Africa & the Middle East Forums

Post New Topic

Recent Activity

View all Africa & the Middle East activity »
  1. 1 Trip Report RESTORE@ :YAHOO ☎ 1:800:982:8520 YAHOO Tec*h SUPPORT CONTACT 24x7
  2. 2 Safari Goers, I Need Your Expertise!
  3. 3 An Ugandan Urge- Gorillas & Chimps in the midst
  4. 4 Trip Report Our Magic Carpet Ride-Marrakesh!
  5. 5 Where do I even start planning my SA safari?
  6. 6 Itinerary Ideas
  7. 7 Tanzania Itinerary help
  8. 8 planning first safari to Tanzania ... feeling overwhelmed
  9. 9 Trip Report Trip Report: Tanzania Northern Circuit Safari with Earthlife Expeditions
  10. 10 Help with Israel Trip (First Timers): Some Basic Questions
  11. 11 Tel Aviv-Haifa: gifts and presents. Any ideas?
  12. 12 Narrowing down my 10 day itinerary
  13. 13 Kenya/Tanzania
  14. 14 Dubai first time
  15. 15 2 nights in Dubai
  16. 16 16 hours in Qatar
  17. 17 Petra from Israel
  18. 18 Trip Report Nine months to Egypt (but you should go now)
  19. 19 Trip Report A South African in Lusaka
  20. 20 Packing for trip to Tanzania
  21. 21 Need tour operator for Tanzania and Kenya
  22. 22 A Little Trick for Converting Centigrade to Fahrenheit
  23. 23 Trip Report RETURN TO BOTSWANA, PLUS JOHANNESBURG, 2017
  24. 24 Trip Report Babies Galore: Kenya in April
  25. 25 Safari suggestions
View next 25 » Back to the top

Iran Trip Report Part 2

Jump to last reply

Shiraz was very interesting most particularly because of Persepolis, a UNESCO world heritage site 100km from the city.

Much like a Greek ruin although in its own architectural style Persepolis is the ruins of a ceremonial center, almost a city which was destroyed by Alexander the Great in 330BC. Nearby the necropolis has the impressive carved graves designed in the rockface of Darius and others dating from 5th century BC.

From Shiraz, where we also saw lots of other stuff including a beautiful bath complex converted into a restaurant with live traditioinal music, we headed south to kerman. Close the the Afghan border we visited Bam a deserted Silk Road mud city with undefined origins. It seemed like the largest sand castle in the world and at about 110 degrees it was baking!

In the desert city of Yazd we were captivated by the traditional wind towers used to cool the mus houses. We were equally fascinated by the Zorastrian Fire temple and the Towers of Silence where the Zorastrians used to place the bodies of the dead to be eaten by the birds so the didn't pollute the earth.

Iran really an extraordinary place to visit we never felt threatened and people were constantly inviting us to visit them or even to stay! We sat in the park and chatted to women, met young university students at dinner and found everyone friendly and open. With the guide we felt free to talk to anyone because he did a wonderful job translating.

At the Shia religious shrines I had to borrow a chador to cover myself and entered through the women's entrance. The decorative mirror works were unlike anything I have seen and at a shrine in Tehran they were so happy to see foriegners that they gave us a gift of lavish datebooks for 2004!

The museums in Tehran were incredible particularly the Jewellery Museum in a bank vault and the Raza Abbassi Museum which has a wonderful collection of ancient gold peices (1000 + years old) and great Persian minatures.
Throughout the trip I had to were the hejab to cover my hair, which was hot but one got used to it. I wore loose long linen shirts but was happy to find out I could wear ankle length pants and open toed shoes without socks.

We really loved the trip, I cannot recommend the tour company (www.irangashttour.com) highly enough. The guide was in his late 50's a really history buff with a great sense of humour. He had been a fighter pilot and spent several years training in the US in the 1970's. He ensured we had a wonderful time and even took us up to the roof of one tomb and paid someone so we could climb to the top of a minaret!

I you are considering a trip to Iran I really recommend organizing something directly with an Iranian travel agent. The trip cost less than half the price of a US tour, which would have been with a group of perhaps 12-15 strangers, and it was entirely customized. I know Iran isn't the most average destination and our families and friends thought we were crazy but it really was an incredible holiday.

3 Replies |Back to top

Sign in to comment.

Advertisement