Why we should see Iran?
Iran is a mountainous and arid country located in Southwestern Asia. It sits between Asia and Europe, the two largest continents in the world. It has two aquatics, the Persian Gulf in the Southern border and the Caspian Sea in Northern border, making the country a unique travel destination. It offers wonderful sightseeing opportunities to the tourists as Iran has beautiful mosques, shrines, captivating plains on foot of the mountains, caves and many more tourist spots.
Not a long time ago, Iran was reserved for adventurous travellers, but this has changed now as Iran is trying to attract more tourists. The country has also eased visa rules, allowing people of over 180 countries to get visa-on-arrival at their airports. Iran is also well-connected by numerous international flights from multiple airlines. So, reaching Iran is not a big task nowadays.
Iran was the heart of the Persian Empire and has played a major role in this region because of ample natural resources, mainly petroleum.
The ancient Iranian dynasty is the Achaemenian Dynasty, whose period started in 550 BC. The Achaemenid Empire was the largest Empire of the ancient world. It was Cyrus the Great who expanded this Empire in Persia, presently known as Iran using the strategy of cultural toleration. Cyrus was a very successful military commander, but after conquering a region, he allowed the locals to continue praying their religion. Throughout his time as a ruler, he was tolerant and generous. The Achaemenid Empire was further expanded by Darius the Great. In his prime time, he introduced various reforms and appointed provincial governors for ruling, on his behalf, the smaller regions of his empire. Darius the Great also constructed a new capital, known as Persepolis.
The kings of this dynasty founded this Empire and ruled it for many years. From the Achaemenian period, Iran has been influenced by various immigrants and conquerors. But the lasting influence on Iran was made after the invasion of Muslim Arabs in the 7th century AD.
Iran is not like what you think; there are no wars or any security concern in this country. When travellers come to Iran for the first time, they usually get surprised by the reality that they experience here. They had never heard about it before coming to this beautiful country. It is peaceful and is safer even for the solo female travellers, with some precautions and common sense
When you come here, you will love the hospitality of the Iranian people. The locals are caring and respect everyone, including the ones coming from a different country. Don’t be surprised if you get greetings from random people on the streets or invitations from locals for tea or lunch at their house while exploring the area. This love and care for unknown travellers are not new as this was the legacy of their ancestors.
Coming to the geography of this country, Iran is not only about deserts, cracked lands and hot weather. There are lush green forests in the Caspian shores, green hills in the northern part of the country, majestic mountains, caves and sandy beaches. Iran has many things for travellers to explore – the unique architecture, rich history, food, diverse culture and many other things. Multiple rulers and dynasties in the past have left behind impressive palaces, bazaars and mosques with different architectural styles.
Visit Iran for its hospitality
Iran is the country of warm hospitality, the kind I’ve only seen in Sardinia so far, and not just because “welcome” is possibly the most popular English word there, but because it’s an essential feature of their culture. From Tehran to Tabriz we took the night train, and one of our cabin mates was a woman from Tabriz who, within the first two minutes of the conversation, has managed not only to invite us to her house but also to insist. And if you think this degree of hospitality is reserved for foreigners only, you clearly haven’t come across any taarof moment, which is understandable as this is a very “between-Iranians” prerogative.
Whatever city or province you go, friendly locals will be a great part of your Iranian journey.
Iran tends to get a lot of bad press, but somewhere in the mix, the good word about Iranian hospitality somehow got out. It’s not only the remains of Persepolis, mosques of Esfahan, and windcatchers of Yazd that have drawn travelers in, but also that unshakable curiosity about this renowned hospitality. This centuries old tradition has only intensified in recent years, solidifying that initial curiosity for travelers, and leaving a lasting impression much stronger than any tourist attraction ever could.
Travel to Iran to learn about its long history
Iran is home to one of the oldest civilizations. Most people immediately think of the first Persian Empire and sites such as Pasargadae and Persepolis, and while Persian history largely takes shape from this time (550-330 BC), there are sites such as Tepe Sialk in Kashan, Ecbatana in Hamedan, and Susa and Chogha Zanbil in the Khuzestan province which predate this period.
Hardly in need of any introduction, Persepolis is possibly Iran’s most famous ancient site, even though not the only one. From ancient Persia to modern Iran, from the Achaemenid Empire to the Sassanian era, from the Safavid period to the Qajar dynasty, to finally the Pahlavi family and the Islamic Revolution, Iranian history is as stormy as it gets.
With so many historical places to visit in Iran, travelling all around the country you can soak in every period and delve into the nation’s tangled past. After you enjoyed your Persepolis tour, don’t forget to add to the list also other Iran points of interest such as the Golestan Palace in Tehran, Ali Qapu Palace in Isfahan and the Fire Temple in Yazd, just to mention some.
If this is not a reason to visit Iran, I don’t know what is.
we should Visit Iran Because of its architecture
Be it a mosque, a palace or a bazaar, Iranian buildings are finely decorated and glow with ornamental elegance. Pastel colours gracefully interact with bright hues, tapering minarets and seemingly ubiquitous domes outline the landscape, symbols and traditional calligraphy coexist in a charming interplay.
Whether inside or outside a building, the sophisticated Persian architecture is always something tourists marvel at every time they visit Iran.
Whether you’re marveling at the tiled domes and ceilings of mosques or exploring the historical houses of Kashan, strolling through the ancient bathhouses or discovering the mechanism behind the windcatcher, the architecture in Iran will keep you enthralled. And although it’s mostly the older structures that lure visitors in, Iran has seen the construction of some impressive modern buildings and apartments in recent years that will have visitors questioning whether this is the Iran they’ve heard about in the news.
Also, the architectural styles and features evoke the dynasty they belong to. For example, Nasir al Mulk mosque in Shiraz is clearly Qajar dynasty with all its pink roses and small images of French churches, while the stunning Yazd Grand Mosque is all about overlapping styles, symbols and eras.
Getting enchanted by mesmerizing decorations, fine carvings, and elaborate paintings is one of the best reasons why you should visit Iran.
Travel to Iran for their handicraft
Each province, each city, each village has their own handicraft. In Yazd, you will certainly buy the beautiful termeh, handwoven silk and wool fabric (and baklava sweets), in Isfahan tiles and blue chalices and plates to decorate your home or use to offer sweets to your guests with a Persian touch.
Different cities different handicraft. Visit Tabriz (and everywhere else) for their particular carpets of all sizes, colours, and patterns, or their nuts, get to Hamedan for their colourful pottery or spend a day or two in Nishapur for their turquoise stone jewellery.
Plan a trip to Iran to try Persian food
From pistachio to black tea, from saffron to kebab, from Mirza Ghasemi to Ghormeh Sabzi, the heavy presence of aromatic herbs makes Iranian cuisine appetizing and addictive, especially when it comes to pistachio and baklava if you ask me.
While there are national dishes that you can find everywhere, like herb stew Ghormeh Sabzi, there are others that are exclusive, or at least typical of a particular region. Among these are the aforementioned eggplant-based Mirza Ghasemi, typical from Gilan province, or Dizi, too meaty and heavy for me but still a national treat, typical from Ardebil.
If for food you consider also the single ingredients, Iran is famous for its saffron, much cheaper than in Europe in case you are thinking about some Persian gift shopping or their delicious pistachio.
Visit Iran because it’s still cheap
Be it for the sanctions or for the dropping of their currency, travelling to Iran right now will turn very cheap. With the cost of public transport ranging from the 8 euro (roughly 10$) of the night train from Tehran to Tabriz to less than 3 euro (4$) of the bus from Ardebil to Lahijan, and the accommodation, usually 4-star hotels, around the price of 30 euro (40$) per night per double room, you can spoil yourself with a royal treat without spending too much, saving enough for your inevitable shopping spree.
It mostly depends on the exchange rate, by since now euros, dollars and pounds are still strong compared to the rial, try to visit Iran as soon as possible before things change too much.
In Iran, you will have a truly authentic experience
probably due to sanctions that allow little commercial exchange with other countries, especially in the West, Iran can boast its own products on a variety of manufacturing areas, from food to textiles to ceramics. Apart from goods on sale, Iranians are very proud of their culture and traditions. This is why they will never miss the opportunity to illustrate what you might be seeing, eating, drinking, listening to, and so on and so forth.
This will give anyone who decides to visit Iran a great chance for a genuine local experience. This is also what allows you to better delve into the local society and understand an ancient culture preserved with pride.
Iran tourism is living its boom season, and all Iranians are taking part in showing off their country that for too long has remained isolated from the travel industry.
Now that travel agencies are literally being created every day, you have a lot of Iran tours and packages to choose from. However, if these are too expensive or you are more into independent travel, locals will make you feel welcome and for sure will add to the value of your trip
Romantic Persian gardens and poetry
Parks are plentiful throughout Iran, even in the megacity of Tehran which surprisingly has a lot of green spaces. This love of the outdoors perhaps stems from the past when the elite ensconced themselves in lavish private gardens such as Fin in Kashan, Eram in Shiraz, and Shazdeh in Kerman, which are a few that make up UNESCO’s collective listing of Persian gardens. The tombs of poets Hafez and Saadi are also surrounded by immaculate landscaping and pools of cascading water, providing the perfect backdrop to recite some romantic poetry.
Cultural and ethnic diversity
Iran is culturally and ethnically diverse with each region having its own traditions, customs, and in many cases, language. Even Iranians who travel domestically will find themselves experiencing a bout of culture shock. As you travel from Azeri-Turkish speaking Tabriz, to Kurdish speaking Kordestan down to the nomadic tribes around Shiraz all the way to the Arab-influenced southern port cities and islands and everywhere else in between, you’ll discover the various cultures and people that make up the collective Iranian identity.