Is It Safe to Travel to Iran during Coronavirus Restrictions?

The world is return to the pre-pandemic normal and started recovering from COVID-19, and ordinary life is getting back in Iran. According to Reuters almost 89% of the country’s population have been vaccinated. Iran has opened its borders recently, and the good news is that the flow of tourism has started, and travelers are exploring the country. Iran is completely ready to welcome visitors, and finally, after two years of COVID restrictions, the universities and schools are fully open, and teachers and students are about to experience the vibes again.

iran travel during covid

How Is Iran Tourism in 2022?

Public Places:

  • Restaurants, cafes, shopping malls, and all the historical places and museums are open for travelers, except the jewels museum in Tehran.
  • All the public transportations and domestic flights are operating.
  • Performances open to the public are held in theatres, cinemas, concert halls, and amusement parks whether indoors or outdoors.
  • Sporting events and competitions are back to normal.
  • For travelers’ accommodation, hotels are ready to welcome guests, the travelers should check the availability in advance!
school opening in Iran covid time
restaurants opening in Iran

Start Planning Your Persia Journey

Let’s pack and travel to Iran. All you need to do is tell us about your favorites and interests and we will make you a customized itinerary. All you need is to contact us!

Newest Entry Rules for Iran in May 2022

As the newest rules of covid vaccine 2022 requirements in friendlyiran website for traveling to Iran from May 2022, all passengers regarding coronavirus entry regulations must have an English covid-19 vaccination certificate as general obligation for persons entering the country showing that passengers were fully vaccinated at least 14 days before arrival!

Do You Know There Is Another Way to Arrive in Iran?

Yes, you understand surely! Like many other destinations, there is
also possible to travel to Iran just with a negative covid PCR test
or
RT-PCR test taken at most 72 hours before departure from the first flight
points…!

You can get more information about your
upcoming Iran tour in
friendlyiran website.

3 Other Important Rules…

  • There is no chance of applying to passengers younger than 12 years.
  • All Passengers must complete a (self-declaration form) before arrival.
  • Upon arrival covid-19 tests and quarantine, if required, is on the traveler’s own expense.

Also for more information about the covid vaccine, 2022 rules, and the covid PCR test for travel to Iran you can read the article Is It Safe to Travel to Iran during Coronavirus Restrictions? on friendly Iran website.

FIFA WORLD CUP 2022 + IRAN Gateway Vacation

Visiting the Middle East from another continent? Why just explore Qatar when the cradle of culture and nature is beside you?!

You have traveled a far distance from your home, and you have a great chance to visit a beautiful country. You can easily take a ferry or a short flight to Travel to the nearby islands of Iran or its southern cities that are hosts to endless wonders and beauties.

It is very likely for the Iran Visa to be removed from the requirements of entering Iran for anyone who has a two-way ticket to Doha, therefore tourists from all around the world
can enter Iran an enjoy the vast and beautiful nature and culture of Iran.

 

You can have a short trip plan between the football matches of your beloved teams while you are in a break. Travel to Iran which is a country full of wonders; from vast deserts to dense forests, from ruins of ancient times to beautiful modern cities, you can explore
our beautiful country for an affordable price and get to know the friendly and welcoming people of Iran.

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It is also possible to extend your Iran Tour before or after your stay in Qatar, as an example you can have a 7-day classic trip plan, starting by visiting Shiraz and go all the way to Tehran to see the beautiful culture and architecture of land of Persia
that are still standing up from 2500 years ago until today. You rather watch the football matches from TV with Iranian soccer fans!!

 

If you are a nature lover and you are interested in excitement and adventure, we have good plans for you as well. Desert trekking, mount climbing, canyon hiking and jungle trekking and much more. We have all of this in the southern parts of Iran which is about 1 hour From Qatar to Shiraz. Let’s discus it in detail and decide about your route based
on your interests.

We have also planned special Iran tours for youngsters who are looking for adventurous tours as well as being budget-friendly and affordable.

In the nearby countries of Qatar, Iran is by far the most affordable country in the region and you can spend more time and pay less at the same time while getting to know  various ethnic groups and visiting the pristine nature.

Our team in Friendlyiran is here to make sure you have the best possible experience during your trip to middle east.

Iran Set to Resume Visa after 19 Months

The issuance of Iran tourist visas and the flow of foreign tourists from land and air borders after a 19-month suspension will be resumed in October 2021 by the order of the Iran President.

According to ISNA, Seyed Ezatullah Zarghami – Minister of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts – announced this news on the occasion of World Tourism Day on the 27th of September. After the 19th of September that Mr. Zarghami has announced lifting the restrictions on the Iran Tourist Visa, today’s news has given tourism industry activists great hope.

Ali Asghar Shalbafian, the deputy tourism minister, also told ISNA that the decision to resume issuing Iran tourist visas had been issued and notified to all relevant agencies.

iran tourist visa after 19 months

The issuance of Iran visa was stopped in April 2020 due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus, the suspension of most international flights and the closure of land borders with the approval of the National Corona Headquarters, but medical, business, and student visas were still issued non-stop.
Earlier, President Seyed Ibrahim Reisi, seeking to speed up vaccination in Iran, had said: “We have reached a point where instead of imposing new restrictions, we must plan and decide on the removal of restrictions.”

Update on Iran Tourist Visa, October 18, 2021:

“The issuance of Iranian tourist visa will resume; the regulations on this issue have been written in strict compliance with health protocols and will be implemented with high safety aspects.” Seyed Ezatullah Zarghami said on Monday.

All of the details are specified in an Iran travel protocol and will be announced soon. According to these regulations, travelers can enter Iran just through travel agencies and need to stay in approved hotels, they also need to be fully vaccinated.

What to see in Dubai: the 10 must-see attractions!

Traveling among the most famous attractions of Dubai: from the Burj Khalifa and its dancing fountain to the Burj Al Arab in Jumeirah, from the luxurious shopping centers to the Creek and the historic district of Bastakiya.

Our travel guide tells you 10 places not to be missed during your stay in Dubai. With our organization and our services, you can book directly from your country one or more of these wonderful attractions such as a visit to the Burj Al Arab, the famous “sail” that has become the icon of Dubai, Palm Island, and the Al Bahar souk. Or the Burj Khalifa; you can also book dinners and cocktails in the most exclusive restaurants and hotels in the city, in order to make your holiday even more unforgettable. Dubai, the 10 must-see attractions:

1. Burj Khalifa

The “Tower of the Caliph” was inaugurated in the heart of Downtown Dubai in 2010 and at 828 meters in height, it is simply the tallest man-made building ever since. The in-depth study of our Magazine entitled The Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the record skyscraper, is dedicated to this architectural marvel.

 

2. Burj Al Arab

Let’s move to the coast. The Burj Al-Arab or “Tower of the Arabs” is one of the most luxurious hotels in the world, at the time of its opening it even boasted 7 stars (currently, however, only 5 are recognized). Located on Jumeirah Beach, 15 km south of Downtown, on an artificial island connected to the mainland by a 280-meter bridge, it is characterized by a particular “sail” shape designed by a team of architects who made it a real icon. Its construction began in 1994 and finished in 1999 with a total cost of 650 million dollars.

3. Jumeirah Palm and Atlantis

This amazing palm-shaped artificial island is considered “the eighth wonder of the world”. It houses a number of commercial properties and exclusive residential homes with their own private beaches. Located on its crescent is the prestigious Atlantis. The Palm Resort with its AquaVenture water park. Further north along the coast, just in front of Jumeirah Beach, the emirs have made things even bigger: The World is a project still under completion, an archipelago of artificial islands that (seen from above) reproduce the shapes of the continents on the world map.

پالم جمیرا در دبی

4. Dubai Fountain

Let’s go back Downtown. The Dubai Fountain is located in the artificial pond at the base of the famous Burj Khalifa: obviously, it is the largest dancing fountain in the world. Larger than the dancing fountain complex of the Bellagio in Las Vegas, which it is clearly inspired by. Alex Salamoun designed it, it is 275 meters long and the water jets can reach a height of 150 meters. Ideal to see it in the evening, from 7 pm to 11 pm (at half-hour intervals) when a show of water games, coordinated with the background music, would leave anyone speechless.

 

5. Shopping Malls

Within walking distance of the Dubai Fountain is the next attraction in Dubai that you shouldn’t miss. The Dubai Mall is not only one of the largest shopping malls in the world but offers around 1,200 shops of internationally known designers and fashion chains as well as some experiences that you can only find in Dubai.

 

6. Madinat Jumeirah

Madinat Jumeirah means “City of Jumeirah” and the best way to describe this village is “a city within a city”. It is a building project complete with canals and buildings aimed at recreating the atmosphere of a typical Arab city, with the aim of showing what life was like for the inhabitants of the Creek area before Dubai became what it is today. . From the depths of time, in a place of extraordinary beauty, the Madinat Jumeirah appears, an imposing expression of a rich historical heritage and a fascinating cultural tradition. The Madinat Jumeirah is located within a magnificent 40-hectare landscape in front of a large private and equipped beach dominated by the Burj Al Arab, the symbol of Dubai. Definitely worth a walk.

 

7. Ski at the Emirates Mall

The Mall of the Emirates is another address that lovers of shopping and entertainment must absolutely mark on their agenda.

What makes it an essential destination for anyone who decides to visit Dubai, however, is not only the over 500 boutiques and shops it hosts but its ski slope.

 

8. The historic district of Bastakiya

The area north of the Jumeirah Mosque and the Dubai Frame is the oldest part of the city, and it is also one of the few that retains traces of authenticity. In particular, at the Al Fahidi Historical District you will find traditional houses and buildings, exhibitions and museums; in addition to the Al Fahidi fort (whose construction dates back to the end of the 18th century, it is the oldest building in Dubai!), what remains of the old Persian quarter, once inhabited by fishermen and merchants, has been entirely renovated for conservation purposes in 2005 and can be easily walked around. It is in fact a maze of narrow and winding alleys with a very characteristic atmosphere close to Dubai Creek.

 

9. Dubai Creek

Dubai Creek (Khor Dubai), is the river that flows into the city of Dubai, drawing a wide bend that flows from the port to Jumeirah Beach. Do not miss a mini cruise, or better still a ride on the old ferries (wooden boats) that connect the various river stations. Or if you are a romantic, enjoy dinner aboard a Dhow with a glass keel, a real delight for the passengers.

10. Gold Souk & Spice Souk

After crossing Dubai Creek, finally, there is Deira: the market district. If there is one thing that can be found cheaply in Dubai, it is gold. In fact, there is a real tradition of trade and gold processing that has its roots in the historical periods in which the country was a crossroads of trade that closed from the Indies to Europe and vice versa. There are, therefore, in Dubai, numerous typical indoor shops (called Suk or Souk, or the traditional Arab markets), specialized in the marketing of gold; most of them are concentrated in the district of Deira, in the area immediately behind the Creek. The nearby Spice Souk, on the other hand, is the Arab spice market par excellence. Once immersed in the heart of this market, the fragrances, aromas of spices, and various condiments will surround you.

 

These days because of Expo 2020 Dubai, you have time to visit Dubai as well as an international exhibition. Our page ”Expo 2020 Dubai: “Connecting minds, creating the future” will help you find useful information about this wonderful exhibition.

With friendly Iran you can make the dream of a holiday in Dubai come true, being able to visit the points of interest and enrich your stay with many travel experiences that will make it unforgettable.

Expo 2020 Dubai : “Connecting minds, creating the future”

The future is now!

The world exhibition, also known as Exposition Universal International, Expo or World’s Fair, is an international exhibition that was able to establish itself as a technical and craft exhibition during the period of industrialization.

World fairs are often characterized by interesting architecture, which tries to express the characteristics of the respective country. The original concept aimed primarily at the presentation of industrial and commercial capabilities and the demonstration of new technical developments. The fact that the world is in a constant state of flux has led to a shift in the focus of the subjects of the exhibitions supervised by the BIE to more fundamental subjects that concern all of humanity. A general thematic focus was set in 1972 through a decision by the BIE to emphasize education as the goal of the world exhibitions. In 1994 it was stated that world exhibitions should address the pressing problems of the present. The next Expo will take place in Dubai in 2020 on the topic of “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future”. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Expo 2020 is to take place from October 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022, which will cover 483 hectares in 3 districts:

Sustainability: You will see some of the world’s most advanced technologies in action, what countries are doing to promote sustainability, and experience how the human race can enjoy life in harmony with nature in a high-tech future.

Mobility: We live in a world of unlimited connections. Explore horizons that drive human progress, as mobility continues to transform the way we live, connect with people, understand different cultures, and exchange knowledge and ideas in a more intelligent and productive way.

Opportunity: there is a ripple effect in everything we do. Even one person can hold the key to unlocking eight billion opportunities that can help individuals and communities create a better tomorrow today. It is time to release your inner potential and be an agent of change!

Expo 2020 Dubai, the theme of the event

The theme of this edition of Expo will be “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future” and the event has the ambition to make a decisive contribution in just 182 days to “Creating a better planet”. The whole exhibition will be organized around a large central square called Al Wasl (“connection” in Arabic), from where the three thematic areas of Mobility, Sustainability, and Opportunity can be reached.

Expo 2020 Dubai, the numbers of the mega event

Three thematic areas through which it will be possible to explore the more than 192 pavilions of the participating countries. A unique and unrepeatable experience, an extraordinary journey through the Italy of beauty, the modernity of Japan, suspended between technology and tradition, the warm hospitality of the Emirates, Norway’s vocation for the protection of the oceans and their habitat. Find out how these countries are working together to create a better future. Here are the salient numbers of Expo 2020:

3 thematic areas

192 Pavilions

20 Entertainment areas

60 daily shows

Expo 2020 Dubai, tickets and travel packages

From 01/10/2021 to 31/03/2022 Dubai will host the Universal Exposition.

To allow you to visit this extraordinary event, which takes the name of Expo 2020 Dubai and of which Friendly Iran is an Authorized Ticket Reseller, we have specially designed three travel packages with different duration and many alternatives to stay overnight in the best hotels in Dubai.

Tickets for Expo 2020 Dubai are already on sale at a promotional price. There are various types of tickets, from the day entrance ticket to the multi-day ticket, to the ticket valid for entry throughout the event. The rates and ticket types for Expo 2020 Dubai are as follows:

The cost of the daily entrance ticket for adults (18-59 years) for 1 day is 95 AED (22 euros).

The cost of the multi-day pass for adults (18-59 years) for 30 days is 195 AED (45 euros).

The cost of the season pass for adults (18-59 years) for 6 months is 495 AED (115 euros).

Children and teenagers aged 17 and under, students, the disabled, and adults over the age of 60 can enter for free.

Tickets for children under six will only be issued to visitors upon arrival at the Expo entrance and cannot be booked online.

Expo 2020 Dubai, dates: When to go

The event, which was supposed to take place in 2020 and has been postponed due to the global emergency linked to Covid-19, will take place every day from 01/10/2021 to 31/03/2022, including holidays such as Diwali, UAE National Day, Christmas, New Year, Chinese New Year and Women’s Day. You can also visit our page and get useful information about Dubai What to see in Dubai: the 10 must-see attractions! To visit the beautiful city of Dubai.

The opening hours are as follows:

Saturday – Wednesday from 10:00 to 01:00

Thursday and Friday from 10:00 to 02:00

Iran offers visitors an unforgettable experience of culture, art, science, and mobility even at Expo Dubai! Iran Pavilion shows a Persian garden. The pavilion best summarizes all the innovative capacity of Iran. Iran pavilion with an area of ​​2014 square meters is located in the mobility zone in the Expo 2020 Dubai site and is an authentic platform capable of enhancing the role of arts, culture, and re-launching Iran historical and artistic heritage.

Expo 2020 Dubai and Trip to visa-free Island in Iran

Due to Iran’s proximity to Dubai, this is a good opportunity to visit Iran at the same time as visiting the Expo 2020 Dubai. A trip to Iran opens up to a world of unexpected discoveries. Cradle of Persian civilization and a land of passage for caravans and traders, Iran has been a thriving crossroads of cultures for centuries and knows how to amaze with the unexpected surprises it offers to those who visit it.

Among the cities and landscapes, the island of Kish is located in the Persian Gulf and is part of the national territory of Iran. If you want to enjoy the sea, the sun and the truly oriental luxury and comfort, Kish is sure to please you. According to tourists, the beaches here are even better than in the Emirates. And Kish itself occupies the second position in the nomination “The most beautiful islands in Western Asia” (after Socotra in the Indian Ocean). The beaches here are free and well equipped.

Kish Island, known as the gem of the Persian Gulf and the most luxurious beach in Iran, is a free trade zone (and also a visa-free zone). The island hosts the most luxurious hotels and modern shopping centers. Kish is a small island with an area of 91 square kilometers that features a combination of modernity and tradition, including history and culture. You can experience all kinds of creative, exciting, and attractive aquatic and non-aquatic entertainment from a variety of water parks to orchards, aquariums, dolphin parks, cruise ships, paragliding, jet skis, and etc.

Ultimate Iran Travel Guide to Solo Female Travelers

This post is dedicated to different aspects of traveling to Iran as a woman written by a solo female traveler who has traveled to Iran during 2020 for 21 days through a half-planned tour; the safety of traveling solo in Iran, the required items, the precautions plus much more extra information to get prepared for a memorable journey to the heart of Persia.

Thinking about Traveling to Iran as a Female Traveler!

I think the perception of ‘danger’ would be the biggest barrier to a solo female visiting Iran. So many people said to me ‘it’s so dangerous there, you’re so brave”. You and I and lots of people who have been to Iran know this is based largely on the way Iran is portrayed in the media. Of course nowhere can be guaranteed 100% safe but it will be important to reassure solo female travellers that on a daily basis Iran is as safe as anywhere to visit.

I felt safe in Iran. Everyone I met was kind and courteous and I was not harassed or concerned for my personal safety. As with everywhere else in the world, you do need to be sensible – ie not wandering the streets alone late at night etc. Here are some points I always consider while traveling solo which I certainty kept in mind in Iran:

  • Having an itinerary in place and everything arranged before I left added to my sense of safety. My guides contacted me the evening before to confirm arrangements for the next day and again on the day.
  • American, United Kingdom, and Canadian passport holders must be accompanied by their guides when outside of their hotels.  For other independent travelers, be conscious of your surroundings after dark, in the early morning hours, and in unpopulated areas.  Iran is considered very safe, but just as in any part of the world you should take precautions with your money and personal documents.  A money belt or neck pouch (tucked under your shirt) is advisable for extra cash not needed during the day.  Safety deposit boxes in hotels are often available.  Bring luggage locks to deter petty thieves.
  • Harassment is infrequent and dealt with swiftly, but it has occasionally occurred, if it does happen to you, make a scene, or shout at the man. It’s a very severe religious offense for men to do so, and they’ll quickly back off in fear of getting caught. Be friendly, but not too friendly or it could result in a misunderstanding with a man.  If a man wants to take a picture with you, don’t touch each other.
  • For me, staying in quality smaller boutique hotels gave me sense of security. With a smaller number of guests, it’s easier to get to know the staff/owner and have more personal attention if you needed anything ie directions to the bank to change money, calling a taxi etc. They were also more aware of my comings and goings and I’d like to think they would alert the travel agency if I did not return after a day or became ill.
  • Cell phone – I think it’s really important for a solo female traveller to have a local SIM card for her phone (with data) fairly soon after she arrives in case, she needs to contact the agency/accommodation urgently and is not within Wi-Fi. It also enabled me to find my way around on my free days using GPS online maps.
  • Having travel insurance! You need to choose among few options due to the sanctions against Iran, there are also some Persian choices. If you want to buy it in advance, you can make it happen online. It is also possible on your arrival.

Iranian People

People make a place and the Iranian people are so kind, generous, and courteous. Every day I felt like a treasured guest. A couple of times curious strangers came up to me on the street. At first, I was a little hesitant of their motives but soon realised that they just wanted to know where I was from and if I was enjoying their beautiful country.

Iranian people are among the most hospitable in the world.  Because tourism is more limited, many Iranians will be curious and friendly towards you.  You can expect more attention than you may normally be used to and will likely be approached with friendly questions, requests to take a photo with you, or to practice language skills. Iranians are very aware of world events and follow global politics.  It is interesting and educational to engage in conversation with the Iranian people.

Just as in many other parts of the world, bargaining is expected in the markets and bazaars.  Keep a smile on your face and shopkeepers will be friendly. Remember if you really want an item, don’t walk away as you may not find it elsewhere.

Being a solo female traveller anywhere can be challenging and more so in a family-orientated country like Iran, but you need to look at it as an opportunity. When I travel solo, I find that I connect more with the people and culture. I’m more open to meeting people and taking the time to get to know them a little and seize opportunities when they arise. I also have the luxury of setting the rhythm of my day – if I want to spend an hour or two sipping tea and people watching in a beautiful courtyard café next to a turquoise pool strewn with colourful flowers then I can – there’s no one to hurry me along…

Iran Female Dress Style

From my experience there’s a lot of uncertainty in the West about what hijab means – when I told people I was visiting Iran some seemed to have a mixed view based on media images from other countries ie a burkka (Afghanistan) or full black abayah/niqaab (Saudi Arabia).

Iran is a traditional Islamic nation, and a strict dress code (hijab) is enforced throughout the country. Hijab for women is a head covering, modest long tunic type tops with long sleeves (three-quarter sleeves are generally acceptable), high necklines, and the bottom hem to mid-thigh, and long pants. You can wear any type of pants as long as they cover your ankles.

Even though I was familiar with Iranian hijab when I first went to Iran in 2012, I remember being extremely nervous that I would get it wrong and be really embarrassed/offend someone. Luckily, a kind woman on the plane reassured me that it’s not that strict and to relax and enjoy myself. I soon found out Iranian women are just as fashionable as anywhere, albeit within their dress code.

My tips would be:

  1. It’s Ok to wear colour!  There’s no rule about wearing dark colours in Iran. In fact, light colours are better in the heat of summer.
  2. Head: Yes, you do need to cover your head/hair when out in public but that doesn’t mean a tight scarf around your head. It’s OK for women to allow whisps of hair to frame their faces. A scarf is better than a hat or beanie – choose one that is big enough to cover your head completely with enough fabric to wind around your neck a few times. Depending on the season, lightweight wool or cotton are best as they don’t slip off your head like silk or satin, if they do, a pin or even a paper clip would help.
  3. Body: Should be covered with to mid-thigh with fairly loose clothes like a long-sleeved tunic or shirt, coat, or manteau. Arms should not be bare.
  4. Legs & feet: Legs should be covered down to ankles so trousers/jeans are best. Sandals or open toed shoes are fine, but if you are walking a lot or hiking/visiting historic sites, suitable covered-in shoes are best.
  5. Chador: Chador is just necessary while entering certain mosques and shrines which you can easily find at the women’s entrance.

Eating Outside in Iran

Eating in Iran is a joy! The food is very flavorful and will delight the taste buds. Take advantage of eating outside in beautiful gardens, courtyards, and along bustling sidewalks. Although alcohol is prohibited, it’s fun to try the variety of fresh fruit juices and teas that are available.

I loved sitting outside to eat my meals – it was great for people watching. I did chose locations I felt comfortable in ie nice cafes in North Tehran or lovely courtyard cafes.

It wasn’t hard to find delicious food also for vegetarians. Local foods such as Kashke Bademjan, falafel, sabzi or saffron rice, Kuku Sabzi, and Ashe Reshteh would be good choices.

Public Transportation in Iran 

I felt comfortable using taxis and intercity buses. Just the same as here in New Zealand. I had no problems with language which was helped greatly by having the addresses of where I wanted to go written in Farsi (or I could show the driver on an online map on my phone). Snapp is a great rideshare app to use but you do need to know Farsi numbers to recognise number plates.

Metros are available in Tehran and a few other cities like Shiraz. There are “women only” compartments in Iran’s Metro which you can go if you prefer to. Men are not allowed in women only sections.

Iran Airport Security

When taking a domestic flight within Iran or when leaving at the end of the trip, women have a separate security line.  This means your personal items (including your purse) and baggage may be out of your sight briefly.  If traveling with others ask them to keep an eye on your stuff as it goes through the scanner on the security conveyor belt. This made me nervous when we took a flight from Tehran to Shiraz, but don’t worry many guards and cameras are there and nobody can touch your stuff.

Required Cash in Iran 

US dollars and Euro notes are generally the only currencies accepted at Iranian banks and money exchanges. Money exchangers are available upon arrival at the airport and can be found in most of the places that you’ll visit.
If you have paid in advance for your hotels and in-country transportation, I recommend you bring the equivalent of approximately $500 US with you for a two week stay. This will cover your basic needs: meals, entrance fees, optional activities, some souvenirs, and other small items. If you’re a big shopper and/or are interested in purchasing bigger ticket items such as carpets, I recommend you bring more. If you are using a guide for any services, you will want to have cash to tip.
Because credit and debit cards are not accepted in Iran make sure you bring enough cash to see you through your trip. The above suggestion of $500 is just a suggestion and only you know your spending habits.

Iran Visa for Solo Female Travelers

There are two options. You can get your passport stamped in advance OR you can get it done at the airport on your arrival (VOA). For both options, you need to have a visa tracking code which you can obtain through a travel agency. I followed the first option and was assured of my entrance, although I know lots of friends who got their visas at the airport easily. In order to get VOA, you need the following item: Your return ticket, A hotel reservation for first accommodation, Passport, and Travel insurance. This post helps you with all the questions you may have about your Iran visa: https://friendlyiran.com/visa/

Packing List for Women Traveling to Iran

Pack as lightly as possible. You will frequently carry your own luggage, so it is best to keep the weight under 10kg/22lb. You can always buy an additional bag at a reasonable price if you buy lots of souvenirs.  Smaller bags with wheels work well and you will also need a day pack/bag to carry water, camera, guidebook, etc. A cross body purse is useful and provides a greater sense of security when carrying your passport and cash.

Documents: passport (with photocopies), flight information (printouts of e-tickets may be required), insurance information (required), required visas for American, United Kingdom and Canadian passport holders (with photocopies), itinerary information.

Essentials: Camera, cash (credit and debit cards are not accepted), basic first-aid kit (sunscreen, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, extra prescription drugs you may be taking), sewing kit, small flashlight, locks for bags, sunglasses, toiletries, electrical adaptor, money belt or neck pouch.

Conservative attire:  two – three headscarves (if traveling in warmer weather, make sure your scarves are light weight), modest long tunic type tops with sleeves that are at least three-quarters, high necklines, and hem to at least mid-thigh.  Any type of long pants as long as they cover your ankles.  Comfortable walking shoes and some sandals.

Inclement weather (depending on season you are traveling):  fleece top/sweater, hat, scarf, gloves, warm long pants/jeans, windproof rain jacket.

Thoughts as a Female Traveller to Iran

  • Relax and enjoy the people and the culture
  • Be curious and open-minded
  • Be respectful. Listen and learn
  • Underneath we are all the same – we want the best for our family and friends.
  • Try Culinary Workshops or Persian family gatherings, worth it!
  • Respect the dress code – it isn’t onerous or scary – you probably have most of the things you need in your wardrobe already.
  • You won’t get into big trouble if your scarf slips a little bit.
  • While it’s largely free from petty crime against tourists – the same travel rules apply as everywhere else in the world. Be sensible.
  • Pack wisely but there’s no need to bring the kitchen sink with you – they have shops for necessities in Iran too. Save your luggage space for beautiful hand-made goods and exotic spices from the bazaar.

Marina Kish Water Sport Club

Certainly, the best water sports club on Kish Island is Marina Kish, locating on the eastern side of the island. 

Marina Kish is actually a Marina resort with a private section to maintain lux ferries, water activity club, beach lounge, restaurants, and Marina Park plush hotel.

Have a wonderful stay in the luxury Hotel of Marina Park and moreover enjoy a splendid yacht tour, different water sport activities, and feast with delicious foods of Marina Kish restaurants and the beach lounge.

Marina Kish Water Sports Club History:

In 2013 Marina Kish Sports club was founded with 278 parking places for different sized boats and ferries. Marina piers are all made in France, every pier contains several drinking water stations, power plugs, and SOS that are available for boat and yacht owners.

Marina Park Hotel:

A vast area designed with different plants and fountains and in the middle there is the Marina Park Hotel, just in the most eye-catching site of Kish Island. On two sides of the Hotel, the view of the blue Persian Gulf makes there twice beautiful.

Marina Kish Water Sports Club, as the best equipped and most luxurious ocean tourism center in Iran, has the vision of providing high standard services to the yachts in Kish Island. All yacht owners who have rented a boat parking spot in Marina Kish can leave their yacht with ease and Marina Kish takes the responsibility of ferries maintenance in an eligible condition till the yacht owners’ next visit.

Plus all the yacht keeping services, the Marina Kish Watersport Club offers various kinds of water activities and sports facilities to Kish Island tourists and inhabitants.

Different sections of Marina Kish:

  1. Yacht Club; at the yacht club, you can join as a yacht owner, receive consultation about yacht rental, buying, and selling. At Marina Kish Yacht Owners club, you will get VIP services in a luxury environment.
  1. Repairing and Maintenance center
  2. Water sport and ferries equipment shopping center
  3. VIP Restaurant
  4. Water Sport Club
  5. Beach lounge with food and drink booths

Marina Kish Water Sports;

Almost all kinds of water sports are available at Marina Kish with all the needed equipment and a supportive team close by the beach lounge and restaurants.

Snorkeling, Diving, Kayak, paddleboard, parasail, sailing, cruise tours, renting a yacht, and a lot more are waiting for you at Marina Kish Sports Club.

Top Water Activities in Marina Kish

Setareh Taherian

Scuba Diving in Kish

Are you looking for inspiration to find out where to do the best scuba diving ? Scuba diving is one of the most popular activities on the beaches of Kish Island.

Read More »

Farm Stay in Iran

In recent years, many farms in Iran have decided to open up to the world of tourist accommodation by offering their guests rooms or camping, in perfect harmony with a holiday made up of experiences strongly linked to the rural context, including farm animals, production, and collection activities and typical products. Farm holidays with animals are a great way to relax in the green of nature and to get to know or rediscover a world often forgotten by adults and unknown to children. Precisely for this reason, Farms with animals are an excellent destination for family holidays with children, an unusual and fun experience for young and old who certainly won’t be bored staying in contact with animals. Here they will be able to discover the life of the Farm and its activities, the habits of animals and the rhythms of nature, learn to recognize plants, and taste the genuine flavors of the products of the earth to discover the beauty of simplicity.

Here we introduce you a cozy farmhouse that you can have an agritourism experience there!

This farmhouse is located in Sartoli village, a small village on the hills, between Shiraz and a Sepidan. It offers its guests peace and health, but above all, they offer you gastronomy that combines the flavors of the region tradition with the cuisine. Vegetarian and vegan also feel at home. At this farmhouse, you can appreciate zero kilometer organic products, grown in the lands adjacent to the structure, and proposed in a menu that changes seasonally. The ideal place to spend peaceful and regenerating nights, but also to taste healthy vegetarian and other dishes.

Farmhouse in Sartoli is a way of life. Imagine falling asleep lulled by the song of crickets and waking up calmly to taste the still-warm bread cook in nature, baked in a wood oven, and seasoned with organic homemade jam.

This is the flavor of a holiday spent in the countryside, marked by the slow rhythms of nature, under the star vaults of an old farmhouse surrounded by lush woods and expanses of cultivated fields.

This farmhouse has vegetable gardens such as tomato, corn, green pepper, Eggplant… There are a rafter of turkeys, plenty of ducks, and chicken coops that provide excellent fresh eggs. Meals are served in the common rooms and consumed in collective tables, where visitors and residents get to know each other. The menus are based on local and organic products such as bread, fresh cheese, yogurt, egg, and organic fruit jams. The possibility of having a barbecue in nature, an organic restaurant, and cooking classes will make your holiday really pleasant and relaxing.

It’s a super-fun day; Barbecue in nature, with the collection of wood and the crackling fire, Fire-Grilled meat, and chicken with natural vegetables are romantic and recall ancestral customs and it makes an unforgettable trip in nature

One of the delicious natural cuisine that serves here is smoky eggplant with yogurt. Place the eggplant under charcoal barbecue (Roasting eggplants on an open flame can be messy, but it is definitely worth the effort), the smoky aroma adds immensely to the taste, after 30 minutes moved it out and let it cool slightly (to avoid burning your hands) and peel, then add it to a bowl of organic yogurt. Now by adding salt and pepper… it’s ready to eat! Buon appetite!

Vegetarian and vegan cuisine in Iran? In this farmhouse, you can!

Are you looking for a farmhouse that offers vegetable or vegan cuisine? We found it for you! In recent years, interest in vegetarian and vegan cuisine has increased significantly. Many people choose to adhere to this eating pattern and obviously have to maintain it even when they are on a trip.

For those who adhere to this world, it can be difficult to find the right place to eat while on vacation. Fortunately, many of our farms have decided to meet this lifestyle and have included many vegetarian and vegan dishes in their kitchens by using organic and local products.

So our specialists can tailor-made your rural tour on the base of your lifestyle! When we customize an itinerary, we work with you on every aspect of your trip to help maximize your travel experience. Do you have a particular interest that you want to emphasize: adventure, culture, photography, agritourism, trekking …? So we are here to organize your trip as you desire!

Enjoy life in the countryside!!

Let’s start to discover this amazing family-friendly countryside holiday in Iran with us!

Visiting Iran during Ramadan – Traditional Cuisine and Sweets!

Invited to God’s fiesta? Ramadhan is known to be the month of God’s feast, while the guests are believers who fast. Fasting, literally meaning to prevent eating in a period of the day, is a part of almost all religions! Based on Islam, Muslims should fast during the month of Ramazan/Ramadhan, the 9th month of the Islamic calendar.

People in Iran believe that fasting is not all about starving oneself, it’s even more about being gentle, unselfish, and putting a stop to evil deeds! So in Ramadhan, giving away food, money as well as giving a party is pretty common.

How to break a fast like an Iranian? What to eat first at Iftar time?

When the sun sets and the first star shows up in sky, it’s the perfect time to break the fast!

Just like breakfast, the first thing you eat after hours of having nothing is very important for your health! In Iran, a warm beverage like hot rosewater, chicory sweat, and eglantine sweat is one of the best options which is accompanied by dates, Ranginak or Zulbia Bamiyeh! You know what dates are, but how about Ranginak and Zulbia Bamiyeh?

Ranginak is a mixture of date with some walnuts, pistachio, or both served with a special sauce of flour, coconut powder, cinnamon, and cardamom! So delicious and sweet! Iranian eat Ranginak with tea and as a side dish!

Zulbia Bamiyeh are actually two different sweets that normally come together! They are made mainly by farina, baking soda, eggs, rose water and saffron! It’s good to mention that it contains a lot of sugar!

After breaking fast with the warm beverage and the sweet, people say “may god accept (our good deeds) “, as congratulating each other for another day of fasting for Allah sake.  

What is next?

Since the Iftar time is right the same time to practice the 4th and 5th Salah of the day, it’s optional to pray first or eat dinner!

At home, some people, prefer to eat dinner first then practice Namaz (Salah)! While at mosques and by people who are more religious, they perform Salah first, and then they have dinner!

Putting the table! One by one the dinner table is filled with advance prepared cuisine, different side dishes, desert, and even fruits!

The best food inspiration ever!

What are the main Iranian dishes for Iftar in Ramazan holy month?

Foods of Ramadan used to be very simple like different kinds of Ash! Ash is a wealthy kind of soup with different kinds of beans! However, in traditional Persian sofrah fresh bread, vegetables, yogurt, pickles, halwa, and even fruits give a variety of choices to food lovers!

Ramadan Rituals and Special Tradition

One of the most famous rituals of Ramadan is “Laylatol Qadr”, meaning the night of value!

What is Night of Value?

It’s said in Quran that the Quran verses were revealed to Mohammad the prophet at the night of value! So at this night Muslims stay awake at night, recite Quran and pray. 

The night of value is known to be an odd night of the last 10 days of the month of Ramadan! Muslims of Shitte relation and Sunni relation stay awake and pray in different dates!

Shitte relations believe on 23rd night of Ramadan, but also praying on the 19th and 21st of Ramadan.

And Sunni people believe on 27th night of Ramadan, but usually praying all last 10 nights of Ramadan.

Laylatol Ghadr (The night of value) is so important in Iran that some government organizations, companies, and even schools start a few hours later than usual in the morning so that people can get enough rest after the whole night praying.

At Laylatol Qadr, people gather at shrines, mosques, universities, parks, personal houses, and etc, to pray together.

Popular Foods To Eat In Iran; 10 Persian Dishes You Must Try!

Iran’s gastronomy has a traditional and historical background which has influenced the food culture of different regions! The popular cuisine of the north is best to serve in northern cities and the nomadic food of Turks is best to be experienced with Turkish nomads! Thus, it’s good to know the best dishes you must try in Iran and where to eat!

Here you can find 10 top dishes you must try in Iran!

Overlook on Iranian food and Drinks you can find here; Iran Food and Drink Guide!

If you are interested in Iran culinary tours and food activities, check out Iran Food Tour.

1. Kalam Polo Shirazi with Meatballs!

Kalam Polo is the traditional food of Shiraz, it’s a mixture of fried meatballs and cabbage with rice! It’s a delicious cuisine served with Shirazi Salad! And sometimes with herbal beverages!

Where to eat Kalam Polo Shirazi?

Haftkhan Restaurant complex is one of the best places you can eat Kalam Polo! However, there are other restaurants like Qavam Restaurant, Soofi chain restaurants, or Shater Abbas Restaurant, where you can order Kalam Polo!

Vegetarian/ Vegan tip: This food doesn’t contain stew and sometimes you can ask the restaurant to bring the meatballs in a separate plate for you! There are always hungry cats on the street to enjoy the meatballs!

2. Beryani! Eat Isfahan!

Everyone knows Isfahan with Biryani!

Biryani is an Isfahani food cooked with lamb and tail fat! So delicious and tasty!

Best restaurants to eat Biryani in Isfahan are Azam Biryani and Haj Mahmoud Biryani.

3. Tah chin

A freelancer in Food world! Originated in no specific place in Iran! Although one of the most popular cuisines!

Tahchin is a kind of Rice cake, with chicken/lamb, saffron yogurt and fried barberry! Once you try it you’ll be a big fan!

You can have Tahchin in almost all traditional restaurants; like Hestooran restaurant of Tehran, Kohan Restaurant in Shiraz, Khangostar Restaurant in Isfahan.

Not vegetarian friendly! But if you plan to cook it at home you can use fried eggplants instead of chicken and it’ll taste good!

4. Ghormeh Sabzi

One of a kind food that its smell fills your head and you cannot forget about! Ghormeh Sabzi is a stew with lamb, fenugreek leaves, beans, and Persian limes and it’s served with rice.

In Ramadhan and other religious events, some give away Ghormeh Sabzi for good. Iranian believe giving away food (normally to poor people) will make their wish come true!

However the best Ghormeh Sabzi is homemade, you can have a tasty Ghormeh Sabzi at good traditional restaurants all over Iran. Like; Divan restaurant in Tehran, Parhami Traditional House in Shiraz, Isfahan Shahrzad Restaurant.

5. Falafel

A typical street food, a great option for vegetarians!!!

Falafel is originally an Arabic cuisine. Abadan, one of the southern cities of Iran is known to have the best Falafel in Iran. Though in other cities you can also find this inviting food. 

6. Kebab in Iran!

Kebab is a regular dish at the Iranian restaurants menu! If you enjoy eating meats that are separately served, like steaks, you would probably love Kebab as well.

It’s always good to know the difference between kinds of Persian Kebab to have the best choice:

Joojeh kebab: Pieces of chicken meat with or without bones.

Koobideh Kebab: Ground chicken or lamb meat.

Soltani Kebab: A mixture of beef kebab and chicken kebab.

Sour Kebab: Chicken Kebab served with pomegranate juice and walnuts.

Chenjeh Kebab: fresh lamb meat which is cut in cubic forms.

All kinds of Kebab can be served with rice or bread.

You can have a great kebab all over Iran! Yet, talking about the best place to have kebab in Iran, the northern part of Tehran, in Darband springs to mind.

7. Ash Reshteh!

It’s what everyone needs in cold winters! Ash Reshteh is a kind of soup, a rich source of vegetable protein, and the best option for wintertime!

Rice noodles, herbs, peas, beans, and sour yogurt the main ingredients of Ash Reshteh.

Is it Vegetarian? Sometimes people cook Ash Reshteh with meat, sometimes only with the meat stew and sometimes with none! 

You can have well-cooked Ash Reshteh at some popular restaurants or small café shops, like Hestooran restaurant in Tehran, Qavam restaurant in Shiraz! Ash Reshteh might be a seasonal meal of the menu. So better to ask first!

8. Yum-yum! Fesenjan Stew!

Same as Saffron, Pomegranate is also frequently used in Persian dishes. Fesenjan is a stew based with pomegranate juice! Chicken/lamb and walnut are other ingredients.

Stew and rice always come together and make a delightful combination.

Nayeb Restaurant in Tehran, Kohan restaurant in Shiraz, Naghshe Jahan Restaurant in Isfahan.

9. Dizi or Abgousht!

The traditional food made in stone crock pots, a unique cuisine of Iran! Abgousht literally means meat stew, but it’s not all lamb! It is accompanied with chickpeas, tomato, potato, garlic, and turmeric.

There are some restaurants that only serve Dizi like Dizi Sara Restaurant in Tehran.

10. La Poloyi

La Poloyi is a traditional Persian Nomads Cuisine! A mixture of rice, pieces of chicken or meat! One of the most delicious food you can have in Iran!

It’s better to have La Poloyi by Qashqai nomads of Iran, yet in some restaurants, you can enjoy having La Poloyi food.

If you like to have such experience by nomads in Iran, approach us!

Iranian Vegetarian Food Guide – What to Eat and Where?

Is it reasonable to travel to Iran as a vegan or vegetarian? Can vegetarians survive in Iran? Absolutely! Visiting Iran as a vegetarian will limit your menu but it’s of course possible by considering a few guides!

There are lots of Iranian vegetarian cuisine and meatless food, but unfortunately, most of them are missed at the restaurant menu.

Still, you have our guide to travel in Iran and keep your vegetarian diet.

Vegetarian meals on Menu! What dishes can I order at a restaurant as a vegetarian?

Vegetarian Food that you can find at traditional restaurants:

  • Kashke Bademjan: Fried eggplant with onion and yogurt
  • Ash Reshteh: Rice noodles, beans, herbs (sometimes mixed with meat, please ask before the order)
  • Seasonal Salad:
  • Shrimp and Rice
  • Fried Shrimps
  • Fish Kebab with Rice
  • Fried Fish with Rice
  • Herbal rice and Fish

Vegetarian Food at Iran Fast Foods:

  • Vegetable Pizza: Fast foods are creative in choosing what kind of vegetable! And there is no special recipe for this.
  • Garlic bread: It’s either a kind of Pizza dough with garlic and cheese or fried bread with garlic sauce!
  • Fried Mushrooms / French fries! We know they are not an official meal, but they are tasty for sure!

 

Iran’s street food for Vegetarians:

  • Potato Samboose: Potato and herbs wrapped in the fried bread
  • Falafel: chickpeas, herbs, garlic, spices served with bread, pickles, tomato

Where do Vegetarians can eat in Iran? Are there any Vegan/ Veg. Friendly Restaurants in Iran?

Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurants in Tehran:

  1. Zamin Vegan Restaurant (+982188373924)

Serves Vegan Fast-food, western cuisine, dessert, and beverages

  1. Ananda Vegetarian Restaurant (+982122556767)

Serves Vegetarian Fast-food and veggie western cuisine

  1. Iranian Artist Forum Veggie Restaurant (+982188310462)

Serves Vegetarian Fast-food

  1. Noon Slowfood (+982166767502)

Serves Vegetarian food

Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurants in Isfahan:

  1. Zima Vegetarian Restaurant (+983132666254)

Serves Vegetarian Fast-food

Bandar Abbas Vegetarian/ Vegan Restaurant:

  1. Kaj Veganism restaurant (+989179809610)

They offer Persian cuisine in a vegan style!

  1. Kinowa Vegan Restaurant (+989371337242)

A vegan restaurant nearby Haghani port.

Other Veggie restaurants or with vegan/vegetarian options:

  1. Mehre Mitra Vegetarian Restaurants (+989123478303)

Location: Lavasan, Tehran Province

They normally use Mushrooms or Soya Instead of meat with Persian cuisine recipes

  1. Qavam Cafe Restaurant (+987132359271)

Location: Shiraz, Fars province

They have vegetarian Persian cuisine in the menu

  1. Dragon Chinese Restaurant (+987132286074)

Location: Shiraz, Fars Province

They have vegetarian cuisine in the menu

*Some of these veggie restaurants are local and small, so please call before showing up to make sure about their working hours

Persian Homemade food for Vegetarians:

There are lots of Persian foods which are certainly the ones you would enjoy to have and they are meatless! You can have them maybe in cozy local restaurants/ family-run restaurant, by a Persian family or you can easily make them at home! We name them here for your information and we will send you their recipes if you like to.

  • Adas Polo ba Keshmesh via Gerdu: Rice with lentils, raisins, and walnut!
  • Dal Adas: A spicy dish of lentils and shallots.
  • Estanbuli Polo/Loobia polo (without meat): rice and green beans
  • Albalu polo (Without meatballs): Brewed rice with nuts, saffron, boiled sour cherry
  • Morasa polo (without chicken/meatballs): Brewed rice with nuts, saffron, jam, cooked carrot
  • Eshkeneh: A mixture of herbs, water, eggs
  • Kuku Sabzi: The mixture of vegetables and eggs
  • KuKu Sibzamini: The mixture of potato and eggs
  • Kate Gojeh: brewed rice with tomato and potato
  • Samboose: Vegetable Pizza
  • Lubia Garm: boiled Beans with mushrooms
  • Dopiazeh: Mixture fried potato and onion
  • Yatimcheh: Mixture of fried tomato, garlic, and zucchini

Veganism in Iran!

The new generation in Iran is more or less familiar with vegetarian diet and there are vegetarian restaurants or veggie cuisine options on some menus! However, the concept of vegan is mostly common in Tehran, the capital! To survive in Iran as a true vegan you may need to take it easy sometime and maybe switch to a vegetarian diet especially in small towns.

Please check out the mentioned vegan restaurants or ask our agent to know about vegan restaurants in your particular travel destination.

Chinese Tourists in Iran

Iran tourism industry has been improved rapidly in recent years. Therefore, the Iran government has been tried to facilitate traveling to Iran from other countries. In this regard, in 2019, Iran announced a visa exemption for Chinese nationals. It aimed to facilitate traveling from China to Iran and to develop economic ties. Thus, Chinese travelers have become more interested in Iran as a new destination.

To make it brighter, we refer to Morocco’s experience in this regard. Morocco has seen a massive increase in tourists coming from China after lifting visas for Chinese in 2016. Accordingly, the number of Chinese visitors to Morocco rose about 20 times in 2 years after announcing the visa exemption for Chinese nationals. It shows that Chinese tourists are very interested in traveling to new destinations.

These days, a quick search on the internet shows that there are countless companies that offer Iran tour packages. Many of them are official tour companies from all over the world and Iran. But we can see many Chinese guides who promote Iran tour packages on the internet and social media as well. The big question is which one is more trustable.

To answer this vital question, let’s refer to Morocco’s experience with Chinese tourists one more time. “Many times, I have met groups with just Chinese guides, without local tour guides,” A Moroccan tour guide said. It is evident that Chinese people prefer Chinese guides who speak in their native language and know their customs. But according to Morocco experience, they need local guides to get the most out of their trip. The Chinese tourists who visited Morocco without local guides were not satisfied with their trip to Morocco. Although Chinese guides can communicate with their clients and address their needs, they cannot introduce less-known destinations like Iran thoroughly.  Also, they cannot engage their clients in the inhabitants’ everyday lives (which is very important in the tourism industry).

As a result, to avoid the same situation in Iran, Chinese tourists need to travel with Iranian official travel agencies or the other travel agencies in the world who are partners with Iranian travel agencies. These kinds of companies can provide local professional tour guides, who are experts in different aspects of tourism. Moreover, as these days, there are numerous Iranian tour guides who can speak in Chinese, these agencies can offer the best Iran tour packages with full-time Chinese-speaking travel guides who can introduce all aspects of Iran as well as handle their clients’ issues.

Pooladkaf Tourism Complex

Pooladkaf Tourism Complex

Pooladkaf tourism complex is located about 80 km north of Shiraz, around the Zagros Mountains (2830 high) in Shekarak Region.

 

Pooladkaf Hotel

Pooladkaf 4-star Hotel is located in a 5000 square meter land and consists of 52 rooms (2/3 bed), 4 suites, and 10 Mongolian Yurt (chadors or tents)

Summer Facilities in Pooladkaf

The fresh weather of the mountains can furnish this astounding experience with a delightful and pleasant, relaxing atmosphere away from the city hustle and visitors can enjoy their summer vacation with provided facilities such as Horse riding, Cycling, Paddle-boat, Zip-line, Cable-car, Theme-park, Buggy-cars, off-road cars, etc.

Yurts

A traditional “Yurt” or “Ger” is a round tent as originating in Central Asia (Genghis Khan and his horde used them) used for dwelling for at least the past few thousand years. For the first time in Iran, the Hungarian company of “Domus Living Solutions” has invested in building ten luxury accommodation units, in the form of Yurts. The Yurts can now be offered to the guests enjoying a five-star service and facilities.

Nomadic Camp

Experience a nomadic life at the largest camp in the province. you can enjoy listening to ancient Iranian folk music of the Nomad tribes belonging to the region, as well as tasting the local gourmet and the herbal drinks of the Nomads.

Winter Facilities in Pooladkaf

At winters, the resort turns into one of the major attractions of Fars Province and the south-west region of Iran. You can enjoy the ski facilities of the resort either as a professional or amateur skier using the cable-car and the ski lift. The cable car runs at a length of 2200 meters, under the license of Puma, France. You can also have the chance to rent the ski gears, snowmobiles, and Mini-Bobs and can start learning the fundamentals of skiing at our ski-school.

8 Reasons Why Iran should be Chinese Travel Destination

1. Local People

In the digital age that modernity has conquered human life and a shadow of media and smart devices is fallen on the rich cultures, Iranians have protected the ancient Persian cultures in the best way.

The top rank reason to travel to Iran is the people and ethnicities of Iran. It is recommended for all the people in the world to know the Persian old culture and traditions as one of the most effective and ancient cultures ever existed.

2. Exotic and Local experiences

Don’t be an observer, live like a local! There are so many opportunities to try out living like a local, have unique and fun experiences and give some spice to your Iran trip, like; Culinary courses, Nomad Tours, camping in deserts, Persian calligraphy

3. Photography from a different vision

What would be more desirable for a photographer to be in an uncrowded place at the right time and have their subject of photography clear in the lenses? Whether if you are a fan of street photography, Wildlife Photography or any other bellow mentioned types of photography, you’ll catch your favorite moment in Iran.

Architectural Photography

 

Time-Lapse Photography

Wildlife Photography

 

Reflection Photography

Forced Perspective

Photography

Sun-Set & Sun-Rise

Photography

 4. Ancient tales and stories

Iran has one of the riches literatures in the world. From ancient times so many stories have been taking a part in Iranian lives and some of them have become the basis of valuable books of Ferdowsi, Shahnameh and Nezami Ganjavi Poems.

5. Great weather; Clear Sky, low pollution

As a four-season country Iran is always a good travel destination. You can travel in winter and enjoy the chilly weather of south Iran and Islands, you can travel in summer and relax in northern nature.

Ask a trip advisor to find out the best Iran destination based on your travel time.

6. Feels like Home

No matter if you are in a populated city or a small village there are always friendly people welcoming you and offering you help, free dinner or ride. Iranians love to host strangers and share their food with them. It is in our culture and also recommended in our religion.

7. Know how different religions in Iran live

 

Iran is known to be a Muslim country, but not all the people in Iran are Muslim. You can meet Iranian Armenians who are Christian in Isfahan, Zoroastrians in Yazd and know more about their living style.

8. Most number of world heritage site beholder in the Middle east

Not all sites in the world can be a world heritage when you know somewhere is in the UNESCO heritage list, you know it worth the visit and the place has a lot to offer. People who admire world heritage sites know how culture and history affect the future.

Tehran International Airport Guide

Iran’s main international airport, Imam Khomeini Airport (IKA), is located about 30 kilometers to the southwest of the capital, Tehran. IKA covers over 13,500 hectares and has been in operation since 2004.There is another airport in the capital, Mehrabad International Airport, which mainly operates domestic flights.

Services and Facilities Available inside the Imam Khomeini Airport:

Banks and Currency Exchange: There are several banks and exchange offices at the Imam Khomeini International Airport offering different services such as currency exchange services; Tejarat, Meli, Saman, Post and Mellat Bank and Sorena money exchange agency.

ATMs: ATM machines are available at the airport. Although due to sanctions against Iran, ATMs don’t work with international cards, So IRR (Iranian Rial) is the only cash you can receive from ATMs.

Wi-Fi: At Tehran Airport free Wi-Fi is available in the arrival and departure lounges. To be able to receive a password via text message, a mobile phone number is required. There are also internet cafes for printing, copying, scanning or other related services and also activation of sim cards. Internet Cafes are located at entrance hall.

Medical Services: The airport has a long distance from medical centers, this is why there are emergency medical services available round-the-clock for emergency situations.

Mobile Charging: Charging stations are available in the departures and arrivals areas.

Baby Care Services: There is a baby care room for families with children.

Duty Free & Shopping: There are about 40 shops at IKA and few of them are open round the clock.

Food & Drinks: There are several restaurants and cafes available in all terminals, some of them are open 24 hours for snacks and
drinks.

Services for Elders: At passenger terminal at Tehran airport, special services are available to accessible people such as disabled and elderly people.

Prayer Rooms: There are 17 prayer rooms available to all passengers in different areas.

duty-free-IKA
bank-Imam-airport-Tehran
Exchange office IKA Tehran
Irancell Hamrah aval IKIA

Airport Transportation: Getting To/From the Imam Khomeini Airport

Travelers can reach Imam Khomeini international airport through Tehran-Qom Freeway and Tehran-Saveh Freeway. It is accessible by following options:

  1. Taxi Service Companies are available outside the arrival hall. They are ready to give any group of travelers a private drive to different destinations. Based on the vehicle you choose; the price will be different. It takes 45-60 minutes to arrive in downtown.
  2. Snapp/Tap30 Online Taxi Booking Applications are another kind of private taxis which costs less than the airport ones.
  3. Tehran’s Subway System (Metro) is the cheapest and fastest way to reach the downtown Tehran. IKA is connected to this system through Line 1.
snapp-tap30-iran-transportation
Taxi Imam khomeini airport
Imam-Khomeini-Airport-Metro-Station-IKIA-Station

4. Car Rental is also possible at Imam Khomeini Airport, you can ask for a van or a sedan car from the Europcar office located inside the airport. To do so you will need to carry your international driving license, a valid credit card and your passport. Be careful while driving here 😊

Rent a vehicle at IKA
drive a car and drive in Iran

5. Private Drive, the easiest and safest way would be to book your private transfer in advance. Inform friendlyiran agents about the detail of your transfer; the exact time, the destination and the preferred kind of vehicle and a professional driver will be at the airport carrying your name.

Hotels at IKA

Tehran Imam Khomeini Airport Hotels

There are two side-by-side hotels at the Imam Khomeini International Airport, located at the main terminal: IBIS and NOVOTEL, 4- and 5-star accommodations with various amenities such as Spa center, Sauna, qualified restaurants and etc. It is also possible to book a room up to 3 hours or up to 6 hours at an affordable price. A free shuttle bus is available every 20 minutes to drive the travelers to the airport.

For short-time rests, Reclining chairs are available at the airport.

CIP Service and CIP lounge at Imam Khomeini Airport

To avoid flight problems, CIP services are available at Imam Khomeini airport offering various kinds of airport assistance. You can book CIP service in advance and shorten the waiting time at the airport with enjoying free beverage and snacks, the smoking room, newspapers and with free available WIFI.

The CIP service at IKA includes meet and greet at the airport, the check-in process, passport and visa control, luggage check or only a transfer by different vehicles such as standard car or van, VIP sedan or van, middle bus, and VIP buses. CIP lounge services also provide lifter and wheelchair for seniors or travelers with physical disabilities.

Belt & Road Initiative Impact on China-Iran Tourism

China-Iran economic and tourism relation is soon to be enhanced after Iran participation in Belt and Road Initiative program.

In 2013, mr. President Xi Jinping declared the concept of One Belt One Road which is meant to increase East countries ties. This Belt and Road Initiative inspired by the old Silk Road will have direct impact on China-Iran tourism.

In addition to the countries through which ancient route of Silk Road used to pass, Todays silk road will be expanded to the far west, even America Continent.

Supporting this big project, Iran is welcoming Chinese tourists more than ever with new rule of Visa free visit of Iran for Mainland Chinese and people from special Administrative region, peoples republic of China, Hong Kong and Macau.

 

Friendlyiran travel agency as a pioneer in Iran tourism field offers best Iran tour and travel services with smooth routes for Chinese visitors. Different types of packages, customized to tourists’ interests are operated by us to make a wonderful journey for our Chinese travelers. Considering Chinese tourists needs, the quality of our services brings hassle free traveling around Iran for our Chinese groups or individual travelers.

Iran Ski Holiday

Iran is one of the best and the most popular skiing destinations in the Middle East. Since Iran is endowed with many high and mountainous areas with long-enduring cold weather, snowy season, and powdery snow, its ski resorts are welcomed by both local and foreign skiers. Moreover, the entrance fees and rental expenses are so affordable in all resorts.

There are two mountain ranges with different climates in Iran. The highest one is called Alborz. This mountain range, located near Tehran, stretched from the northwest to northeast of Persia, has got many popular skiing resorts such as international Dizin ski resort (the most popular and the biggest), Shemshak, and Tochal which are the most accessible and have got the best equipment for skiers.  The other mountain range is called Zagros, located at northwest and west of the country, covers 20 percent of Iran.

The most famous ski resorts of this zone are Pooladkaf (in the south near Shiraz) and Chelgerd (near Shahrekord).

Here is a glance at the most important Iran ski resorts.

Iran Dizin Ski Resort

The international and best ski resort in Iran is Dizin, which is located at the north of Tehran in the Alborz Mountain Range. It is in the list of the 40 highest ski resorts in the world. Its base is higher than the peak of many Alpine sites. The lifts get you to the altitude of 3700 meters above the sea level. Due to its high-quality snow, Dizin is welcomed and accepted by snowboarders. It should be taken into consideration that Dizin has run for any skier from beginner to professional, but it is more suitable for the more experienced ones. Here are some pieces of information about Iran Dizin Ski Resort.  There are also facilities for grass skiing during the non-snowy seasons.

Dizin Hotels and Cottages

Dizin International Ski Resort offers affordable and convenient accommodation consisting of hotels, cottages, private apartments and villas near the resort which yearly host thousands of people.

The most famous ones are the Dizin Hotel and Gajareh Hotel.

Gachsar Hotel is another hotel near the ski resort.

Dizin Skiing Equipment

Do not bring your ski facilities; you can rent what you need. Our ski school uses internationally popular and modern methods to make your ski learning more pleasant. These are the facilities you can get there: ski wear, ski and snowboard, mono board, and accessories. Kids ski teachers are also available. Tele-cabins, ski lifts, tele- skis and Hammer tele-ski are the resort equipment.

 

 Food and Drink

In Dizin you can find two main restaurants; the first one is Chalet Resturant at the 3,000 meters above sea level and the second one is Chaman Restaurant located at the top of Chaman chair lift.  You can find many other restaurants and snack bars in the zone, such as SnackBar Restaurant, Dizin Ghole, etc.

Transportation

You can take the Chaloos Road to reach Dizin Ski Resort, and based on your group members and your car; sometimes it takes 3.5 hours in the winter.

Shemshak Ski Resort

After Dizin, Shemshak is the second largest ski zone in Iran. It is at the altitude of about 2500m to 3000m above the sea level. Shemshak is suitable for more advanced skiers.

 

Shemshak Hotels

Shemshak skiers and snowboarders have got two options for lodging. Shemshak Resort Hotel and Barin Hotel both located in Shemshak area, the first one has standard quality but situated in the heart of white-coated peaks. The second one is more luxury with modern architecture and located approximately 1 kilometer from Shemshak Ski Resort.

Shemshak Skiing Equipment

There are two main slopes with chair lifts. The piste also has lighting facilities for skiing during the night. The slopes are quite steep, and many of the runs are mogul runs.  There are also ski, snowboard, and sleigh for renting.

Food and Drinks

There are different restaurants in Shemshak and Darbandsar zone such as Paparazzi restaurant, Dejavu cafe, and Restaurant, Café Muse, etc. There are also coffee shops where you can buy snacks and drinks.

 

Transportation

The ski resort is about 65 kilometers from Tehran. To get to there, you should go toward north, take Lashgarak Rd and pass Fasham to get to Shemshak.

Tochal Ski Resort

Tochal in the nearest ski resort to Tehran and can be reached via a 20-kilometer journey from the capital. It has one of the longest cable cars in the globe. It is the fifth-highest resort in the world at an altitude of about 4000m, from where you can see a glorious view of Damavand, the highest peak of Iran.

Tochal Hotels

As Tochal is near the capital, you have many options for accommodation inside Tehran, but if you love to stay your night in the silence of the snow-covered mountains, we suggest Tochal hotel at the altitude of about 3,500 meters above the sea level. The hotel serves the skiers and snowboarders for about 7 to 8 snowy months.

Tochal Skiing Equipment

Besides the ski lifts, chairlifts, ski piste, and all available facilities related to skiing, Tochal is a sports complex containing Archer Club, ziplining, one of the best hiking pathways, paintball club, Bungee jumping and ….

Food and Drink

Since the resort is almost inside Tehran, there are several restaurants and cafes in the area and on your way to the top where you can rest, have food, and drink hot coffees.

Transportation

Tochal is about 20 kilometers from Tehran center. To get there, you should take Velenjak avenue and drive toward the north.

Pooladkaf Ski Resort

Pooladkaf located in 90 km from Shiraz at the altitude of about 3200 meters from the sea level is major ski resort of the South of Iran and the second international resort after Dizin. All facilities of the resort (except the piste) is open in all seasons. It is interesting to know that sunshine is bright and strong even in January.

There is nomad camps and local houses where you can meet Indigenous people, be familiar with there customs, and listen to folklore music.

Pooladkaf Hotels

There is a 4-star hotel in the mountain for ski lovers and also a hotel apartment in the mountain skirt.

You can also spend overnight in the local houses.

Food and Drink

There are some restaurants in the mountain skirt and near the piste such as Pooladkaf Restaurant and Gholleh restaurant. Also, there is a café at the top station of the gondola lift.

Pooladkaf Facilities

In the complex, you can find surface lifts, Tele skis, snowmobiles, and a 2100-meter length gondola lift. You can also rent skiing equipment. Besides the skiing facilities, you have got the opportunity to experience cycling, horse riding, and pedalo boat riding in the mountainous area of Zagros massif.

Transportation

After about 2-hour drive from Shiraz toward the northwest through a mountainous road you get to Pooladkaf ski resort.

Chelgerd Ski Resort

Chelgerd village is the home of Bakhtiari tribe community. The resort is located about 200 km from Isfahan and about 85 kilometers from Shahrekord in Chahar Mahale Bakhtiari province at the heart of Zagros massif. You can find summits with different altitudes in the region, some of them higher than 4000 meters. There are large slopes for professionals and small slopes for the beginners. The average slope of the piste is 20 percent and it is 800-meter-long. Chelgerd with its unique nature is also a popular destination for sightseeing including the virgin area of Koohrang, springs, natural glaciers, caves, wetlands, etc.  

Chelgerd Facilities

In Chelgerd and Koohrang area, there are some hotels such as Koohrang hotel and Keyno Hotel, and also villas, ecolodges, and restaurants where you can test local foods. There are also three lifters and skiing equipment for renting.

Transportation

From Shahrekord drive west, after about 40 kilometers you reach to the Baba Heydar village. From there drive to the north, and after 50-kilometer driving in the mountainous road, you arrive in Chelegerd ski resort.

Iran Visa for Chinese, Hongkongers and Macanese has been Waived

According to the Iranian government’s official notification, China, Hong Kong and Macau passport holders’ visas for travel to Iran have been waived.  consequently, from now on the citizens of these three countries can visit Iran and stay in the country for 21 days without a visa.
Accordingly, visa cancellation will provide more convenience for Chinese, Hongkonger and Macanese travelers and will strengthen the bilateral relationship between Iran and these two countries in tourism, culture and economy areas. 

 

 

 

Caspian Hyrcanian Mixed Forests

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Remained from Ice Age, the Caspian Hyrcanian Mixed Forests region is a  large  area of green lowlands and massive forests covering about 55,000 squares along the 850 km of the Caspian Sea shore in Iran and Azerbaijan. Most of this forest area is located in Iran.

On July 10th of 2019, the Iran Hyrcanian Forests were registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, in Baku.

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Hyrcanian Forest also called Caspian Forest stretched between the northern slopes of the Alborz Mountains and the coastal areas along the Caspian Sea. So, some parts of 5 northern provinces of Iran are located in the west to east of this region including Ardabil Province, Gilan Province, Mazandaran Province, Golestan Province, and North Khorasan Province.

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 The Hyrcanian ancient broad-leaved forest that belongs to 25 to 50 million years ago covers 7% of Iran land. It is somehow a natural museum. The climate of Hyrcanian forests is humid, oceanic and mountains at the high altitudes. This weather diversity makes this region the home to 180 birds’ species and 58 mammal species such as white-fronted goose, greylag goose, Eurasian spoonbill, white-headed duck, night heron, Little bustard, red-breasted goose, peregrine falcon, Dalmatian pelican, greater flamingo, brown bear, Caspian tiger, wolf, wild boar, jungle cat, golden jackal, badger and otter. The beauty of this pure nature besides the tourist infrastructures such as local restaurants, cafes, ecolodges and recreational sites that exist in this region attract many tourists every year who enjoy, trekking, hiking, camping and … in the paradise of Hyrcanian Forests.

You can follow our LinkedIn account for the news that related Iran and Iran tours.

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Our Caspian Hyrcanian Forest Tour Packages:

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Iran-Austria Relations

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Since about 160 years ago, Iran and Austria have had a real, low-tension relationship. The most important event between these two countries was Austria hosting for Iran’s Nuclear negotiations, which ultimately led to a final agreement on the Iran nuclear program.

 Iran and Austria’s diplomatic relations date back to Safavid era, particularly Shah Tahmasb reign in 1552 AD.  After the establishment of the Austrian Academy of Oriental Studies, some of the graduates of this center traveled to the Middle East, especially Iran, and began publishing Iranian literature and poetry in the European gathering. Among these graduates, Joseph von Hammer Purgstall was the first who translated “Hafez Divan” into German. Goethe later considered this translation.

These relations continued during the Qajar era, and due to the pretext of establishing the Academy of Sciences, entered a new stage. At that time, Amir Kabir’s invitation of the Austrian academic professors in the fields of mining and medicine made the two countries closer. In the following years, during the two visits of Nasereddin Shah of Austria, several bilateral agreements were concluded. The main achievements were the conversion of “Chaparkhaneh” old post office, into a coherent post office, the formation of the police force in Tehran, the construction of a telephone company, etc.

After the victory of the Iranian Revolution, although most European countries had cut their diplomatic relations with Iran, Austria continued the bilateral ties. After the revolution, the first Iranian foreign minister’s trip to a Western country was to Austria. During the Iran-Iraq war, Austria also proved its friendship by accepting the Iranian casualties of Iraqi chemical attacks.

After the revolution, scholarship and free students were dispatched to Austria, and every year more than 1,000 students are enrolled in various universities.

Interactions, communications, and cultural, scientific and academic cooperation are the most prominent relations between Iran and Austria. In other words, one of the main characteristics of the relationships between these two countries is its cultural nature. In this sense, culture is one of the most ancient origins of the Iranian and Austrian associations and has also influenced the political and economic aspects of these relations.

The ancient background of the literary texts and the peoples of both countries’ acquaintance with the cultural, literary and artistic heritage of each other and studies of ancient Iranian traditions in some Austrian prestigious universities and scientific and research centers have had a significant role in the continuation of dynamic interactions and cultural cooperation between these two countries.

Austria was one of the few European countries that refused to adhere to international sanctions imposed on Iran and continued its bilateral trade relationship.

Following the Vienna nuclear deal, The Honorable Heinz Fischer, President of Austria, was the first high-ranking member of the European Union who traveled to Iran.

Our company has also taken practical steps to consolidate these relations. Participation in the Vienna International Tourism Fair, Visiting Modul University Vienna and having several meetings with the managers of this university to exchange professors and students, and knowledge and technology transfers, especially in the field of tourism, was valuable actions that our company has taken to strengthen the knowledge-based tourism relations between the two countries.

Recently to further strengthen this valuable relationship, we had business breakfast hosted by The Austrian Ambassador to Iran in his place, and meanwhile, we received helpful guidance regarding the development of tourism relations.

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As Australians are nice people who like Art, especially architecture and music and they are eager to experience local life, the destinations and highlights of this tour are arranged to satisfy them.

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