The creation and growth of the city was based on the underground irrigation canals, the qanāts of which Bam has preserved some of the earliest evidence in Iran. The archaeological discoveries of ancient qanāts in the south-eastern suburbs of Bam are datable to the beginning of the 2nd century BC.
Bam developed at the crossroads of important trade routes and became an outstanding example of the interaction of various influences.
Arg-e-Bam, the Citadel of Bam is the most representative example of a fortified medieval town built in vernacular technique using mud layers (Chineh) combined with mud bricks (Khesht).
On December 26, 2003, a major earthquake hit Bam, destroying most of the city as well as the archaeological site of Arg-e-Bam.
One might blame the ancient earthen structures for not being earthquake resistant but actually, the newly restored buildings in the Arg-e-Bam suffered more destructions than those that had not been restored.
The ancient Bam, which was inhabited until mid 19th century, is overlooking that route of trade and invasion, which the Sassanian Kings had already wished to control. Subsequently the Arabs extended their sway over it, only to be superseded by the Seljuk Turks in the 11th century. Finally the Bam citadel was captured by devastating Ghalzai Afghan invaders in 1722, but they were driven out in 1729, after their power had been shattered by Nader Shah Afshar. In 1795, the town w as the scene of the final stand of the gallant Lutf Ali Khan, the last of the enlightened Zand dynasty, against Agha Mohammad Khan, the first of the Qajar rulers of Iran. Some forty-five years later, the Agha Khan Mahallati, the head of the Ismaili Sect and a lineal descendant of the last Grand Master of the order of the Assassins, revolted against Fath Ali Shah. On being defeated at Kerman, he and his followers took refuge in Bam, whence they subsequently fled to India; the present Agha Khan is a direct descent of him. Total abandonment of the city seems to be, however, of a recent date. Otherwise its ruins should have been in a much more dilapidating condition.
“The Citadel of Bam, which was habitable and in a fairly good condition until a hundred and fifty years ago, has, according to Hudud ol-Alam and other reliable sources that have come down to us from the 10th century AD, been founded some 2,000 years back, and has been repeatedly repaired thereafter. This commemorative tablet relates to the completion of the repairs of the watchtower and of a part of the Governors residence.
Bam tourism- industrial city
This Industrial Town located in Bam city.
Close to the vicinity of The Old citadel (Arq-e-Qadeem) of Bam, is located a new tourist complex known as the new citadel (Arq-e-Jadid). This is a modern tourist resort with recreational areas and all the latest facilities for the welfare of visitors and tourists. The constructions in this vicinity covers an area of approximately six hectares and comprises of residential facilities and services in this desert area, and in keeping with its traditions, including a number of Iranian gardens with recreational sites that have increased the popularity of the area.