Ghasabeh, The Greatest & Oldest Qanat in the World

Monday, July 16, 2018 - 11:28

Qasabe Qanats of Gonabad, located at Gonabad, Razavi Khorasan Province, Iran, contains 427 water wells with a total length of 33,113 meters. It is one of the oldest and largest qanats in the world, which dates back to 2500 or 2700 years ago and is the only suggested monument by the Great Khorasan to UNESCO to be registered.

From the point of topographic features, Siyah Kuh Mountains are in the western parts of this region whereas low lands are found in its north and northeast direction. The catchment of Qasabeh Qanat covers an area of ca. 317.67 km2, which is a part of Iran’s Central Desert basin.

The maximum height from sea level in the western part of the aquifer is 2785 m and the minimum height of ca. 1104 m from the sea level is located on the north side. Siyah Kuh Mountains are the main water source for Qasabeh Qanat.

With an average temperature of 127˚c and an average of 240 mm for a 30 year period due to the geographical situation and distant water resources, this region can be known as a semi-arid zone. However, the western parts of this area receive a higher rainfall compared to the north and northeastern parts.

This qanat is one of the most important and historic qanats in Iran Plateau which has had a vital role in the development of a qanat base civilization in the region and in the whole world. Certain features have made this qanat of the outstanding water structures in Iran. Its antiquity, construction method, management system and structural techniques are some of these features.

This site were first added to the UNESCO's list of tentative World Heritage Sites in 2007, then officially inscribed in 2016 with several other quants under the World Heritage Site name of “The Persian Qanet”.


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