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

Caspian Hyrcanian Mixed Forests


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.


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.


 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.

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Our Caspian Hyrcanian Forest Tour Packages:


Iran-Austria Relations

Iran-Austria Relations


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.

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.


A local Academic and Training Institute based on the Global Knowledge

A local Academic and Training Institute based on the Global Knowledge

Gardeshgaran Shiraz traveling agency started its activity in 1999 with a tour license (clause B), and in 2003 obtained a license from Iran Aviation Organization and then became a member of IATA in 2006. In order to serve better services to people who are eager to take part in Tourism Industry, the company established a new academic and training institute in all related fields like tour guiding, hospitality and hotel management and technical management of travel agencies in 2011.  Gardeshgaran Sarve Shiraz Institute prepares and trains students not only for their own team but also for related industries. Presently, this team holds more than 55 members of staff and 25 expert professors and teachers as well as 200 students in each semester.

To be successful in training tourism and improve our team mission to conduct a knowledge-based business, we obtain global up to date knowledge and international education by taking part in related international conferences and educational business tours.

Some of these seminars and tours in 2019 are Global Business Forum in Muscat, John C.Maxwell speech in Kish island, Meditation and mindfulness tour in Tibet and Germany business training tour in Hannover and Hamburg.

we also connect with the most well-known and successful mangers of the world in 2019 includes Rory Simpson, Jonathan Low, Dr. Chris Arnold, Pat Mesiti, Mark Colbourne, Cris Beswick, Dr. Richard James, Dr. Dimitri Tsivriko, Alan O’Neil, Michael Ogilvie.

Nowruz, Iranian New Year Celebration

Nowruz, Iranian New Year Celebration

contents      What is Nowruz?      Spring Cleaning (Khouneh Tekouni)      Family Shopping in Nowruz      Hajji Firuz      Haft Sin      Visiting Celebrations      Iranian New Year Meals      Sizdah Bedar

What is Nowruz?

Norooz, the Persian new year is a traditional festival marking the first days of spring and the renewal of nature. It is partly rooted in the religious tradition of Zoroastrianism, one of the most ancient religion in the world, and has been celebrated for over 3,000 years. During Noruz holiday families gather to celebrate. It is observed in Afghanistan, Albania, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Turkey.


Spring Cleaning (Khouneh Tekouni)

Spring cleaning is called khouneh Tekouni in Iran, is the practice of cleaning the house at the same time with the renewal of nature. Weeks before Nowruz, every Iranian excitedly looks up the date and plans for preparing the house for the new year.


Family Shopping in Nowruz

In the Persian new year, renewal is not only about the nature, it is about new clothes and even new furniture. One of the Beautiful ceremonies before the New Year is that all families go out together for shopping and get those requirements that are related to the New Year. Kids are so exited to buy their new clothes for the visiting celebrations.


Hajji Firuz

He is traditional-fictional character for the new year, like Santa Claus, perhaps as a remnant of the ancient Zoroastrian fire-keeper. His face is covered in soot and he is clad in bright red clothes. People gather around him and he dances with tambourines and trumpets bringing glad news of Nowruz coming.


Haft Sin

Soferh-e Haftseen is a kind of tablecloth spreading in every Persian household during Nowruz includes seven items starting with the letter ‘S’ in the Persian alphabet:

Sabzeh” (sprouts), “Sib” (apples), “Samanu” (wheat pudding), “Sir” (garlic), “Senjed” (dried oleaster), “Sumac” (Sumac fruit) and “Serkeh” (vinegar).

You can find other items in this tablecloth like homemade candies, painted eggs, mirrors, flowers and gold fish.


Visiting Celebrations

At the first day of Nowruz (first day of Persian calendar), Iranian families gather around the table of Haft Sin, they kiss each other, and gifts are exchanged. During the next days, the youths visit the senior family members first and then younger ones. This chain of visiting continues to the last day of Nowruz (13th day of the Persian calendar). Usually guests served with nuts, fruits and sweets and the elders give a little money as a gift called “Eydi” to the kids.


Iranian New Year Meals

Iranians are used to prepare special traditional meals at the first day of the new year and the whole family gather to have this meal together in cheerful atmosphere. Sabzi Polo Mahi: This traditional meal that is prepared in different cities of Iran for starting the new year celebration is the mixture of rice and fresh green herbs served with fish. Kookoo Sabzi: This is a kind of traditional light and fluffy omelet includes Herbs, vegetable, eggs and walnut. Reshteh Polo: It is prepared in some cities that is rice cooked with a special noodle.

Sizdah Bedar The thirteenth day of the New Year festival is called Sizdah Bedar. All Iranians go on a picnic in the nature. They play music, dance and eat sweets. On this day, people respect the nature and are thankful of its renewal, they throw Sabze in the rivers as the symbol of greenness.

Iran 10-day travel Spiegel Family – May 2018

Iran 10-day travel Spiegel Family – May 2018


Iran 10-day travel Spiegel Family – May 2018

Our family has made a tour in Iran in the first 10 days of May 2018. We were looking for a bit of adventure in an ancient culture unknown to us. To experience something special, but not too far away from home and safe enough for us and our two young children Josephine (8) and Mathilde (6).  

On an initial exploration of the Internet, we read many enthusiastic stories about Iran. We found an Iranian travel agency, aptly named ‘ Friendly Iran ‘. Via Mail and WhatsApp, we composed an attractive journey with advice from our Friendly Iran travel agent Samane, also suitable for our children.

Friendly Iran has booked for us all Hotels (with breakfast) and arranged all transport with taxis (and 1x Night Train), also to all sights. That all went well and in consultation with the driver we also adapted the program every now and then. For example, just relax in a park if we or the children were tired, instead of a planned visit.

We stayed the first two days in Tehran to ‘ land ‘. Our Hotel Hejab was conveniently located opposite the large Laleh park, where the children could play. Really an oasis in the hustle and bustle of the city. For the children, the Mirror Palace and the young kittens in the Golestan Park were fun. And they certainly remember making fun and playing hide and seek with the guard of the Reza Abbasi Museum, where we have seen a beautiful collection. There was also time to go up the big Tower ‘ Milad ‘ for a magnificent view of Tehran. And to see, in our notion, the chaotic traffic from above.


Our tour went after Tehran via the cities of Shiraz, Yazd, Esfahan and Kashan. A ‘ classic ‘ round it seemed afterwards, so evident from the meetings with other travellers in the hotels.

From Tehran train station we left at the end of the afternoon by night train to Shiraz, which is about 900km to the south. Train travel is really something for me, but I believe there are more people that have an adventurous feeling with the idea of travelling through the Persian night by train. Ok, it was not a new train, but we had clean bed linen and the chicken with rice and salad that we got tasted very well. We talked a lot with other travellers in the wagon, like the boys who were with their teacher on a school trip and with the owner of an English language institute from Qom. All curious in our opinion about Iran.


From Shiraz on we had a good English-speaking driver, named Mohammed Dehghani. It is really nice if you can communicate well with your driver and that he also feels where the children (and parents…) are on. We certainly had such a good driver with Mohammed. He also had young children and found it extra fun to travel around with our family. He was not only a driver, but also our interpreter, money changer, negotiator and consultant in many areas. We spent a lot of fun hours in his white Samand taxi, and the girls in the backseat and me next to him.


We did not have a fixed guide for our entire travel program, but with help of the driver and via Friendly Iran we hired a guide for places where it was necessary. For one day we had a very good guide in Esfahan, Mr. Peshman Azzizi.


In Shiraz we stayed at the Niayesh Hotel, with beautiful stained glass, romantic indoor places and exciting passageways all of which were explored by our children. In Shiraz we visited several beautiful mosques, the Vakil Bazaar and the Naranjestan Palace. The next day we went on excursion to Persepolis, where we had our own guide. The palace ruins of Persepolis are really quite impressive due to its size, old age (2,500 years old) and beautiful reliefs and statues. The children also found the fantasy creatures, like the sphinxes, very beautiful.


In Shiraz we also ate in the family home of our travel agent Samane, together with her mother, sisters, a few colleagues and a colleague’s nephew. I helped a little with cooking. The mother of Samane had prepared a dish called ‘ Fesenjan ‘, with chicken, pomegranate syrup and walnuts. We ate together sitting on the ground, on a Persian carpet. Our children played with the sisters of Samane and with the nephew of her colleague.


The day after we went to the town of Yazd, which is close to the desert. En route along the tomb of King Cyrus the Great (of which Josephine later bought a snow globe as a souvenir) and drank tea in a tent with a nomad family with sheep, in a beautiful rugged area. With a picture of us in traditional attire and for the kids a nice bracelet. We discovered that there are more types of pistachio nuts.


In Yazd we stayed at the Royay e Ghadim Hotel, again with a beautiful courtyard. We have climbed the ‘ Towers of Silence ‘ with the children, the place where the Zoroastrian community brought their dead. Impressive to stand on top of the towers and know the story. Near Yazd we have visited a desert camp and made walks, the children also on a camel. It felt really good to be ‘out’ in the desert; sleigh riding and rolling down from sand dunes for tour children and we all enjoyed the sunset. We ate in the evening at the campfire, until suddenly a violent thunderstorm with sand storm drove us inside. Definitely not good for people with contact lenses, like me.


From Yazd, Mohammed brought us to Esfahan (Isfahan). On the way in the town of Meybod we visited Narin castle, the first parts of which could be built 4,000 years b.c. The legend wants this castle to have been inhabited by King Salomon.


In Yazd we stayed in the Atiq hotel, with an excellent breakfast buffet and again a traditional palace with beautiful courtyard. Esfahan impressed us with its beautiful large squares, bridges, beautiful mosques and palaces. We also visited the Vank cathedral in the Armenian Jolfa district, with afterwards the most delicious (and thickest) hot chocolate in the world.

Everything was even more appealing to the imagination in Esfahan by the explanations we got from our great guide Peshman Azzizi. Again, in Esfahan we had lots of nice contacts and ‘ photo moments ‘ with Iranians.


From Esfahan we travelled to Kashan for our last night. In Kashan we bought souvenirs (oil lamps) and visited a hammam and a beautiful 18th century merchant house.


The next day, unfortunately, we had to go back again to the ‘ IKA ‘ airfield of Tehran. On the way we bought delicious pistachio biscuits and had a farewell lunch with Mohammed our driver. He was sure that we would come back again. We have that feeling too; The goodbyes made us really grief.


We felt safe and comfortable throughout our entire journey in Iran. Of course, you have to surrender in traffic to the driver’s knowledge and all other Iranian drivers, who must have a great deal of confidence in each other, in view of their driving style.

The main thing is that we had a great Persian journey with our family and we have never experienced a holiday with such a friendly and interested population as in Iran. Next time we would like to take a less classical route, with some more nature, perhaps by the sea (Persian Gulf or the Caspian Sea) and a longer stay in the desert. Anyway, there is still a lot to discover in Iran. We just got a corner of the veil for ourselves, in a beautiful may holiday.

Edward and Sieneke Spiegel, and our daughters Josephine and Mathilde

Zwolle, the Netherlands


“Silk Road” the Ancient Trade Network

“Silk Road” the Ancient Trade Network


The Silk Road (Silk Route) was an ancient network of trade routes founded during the Han Dynasty of China, that went through the regions of Eurasia and linked them in commerce. While many kinds of goods traveled along the Silk Road, the name Originated from the silk which was the Chinese Valuable commodity. The Silk Routes expanded from China through India, Asia Minor, Mesopotamia, Egypt, the North African continent, Greece, Rome, and finally Britain. The northern Mesopotamian region (present day Iran) was China’s closest trade partner, and they initiated important cultural exchanges. These ancient roads had no particular name. In the mid-nineteenth century, Baron Ferdinand von Richthofen, the German geologist, named the trade and communication network the Silk Road”. It was supposed a safe trading network of roads and even the Chinese extended their great wall to ensure its safety.

The roads were used from 130 BCE, when the Han officially established trade with the west, till the Ottoman Empire prohibited trade with the west and closed the roads.

The history of the Silk Road refers to the time before the Han Dynasty, known as the Persian Royal Road, which was of the main thoroughfare of the Silk Road. It was established during the Achaemenid Empire (500-330 BCE). The Persian Royal Road stretched from Susa, in Persia (modern day Iran) to the Mediterranean Sea in Asia Minor (modern day Turkey). There were postal stations along the route with fresh horses to deliver messages throughout the Persian empire, quickly.

Herodotus (413/425 – 484 BCE), about the efficiency and speed of the Persian messengers, wrote that:

“There is nothing in the world that travels faster than these Persian couriers. Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor darkness of night prevents these couriers from completing their designated stages with utmost speed.”


The Persians protected the Royal Road attentively and expanded it through smaller side roads. These routs eventually stretched from east into India, and from west into Egypt.

In addition to the silk, also spices, textiles, grain, fruits, vegetables, animals, tools, metal work, wood work, art work, gun powder, religious objects, precious stones, and much more were traded through the roads. The greatest legacy of the Silk Road was the exchange of technology, language, Art, religion, culture, philosophy, science, architecture, and every other civilization element beside the commercial commodities. The main traders in the road were the Persians, Chinese, Jews, Arabs, Greeks, Bactrians, Syrians, Turkmens, Indians, Romans, Georgians, and etc.

In the Dark Ages, caravans traveled through the silk roads were welcomed in large guest houses, so they had opportunity to meet other merchant travelers, and exchange cultures, languages and ideas.

Caravans’ travelling continued until the 19th century. This caused a network of caravanserais to be formed in China, India, Iran, Turkey, the Caucasus, North Africa, Russia and Eastern Europe. Many of them still stand. In the nineteenth century, a new type of travelers such as geographers and archaeologists explored the Silk Roads. Regularly, they were from France, England, Germany, Russia and Japan.


Iran on the Silk Road 

The silk road enters Iran through Khorasan and passes Tous, Nishapur, Sabzevar, Shahrud, Damghan, Semnan, the ancient Rey and Qazvin, and from there it is divided into two branches. One path goes toward the Northwest through Sarab, Tabriz, Marand and Khoy and afterward out of Iran. The second path stretches to Hegmataneh (today Hamedan), Kermanshah and exits from the west of Iran.

In the recent decades, UNESCO has tried to revive the silk road in the countries including Iran that form the chain loops of this precious heritage. Simultaneously, Iran government has taken effective steps to develop the road to become one of the major tourist destinations of Iran. In this regard, Nowadays the tourists are more interested to travel to this road and pass through the same road that their ancestors did and experience caravan journeys and visit ancient structures such as Caravansaries, water cisterns, cafes, shrines, castles, springs, sanctuaries, cemeteries, baths, markets, aqueducts and even the remnants of road and bridge flooring. If you are eager to explore the silk road, Friendlyiran offers a Comprehensive tour package including en route cities, towns and historical sites.





An Iranian Adventure

By Mike Rudge


When Margaret and I told people we were going to visit Iran, the common response was along the lines of,

“You’re what! You must be mad. Trump is about to bomb the place.”

But we had paid the fares, bought our travel insurance and collected our prescriptions, so backing out from our visit to the cradle of western civilisation was not an option.

If the venue had an unbelievable touch, so did the flight from Auckland to Doha. It is the longest commercial flight in the world, taking the equivalent of over two working days, sitting on one seat. Fortunately, Qatar Airways is a superb airline, providing great service and excellent food. Doha, the capital of Qatar, is a major hub for flights all over the world. The airport oozes wealth and superb architecture, and its arrival/departure boards are a multi-choice geography test. The flight from Doha to Tehran, capital of Iran, was a wonderful geology lesson that was amplified later as we toured by road. The land is contorted into ridges, folds, rifts and mountain ranges because three tectonic plates collide in this region. Politicians are not the only source of pressure on Iran.

Unlike New Zealand, which is surrounded by sea, Iran has land borders with six other countries, and is near neighbour to at least six more, whose religions, politics and history bring various degrees of friendship to everyone’s relationships. History is at the very heart of Iran, because the country today is the core of what were fluctuating Persian empires spanning more than 3,000 years. At its largest, ‘Persia’ reached from Delhi to the Danube, but some of the greatest names in the history of bloodshed have also imposed their wills upon Iran – Alexander the Great, various Roman Emperors, Genghis Khan, Tamerlane, the Ottomans. I wondered if today’s despots seem like ‘more of the same’ in the cultural memory and psychology of this country.

Though Kings and empires have come and gone, one constant feature in Iran, and a wonder for tourists today, is the Paradise (=Persian) Garden. The first one was created at Pasagarde in about 500 BC, and its remnants are still discernible today in a semi-desert that was a fertile valley at that time. The basic concept of the Persian Garden – water, trees and flowers – came to be expressed in many ways, at mosques, palaces and homes. Long, reflecting pools, waterfalls, fountains and bubbling channels sit within flower beds and slender cypress trees. One of the finest is the Shah Zadeh garden whose tranquillity arrests the onward rush of even the most ardent tourist. But, beguiling though the Paradise Gardens are, two great centres, the ruins at Persepolis and the mosques and palaces of Esfahan, are the tourist magnets.


Iran is rich both in ruins from past civilisations and in glorious Islamic architecture. Many of both are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Perspolis, is the remains of a palace complex conceived 2,500 years ago by King Cyrus who wanted to display the might of his Persian empire to emissaries paying homage. Cyrus brought designers and artisans from the far corners of that empire. The result, with additions by later Kings, includes great staircases, monumental gateways, friezes carved in stone, statues, and tall columns that are the only remains of many buildings. Persepolis stood in a fertile area then but, in a drying climate, the exquisite stone carvings look as sharp now as when skilled artisans created them. Another ambitious empire builder, Alexander the Great, burned down the wooden interiors in 330 BC, so that today we see only the imposing stone remains, standing above the desert on their platform of massive blocks.

The top tourist destination in Iran is Esfahan, a city of craft artisans, tree-lined boulevards, Persian Gardens and spectacular Islamic buildings. Hundreds of metres of covered bazaars are a shopper’s paradise. Metal and stone craft, works of art, fabrics, carpets, domestic ware, meats, jewellery, a huge array of fruit and vegetables, and sacks and bins of indeterminate spices, are all there in profusion. You can watch silver being engraved, copper being beaten, and semi-precious stones being set. The sights, smells and sounds are marvellous. Long arcades and domes show that architectural skill, and unending imagination in brickwork and coloured tiles, are not confined to mosques and palaces.

Driving around Iran, it is impossible not to be struck by sharp transitions in the landscape. In the valleys, grow cereals, figs, pomegranates, melons, and many vegetables. Within metres, when the slope changes, this fertile scene becomes semi-desert (with occasional flocks of sheep and goats), rocky slopes and mountain ranges. Layered rocks speak of an ancient land that has risen from the ocean, and the Great Salt Desert is further evidence of that. Enormous forces contorted those rocks into folds, and even pinnacles where erosion has eaten into softer layers. It is hard to imagine vibrant cities, great civilisations, and the productive land that would have supported them and their armies, where now there are barren landscapes and ruins. Everywhere in Iran, it is clear that water is as crucial today as it was in the rise and fall of great empires of the past.


Politically, Iran is a theocracy governed by Shi’ite clerics who gaze down severely from billboards and buildings. Women, including tourists, must observe Islamic dress codes, such as head scarves and long gowns, but a younger generation is testing the boundaries with elegant garments that more or less comply. Alcohol is forbidden, but we adjusted quite happily, and realised how big a part alcohol plays in New Zealand society. Iranian food, and its gentle spices, is almost a vegetarian delight, with many dishes based on aubergines, tomatoes, lentils and beans, with or without meat.

Even though English-speaking TV stations are rare in Iran, political matters were always evident. The effect of financial sanctions (over nuclear enrichment) was demonstrated all around the country by incomplete roads, bridges and buildings. General neglect is apparent, too, except in major tourist sites where restoration work is done with admirable support from UNESCO. While we were in Iran, Israel breathed aggression, and the USA announced yet tougher sanctions, but many other countries denied that Iran had breached its nuclear treaty obligations. Such is life in Iran. For us, coming from a land bordered only by benign ocean, it was strange to share at first hand the threats from nearby powers, and from a greater power so far away. The people of Iran do not need them, and probably do not deserve them.

Our local tour company was called ‘Friendly Iran’, a name that truly reflects our experience of that country. Amir, our superb Iranian guide, assured us that we could walk anywhere at any time without fear for our safety. On the street, and in Persian Gardens, bazaars and mosques, we were welcomed. Children called ‘hello’, and they scampered away laughing when we said ‘hello’ back; teenage schoolgirls with smiling faces framed in headscarves, wanted to talk English, pose for photos and laugh in delight; adults extended their hands and asked us where we were from. Many of them knew where tiny New Zealand was, and that it was a beautiful country. They were appreciative that we had travelled from so far away to visit their country, despite what we may have heard about it, and what might happen to us. Iranians must be some of the friendliest people on earth, and anyone who visits their ancient and extraordinary country will be sure of a welcome.


Big Group Tours to Iran

Big Group Tours to Iran


“How nice it would be if the whole world comes together as one happy family, if we could all keep sharing all the things we have – what joy, what peace, what contentment!”

A very Meaningful and nice statement from a community called Samratchana (means “Total Protection”) in Chennai, India, where “Baba” and his followers try to bring the whole world under one roof and live with love. They believe we are brothers and sisters and children of God. The campus houses a few Hindu temples, a mosque, a church, a Buddha temple and a Jain temple. They also travel to know the humans all over the world and send them peace, friendship and love messages.

Baba and the community are interested in spirituality and religion, and travel to different religious and holy places, visiting holy shrines and temples and meeting religious leaders.

Iran is a country full of different cultures and religions and a lot of holy places like ancient mosques, cathedrals, fire temples, Synagogue, holy shrines and ancient cemeteries. Friendly Iran group would happily arrange an itinerary to cover the interests of these kind of communities who are eager to travel and explore the mentioned places.

We can happily plan and customize your itinerary for Iran group tour such as big families, huge group of friends, community members, cult followers and the affinity groups with common interests. Based on your interests we can tailor-made the tour schedule and provide your required services to visit your favorite highlights in main cities and even arrange your tour to explore remote attractions with your preformed group at reasonable prices under your budget limit.


As a consequence of forming a large tour group, friendly Iran would offer special discounts upon Iran tour expenses covering accommodation, catering, tour escort, transferring, Iran visa services and Iran travel insurance fees.

In May 2018, one of Indian community members and their “Baba” (Siva Shankar Baba), formed a large group tour (25 passengers), traveled to Iran and visited the main cities and their highlights. We are proud to have been their host, and provide their required services, based on their interests and budget limit.


Is Iran a family-friendly vacation destination?

Is Iran a family-friendly vacation destination?


Tourism has potential for being a long-term activity for the planet. So, the kids who are the future kings of the earth play a significant role in this activity. When we plan our family holidays, if we consider travelling with our children we should provide the situation for them to have fun and learn during the trip, it will bring us closer to responsible tourism and leads us to a more sustainable world and the third generation of tourism called Creative Tourism. Traveling with your family and kids is wonderful mixture of recreation and education.


When you think about traveling to Iran, as a cultural destination in the middle east maybe you do not consider it as a kid-friendly destination. That is not true! There is no need to leave your beloved children at home with a babysitter or their grandma! Do not hesitate to bring your kids to Iran because:

  • Iran is great for family holidays, children are most welcome, and Iranian adore babies.
  • Iran is a safe destination in the middle east.
  • Iran has plenty of diverse recreation and entertainment sites to go with kids and teenagers such as museums, aquariums, amusement parks and also specific natural sites like Qeshm geopark for unique geo-based attractions and Lut-desert for trekking and safari.
  • Iran is a reasonable destination for families. This opportunity gives the most of travelers the potential to book private services during their Iran visit. A private driver with a knowledgeable guide help to get the most out of every sites, minimize transfer times, and maximize fun with family.

Iran Family-Oriented Accommodation

Your accommodation in Iran can also be an attraction itself. You can stay together in family suites of boutique hotels or Eco-lodges in the small towns and villages, traditional houses and nomads or desert camps. No matter where you stay, it will be of good quality as standard and more. Besides the mentioned advantages, the prices in above types of accommodation are so reasonable for families. As the kids are usually fussy eaters, we can ensure that colorful Iranian cuisine makes them enthusiastic to experience new tastes and eat well. If you have a big family who are eager to explore Iran with kids, we in friendlyiran can happily plan and customize your itinerary for family tours and group tours to Iran.


Christmas in Iran

Around 25th December to the 6th January, at the time that Christmas holidays coming, the Armenian residency and fashionable shops turn on a new decor and make a pleasant vibe.

In Armenian district the smell of doughnuts and coffee comes from little confectionaries, making every passenger set foot in the shop and buy some delicious sweets. Energetic mothers with their children looking for chic clothes and charming gifts, walk in the streets, laughing and enjoying their time.

The official religion of Iran is Islam and majority of Iranian people are Muslims, yet Iran population have about 3 hundred Christians who are freely living in Iran, believing in their religious heritage. Moreover, They Celebrate Christmas every year, attending church services, decorating their houses with pine trees, lights and Santa doll and gathering together as a family.

Jesus Christ is a highly respected prophet in the world of Islam and Christmas is also an exciting event for Muslim youths. They go shopping in Armenian quarters, congratulating New Christian Year to their Iranian and non-Iranian friends.

Most of Azerbaijan Province was the residential district of Armenian people from the ancient time, and about 180 lovely and beautiful churches located in this region. Some of these Churches are UNESCO world heritage, named The Armenian Monastic Ensembles of Iran, in the north-west of the country, consist of three monastic ensembles of the Armenian Christian faith: St Thaddeus and St Stepanos and the Chapel of Dzordzor.

From early times that Christianity came to Iran, so many Armenian merchants made deals with Indians through Bandar Abbas and Shiraz.

The most beautiful Christmas festival in Iran is held in Armenian Quarter of Isfahan, which named as Jolfa! It feels like you are in Armenia when you walk through the pavement in the Jolfa region. There, people speak their mother tongue, Armenian language, with an adorable accent. The cosy shops are just the same as Armenian shops. Have you ever heard about Armenian coffee? Coffee shops in Jolfa region serve a tasty coffee. There are some famous churches located in Jolfa Area, such as Vank cathedral and St. Mary Church. Christian New Year holiday in Iran, visiting Iran historical places while you make yourself at home!

How We Celebrate Christmas in Iran

On 1st of Jan, The ceremony of sacrifice begins. Families enter the yard of churches, kiss the relatives. Children play, and adults do greetings. At the exact time of 12:00 when bells ring, the sound of silence is all you will hear, everybody looks at the sky and pray, turn on candles, then people sing a traditional song while their tears wash out their faces.

On 5th of Jan, Armenians break their fasting, doing communion in Church. For the consecration, they give some butter to families to add to their meals.

In the Christian New Year eve family members gather together around the Christmas tree and pray and then attend to church services. Pine trees ornamented by colourful glass balls and shining lights. Under the Christmas trees, there are always gifts. Some family members put on Santa clause clothes, and some hire a Santa claus to give presents to the children.

Are you planning to spend Christmas holidays in Iran?

Joining Iranian Christmas in the holiday is a new experience that is different than all Christmas times that you ever had. Every year stylish tourists who like to try new things don’t lose the opportunity of joining Iran Christmas tours in 2018. During this Christian holiday, you can still do Christian communion, ceremonies and join the gatherings with lovely Armenian Christians. A fabulous beginning to the New Year 2018, in Persia!

This Iran tour for Christian New Year holiday is fixed in the Vacation time, but via ignoring the Iranian Christmas celebrations in Isfahan, you can have the same tour in all time of the year!

Why Should You Not Miss Persian Christmas Tour Package?

During Christmas time, it’s low-season in Iran, and you can make a great Iran tour deal through FriendlyIran tour operator!

You should choose a travel agency in Iran that have competent programs, especially in this great Christian holidays.

From 24th of Dec to 6th of Jan, when the schools are closed, and it’s time to give yourself an easy time to go on a trip, Go ahead and make your decision to be in Iran for this Christmas! Don’t let yourself wondering where to go! The next destination for 2018 New Year holidays is Iran!

FriendlyIran Travel and Tourism Agency operates customized tours to have a special New Year holiday in Iran, which will be beyond your imagination! We’ve got so much interesting plan and surprises for you! Taste the Merry Christmas in Persian- Christian Style!


Good to know

Iranian new year . .

Christmas in iran pictures

Join us in new year  holiday tour package

7 Things to know about Iran Tourist Visa on Arrival in 2018

How to get on arrival Iran visa in 2018? Is it necessary to have Iran visa as a permission to enter Iran? So many tourists who plan to travel to Iran wonder; how and when to proceed to get Iran visa? And, How to get Urgent Iran visa for travelling?

This article is about most important tips to get Iran visa (Iran tourist visa) and hints to have Iran visa on arrival.


iran visa

  1. Who can get Iran visa on arrival?

Tourists who are planning to visit Iran, can have their visa on arrival at Iran international airports. Iran visa on arrival for Diplomats, Officials? Iran visa on arrival is specified to tourist type of visa. Diplomats, official passport holders cannot have visa on arrival to Iran. Which nationalities can have Iran VOA? Most of the nationalities can have Iran visa at the airport.

Which nationality cannot have VOA of Iran? USA, UK, Canada, India, Colombia, Somalia, Jordan, Bangladesh, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan passport holders cannot have Iran visa on arrival.

  1. Where can we get Iran visa on arrival?

Tourists can have their Iran visa on arrival stamped on their passport in all international airports in Iran, Tehran Imam Khomeini (IKA), Mehrabad (THR), Shiraz (SYZ), Esfahan (IFN), Mashhad (MHD), Tabriz (TBZ) and Kish (KIH).


  1. Requirements and Needed documents for Iran VOA Visa?

Requirements for Tourist visa on arrival are:

  • A passport with validity of 6 months from the arrival day
  • Personal photo with a white background
  • Visa fee; the cost of visa on arrival for each nationality is different


  1. How much Iran visa on Arrival costs?

If you want to have Iran visa on arrival you will skip the Iran visa service, which is normally 45 Euro.

In any case, tourists should pay a cost as Iran visa stamping fee.


The Iran visa stamp fee for Germany, Spain, Italy, Austria, Slovenia, Czech, Denmark, Romania, Sweden, Swiss, French, Finland, Luxemburg, Poland, Norway, Netherland, Belgium, Portuguese, Thailand passport holders is 75 uro for VOA type of Iran visa.

Iran Visa Cost Table:

Nationality VOA Iran visa Fee Nationality VOA Iran visa Fee
Mexico 45 €uro Sierra Leon 120 €uro
Australia 145 €uro Croatia 50  €uro
Argentina 85 €uro S Korea 50 €uro
Brazil 100 €uro Malaysia 10 €uro
China 120 €uro Venezuela 55 €uro
Russia 85 €uro Vietnam 110 €uro
Japan 60 €uro India 50 €uro
Sri Lanka 40 €uro Hong Kong 80 €uro


  1. Tips to get Iran Visa on Arrival:
  • To get VOA visa of Iran in high season you need to stay in a long queue
  • Check the expiration date of your passport. To get Iran visa your passport should be valid until 6 months.
  • Those who have visited Israel in less than a year before Iran tour, might not be able to get visa to Iran.
  • Iran Visa on Arrival (VOA) is usually for 14 days of stay in Iran. To extend the duration of stay in Iran, tourist should present him/herself in Police Office of Foreign affairs.


  1. How to get Visa on Arrival (VOA) for American Passport holders?

Americans, US citizen should have their visa stamped before their entry to Iran. Click here for tips about Iran visa for Americans, Canadians and British passport holders.

  1. Is it possible to get Iran visa on arrival for Indian passport holders?

Tourists with Indian citizenship should get Iran visa before entry and arrival to Iran. Having the visa at the airport (VOA) is not possible for Indian nationalities.


Stay on Safe Side!

It’s possible to get Iran visa on arrival and have Iran tourist visa at the airport, but Friendly Iran Visa Advisors suggest you have Iran visa tracking code for a primary approval of your entry and then stamp your Iran visa at the airport.

Free Iran Visa Code with FriendlyIran Tour Operators! Save 45 Euro!

Iran visa service on our Iran tour packages is totally free.

Celebrating Yalda Night

Celebrating Yalda Night

Celebrations in every nation and country may hold for families to gather together, youngsters sit side by side of their elders, and experiencing happy moments and memories. Theses things remind us how majestic nature is and how merciful God has been toward us.

Yalda Night is an Iranian ancient ceremony which is considered as the last night of fall and the first night of winter. This night equals the first night of winter for those who live in the northern part of earth. From this night the length of days increase while nights become shorter than previous nights in fall. Ancient Iranians celebrated this night since they believed that from that night on the lord’s light spread over the earth much more than before. This type of thanksgiving celebration has survived among Iranians to the contemporary era.

Families used to gather at Yalda night in order to move from the lengthiest night to the light of the next day. They wanted to share their happiness with each other. Yalda contains several beautiful traditions each one of them is designed for a reason. It would be great if every body follows these traditions in its best way. Nowadays People set a beautiful table full of delicious foods, fruits and nuts, Meanwhile, in the past people used to sit around Korsi at Yalda nights.

Korsi: Korsi is a heating utensil which gives Iranian people a feeling of nostalgia. Korsi is made up of a sort table under which a bowel filled with hot coal is situated. People used to spread a quilt over the table to keep the heat under it. Iranian families used to spend their winter nights sitting beside Korsi.


For Yalda night, people provide so many different foods for their spread. Every province in Iran may have its own specific foods, but what are common among all Iranians are watermelon, pomegranate, special nuts like dry fruits that people used to make them but nowadays you can buy it from different stores. These dry fruits and nuts are figs, raisins, walnuts, almonds, pistachio, hazelnut, apricots and so on. Eating any of these nuts means something special. For example seeds are the symbols of earning. People believe that if you eat watermelon at this night, you will never catch cold in the cold seasons.

Among other traditions some highlights are, elders who tell stories to the youngsters of the family, reading Hafez poems and see your Fal. Hafez is a famous Persian poet. We believe that if they pray first and then open Hafez Divan, he’ll tell you about the future and what you have in your mind. 



Top 20 Motives to Visit Iran (4)

16. Ta’rof!

As we talked about it at the first step, being Friendly is the most amazing feature of travelling to Iran. Iranians always treat their guest in the best possible way. Taarof is a unique Persian culture makes you feel not a stranger at all, although it may cause some cultural misunderstanding ?…It can’t be described in words, so Befarmaeed az nazdik bebinid…



17. Alamut

The fabled Alamut Valley offers a tempting invitation to hike, enjoy, explore and reflect among the fabled Castles of the Assassins. More than 50 fortresses that were once home to the medieval world’s most feared religious cult choose a day hike from Qazvin or more extensive wanderings from Gazor Khan, a full trans-Alborz crossing to the Caspian hinterland, an off-road tour in the heart of over 100-year-old jungles. Either way, this is some of the most rewarding hiking to be found in the Middle East.



18. Shiraz, the city of Literature

Even in the poorest home you’ll find two books: the Quran and the Divaneh Hafez. It’s appropriate for a country whose most celebrated sons are poets, and where almost every person can quote their favorite millennium-old man of words. In Shiraz, the city of nightingales, roses and gardens, the tombs of Hafez and Sa’di draw pilgrims from around the country. Join them as they linger over tea, reciting the works of their heroes, playing traditional Persian instruments and find out your answers among Hafiz Fals


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19. Cheetah

You may wonder “Are there cheetahs in Iran??”…the answer is YES, although…

Iran is trying to save one of the world’s critically endangered species, the Asiatic cheetah. The Iranian cheetah, one of the fastest animals on earth, ranged long time ago from the Red Sea to India, nowadays its numbers shrunk to the level that it is hanging on by a thin thread. The survivors in Iran are estimated from 50 to 70 animals, mostly in the east part of the country.



20. Zoroastrian Fire Temples

Iran is an Islamic Republic, but varieties of religious sites amaze everyone. It’s Zoroastrian sites have an otherworldly charm. Chak Chak, out in a deliciously remote location in the Yazd hinterland, has a superb fire temple with a stunning brass door, even more stunning views, and an air of ritual, ancient and deep. This was the Zoroastrian heartland and remains its most significant pilgrimage site. It’s difficult to come here and not imagine yourself in the days before Islam arrived in Iran. There are other fire temples in Kerman and Yazd.


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Top 20 Motives to visit Iran (3)

11. Where is modern day Susa?

Even if you don’t normally seek out ancient ruins, these three World Heritage sites will make you reconsider. The great bulk and fascinating back story make the Choqa Zanbil Ziggurat, which dates back a mere 34 centuries, one of the most impressive historical sites in a region full of them. Now excavated, some of the bricks look as if they came out of the kill last week and the Tomb of Danial with its unique architecture. Susa or Shush is a fabulous ruin of a place with a castle, acropolis and palace remnants, while Shushtar impressively rounds things out. The ancient watermills of Shooshtar date back to Darius the Great, is a masterpiece of architecture.



12. Tehran Art Scene

Tehran’s excellent museums and palaces provide great insights into Iran’s past. However, to gain a handle on its present, don’t miss the city’s range of hip cafes and contemporary art galleries. These provide an entree into a side of modern Iranian life; they are creative, challenging and liberal, you seldom hear much about in the media. Even government sponsored institutions such as the Iran Holy Defence Museum and Qsar Garden Museum make inventive use of contemporary art. There are many galleries in Tehran which present contemporary art such as Aran art, Elahe Gallery, Homa art gallery, Aun gallery, Etemad gallery, Seyhoun art gallery, Silk Road art gallery, and Sien gallery.


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13. Islamic Bazaar

In the age of the superstore, most Iranians rely on these mazes of covered lanes, madrasehs and caravanserais for much of their shopping. Tehran, Esfahan, Shiraz, Kerman, Qazvin, Lar and Kashan all have atmospheric bazaars where you can browse beneath domed ceilings, dodge motorcycles and stop in teahouses for a brew. Perhaps the greatest is the World Heritage listed, Tabriz Bazaar, the world’s largest covered bazaar and once among the most important trading centers on the Silk Road.



14. UNESCO world heritage city of Iran, YAZD

Few places have adapted to their environment as well as the desert city of Yazd. It’s a gem of winding lanes, blue tiled domes, soaring minarets, bazaars, and Court yard homes topped by badgers (windrowers) and watered by Qanats (underground water channels). Several of these homes have been restored and converted into evocative traditional hotels. Many travelers declare Yazd to be their favorite city in Iran, and it’s not difficult to see why, combining as it does a whiff of magic on the cusp of the desert. Summer places not far from this desert area are the unexpected combination you can’t miss.


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15. Western Iran

With the slowdown in overland travel, few make it out west, but that’s just the way we like it. Track down UNESCO World Heritage, listed Armenian churches. Follow the route through Howraman on your way between Marivan and Paveh, named Thousand Masuleh for owning many villages the same as Masuleh. Explore the Aras Valley or spend time getting to know the Kurds around Howraman, the mountain villages around Paveh, the Azeris in the northwest, the Gilan on the Caspian Coast, the Arabs of Khuzestan and so many more unique attractions. Put them together and Western Iran is worth building your entire trip around.


Top 20 Motives to Visit Iran (2)

6. Yummy Trip

Iranian food is one delicious surprise after another. Once you’ve tried several varieties of kabab, khoresht (stew), ash (soup), and flatbread, ask for Fesenjun (chicken in walnut and pomegranate sauce) or anything with Bademjan (eggplant), or try Gilan cuisine with its predominantly sour flavors, this city is the only registered UNESCO creative city of food under the name of Iran. Then you can try the Shirini (local sweets), … As exquisite as so many Iranian flavors are, it’s the buzz that surrounds eating, the primacy of food in so many social encounters that makes it truly one of life’s great pleasures.

7. Esfahan, city of the blue-tiled dome

There are moments in travel that will long stay with you, and your first Sight of Esfahan’s majestic Naqsh-e Jahan (Imam) Square is one of them. This Square is home to arguably the most majestic collection of buildings in the Islamic World: the perfectly proportioned blue-tiled dome of the Masjed-e Shah, the supremely elegant Masjed-e Sheikh Lotfollah, and the indulgent and lavishly decorated Ali Qapu Palace. Far from being a static architectural attraction, the square and the nearby traditional tea houses overlooking the river throng with life. The Qeysarieh bazaar which is surrounded by the square won’t let you feel the time passing!

8. Imam Reza Holy shrine

Iran is an Islamic Republic country and while most travelers find Islam is not nearly as all-pervasive as they had expected, the Shiite faith remains an important part of Iranian life. It is at its most obvious in the passionate devotion seen at monuments such as the huge Haram-e Razavi in Mashhad. The main draw here is the Holy Shrine of Imam Reza, the only Shiite imam buried in Iran. The passion and warmth you’ll encounter here lend a powerful sense of Islam as a force for good in the world. The city of Mashad is one of the important stops along the Silk Road.

9. Persian carpets

The Persian carpet is best known and appreciated among all hand-knotted carpets over the world. In the East, the carpet has particularly dated back to the 5th or 6th centuries; later the knotted carpet has been introduced in Persia by the Seljuks in the 11th century. The oldest carpet we received is known as Pazyryk Carpet, from approximately 500 BC. The art of Persian rug reached the highest peaks during the Safavid dynasty or the beginning of the 17th century. We classify the Persian carpets according to the knotting time: ancient, old, new, and modern Persian carpets; they usually take the name from the city or knotting area so we can divide them out of the areas of origin.

10. Persepolis

The artistic harmony of the monumental staircases, imposing gateways, and exquisite reliefs leaves you in little doubt that in its prime, Persepolis was at the center of the known world. These days it’s Iran’s premier ancient city. Built by kings Darius and Xerxes as the ceremonial capital of the Achaemenid Empire, located not far from the great city of Shiraz, is one of the attractions you need to add to your tour like it or not J. And do not miss the monolithic tomb that sat nearby Necropolis or Naqsh-e Rostam.

To be continued…

Top 20 Motives to Visit Iran (1)


1. Friendly People

The first impression after entering the country is “Do they know me?!”

In any competition for the title of the world’s friendliest people, Iranians would be definite finalists.

It’s the people that leave the most lasting impressions from any journey to Irantheir warmth and their hospitality, their willingness to set aside enmities between countries and welcome you with open arms and doors.

Whoever you meet, you will regularly bask what you think of Iran, told ‘You are our guest’ and brought tea, local sweets, and even food. Meeting Iranians is, quite simply, the best experience in Iran. 



 2. Desert

Three different types of deserts including various attractions have made Iran a popular destination for desert lovers. The welcome is rarely warmer than in the vast, empty silence of Iran’s two great deserts. Garmeh is the oasis village of your dreams, with a crumbling castle, swaying date palms, and the sound of spring water. It’s the sort of place you come for one night and stay more. Nearby Farahzad and tiny Toudeshk Cho, between Esfahan and Na’in, also offer memorable desert-style family homestays; think beds on the floor, basic bathrooms, fresh, delicious home-cooked food, and endless horizons just outside your door.


3. Not only sand dunes

In addition to big desert areas in the land of Persia, mountain chains of North and West are the big reasons for a completely different nature in the western and northern parts. Mount. Alborz is located in the north of Iran and Zagros in the west.

You can enjoy unique nature such as mountain parks, Nomadic life, mountain villages, 100 years old jungles, and much more attractions.



4. Nomads of the Zagros

About two million Iranians from several different ethnic groups still live a nomadic existence, traveling with their goats in spring and autumn in search of pasture. Qashqa’i and Bakhtiyari nomads spend the summer months in the Zagros Mountains, before heading down to the coast for the winter. You can get a taste of nomad life on a day trip from Shiraz to Sepidan or Khan Zenyan.


5. Skiing

Think Iran and skiing is hardly the first thing that springs to mind. But Iran has more than 20 ski fields and most of the action is conveniently concentrated around Tehran. The Dizin and Shemshak resorts are the pick, with steep downhills and plenty of untracked Powder to keep skiers of all levels interested. Chalets and ski passes are inexpensive compared with Western countries and the slopes are relatively liberal, beloved as they are by Tehran’s upper-middle class. Pooladkaf ski resort is another one located in the south of the country.


To be continued…


Jashk Salt Dome 

 an Amazing Geological Attractions in Iran

Are you interested in adding off-beaten attractions to your Iran tour?!

Salt dome or as Iranian call it Kuh-e Namak, is one of the magnificent natural beauties all over the world. Jashk salt dome also known as Dashti salt dome is the biggest sample in Iran and also middle east. This colorful mountain covers an area of about 3660 hectares on the Southern slope of Zagros Mountains, in Bushehr province.

You will be surprised by the variety of attractions here, salt waterfalls and salt springs, making different salty shapes in the water such as Cauliflowers, and salt caves full of stunning salt crystals. Different colors, red, brown, yellow, black and white, has made this attraction so matchless among the other 114 salt domes in south of Iran.

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Salt glaciers are another majestic treasure of the area. The name glacier is showing the similarity of salt and snow. You never can recognize a salt dome from a snow-covered mountain in the distance. The adorable points about this similarity is the green land full of flowers which exists some steps away from the glaciers ?

Best time to visit the waterfalls is from mid Spring till autumn and as this phenomenon is located near Persian Gulf, you will have the chance to explore the southern ports and enjoy different water sports such as diving.



Top 5 Traditional Hotels of Middle East in Iran 2018

Each year Trip advisor, the world famous tourism magazine, announces Best Middle East B&Bs and Inns.

In 2017, Iranian House,  Saraye Ameriha,  Manouchehri house and Ehsan house were 4 suggested Traditional and Historical House in Kashan among 25 Best Bed and Breakfast hotels and inns. They were also Top accommodation in Kashan based on tourist reviews in 2017.

In 2018, Tripadvisor again listed best inns and B&B hotels in Middle East. In the 25 selected Inns, Iran got 5 bests, this time in different cities and regions,eg; Qeshm Island, Kashan, Varzaneh desert and Yazd.


Close Look at Iran hotels and traditional house photos[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

1. Assad House in Qeshm, Iran

Locating in a good location in Qeshm island, by overnighting in Assad B&B homestay you can enjoy walking to the sea and visit the Island with him.

Amenities and facilities:

  1. Free Parking
  2. Free High-Speed Internet (WiFi)
  3. Breakfast included
  4. Airport Transportation

Mesir Bashgah Kelato | Bandar-e-Doulab, Qeshm, Iran

2. Iranian House

Iranian historical house is actually a 4* B&B Hotel, it’s very well located and stylish. 

 Hotel Amenities and Facilities:

  1. Free Internet
  2. Breakfast included
  3. Airport Transportation
  4. Concierge
  5. Laundry Service
  6. Multilingual Staff

Address; No 8, Fifth Bastan Alley , Alavi St., Fazel Naraqi Ave | Kamal-ul-molk SqKashan 87134, Iran



3. Saraye Ameriha Boutique Hotel

A highlight historical house, with a very splendid area, architecture and great service.

Amenities and Facilities:

  1. Free High-Speed Internet (WiFi)
  2. Restaurant
  3. Breakfast included
  4. Air Conditioning
  5. Banquet Room
  6. Breakfast Available
  7. Concierge
  8. Conference Facilities
  9. Dry Cleaning
  10. Meeting Rooms
  11. Minibar
  12. Multilingual Staff
  13. Non-Smoking Hotel
  14. Refrigerator in room

Address: Alavi AvenueKashan 87134, Iran


4. Chapaker Guest House

This Inn is located in Nain city, between Esfahan and Yazd. One of the best choices for those who love Varzaneh Sandy desert.
Amenities and Facilities
  1. Free Parking
  2. Free High-Speed Internet (WiFi)
  3. Breakfast included
  4. Breakfast Available
  5. Non-Smoking Hotel

Address: Beheshti StreetVarzaneh 8145657333, Iran


5. Jungle Hotel

In the old part of the city, in Yazd. A cosy new built house in an old style.

Amenities and Facilities:

  1. Free High-Speed Internet (WiFi)
  2. Breakfast included
  3. Free Parking
  4. Air Conditioning
  5. Airport Transportation
  6. Breakfast Available
  7. Laundry Service
  8. Non-Smoking Hotel
  9. Refrigerator in room

Address: Emam Ave FAHADAN STREET | Fahadan, Front of coin museumYazd 8919954177, Iran

Iranian hotels and traditional houses Best Picture and photos

Top 10 Things to Do in Isfahan


Isfahan one of the best and most beautiful and tidiest cities of Iran used to be the capital of Persia in glory days of 17th century. It is called “half-of-the-world” by many people due to its uniqueness and grandeur. It is a live museum of artisans and the handicrafts with its historic bazaar, attractive bridges, and adorned mosques. The city of blue domes is the home land of Muslims, Jews and Christians who live peacefully together. As Jean Chardin, a 17th-century French traveler, writes: “The greatest and the most beautiful town in the whole of Orient” and “was expressly made for the delights of love”.

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  1. Naqsh-e Jahan Square: Known also as Imam Square, is the masterpiece of Safavid era and one of the UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. The royal square was the place where Shah and his people met. It is surrounded by four highlights including Imam Mosque, Sheikh Lotfolah Mosque, Alighapoo edifice and Bazaar.

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Imam/Shah Mosque: Designed with blue-tiled mosaic presents perfectly proportioned architecture of Safavid era and creates a marvelous view to your eyes. The majesty of the architecture of this mosque cannot be described in words; thus, you must go there to pay a visit in person.

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Ali Qapu Palace: A huge portal that is opposite to Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque. Shah Abbas used to celebrate Nowrooz (Iranian New Year) in this fabulous edifice. 18 columns of this monumental palace are decorated with mirrors and the ceiling is covered with great paintings. A splendid music hall is in the sixth floor with deep circular niches in the walls for music echoing. Shah used to sit in the edifice terrace and enjoy watching polo matches.


Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque: A valuable monument dominating the boundary of the Naqshe Jahan Square which was the first one among the four constructed edifices around the Square. Although, in comparison with Imam Mosque, Sheikh Lotf Allah Mosque is very simple in design, but it has an exceedingly complex decoration both inside and outside. The exterior of its single dome is richly ornamented with exquisitely made and beautiful tiles.

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  1. Isfahan Bazaar: A historical market in Isfahan and one of the oldest and largest bazaars in the Middle East. The bazaar is a two-kilometer street connecting Isfahan’s old city to the new part. Every line of the bazaar is allocated to certain types of goods, such as colorful Iranian carpets, hand woven rugs, shoes, spices, gold, silver and handicrafts such as Moarraq, a sort of manual wood working, Khatam, the wooden articles with fine pieces of wood, bone and metal precisely cut in geometrical shapes. There are also several workshops where you can see the handicrafts making process.

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  1. Jolfa square: The Armenian square of Jolfa in Isfahan is a place where Christians live peacefully and do their religious rites. Their ancienter migrated from Jolfa town in the north of Iran during Safavid era. There are Armenian churches, an old cemetery and music museum in this fashionable area. In the afternoons and evenings many visitors are strolling the quarter and enjoying Armenian coffee in a liberal atmosphere.

 Vank Cathedral: Another marvelous piece of art with splendid architecture is Vank Cathedral in the Armenian square. Its architecture is a combination of 17th century Safavid style with lofty arches and a dome with Islamic design. The biblical story is depicted by the paintings drawn on the brick dome. Its museum is the house of valuable collections gathered from all the Armenian world such as Safavid costumes, tapestries, European paintings, embroideries and a small seven-gram bible believed to be the smallest written text in seven languages.

Music Museum: There are more than 300 Persian instruments including Kamancheh, Tar, Ney, majestic harp and nomadic camel bells. It is not just a museum full of musical instruments; visitors have access to the less precious pieces and they can even try to play. They also enjoy masters’ performance of traditional Persian love songs.

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  1. Menar-e Jonban (Shaking Minarets): It is a historical monument that was constructed during the Ilkhanid era. The edifice was decorated with dark blue tiles and bricks. There is a marvelous peculiarity about this building. At the summit of one of the minarets, if someone hold the minaret and shake it by hands, the other minaret on the opposite side will surprisingly shake, too. This instance of unprecedented coupled vacillation is observable from the ground.


  1. The City of Bridges: One of the remarkable attractions in Isfahan is its bridges. Five old bridges have constructed cross the seasonal river of Zayandehrood. They date from Safavid era and even earlier.

Si-o-Seh Pol: This ancient bridge is probably Isfahan’s most famous bridge. It is made up of 33 arches in a row on the river. During the Safavid era the ceremonial feasts of Abrizan (throwing water) of the Armenians were held beside this bridge. It is regarded as one of the masterpieces of Iran’s and the whole world’s architecture and bridge construction.

Pole Khaju (Khaju Bridge):  Due to the pleasing construction idea of the bridge, it becomes one of the famous bridges of Iran. It is built in Safavid era. The primary function of this bridge was abode for public meeting or as a tea-house.

Pole Marnan (Marnan Bridge): The exact date of the bridge construction is unknown but there are signs in the bridge foundation that date back to Sassanid Dynasty. The Bridge used to be the important western bridge in Isfahan during the Safavid era.

Pole Shahrestan (Shahrestan Bridge): The pillars are made of cement and ballast. The foundation of the bridge is Sassanid and Achaemenid and the buildings on the bridge have influenced by Islamic architecture.

Pole Choobi (Choobi Bridge): Another famous bridge of Isfahan, constructed by Shah Abbas II during Safavid era. it was built in order to irrigate Safavid royal gardens close by.

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  1. Isfahani art of cuisine: The popular Iranian cuisine is ancient, rich and indeed delicious. It is so various due to the extent of the country and the climate diversity. The traditional restaurants in Isfahan are dedicated to specific traditional foods of the area, do not miss them.

Beryani, the real taste of baked meat: This is the most famous traditional food goes back to about 400 years ago, served in unique restaurants of Isfahan. It is the burger shape mixture of lamb, saffron and some herbs served in a traditional bread.

Gaz: Gaz is the traditional name of Persian nougat which is a kind of candy originated from the city of Isfahan and Boldaji. It is decorated with small pieces of pistachio or almond to give it the special taste of nuts. You can also shop this tasty and sweet candy and take it as souvenir to your country and eat it along with a cup of saffron tea.

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  1. Unique Gardens: This azure city which shines like a piece of diamond in the center of Iran’s plateau is intertwined with lovely gardens to give a new sense of the beauty of urban spaces. There is a famous historical avenue constructed during Safavid dynasty named Chahar Bagh (Four Gardens), this 6-km lovely street connects the north of Isfahan to the southern parts.

Chehel Sotoun: A pavilion with the Achaemenid-inspired style with an elegant terrace in the middle of a garden at the end of a long pool, a masterpiece of Safavid era and declared as a UNESCO heritage garden. The important meetings and feasts were held in this palace during Safavid dynasty. “Chehel Sotoun” means forty pillars that is the number of twenty wooden pillars plus their reflections in the long pool in front of the palace. Moreover, it contains many eye-catchin paintings on ceramic.

Hasht-Behesht: It is a magnificent palace in a paradise like garden belonging to the Safavid era. The name of the pavilion has been derived from the “Hashti” meaning entrance or gate and Hasht Behesht means the gate to the Heaven. The decorations of the edifice and the beautiful and majestic garden around the palace is so artistic that has been admired by many of its visitors.

Birds Garden: For sure it is one of the world’s most beautiful birds’ gardens. This 17,000 square meter garden is filled with nearly 5,000 animals of 130 species. Each section of this recreational, scientific and research center welcomes the interested lovers of nature and specifically birds.

Flowers Garden: The garden is comprised of different kinds of gardens including the Rose garden, edible and medical herbs garden, the Chrysanthemum Garden, the Iris Flower Garden, a greenhouse and an area full of wonderful fountains. The whole garden’s surface is covered with grass and seasonal flowers and ornamental small trees.

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  1. Aquarium: It is a large aquarium with a duck pond and a variety of aquatic life in sweet and salty water including Japanese carp and sharks. Its tunnel is the largest of its kind in the Middle East and is built in an underground area with about six-meter height.

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  1. Nain: It is a town in 140km east of Esfahan. The most important monuments of Nain are Jame Mosque, one of the oldest mosques in Iran, the splendid Narenj Fortress, the traditional house of Pirnia, the traditional Bazaar, Qanat and a Zurkhaneh. The town is also famous for its high-quality carpets.

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  1. Varzaneh desert: It is located 105km southeast of Isfahan. Varzaneh is popular for its spectacular desert and safety. Due to the short distance from Isfahan, it is rated as one of the most accessible deserts in Iran. Varzaneh, is unique in the local women’s costumes. They wear white chadors, while the black one is common in Iran.

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Take a break, sit back and relax, while we take care of your travel arrangements. Choose from a range of our tour packages, whether with inclusive flight tickets or without. Our custom-tailored packages guarantee an unforgettable experience with memories to cherish.


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