Nomads of Bakhtiari, Iran - Persia Advisor Travels

Nomads of Bakhtiari, Iran
Photo by Dmitry Chulov / Shutterstock

Bakhtiari people as a noble Iranian tribe are inhabiting in an area of approximately 67 thousand kilometers which includes the northern regions of Zagros Mountain i.e. Qazvin, Hamedan and Kermanshah and continues to southwestern parts of Iran. They are one of the most populated Iranian tribes which are divided into two categories of Haft Lang and Chahar Lang which literally mean seven legs and four legs respectively. Their dialect is Luri- Bakhtiari and they live their lives through husbandry and farming.

Their clothing style is a cultural element representing this tribe. The main cloths of men are a no-rimmed black felt hat and loose shirt and also they wear a sleeveless jacket on it which is called Chogha whose height is up to their knees.

Chogha is the symbol of Bakhtiari clothing which is woven with natural white wool with vertical dark blue or black lines. They also wear a baggy black trousers which is called Tonban.

Their footwear is called Giveh (a kind of soft, comfortable, durable and handwoven-top shoe).

The colorful clothes of Bakhtiari women consist of Lachak (a kind of scarf), Meyna (a veil whose length is about 2 or 3 meters which is worn on their head and covers shoulders and it is tied by clips under the chin) and a long-sleeved shirt which is called Jowa and it covers their body up to the knee, it is worn along with a layered skirt.

Another part of Bakhtiari culture is its traditional music and folklore dance, they have a special music for each event. The music used for mourning ceremonies are known as left music and the music played in happy occasions is called right music. Epic music is also another part of Bakhtiari music which is played during battles and races and all the events have an epic atmosphere, these kinds of songs are called “Sayyadi” songs. Wood playing is a martial game in which the men fight, attack and defend symbolically.

The nutrition system of the Bakhtiari people is traditionally based on meat, bread and fruits and rice is used much less in their diet. They almost eliminate meat from their diet at the time of migration but during the rest of the year, meat is the main base of their foods. The mostly used dairies in their diets are yogurt and curd.

Although since the early decades of current centuries, many groups of the Bakhtiari tribe chose sendentism life style like other Iranian tribes, still some of them are migratory. Like other tribes, Bakhtiari people migrate two times in a year for long time, in autumn and spring and from cold regions to warm regions and vice versa. They spend their winter in the lands of east of Khuzestan and their summer in western parts of Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari.