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Abadan (Persian: آبادان‎) is a city of 230,000 people (2016) in Khuzestan, in the southwest of Iran. It is a port city and oil refining center. During the 1980 Iran-Iraq war, the city was emptied of people and heavily damaged.


Abadan is the capital of Abadan County. It is on Abadan Island (68 km or 42 mi long, 3–19 km or 2–12 miles wide). The island is bounded in the west by the Arvand waterway and to the east by the Bahmanshir outlet of the Karun River (the Arvand Rood), 53 km (33 mi) from the Persian Gulf, near the Iran–Iraq border. Abadan is 140 km from the provincial capital city of Ahvaz.

In September 1980, Abadan was almost overrun during a surprise attack on Khuzestan by Iraq, marking the beginning of the Iran–Iraq War. For 12 months, Abadan was besieged, but never captured, by Iraqi forces, and in September 1981, the Iranians broke the siege of Abadan. Much of the city, including the oil refinery, which was the world's largest refinery with capacity of 628,000 barrels per day, was badly damaged or destroyed by the siege and by bombing. Prior to the war, the city's civilian population was about 300,000, but at the war's end nearly the entire populace had sought refuge elsewhere in Iran.


The climate in Abadan is arid and similar to Baghdad's, but slightly hotter due to Abadan's lower latitude. Summers are dry and extremely hot, with temperatures above 45 °C (113 °F) almost daily and temperatures above 50 °C (122 °F) can be almost common. Abadan is notably one of the few hottest populated places on earth and experiences a few sand and dust storms per year. Winters are mildly wet and spring-like, though subject to cold spells. Winter temperatures are around 16–20 °C (61–68 °F).).

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

By train[edit]

Nearest railway station is in Khorramshahr, about 10 km north of Abadan. Daytime trains from Ahvaz as well as overnight trains from Tehran and Mashad are available.

By ferry[edit]

There are river ferries from Basra, in Iraq, to nearby Khorramshahr several times per week. The ferry is run by Valfajr Shipping Company[dead link] and journey time is just under one hour.

Get around[edit]


Traditional bazaar

  • Khorramshahr Holy Defence Cultural Center (War Museum), Ahmad Abad Avenue (Next to Naft (Oil) University). Museum reveals Abadan and Khuzestan's ancient history as well as the Iran-Iraq war, specifically how Abadan was successfully defended by the Iranians against the Iraqi invaders.


Play golf

Visit Shadegan wetland (bird watching)


Khuzestan handicrafts


Lots of seafoods like:

  • ghaliye mahi (Southern Iranian spicy fish and herb stew)
  • medfune
  • khoroshte bamie
  • 4-mahi sobur (barbecued fish)

and lots of desserts made of local dates.

  • 1 Baba Taher Restaurant, Shahid Taleghani St, +98 930 203 1980. 24 hours daily. Fresh kebabs.


High quality tea is available anywhere.


Go next[edit]

This city travel guide to Abadan is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.