MYSTERY OF IRAN

MYSTERY OF IRAN



Mystery Of Iran

By amirgh@qq.com 05 Jul, 2016

What is the Iran visa rule for US citizens?

By amirgh@qq.com 30 Jun, 2016
Editor’s Note:   Retired Eau Claire County Judge Thomas Barland recently spent nearly two weeks in Iran. Barlandestimates he has taken 75 foreign trips, visiting about 70 countries. He wrote this account for the Leader-Telegram.
By amirgh@qq.com 27 May, 2016

While not many people may have Iran on their travel agenda, times are changing and travel bookings to this misunderstood region in the world have increased by 400% last year alone! As a destination with a plethora of things to see and explore, not to mention exotic cuisine and still pristine environments to impress even the most traveled outdoors lover, it’s definitely worth a second look. Whether you know much about visiting Tehran or not, we wanted to shed some light on this destination and put it on your radar for an unforgettable adventure in the near future.

By amirgh@qq.com 11 May, 2016

Mount Damavand

66 kilometres northeast of Tehran, at a height of 5,610m, Mount Damavand is the highest mountain in the Middle East, and a worthy challenge for any accomplished mountaineer. Visible from Tehran on a clear day, the mountain is snow-capped all year round, and features prominently in Persian folklore and literature. Located in the Alborz Mountain range, reaching Damavand’s peak will take the best part of two days – and earn you the eternal respect of any Iranians in your life. The climbing season is June-September.

By amirgh@qq.com 10 Jun, 2015
Yes, this gorgeous, altitudinous part of the Middle East is the skiing world’s best-kept secret.
By amirgh@qq.com 19 Mar, 2015
Should I or should I not visit Iran?
By amirgh@qq.com 03 Mar, 2015

Do you wish to travel to Iran to experience the delights of the ancient Persian Empire? Do you know new rules and regulations about traveling to Iran? And most important of all; what do previous Iran travelers experience in Iran? There are some things to review before traveling to Iran. To know all these and more; join us on Mystery Of Iran blog and update your traveling information, Iran is a can’t-miss spot on your Middle East list! Now let’s review things to know before traveling to Iran:

10 reasons why you should visit Iran now

  • By amirgh@qq.com
  • 19 Mar, 2015
Tomb of Great Cyrus
Should I or should I not visit Iran?

You’ve been pondering, mulling over, thinking about it, even planning, yet you still haven’t booked your trip to Iran. You don’t even know why, maybe holidays for you are synonymous with beach so you head to Thailand, maybe you think spices are only available in India, or maybe you think ancient history can only be experienced in Rome.

Whatever has been keeping you from booking that flight, here are my ten reasons why you should visit Iran as soon as possible and overcome all of your doubts.

1. It’s safe

Is it safe to visit Iran? Whether you travel alone or in a group, whether you are a woman or a man, or whether you arrive day or night time, Iran is a very safe country. I traveled for two weeks with a friend of mine (woman, Iranian), and apart from one flight, we moved from city to city and province to province by night buses, night trains and taxis, and given the large number of women traveling alone I can only gather this is a common practice.
Tehran’s railway station, we were ready to embark on the night train to Tabriz

2. It’s hitting the headlines all over the world

Let’s face it, now it’s totally Iran moment. Listed by many publications as one of the most popular travel destinations for 2014, after soaking in massive tourist crowds for two weeks I can only say that this year is only the beginning of what will finally be an era of never-ending tourism flow for this west Asian country.

If you ask me, one of the reasons why you should travel to Iran soon is to go before the crowd gets too big!

Tourists in Yazd
Tourists in Yazd

3. Hospitality

Iran is also 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 to foreigners only, you clearly haven’t come across any taarof moment, which is understandably as this is a very “between-Iranians” prerogative. I had the chance to come to grips with taarof because I was traveling with an Iranian, and this is really the only reason why after each and every single ride the taxi drivers suggested we didn’t need to pay. I really doubt with foreigners they would try such a stunt, they probably know we would simply thank and leave, albeit pretty startled.

Whatever city or province you go, friendly locals will be a great part of your Iranian journey.

During a picnic in Iran, the best occasion for sharing each other’s food

4. A long history

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 Sasanian 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, and traveling all around you can soak in every period and delve into the nation’s tangled past.

If this is not a reason to visit Iran, I don’t know what is.

Famous Gate of Nations in legendary Persepolis
Famous Gate of Nations in legendary Persepolis

5. Architecture

Be it a mosque, a palace or a bazaar, Iranian buildings are finely decorated and glow with ornamental elegance. Pastel colors gracefully interact with bright hues, tapering minarets and seemingly ubiquitous domes outline the landscape. Whether you are inside or outside a building, the elaborate architecture is definitely something tourists marvel every time they visit Iran.
Pastel hues and fine art at Nasir ul-Molk mosque in Shiraz
Pastel hues and fine art at Nasir ul-Molk mosque in Shiraz

6. Handicraft

Each province, each city, each village has their own handicraft. In Yazd you will certainly buy beautiful termeh, handwoven silk and wool fabric (and baklava sweets), in Isfahan tiles and blue decorations, in Tabriz (and everywhere else) carpets of all sizes, colors and patterns. Wherever you travel in Iran, rest assured that you’ll get back home with the loveliest of gifts.
Persian rugs at Shiraz bazaar
Persian rugs at Shiraz bazaar

7. 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 from a particular region, such as 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.
Delicious saffron rice with sour berries, zereshk polo in Persian language
Delicious saffron rice with sour berries, zereshk polo in Persian language

8. It’s cheap

Be it for the sanctions or for the dropping of their currency, traveling 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.
Iranian notes
Iranian notes

9. 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, and they will never miss the occasion of illustrating 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.
Narghilé (Hookah, Sheesha in Arabic, or Ghelyan in Farsi language) is always present on café tables
Narghilé (Hookah, Sheesha in Arabic, or Ghelyan in Farsi language) is always present on café tables

10. You will enjoy a relaxed atmosphere

Contrary to common belief, the atmosphere in Iran is very chilled out, and contrary to many places at least in Italy, you can take pictures just about everywhere. Vital to complete the breezy and somehow devil-may-care scene are obviously Iranians, very friendly, always up for a chat, seldom if ever worried about timetables and surprisingly happy to be the subject of your next photo.
Relaxing in the park in Shiraz
Relaxing in the park in Shiraz

Mystery Of Iran

By amirgh@qq.com 05 Jul, 2016

What is the Iran visa rule for US citizens?

By amirgh@qq.com 30 Jun, 2016
Editor’s Note:   Retired Eau Claire County Judge Thomas Barland recently spent nearly two weeks in Iran. Barlandestimates he has taken 75 foreign trips, visiting about 70 countries. He wrote this account for the Leader-Telegram.
By amirgh@qq.com 27 May, 2016

While not many people may have Iran on their travel agenda, times are changing and travel bookings to this misunderstood region in the world have increased by 400% last year alone! As a destination with a plethora of things to see and explore, not to mention exotic cuisine and still pristine environments to impress even the most traveled outdoors lover, it’s definitely worth a second look. Whether you know much about visiting Tehran or not, we wanted to shed some light on this destination and put it on your radar for an unforgettable adventure in the near future.

By amirgh@qq.com 11 May, 2016

Mount Damavand

66 kilometres northeast of Tehran, at a height of 5,610m, Mount Damavand is the highest mountain in the Middle East, and a worthy challenge for any accomplished mountaineer. Visible from Tehran on a clear day, the mountain is snow-capped all year round, and features prominently in Persian folklore and literature. Located in the Alborz Mountain range, reaching Damavand’s peak will take the best part of two days – and earn you the eternal respect of any Iranians in your life. The climbing season is June-September.

By amirgh@qq.com 10 Jun, 2015
Yes, this gorgeous, altitudinous part of the Middle East is the skiing world’s best-kept secret.
By amirgh@qq.com 19 Mar, 2015
Should I or should I not visit Iran?
By amirgh@qq.com 03 Mar, 2015

Do you wish to travel to Iran to experience the delights of the ancient Persian Empire? Do you know new rules and regulations about traveling to Iran? And most important of all; what do previous Iran travelers experience in Iran? There are some things to review before traveling to Iran. To know all these and more; join us on Mystery Of Iran blog and update your traveling information, Iran is a can’t-miss spot on your Middle East list! Now let’s review things to know before traveling to Iran:

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