Anahita Temple of Kangavar
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Anahita Temple

? 6 minute read

Welcome to Anahita temple which is one of the outstanding temples of Parthians and known as the 2nd largest stone building of Iran. Anahita is remained from ancient days of Iran and is located in Kangavar. According to history of this are, there were several sacred places in this complex in order to respect to religion especially for four elements of life.

Religion in all over ancient empire of Iran has been affected by Islam and this affected on many temples and building that there are sufficient evidence about the usage of each building and details of architecture. However, archaeologists found enough documents that this building dates back to Persian Empire that later on, Parthians built their own town on ruins of Persian city which was called Kangiar and in Sassanid it didn’t lose its value especially by Khosrow Parviz.

Nowadays this complex is on top of hills with 32 m height in center of Kangavar that looked pretty similar to Persepolis that has been by Darius I. Because of similarities in construction of entrance staircases. This complex is vast and it is very difficult to believe this was only one temple because of having several monuments in every single corner. some are from ancient days and some of them are remained from early Islamic periods on ruins of ancient city.

In ancient Iran, Especially in Sassanid many people were of the opinion that there were several gods and goddesses for every natural agent such as Anahita as a goddesses of water. Although this complex has been exposed to several attacks and damages in history by human or natural agents, it still is one of the most well-known spot for several domestic and foreign tourists to visit.

From architecture point of view as it is mentioned above, the whole complex is on top of a hill with 32 m height which has an square plan and the length of each side is about 209m and 18 m height regarding the height of columns. It is well noted that all this complex has been built by pieces of stones that are all brought to this spot from local mines as well as rivers along the city.

In every side of main building there are water channels that led water toward the center of main hall. Apparently it was all supplied in a little pool for religious program at certain time of the year. In southern flank of this complex, place where archaeologists are of the opinion that, this is the main entrance toward the whole complex, length of stairs are about 154 m. Along the stairs there are several pillars with height of 3.5 m that none of them has a particular decoration or patterns which represents Ancient Style of Iranian Architecture that has been used in Pasargadae as well as Persepolis or even Susa.

There are several stories about the complex that has been made by researchers, historians as well as travelers that all were similar in few points such as Iran and west were trading with each other by taking Silk Route and either sides could have used different styles of architectures.

Unfortunately aside from all its importance and beauties, this is not listed as one of MUST-DO items in travelers bucket’s lists and even locals had used its stucco works and mortar for their own construction.

As a result, we would highly recommend to visit such a magnificent complex by taking a day trip from either Hamedan or Kermanshah in order to visit the 2nd largest stone building of Iran that has been playing an important role in Iran’s ancient history.


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