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Iran

Shiraz

It’s my first vacation since I moved to Europe, and guess where I headed – back to Asia. Well, not that far – but halfway there. Iran! I never placed Iran in my list of places to travel, but it’s good to have a curve ball thrown at you when it comes to travel destinations.

After landing in Tehran, it was a mad dash to their domestic airport (Mehrabad), an hour north of Imam Khomeini International, to the western banks of the capital. If you’ve seen Argo, the departure gates a just two polishes ahead of the movie’s suspenseful finale.

Shiraz is located in the heart of the country – where it boasts of peaceful Persian gardens, regal mosques, and the ruins of world famous Persepolis.

You can get there on the cheap by taking a 12-hour bus ride (the highways are in quite good condition), but I took a plane for 50 USD and saved myself some time. Key places to visit would be Nasir-al-molk mosque, Hafez’s tomb, the citadel and their bazaars and caravanserais.

Inside the Citadel

 

Inside the Nasir al Molk mosque

The sand-coloured bricks are brought to life with vividly painted tiles.

Outside, one of the citadel’s towers leans ¬†as the basement was a hammam whose water flows eroded the tower’s base.

 

It was the beginning of my trip around Iran – there’s a really nice blog post summarising our trip here. Well, here’s the part you missed Brenda. Special kudos to Golshan Traditional Hostel – it wasn’t free, but the hostel had a lovely courtyard, a fountain, and plenty of Persian rugs to sit on.

 

Golshan Traditional Hostel