Shushtar Historical Hydraulic System – Khuzestan
Shushtar historical hydraulic system is an interconnected set of bridges, dams, watermills, waterfalls, canals, and massive tunnels to guide water that all of them working together as one hydraulic system.
Shushtar historical hydraulic system Khuzestan in the past
This historical hydraulic system was employed to better utilize water during the Achaemenid empire all through the Sassanid era. In a travelogue written by Madam Jane Dieulafoy, a well-known French archaeologist, the Shushtar historical hydraulic system Khuzestan is regarded as the largest industrial area before the industrial revolution.
This island city with a multiplex irrigation system is located in the Iranian province of Khuzestan and it is said that sections of this system date back to the time of Darius the Great, who was an Achaemenian king.
The structure of Shushtar historical hydraulic system Khuzestan
The historical hydraulic system Khuzestan includes two main canals that diversify the Karun river, and one of them is still being used today. This canal conveys water via a passage of tunnels to the city of Shushtar.
The Salasel castle is also located inside this area and acts as a pivot of the hydraulic system operation. A tower used to measure water level also exists in the area as well as bridges, dams, basins, and watermills.
Shushtar historical hydraulic system Khuzestan is a unique example of water utilization in the ancient time. The collection of dams, subsidiary canals, tunnels, and watermills in this area have been formed as an industrial-economic set and working as an interconnected unit.
How does the Shushtar historical hydraulic system Khuzestan work?
Everything begins at the GarGar dam. This dam blocks the river stream and at the same time, water levels behind it rise to reach the three tunnels thrust into the rock.
These tunnels guide water into the Shushtar hydraulic system, and through there the water flows into various canals. After turning mills, the water pours in the pool-like area in forms of waterfalls.
The water stored in the pool located in the southern parts of the city used for farming and the supply for the orchard plants in an area called “Mianab” (literally translates to among the water).
In addition to industrial uses, the Shushtar old hydraulic system aids locals in times of drought by providing the required water supply of the city locals.
Shushtar historical hydraulic system Khuzestan today
It is worth mentioning that parts of this hydraulic system are still functional after centuries. The waterfalls in this complex have also created a seductive view in the heart of Shushtar city.
Tourists from all over the world visit this structure to become familiar with the function and the brilliant engineering that was put into this place.
The watermills of Shushtar were placed in the list of UNESCO world heritage suggestions, but the experts in UNESCO believed that the mills are only a part of the whole interconnected hydraulic system. Therefore the whole system was later suggested to be listed as a UNESCO world heritage site and was registered in 2009.
How to visit Shushtar historical hydraulic system Khuzestan
The Shushtar traditional hydraulic system Khuzestan is located on Taleqani street in Shushtar, Khuzestan province. Shushtar is almost 100 kilometres away from Ahvaz and is accessible via public transport.
If you are planning to travel to Ahvaz, you can check out a list of available treatments in below.