Among those interested in travel and tourism, there are always two vehicles as the first choices: aircraft and trains. Each of these vehicles has special features that will appeal their audience. But based on experience of people who have traveled to Iran, Train travel in Iran usually leaves more enjoyable and lasting memories. Do you know about Iran trains or how to buy Iran Train Tickets?
A family-friendly atmosphere is the result of this form of travel. Regarding aircraft, the concept of special services and luxury is well understood and most people are aware of it. In this article we are going to introduce the best Iranian trains and their services.
History of Railway System in Iran
Before we get into the topic, let’s talk about the history of train in Iran. According to the latest statistics, more than 13437 Km of railway exist in Iran. The first Iranian railway was built from Tehran to Shah Abdul Azim shrine located in Rey. This line was built in 1882 by a French engineer.
This historic event took place during the reign of Nasser al-Din Shah Qajar who invited large crowds to come to see the inauguration of first Iranian train which was later called “smoke car” by locals – because of the huge volume of train steam output. People are said to have been first terrified of seeing this huge machine, and the work came to a point where the king ordered a number of celebrities, commanders and courtiers to board the train with him, so that people will see the event and get the courage.
After further construction, Iranian railway system was finally nationalized in 1927 and became the Nation-wide railway of Iran, which expanded very soon.
The major Trans-Iranian Railway building project started in Pahlavi Iran in 1927 and completed in 1938. It was designed and executed in a successful collaboration between the Iranian government and 43 construction contractors from overseas. The railway is notable for its scale and the engineering works it required to overcome steep routes and other difficulties. Its construction involved extensive tunnel constructions in some areas, while the rugged terrain in others dictated the construction of 174 large bridges, 186 small bridges and 224 tunnels, including 11 spiral tunnels. Unlike most early railway projects, construction of the Trans-Iranian Railway was funded by indigenous capital to avoid foreign investment and control.
In 2021, Trans-Iranian Railway was listed as UNESCO world heritage; Check out here.
Train Travel In Iran
Iran is a vast country with huge distances between major cities. Therefore, traveling with trains is a good way to bridge all together.
For long distance journeys, trains are fast, comfortable, safe and more environmental friendly than buses. Of course, overnight journeys allow you to save on accommodation cost and extend your daytime sightseeing hours. The only issue is to plan your journey in advance and purchase tickets soon, because most Iranian trains are sold out much in advance.
Most trains are operated by private companies which means their quality differ from train to train. None are awful though, at a minimum, service is average. High-speed trains usually connect several destinations.
Iran’s best trains, services and facilities
Best Transport companies always provide such services to create a sense of well-being and safety for the passengers in the best possible way. The concept of high quality service has been defined more specifically in airlines, with variety of VIP and CIP services to travelers. But passenger services are not limited to aircraft, and here are some of the best trains in Iran and the services they provide to make your next trips more enjoyable.
FADAK 5-Star Train – Iran’s Most Luxurious Train
FADAK trains are of the best trains in Iran and for their convenience and safety, are also called the mobile 5 star hotels. Fadak trains have three different classes, with different prices and services. Economy, Business and First Class; of course it is good to know that all Fadak trains are 5 stars.
There are four beds in Fadak train compartment and two monitors in each compartment. If you wish, the temperature of the compartment is adjustable on Fadak trains. If you need help from the hostess, you can just press the host key.
Catering service on Fadak trains is comparable to Iranian good restaurants. For example, Main meals and snakes on the train are served in three different types, and the notable thing is that they are included in the ticket price. This means you will not be charged extra for meal or drink services.
Fadak trains are running on different routes of Tehran, Qom, Zanjan, Shiraz, Ahvaz, Qazvin, Karaj and Mashhad.
The services available on Fadak trains are offered in three levels: luxury, Business and Economy, each with a different price.
The 5-Star “Zendegi” Train, as its name implies, is an ideal travel option for traveling comfort and even at first glance, it has a lot of differences in appearance to ordinary trains. This train was used by Raja Company for the first time in 2017 and is a great option for family trips.
Zendegi full-board train tickets which include snacks, dinner and breakfast are sold online.
All the hosts are university-educated and fluent in English, and the restaurants at this train also serve a variety of Iranian and French dishes. All services provided on Zendegi Train are of the same quality as international air service standards.
VIP “Ghazaal Bonyad” Train
This train is also one of the best trains available in Iran. By buying VIP “Ghazaal Bonyad” Train tickets you can experience your journey in luxury and quality wagons as well as having the right equipment. This train is provided by Bonyad Company, Vaniya Rail and Rail Safar and is operating as a high speed train.
The total capacity of each passenger car is 40 persons, consisting of a total of ten 4-person compartments.
What is the difference between the Vip Ghazaal train and the regular Ghazaal train?
Ghazaal trains are all four-bedded and there are four seats in each compartment. The physical services provided to the passengers are the same on both trains, and the main difference between the Vip and the regular Ghazaal train is the type of extra service that you are entitled to on the journey.
This is exactly the same as the difference in train tickets from other trains. For example, when buying a special ticket does not mean that you are on a separate car, but that your car and compartments are similar to other passengers. Only there is some difference in the services you receive while traveling.
The Ghazaal train has also some “Chair cars” with reasonable price tickets, and the variety of offered services makes travelers comfortable during their journey. There are also two trains named Soroush and Parasto in the Gazaal train system which have similar services. Good to know that the Soroush train is traveling only on the route to Tehran – Qom and Qom -Mashhad.
Raja Green Ploor Train
The train consists of 10 4-seater compartments and one compartment is reserved for the train host. Green Ploor cars have air conditioning, TV system to watch movies. There are two toilets in each car. For sound and heat insulation, the body of the compartments and the windows glasses are double-layered. Each compartment has a 220-volt power outlet so that passengers can easily charge or use personal appliances.
Routes: Shiraz-Mashhad, Tehran-Shiraz, Tehran-Ahvaz and Tehran-Mashhad
Noor trains are among the trains of “Noor-ol Reza Company”, which are in the category of 4-star Iran trains. These trains have brand new cars with 4-bed compartments, high-quality services, good facilities and reasonable prices. Today, they have become one of the best options for train travel in Iran.
Noor train tickets are currently sold in two classes, Special and VIP. The only difference between VIP and special tickets is in the service level and facilities provided during the trip. By booking VIP tickets, you can enjoy a sleeping pack, including sheet set, personal bed and seat covers, and disposable personal items. The meal is also at another level.
What distinguishes Noor trains from other trains in the country’s railway system is the good quality. It is interesting to know that although these trains were purchased from China, but most of the parts and equipment are provided by European companies such as Germany, Italy and Japan.
Noor train routes
Noor train is currently operating on the Tehran-Mashhad, Isfahan-Mashhad, Tehran-Shiraz, Karaj-Mashhad and Tehran-Kerman railways. At first, these trains were operating only on the route to Mashhad, but over time and with good passenger feedbacks, the activity of Noor trains increased and started to operate on other railway lines.
Iran Railway Map 2022
Iran Railway Map 2022
Turkey – Iran Railway
Tehran – Istanbul Train
There was no direct train to travel to Turkey a few years ago, and one had to cross several routes to travel by train. First from Tehran to Tabriz, then from there to Van and from Tatvan to Ankara, and from Ankara to Istanbul. But according to recent news and statements by the Vice President of the Iranian Railway Co. at the press conference of the 7th International Rail Transport Exhibition, it was announced that the Tehran-Van and Tehran-Ankara train will be launched from August, 2019
From Tehran to Ankara you will board 4-star trains with four bed compartments and head to Van Station. After reaching the border and Lake Van, you depart by boat to the port of Tatvan. You will travel from Tatvan Port to Ankara by Turkish train.
Now you have to continue on the Ankara-Istanbul route. The Ankara train to Istanbul runs twice per day, one at 6:00 am and the other at around 4:30 pm, for the last part of your journey you will need about 4:30 hours … Enjoy the scenery of the Ankara-Istanbul route!
✓ How long is it to travel to Istanbul by train?
The duration of the Tehran-Ankara route is 70 hours, Tehran-Van part is 20 to 23 hours, and the rest is about 48 hours to reach Istanbul. Keep in mind that you may be stumbling across the border a bit, so the length of time you are traveling from Tehran to Istanbul varies depending on the circumstances.
Iranian Train Companies
The train companies in the country are always confused with the trains running on the railways, but it is better to know that there are currently about 10 train companies in Iran. Raja is the oldest railway in the country:
➊ Raja Railway Transport Co.
➋ Mahtab Seir Jam Co.
➌ Vaniya Rail Co.
➍ Joupar Transport Co.
➎ Bonyad Shargh Railway Transport Co.
➏ Noor Ol-Reza Co.
➐ Rail Tarabar Saba Co.
➑ Rail Seir Kowsar Co.
➒ Tabriz Ra’ad Co.
➓ Rail Nopardaz Novin Co.
Fastest Train in Iran
Compared to the international standard, the Iranian trains speed is not in good condition (although there is no precise information). At present, the majority of Iran’s trains are at an Average speed of about 100 km/h. For “Ordinary trains”, the speed of the train does not exceed 120 km/h. Of course, it is said recently that Ghadir train can travel at a speed of about 140 Km/h, but it cannot be considered as a fast train.
The situation is a bit different for the fast train. Currently, the only high-speed train is Pardis train. This 4-star train speeds up to 200 Km/h. The slow speed reason of Iranian trains is because of the old railway infrastructure and number of stops in multiple towns.
Iran Train Tickets
Booking an online train ticket has made traveling by train easier than ever. To buy train tickets online, all you have to do is to contact us via email or messenger, then by entering the name of the city of departure and destination and the dates, you can receive information on all the available trains and the schedules for your desired route. Depending on the departure time, train facilities and budget, you can choose the most suitable ticket and receive your ticket online by finalizing the train ticket reservation and paying for it.
Frequently Asked Questions About Trains in Iran
We want to travel from Chah Bahar by train kindly quote schedule and price
I would like to ask, if it is possible to book a train ticket for foreigner online in advance by your travel agency?
Thank you for your reply, with kind regards Mr. Juraj Žitný
Hello, I came to Isfahan by Raja train from Mashhad. I am not satisfied at all. The wagon had only one toilet, it was noisy and slow and it was too late to reach the destination.