TThe province of Semnan is 96,816 km2 (37,381 sq mi) in the north-east of the central plateau of Iran, and its capital is Semnan. Townships of the province include, Semnan, Damqan, Shahrood and Garmsar.
It stretches along the Alborz mountain range and borders to Dasht-e Kavir desert in its southern parts. The province is divided into two parts: a mountainous region, and the plains at the foot of the mountains. The former offers a scope for recreational activities as well as being a source for minerals, whereas the latter encompasses some ancient cities of Iran as one of the capitals of the Parthian Empire was located here.
Semnan can be divided into sixteen sectors from the old days of Avesta. During the Median (Medes) and Achaemenid periods, it accounted for being one of the largest satrapies (provinces) of the empire.
A late 18th century Castle Gate, Semnan, Iran
During the Islamic era, Semnan was part of the historical region of Gomess or Komesh, and The Silk Road paved its way from the midst of this region. Needless to say, the province was witness to numerous wars.
The Cultural Historical Heritage Organization of Iran lists 470 sites of historical and cultural heritage such as palaces, forts, castles, caravansarais, water reservoirs (ab anbar), and badgirs, in Semnan. In addition to these there are various religious and sacred places as well.
The main landmark of Semnan is the 15th century Friday Mosque. Older, however is the nearby 11th century ornamented Seljuq minaret with an octagonal balcony.
* HASC : Hierarchical Administrative Subdivision Codes * ISO : Codes from ISO 3166-2 * Dom : Province Domain codes