3 Reasons to Love Iran

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I love having guest bloggers as they give a whole new perspective to places and spaces we may have only dreamed of, and share their passion for a destination that might not even be on our radar. They open our eyes to new concepts, perceptions and opportunities, so when I asked Jemma from Mai Journeys to give us her 3 top reasons why she loves Iran she jumped at the chance to share! So read all about her Iran below….

‘Why Visit Iran Now?

Known as Persia until 1935, Iran’s warm-hearted people and intense cultural heritage make it one of my favourite travel destinations. It is one of the most misunderstood destinations in the world, and proving that travel in Iran is a magical experience is one of my missions in life. If you are even just slightly considering a visit to Iran, do it! I promise it will be an insightful experience. Westerners who travel there are always incredibly surprised to be greeted with amazing warm hospitality, a magnificent culture and breathtaking scenery. It is quite simply on of the most fascinating countries you can visit.

2. The History

Iran is a country that has entranced and mystified the world. The Persian civilisation is one of the most ancient on earth, and is home to one of the world’s oldest cultures. Travelling through Iran is like stepping back through time. Whether it is archaic and abandoned ruins at the sides of highways, or the ubiquitous call to prayer, visitors will experience an ancient land with a vibrant central society. UNESCO has granted World Heritage status to 19 different sites in Iran including the city of Esfahan and the might ruins of Persepolis (possibly Iran’s most famous ancient site and pictured above). Many towns and sites in Iran’s provinces are situated along the ancient Silk Road, and Caravanserai’s are dotted all along this path.

3. Architecture, Arts & Cuisine
Iran is celebrated for its cultural riches and brilliance. Be it a mosque, a palace or a bazaar, Iranian buildings are finely decorated and glow with ornateness. Elaborate architecture is something travellers marvel at. Iran also boasts extraordinary contemporary architecture, designed no less, by a group of largely female architects. Shiraz, the ‘City of Roses’ is home to exquisite mosques, mausoleums and gorgeous gardens; Esfahan, the ‘Jewel of Iran’, boasts a bustling bazaar, towering minarets, 16th century mausoleums and a massive main square.

Each province, each city, each village has their own handicraft. In Yazd, you can buy beautiful handwoven silk and wool fabric – and delicious sweets! In Isfahan, find tiles and beautiful blue decorations. In Tabriz (and everywhere else) divine carpets of all sizes, colours and patterns.

Iranian (Persian) food is ancient, unique and cosmopolitan. It is largely based on ‘berenj’ (rice) and breads, but worthy o note are the range of delicious stews or “Khoresht’. Each region has its own salads, a favourite being Sharazi Salad. And it would be true to say that Iranians have a sweet tooth with each region producing its own speciality of sweets, the most famous coming from Yazd and absolutely worth a try!

Cheers Jemma’ (Jemma is passionate about women’s travel and is one of our favourite partners!).
So there you have it – Jemma has travelled to Iran twice and has a new tour in May next year. Check it out here and if this sounds like you then please contact me.

Have a great week and chat soon.

Andrea, Chief Diva xx

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