railways offer mainly long distance connections, with usually at least one overnight train per line and a few daytime connections on some lines. Some relations are not served every day but two or three times a week. All connections are structured to be direct. This means you will not have to change at any station during your travel (and you hardly will find any timetable permitting changes). Local or regional service has been introduced in the last decades but it is available only in few areas. Never expect to take a train to cover a distance of just 50-80 kms except in urban regions. On long distances railway is often the fastest available land transport, more comfortable than road connections and of course safer and more environmental friendly.

With up to 500 km of new lines per year Iran's railway has one of the quickest growing networks in the world. Many new destinations have been added since the last years and new services have been introduced on existing lines. By 2020 Iran expects to reach every regional capital by rail. New lines are under construction to Rasht on the Caspian Sea, Hamedan, Sanandaj, Kermanshah and Urumieh. A highspeed line to Esfahan and a new, faster line between Mianeh and Tabriz are nearly completed. Electrification of the main line between Tehran and Mashad has started where trains will soon be able to travel at 200 km/h

Nevertheless demand is much higher than the available trains, as new rolling stock is always one step behind the opening of new lines and the tracks are shared with a heavy freight traffic. Therefore booking is mandatory for all trains except local services. Reservation should be done as soon as possible as some destinations may be fully booked also a week prior to departure. If you have little time to spend in Iran you better book your train from abroad, before you start your journey. For more details consult the timetables and read the tickets menu.

The following train types are available:

(Click on the pictures to see larger images)

high quality passenger train with special service - extra large compartment (Chinese profile) - climate control
Nour Nour Nour Nour Nour Nour 

high quality overnight train with special service - extra large compartment (Chinese profile)
Ghazal Ghazal Ghazal Ghazal Ghazal Ghazal 

Zendeghi luxury train
Zendeghi Zendeghi Zendeghi Zendeghi Zendeghi Zendeghi 

Fadak 5 star train
Fadak offers upscale facilities and services aimed at the wealthy traveler wanting to travel in style.Fadak Fadak Fadak Fadak Fadak Fadak 

Polour Sabz       
high quality overnight train with special service
Polour Polour Polour Polour 

high quality overnight train with special service
Sabz Sabz 

high quality overnight train with special service
Simorgh Simorgh Simorgh 

high quality overnight train with special service
Parastou Parastou 

highspeed intercity trainset
In 2005 Iran started to offer a high quality, fast and reliable express train service with new domestic diesel trainsets built under Siemens licence. The brand name Pardis means of course paradise and offers international premium class standard.Pardis Pardis Pardis Pardis Pardis Pardis 

Negin VIP      
VIP train with first class seats
Negin Negin Negin Negin 

Saba Double Deck      
First class double deck train with seats and board service - HD video entertainment movies
Recently new double deck trains have been introduced to face the ever growing passenger traffic. They offer high comfort on medium distances. On some trains special options (VIP) with larger, reclinable seats and personal multimedia entertainment are available.Saba Saba Saba Saba 

Railbus for regional trains
Railbus Railbus Railbus 

high quality passenger train with special service
Negin Negin Negin 

First Class       
First class train with 4-bed compartment

Regional train with seat, no AC
On many lines rather simple second class trains are available. They will stop at almost all stations. They are very cheap and have only seats, no beds. While they may suit for a journey of several hours they are not recommended for overnight journeys.Regional Regional Regional Regional Regional