Ashtian lies in a fertile agricultural district, watered by surface streams and qanats. The region is a famous one for carpet-weaving. Among its historical monuments is the remains of a fortress and a Safavid era caravanserai. Several learned men and religious figures have stemmed from Ashtian. Abbas Eqbāl Ashtiani (عباس اقبال آشتیانی), a celebrated Iranian literary figure, and Abdolkarim Gharib, founder of geological research in Iran, were born in Ashtian. Father of Dr Mohammad Gharib, founder of modern Paediatrics in Iran, was also a native of Ashtian.
The people of Ashtian speak a peculiar Persian dialect known as Ashtiani. They follow the Shia branch of Islam.