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Two days between Tehran and London - any suggestions where to spend them?

Two days between Tehran and London - any suggestions where to spend them?

Jun 3rd, 2008, 07:22 PM
  #1  
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Two days between Tehran and London - any suggestions where to spend them?

My daughter and I will be spending two weeks in Iran in October. Tour ends on a Sunday morning, then we fly from London to Seattle on Tuesday afternoon. Awkward timing, but I was able to score two British Airways Club World seats with miles, so we went with it. Now we're wondering where to spend those extra days. Would prefer not to be in London, as it's so expensive now and we have both spent a lot of time there - she taught in a private girls' school there several years ago and I lead garden tours in the UK.

I've been looking at flights and choices are pretty limited from Tehran. Istanbul, but we're already spending four days there on our way to Tehran. Paris, Milan, Amsterdam, Rome, etc., but they're all so expensive now also. Ideally, we're looking for someplace with a direct flight from Tehran, in the general direction of back toward London, not terribly expensive, interesting place to spend a day and two nights. Any ideas would be much appreciated.
julia1 is offline  
Jun 4th, 2008, 07:51 AM
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Anyone?
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Jun 4th, 2008, 11:18 PM
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Julia,
We went to Iran in 2003 and had a wonderful time, I'm sure you'll love it.

There's a direct flight on Caspian Air from Tehran to Yerevan which we took but I'm not sure if I'd go for only two nights. I love Armenia and it has lots to offer but it's not really enough time, if you could add a couple of nights I really think you'd find it interesting (particularly after seeing the Armenian church in isfahan) and very reasonable.

Have you considered adding two nights on your own, or with a private guide in Tehran?


You can find my trip report here and pictures of both Iran and Armenia at
www.eyebright.com/travels

Just click on the map!




welltraveledbrit is offline  
Jun 5th, 2008, 09:26 AM
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Thanks so much for your reply! Armenia is a great idea, and I'll look into it. As far as adding time on our own in Tehran, yes we did think of that initially but didn't pursue it because we were feeling 'timid', as my daughter said. Do you think we'd feel comfortable doing so?

Thanks for the link! I'm looking forward to reading your trip report and seeing your photos.

Julie
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Jun 5th, 2008, 12:47 PM
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Julia1 -
I don't have any useful suggestions, but I just wanted to make a plea for you to post a trip report when you return from Iran. It is on my short list and there aren't many reports about Iran posted here, so I'm sure many of us would love to read about your trip after you return.
Thanks!
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Jun 5th, 2008, 09:37 PM
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Maxwell, I will do that - post a trip report, that is. Here are a couple of links for sites I've found interesting/useful while planning. The first is for a photo blog titled 'Life Goes on in Tehran' or LGOIT.com: http://www.lifegoesonintehran.com/ Unfortunately, the author is just moving back to Los Angeles. Anyway, interesting. The second is for a travel article in the London Telegraph about a recent trip to Iran: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/mi...ture-Iran.html Informative article, and it's attracted many comments at the end which also make interesting reading.

Julie
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Jun 6th, 2008, 02:24 PM
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Thanks Julie - I'll definitely check these links out. What company did you book through?
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Jun 7th, 2008, 06:08 PM
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Julie,
Another question - do you mind posting your itinerary? My fall africa backpacking plans are now shelved b/c my family is now ready to book an Iran thanksgiving trip, so I'd love to know what your schedule is to compare to what I'm thinking of trying to plan.
Thanks in advance,
Linda
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Jun 8th, 2008, 08:04 AM
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Linda, here's our itinerary:
Tuesday/Wednesday - Fly Seattle-London-Istanbul
Monday - Fly Istanbul-Tehran (Air Arabia)
Tue - Tehran
Wed - Fly Tehran-Yazd
Thur - Morning Yazd/Towers of Silence - Afternoon drive to Shiraz
Fri - Shiraz/Narenjestan Palace, Shrine of Shah Cheraq, Eram Gardens,etc
Sat - Shiraz/Persepolis
Sun - Drive to Firuzabad, winter quarters of Qashqaii nomads. Dinner & overnight with them.
Mon - Drive to Kazerun, Shapour, then Yasuj
Tue - Drive to Isfahan through Land of the Waterfalls
Wed - Isfahan
Thur - Isfahan
Fri - Isfahan
Sat - Drive to Abyaneh, Kashan/Fin Garden. Arrive Tehran early evening.
Sun - Fly

The company we booked through is Magic Carpet Travel, out of London. Link to the tour is http://www.magic-carpet-travel.com/i...ies/nomad.html

Julie
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Jun 8th, 2008, 10:45 AM
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Julie,
Many thanks!
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Jun 8th, 2008, 03:24 PM
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Go down to Kashan. Absolutely stunning gardens and gorgeous old houses.

We spent six weeks in Iran two years ago as independant travellers. It blew us away.

The country is magnificent, the people more so. Most are educated and very hospitable.

It is very very safe, even travelling on your own.

Nigel
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Jun 9th, 2008, 05:58 AM
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Thanks Nigel...

yeah, I wish we could travel independently...unfortunately right now as Americans we can't get visas without going through a guide who stays with us. I don't want to do a group tour so am trying to find a reasonably priced guide now...
what a great experience it sounds like you had!
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Jun 9th, 2008, 03:30 PM
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Julia,

You only need a guide to satisfy the visa requirement. In other words, you can have a guided tour for just seven days, and then be on your own for the rest of your stay there.

remember also, the visa is good for let's say 90 days, calculated from the time you receive the visa rather than the day you arrive in the country.

What we did is arrange a six day tour through key2persia.com who were terrific. We spent six weeks in the country, all of it but the six weeks, entirely on our own. We took trains, planes and buses and noone bothered us.

It was pure magic!

Nigel
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Jun 9th, 2008, 07:00 PM
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Nigel,
Do you by any chance remember your contact at Key2Perisa? they are telling me they only do group trips. (Not interested in that.) Since gashtours is unresponsive (Welltravelledbrit liked them, but I've given up on them now b/c they are so unresponsive), I'd rather go with a company someone here recommends. Key2Persia also seemed reasonably priced. Magic Carpet, that Julie is using, is a little more than I want to spend.

Thanks for the reminder on the Visa - I had the same issue w/my Syrian visa, although I knew they would issue it immediately, and I've been told that the turn around time for Iranian visas is a little iffy....we want to get our tickets asap since prices right now are very reasonable.
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Jun 9th, 2008, 10:47 PM
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Linda,
Here's a link to another company with Iran trips. The prices are excellent. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/html/c...try=iran&trip=
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Jun 10th, 2008, 02:06 AM
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We didn't get a group, just a guide and a driver. Our guide was Reza and he was excellent.

I absolutely HATE group travel, so you won't get me anywhere near them unless it is something like climbing Kili.

ket2persia is a very small agency on the main drag in Shiraz.

We went with Rexa from Shiraz, to Yaz, to Isphahan, Qom and Kashan. They thenb dropped us off in Tehran and we took a flight to Bandar Abbas down on the Gulf. We then returned to Tehran and took a train to Tabriz and explored some of the wonderful villages around there. Flights and trains are extremely reasonable as are good quality hotels.

Nigel
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Jun 11th, 2008, 04:52 PM
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Thanks for the extra info Nigel and Julie!
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Jun 22nd, 2008, 06:46 AM
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I need to correct something I said about gashtours in a post above - I had tried planning a trip with them last year but just could not get them to work with me. Not sure what was going on in their office at that time, but they have been absolutely wonderful this second time around and so far have been extremely responsive and are trying to help us with all our little requests (e.g., setting up a visit to the university in Tehran.)
Just wanted to correct that earlier statement about them in case someone stumbles across this thread in the future since they seemed to have resolved whatever issues they were having last year.
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Jul 23rd, 2008, 09:57 PM
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Maxwell,
I've only just seen the thread and that you had a problems that has now been resolved with gashttour...did you end up going to Iran? I'd also be curious to know how did things work out with Julia 1 too?
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Jul 24th, 2008, 07:47 AM
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We are going in October, will spend about 12 days with Magic Carpet tour and another 4 days on our own. It's all set, visa in the works. I'll post a trip report when we return.

Julie
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