Main Townships: Bandar Abbas, Bandar Lengeh, Kish Island, Qeshm Island, etc. Main Attractions: Anthropological Museum, Kharbez City, Malek Ebne Abbas Mosque, Portuguese Castle, Zaar Ceremony, etc.
The township of Abumoosa comprises of a mass of islands named as, Abumoosa, Tonb-e-Koochak (Small Tonb) and Tonb-e-Bozorg (Greater Tonb), which lie in the southern sector of Hormozgan province. Abumoosa Island is situated at a distance of 222 km. from Bandar Abbas. It experiences a warm and humid climate. Studies reveal that in the first millennium BC., Abumoosa and the other islands in the Pars Sea came under the jurisdiction and control of Iran. In the years 1151-1165 BC., the Pars Sea and Abumoosa was under the power of the Elamites, and during the Medes this island along with other islands were governed by one of the provinces of the southwest and a part of Kerman. In the year 138-171 BC., during the Parthian period and the reign of Mehrdad I, Abumoosa came under the realm of this dynasty.
Also during the Sassanid dynasty, when the Iranians held control here. In the Omaya caliphate and Abbaside era this held good when their respective commanders controlled the vicinity. In the year 323 AH., Emad-ud-Dowleh Daylami, occupied the ports and islands of the Persian Gulf including the Abumoosa Island. During the Al-e-Booyeh reign all the ports and islands of the Persian Gulf came under their strong hold, and till the year 538 AH. this island was dominated by the Saljuqi dynasty of Kerman, and ruled by the local rulers of Bani Qeisar.
In his conquests Teimoor Gurgani annexed the ports and islands of this vicinity including Abumoosa to the territories formerly in his occupation. In the reign of Shah Abbas Safavid the Portuguese took control of Abumoosa, and in the year 1179 AH., Karim Khan Zand sought control of this island and other islands of the Persian Gulf. Aqa Mohammad Khan Qajar also gained supremacy regarding the islands and Abumoosa.
In the late 19th century the British government entered the scene on the pretext of driving out the pirates from the Persian Gulf region, standing against the sale of slaves, and protecting the security of India. Thus the British government naval force forbade the Iranian militia from taking part in sea-faring procedures. After which the Sheikh of Sharjah (aided by the British government) claimed possession of this island, but in the year 1971 the Island of Abumoosa came under the full control of the Iranian Navy.
The township of Bandar Abbas is located at a distance of 1,484 km. from Tehran. The same lies to the south of the province and is within the southern limits of the Persian Gulf. It experiences a warm and humid climate. In the year 924 AH., Bandar Abbas was known as Jerun and was not more than a small village on the northern coasts of the Persian Gulf. In the year 1514 AD., the Portuguese selected the same for the dispatch of cargo and due to the presence of a large number of lobsters or crabs on its shores, named this port likewise. The British government came to help Shah Abbas Safavid who expelled the Portuguese from this port in 1622 AD. Thereafter to commemorate this victory, the port was named Bandar Abbas.
The British government and the Dutch set up commercial centers here and constructed a magnificent edifice on the sea shore. Most of the cargo ships transporting goods from India to Iran, the Ottoman Empire and other vicinities in the region docked at this port.
The Dutch were responsible for constructing a small town in the midst of the city of Bandar Abbas in 1110 AH., after gaining permission from the government of Iran. In the mid 17th century AD., the East India Company was inaugurated in Bandar Abbas, but later due to turmoil in 1759 AD. the same was transferred to Basra. During the reign of Nader Shah, Bandar Abbas and its suburbs were rented out to the Soltan of Muscat in accordance to an agreement. But due to a rebellion in Muscat in the year 1868 AD., this agreement was canceled and Bandar Abbas came under the jurisdiction of Iran.
Currently, the city of Bandar Abbas is the center of Hormozgan province and enjoys a favorable position both strategically on the shores of the Persian Gulf and Oman Sea and also in connection with economic fields. Furthermore, the facilitation provided in Bandar-e-Shaheed Rajaie aids in brisk transactions between Iran and other countries.
The above mentioned township is situated at a distance of 1,631 km. from Tehran. It is to the west of the province and the coasts of the Persian Gulf, and has a warm and humid climate. There is a strong possibility that 'Bandar-e-Gugana' which held great importance during the Achaemenian period as a trading port, but later declined due to upheavals, is the current Bandar Lengeh. In the year 1760 AD., an Arab clan or tribe by the name of Javasem occupied the southern coasts of the Persian Gulf, Bandar Lengeh and Qeshm Island in a mass migration. During the reign of Karim Khan Zand 1163-1193 AH. Bandar Lengeh thrived in regards to sea-faring activities as a port, and also because the caravan route to Shiraz which added to its importance commercially.
This port was reputedly known as the bride of the ports of Iran during the Qajar era and till the year 1896 AD. the Javasem tribe held the ropes in Bandar Lengeh. The French Consulate was established here in the year 1889 AD. and the Belgians held control of the customs in Bandar Abbas and Bandar Lengeh. In the year 1898 AD. one of the family members of the ruler of Bandar Lengeh enjoyed a prime position in ruling the area, due to weakness of central government. But this continued only for a short while. Bandar Lengeh witnessed decline in the late Qajar period. This state continued throughout the first and second world wars. In 1945 due to infectious diseases and famine the city was further prone towards derangement. At present this port is one of the thriving and active ports in the region.
The above mentioned township is located to the north of the province and is divided into two sectors, that is the east and west. The former being Fazqan, surrounded by a branch range of the Zagross Mountains with high summits. But the western segment consists of salt marshes. The vicinity of Hadji Abad experiences warm, dry summers and moderate winters. The thermal springs of Hadji Abad and Dah Sheikh are the natural attractions of this region amongst other such natural attractions in its eastern sector.
The township of Jask is located to the east of Hormozgan province and experiences a warm and dry weather, being under the influence of an arid and semi-arid type of climate. In ancient times this region was a center for the Mitraism cult and the temple of Anahita is a remnant here. In 1330 AD., Soltan Qotbuddin ruled Jask, and in the year 1614 AD., the British government selected this region as a trading port. The East India Company was established here in the year 1619 AD. In late 1620 AD.
the Portuguese halted the entrance of two ships of the East India Company from docking in the port of Jask. Thus evoking a severe battle between the British government and the Portuguese, which resulted in the defeat of the latter. In order to create further dominating measures in the vicinity, in 1864 AD. the British government set up a telegraph system along with an under water cable thereby setting communications between Iran and India. Today Bandar-e-Jask is a comparatively thriving region and resembles a peninsula that is surrounded by water on the three sides, enhanced by a tranquil and beautiful coastal area.
The township of Minab lies in the north of Hormoz Strait, and is at a distance of 1,616 km. from Tehran. It has a mountainous terrain towards the north and east, whilst the plains are located in its central and western sectors. Minab experiences a warm and humid climate and its agricultural lands are irrigated by the Minab River. Its historical past mingles with that of the ancient city of Hormoz, which historians believe to be related to Ardeshir Babakan Sassanid. In the year 1000 AD., one of the Sheikhs of Oman by the name of Mohammad took advantage of the discontentment of the inhabitants in respect to the ruler of the times, occupied Bandar-e-Hormoz. In 1300 AD. the Mongols invaded this city, thus forcing the Amir (governor) of Hormoz and its inhabitants to flee to the current Island of Hormoz.
During the years 1793-1804, the Soltan of Oman, Soltan Ebne Ahmad came to power with the help of the Britain in 'Gouatre', and tried to refrain from disputes towards the Iranian rule, but at the same time tried to gain control over Bandar Abbas and Minab. Due to internal involvement, Aqa Mohammad Khan was unable to fortify his power in the south during this period. Thence the ruler of Oman took the seat in the areas of Qeshm and Hormoz. But in the year 1852 AD. a treaty was drawn up to the effect that the coastal lands, Islands of Iran along with Minab city be returned back to Iran. The Hazareh (Bibi Minoo) castle is the most important historical vestige of this township.
Qeshm Island is situated to the north of Hormoz Strait, and the city of Qeshm is located in the southeast of this Island. This region has a warm and humid climate and is somewhat a lengthy island. During the Mongol conquest, a tribe known as Turan were the inhabitants of this island and were responsible for its prosperity. In the year 1507 AD. the Portuguese came ashore on this island and fortified themselves from the military point of view, remaining thus till the reign of Shah Abbas Safavid. In 1645 AD.
the Dutch brought about an important military force in the Persian Gulf and occupied the Qeshm castle on the pretext that the Iranians had failed to abide by the trading pact. But the heat of this island compelled the Dutch to leave the place. On the death of Nader Shah in 1747 AD., the influence of Iran in the Persian Gulf weakened, and the Javasem (Arab) tribe increased their supremacy in the vicinity, thereby conquering the Qeshm Island in the year 1760 AD. Britannia founded its naval base in the village of Basaeidoo in the Qeshm Island in the year 1882 AD., but were forced to leave this area due to climatic conditions, i.e., the heat.
After the Islamic revolution, Qeshm regained its importance and in the year 1989 accounted for the second ranking economically free port. In 1990 it facilitated custom services and played an active role in this connection in the Persian Gulf and Oman Sea, both in the industry and commercial circles. Thereby further improving trade relations between Iran and other neighboring countries.
This township is one of the ancient vicinities in the province from the geographical point of view. In comparison to the other regions of the province this area has a pleasant climate. Its underground and surface water resources are on a relatively high level and this promotes agricultural activities in the area, and in the 4th century AH. this territory boasted of verdant regions. In the 8th century AH. its agricultural products were grain, cane sugar, grapes and similar yields. The surplus of which were exported to India via the port of Tiab in Minab. This township is devoid of any historical vestiges, but has natural beauty.
No doubt Hormozgan province is one of the strategic areas of the south of Iran. The same has always been a focal point in the eyes of Iranian rulers as well as foreign powers.
Hazareh (Bibi Minoo) Castle, Minab
The only historical structure Minab city is the Hazareh Castle. It is believed that the city was constructed by two sisters named Bibi Minoo and Bibi Nazanin. It is said that in the past two castles were present here, but one of these is no more, and the other is the famous Bibi Minoo Castle. The same was a seat of local rule till the late Qajar era.
Hormoz Castle, Hormoz Island, Bandar Abbas
This relic is one of the important vestiges from the times of the Portuguese and their domination on the coastal areas and islands of the Persian Gulf. The same is located in north of this island. This structure was constructed in the year 1507 AD. on the orders of Alfonso de Albequrque the renounced Portuguese navigator. The same was constructed in a vicinity known as Murna. It is an irregularly shaped and multi-sided construction, with walls to the thickness of 3.5 m and towers reaching an elevation of 12 m.
Khamir Castle, Bandar Khamir
This castle is located near Bandar Khamir and the entrance of the same is a spectacular construction of stone and gypsum, and has been built according to European architecture. In the four corners there are four circular towers, between every two a short tower is also built. This relic dates back to approximately a century.
Lashtan Castle, Bandar Lengeh
This castle was constructed in the year 904 AH. and is at a distance of 6 km. east of Bandar Lengeh. Within the castle are a number of ponds, cemeteries, and storage areas for edible commodities, amongst other remains. Stony crypts similar to those of the early cavemen dwellings can be noted on the heights in the surroundings.
Portuguese Castle, Qeshm
This castle was built in the year 1030 AH. to the north east of this island under the decree of the Spanish monarch of the times. The same has two ramparts and towers in the four corners. Within the castle a number of extremely ancient and rusty canons remain to date.
Other Castles, Hormozgan
Another castle worth mentioning in this province is the Laft castle, situated in the south of the Laft village of Qeshm.
Abumoosa Island, Bandar Lengeh
This island is located at a distance of 222 km. from Bandar Abbas and 75 km. from Bandar Lengeh. Its length and width is approximately 4.5 km. with an area of 2.2 sq. km. and at a height of 46 m. above sea-level. This island is comparatively warm in respect to its surroundings and has a warm and humid climate. The center of this island is the city of Abumoosa.
Hormoz Island, Bandar Abbas
The same lies like an oyster shell amidst the waters of the Persian Gulf, covering an area of 41.9 sq. km. Hormoz Island is located to the southeast of Bandar Abbas and lies within 10 nautical miles from it.
Kish Island, Bandar Abbas
Kish Island (economic free zone) is located in the Persian Gulf waters, to the southwest of Bandar Abbas, and is an oval shaped island with an area of 89.7 sq. km. It has a length and width of 15.6 and 7 km. respectively. Its center for cultured pearls and large aquariums are one of the attractions of this island. Besides which its strand offers scope for other leisure such as a round in a glass-bottom boat, water skiing and scuba diving (with the aid of a guide). Shopping arcades prove interesting places and so too other recreational areas.
Qeshm Island, Qeshm
This island lies to the north of Hormoz Strait, its length being 115 km. and its width ranging from 10-35 km. The city of Qeshm is its center, the same being in the northeast of this island with an area of 3 sq. km. and at an elevation of 10 m. above sea-level. The island is situated at a distance of 1,353 km. from Tehran and 12 nautical miles from the main land. Climatically it has one long warm and humid season, and a shorter moderate one. Its rocky coastal areas are favored by crabs and lobsters. Besides which, its forested vicinities such as Harrah (mangroves) Protected Area located between the north of the island and Bandar Khamir are wonderful sights to visit.
Other Islands, Hormozgan
The other islands of Hormozgan province are named as, Lavan, Hindorabi, Shatvar, Larak, Hengam, Tonb-e-Bozorg and Tonb-e-Kuchak, Siri, Foroor-e-Bozorg and Foroor-e-Kuchak.