Caspian Sea

Caspian Sea is just half an hour by walk from Gileboom Homestay

The Caspian Sea is the largest enclosed inland body of water on Earth by area, variously classed as the world’s largest lake or a full-fledged sea. It is a basin without outflows located between Europe and Asia.

Kulagir (Gilak name for shepherds’ jacket)The word Caspian is derived from the name of the Caspi, an ancient people who lived to the southwest of the sea in Transcaucasia. Strabo wrote that “to the country of the Albanians belongs also the territory called Caspiane, which was named after the Caspian tribe, as was also the sea; but the tribe, has now disappeared”.  Moreover, the Caspian Gates, which is the name of a region in Iran’s Tehran province, possibly indicates that they migrated to the south of the sea. The Iranian city of Qazvin shares the root of its name with that of the sea.

The Caspian Sea presently lies about 28 m (92 ft) below sea level in the Caspian Depression, to the east of the Caucasus Mountains and to the west of the vast steppe of Central Asia. The sea bed in the southern part reaches as low as 1,023 m (3,356 ft) below sea level, which is the second lowest natural depression on earth after Lake Baikal (−1,180 m, −3,871 ft).

The ancient inhabitants of its coast perceived the Caspian Sea as an ocean, probably because of its saltiness and large size.

The sea has a surface area of 371,000 km2 (143,200 sq mi) (not including the detached lagoon of Garabogazköl) and a volume of 78,200 km3 (18,800 cu mi). It has a salinity of approximately 1.2% (12 g/l), about a third of the salinity of most seawater.

The Caspian Sea has characteristics common to both seas and lakes. It is often listed as the world’s largest lake, although it is not a freshwater lake. It contains about 3.5 times more water, by volume, than all five of North America’s Great Lakes combined. The Caspian was once part of the Tethys Ocean, but became landlocked about 5.5 million years ago due to plate tectonics.

The Volga River (about 80% of the inflow) and the Ural River discharge into the Caspian Sea, but it has no natural outflow other than by evaporation. Caspian ecosystem is a closed basin, with its own sea level history that is independent of the eustatic level of the world’s oceans.

Most part of the coast line, especially in eastern part of Guilan which Gileboom homestay is located is sand and during June, July and August, is the best time to swimming. Sefidrood and Polrood are two famous river which are continued to the sea while have created beautiful Wetlands like Boojagh.

The only Mammal is Caspian Seal and Caspian White fish is the best for local people. It is possible to have kayaking and sailing and especially autumn and winter is the best time to see how people are busy with fishing in the coast by a large wooden ship which is supported with small boats. It is possible for Gileboom guests to join the fishing parties and experience it.

The highest peak above Hyrcanian mixed forest is in front of it, Somamous, 3700 m which is like a nice angel sometimes above the clouds. Qasem-Abad is the nearest point to both forest and Caspian Sea.

Somamous peak
Somamous peak

For further information about swimming in the Caspian Sea regulations, you may follow these links: Swimming in Iran (lonely planet, thorn tree form) and Regulations of swimming (travel stack exchange).

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