Orumieh is the second largest city in the Iranian Azerbaijan and the capital of West Azerbaijan Province. Urmia is situated at an altitude of 1,330 m above sea level, and is located along the Shahar Chay River (City River) on the Urmia Plain. Lake Urmia, one of the world’s largest salt lakes, lies to the east of the city and the mountainous Turkish border area lies to the west.
Urmia is the 10th most populated city in Iran. At the 2012 census, its population was 667,499 with 197,749 households. The city’s inhabitants are predominantly Iranian Azerbaijanis who speak the Azerbaijani language. There are also minorities of Kurds, Assyrians, and Armenians.
The city is the trading center for a fertile agricultural region where fruits (especially apples and grapes) and tobacco are grown. Urmia has semi-arid climate with cold winters, mild springs, hot dry summers and warm autumns. Late autumn, winter, and especially springs have rainy weather, while precipitation in summer is very scarce. Temperatures in Urmia are much colder than most of the remainder of Iran because of the elevation.