Hiking In Iran – Despite the growing popularity of the country, it is easy to get away with failure in Iran! Here are 8 of our favorite places in Iran, plus 5 places we don’t think are worth the trip.
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Hiking In Iran
Walking through Isfahan’s main square, it’s hard to tell that Iran has been closed off from the world for decades. Older German and French tour groups gather at the entrance to the mosque, Chinese teenagers wander the endless streets of the market, and you might even hear the odd Brit or American in the company of your obliging guide.
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Iran’s popularity has skyrocketed thanks to the country’s newly liberal visa program and its firm spot on the “Top X Places You Must Visit ASAP or Die” list.
But that doesn’t mean you have to put up with regular crowds! Even with bags packed in Iran during the two-month peak season, we hardly saw a second foreigner leave the tourist trail.
All the amazing cities you’ll see on our Iran photo tour, but the most popular ones. Fortunately, for those who want to get away from the crowd (or just plain hate people), it’s easy to get off the beaten path in Iran.
Trains are by far the most enjoyable journeys (short of skipping first class on top airlines) and the Dorud-Andre-Méchèque train journey was one of the most beautiful train journeys I’ve ever taken and a great way to leave. . – Win in Iran. Over the course of six or seven hours, the train slowly winds its way through the Lorsten Mountains, passing through several fascinating small tunnels and small villages you can count on your fingers.
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Now you can book flights and buses in Iran online. Check out 1StQuest for online ordering and payment in Iran (use code LWP-QST for 5% discount).
The westernmost region of Iran is called Kurdistan. A more colorful area of backpackers and grassy hills, this is by far the most beautiful area in Iran (in our humble opinion) and it was great to explore the well groomed trails.
Flanagan’s Twin Village was our favorite place in Kurdistan. Less touristy than the more popular Moshola, it’s easy to walk between its earthen houses (which are said to be the roof of one house and the garden of a garden) and explore the flower-filled hills surrounding the village. This is a great area if you really want to travel in Iran.
For most foreigners, Iran is a cash-only economy. This means you have to go with the bigger picture. If you’re not comfortable with that, check out the Mah card. Mah Card is a prepaid debit card specially designed for tourists in Iran. Use promo code to get 40% off Mah Card.
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This city should be part of the tour, but most people enter from Tehran, so this city near the border of Armenia and Azerbaijan is too remote to be part of the tour. Their loss, your gain!
Tabriz is the world’s largest covered bazaar and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. More importantly, it has some of the friendliest people we’ve met in Iran. Considering Iranians are some of the most hospitable people in the world, that’s saying something!
Tip: Don’t take a trip to nearby Kandovan while in Tabriz. It is a cave town similar to the famous Cappadocia, part of the tourist!
Legend has it that Alamut Valley is the birthplace of the Assassins. Legend or not, there are several remote fortresses known as the Assassin’s Castle.
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These forts had already been destroyed, although they were slowly being restored. However, the Alamut Valley has some of the most stunning scenery in Iran and is equally accessible as a day trip for outdoorsmen interested in camping and multi-day hikes. Few tourists visit Alamut Valley and it has become the best choice destination in Iran.
Mashhad suffers from the same problem as Tabriz: it is an important destination, too far off the beaten track to host many foreign tourists. But no visit to Iran is complete without visiting this city – it’s simply the holiest city in Iran!
The only attraction in town is the temple, but what a temple! It is an overflowing city covered in mosaics, white and shining in the sun, and glittering at night. You can see people crying, fighting like wild animals, and losing themselves in prayer at the shrine of Imam Reza, one of the Twelve Imams of the Shiite sect of Islam (the main religion of Iran). Forget this place and go to Mashhad instead.
Tip: Walk around, pay your respects, and maybe enter Imam Reza’s tomb. Get ready for a space battle!
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Don’t have time to go to Mashhad? Visit Imam Khomeini’s (surprisingly) mausoleum on the outskirts of Tehran.
Although it’s still under construction, it doesn’t look impressive from the outside, but the building is absolutely massive and a good example of how magnificent Iranian architecture can be. From those resting on carpets and crying prayers in front of graves, to families posing for selfies (though photography is forbidden) with their children wandering around the house.
For electrifying crowds and fast-paced action, head to Gonbad-Kaws to watch horse racing, the largest racecourse in the Middle East. The crowd is a melting pot of riders from all over the region, and tickets to the race are just $1.50. Races are held every Friday throughout the spring and summer, so check to see if they’re happening before you get there. Very few foreigners come here, and even fewer foreign tourists. Right off the bat in Iran.
Kala Rodakhan itself is worth the long hike, even if the mood for fun at the base of the mountain is volatile. An ancient fortress deep in the Iranian “jungle” that has been outgrown but restored. Due to the region’s monsoon climate, the air is often foggy, giving the sprawling old building a mysterious feel.
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The climb is equally beautiful and a great place to meet cheerful Iranian tourists in search of cooler temperatures from Tehran. Never fear, the theme park feel doesn’t go all the way up the hill – the castle is very safe from food vendors and kitschy souvenir shops.
Tip: Don’t forget to stop for the famous fuman kluche (cookies) on the way to the castle! Packed with peanuts, sugar, and cinnamon, they’re one of the most popular cookies in the world…and for good reason.
As old as it is, it’s not as great as a simple guide. The most complex and famous bass reef is located far from the giant cliff and was uncovered by a university research team a decade ago. No one knows for sure when they will return, so don’t remove the board that was removed too soon. The image above is zoomed in from below.
If you’re looking for help, visit the nearby Persepolis and Necropolis. They have all the highlights your heart could desire.
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Masula gets all the love from the guides when it comes to classified villages, but it’s not as authentic as the others. It is full of local tourists, art studios and souvenir shops. Leave him and go to Falangan or Awania.
Bam Citadel used to be one of the most popular destinations in Iran until it collapsed in a massive and deadly earthquake in 2003. The Bam people are incredibly kind and eager to prove the castle’s value, but I’m afraid to say so. Far from the city, it’s a pile of ruins worth visiting. Although the castle is being rebuilt, most of it is restricted and/or remains a pile of stone, so it’s better to visit the nearer and restored Rein Castle near Kerman.
I doubt it. Sultana is a small village with some important historical points, especially the dome, which is classified by UNESCO as the largest brick dome in the world. What misses the point is that the entire interior of the dome is covered in a shell so you can’t see anything inside.
However, it is worth the trip from Zanjan as there are several other mausoleums and cemeteries in the area that you can visit. If you go, take a look inside. if any
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