Rey Shahr (also Reishahr) is the ruins of an old Elamite city located about 8 kilometers south of Port Bushehr near the Persian Gulf coast. Based on the tile inscriptions found at the site, the city was named Liyan, which served as a bridge between the East and West in the old world.
Rey Shahr excavations led by French archeologists from 1872 to 1877 have uncovered colorful earthenware, bronze vessels, and the remains of Elamite structures and castles datable to the first to third millennia BC.
The founder of the Sassanid dynasty (224–651 CE), Ardashir I (180-242 CE) the Unifier, rebuilt Liyan and renamed it ‘Riu-Ardashir’ or ‘Ram-Ardashir’, which over time came to be known as Rey Shahr. In the Sassanid era, the city was an important literary and scientific center where countless books were written and housed in the libraries of the city.
When Bushehr was founded in the Afsharid era (1736–1796), the inhabitants of Rey Shahr gradually abandoned the city and moved to Bushehr. Rey Shahr was registered as a National Heritage Site in 1932.