Route of the Khaf – Herat railway

An attempt to gather together some information on the construction phases of the Iran to Herat railway line. Has anyone got a good map of the route?

This should not be taken as definitive! Corrections would be very welcome.

Reported distances vary a bit between sources. Spellings vary a lot.

Updated with Stage 4 details 24 February 2019.

Iran – Herat railway project construction phases

Country Stage Route Length, km Funding Construction completed
76.8 km1
Stage 1 Khaf (Kahwaf, Khawaf, Khawaaf, Khauf, خواف) (Junction at 24 km on the Torbat-e Heydariyeh – Sangan line) – Sangan2 (serves mines?) 14? Iran September 20163
Stage 2 Sangan – Myothek – Khoshbeh – Iran/Afghanistan border at Shamtiq (Shematigh, Shmtygh, شمتیغ)
~62 km Iran planned for October 2017?
Afghanistan Stage 3 border at Shamtiq – Jono (Jonaw, Junaw) near the Islam Qala – Herat road to the north of Ghourian (Ghoryan, غوريان, Ghurian) 56 61.2 Iran 30 km October 2017, rest January 20197
Stage 4 Phase 1 Jono – Robat Paryan (Rabat Pariyan) 43 km Afghanistan (supported by Italy?) Construction approved February 20198
Stage 4 Phase 2 Robat Paryan – Herat (هرات‎‎) industrial area and Airport c.20 km Afghanistan, supported by Italy? Construction not yet approved as of February 2019


The line is 1 435 mm (4 ft 8½ in) standard gauge, like the Iranian rail network (as well as the networks in China and most of Europe).

This is not compatible with the 1520 mm (5 ft) broad gauge used in the former USSR, including the lines crossing into Afghanistan from Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. However this is somewhat academic for the forseeable future as the lines into Afghanistan don’t connect with each other, and there are already other Turkmenistan – Iran rail routes which avoid Afghanistan altogether.


One thought on “Route of the Khaf – Herat railway

  1. Thank you for the always interesting and update news.
    According to a news report of the Iranian Ministry of Transportation of September, 25, the October opening date, which has been announced by the Governor of Herat Province, will not be feasible. Work on the line should have finished by October 20, 2017 and the contractor has been given another 10 days to fix some minor problems. According to the report, the opening ceremony of the line (until Ghourian station, 34.448010, 61.478782) should be held in the first days of November 2017. Another 34 km of line east of Ghourian (until Janou or Genu) are near to be finished, too.

    The most updated map of the area (with the railway visible until Ghourian station) is which is based on satellite images of

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