Iran is becoming a tourist hot spot this year, with tour operators reporting significant increases in tourists booking trips to the Middle Eastern country.
From ancient cities with breathtaking mosques to gorgeous natural landscapes, here are some of Iran’s most beautiful, untouched tourist attractions.
Iran tourism is very attractive and famous in the world.
Located in the center of the country, is perhaps one of the cities that attract more tourists than the others.
Isfahan is mostly famous for its Islamic architecture, covered bridges, palaces, and mosques.
It’s home to several major tourist sites, such as Imam Square (Naqsh-e Jahan Square), one of the largest — and most beautiful — city squares in the world. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site that features gorgeous Iranian and Islamic architecture.
There are also many beautiful mosques here, like the dreamy Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque.
It was the capital of the Achaemenid Empire, dating to 515 B.C. The ancient city was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1979.
Once the capital of the first Persian Empire and birthplace of Persian civilization, it’s vital that you visit Persepolis. In fact, you haven’t seen Iran unless you’ve walked in the footsteps of the ancient kings.
known as the city of love and Persian poetry, is another city tourists love. It’s home to the historic Eram Garden (Garden of Paradise). Several famous Persian poets are buried in Shiraz in elaborate tombs. This is the mausoleum of Saadi, a 13th-century poet.
There are also gorgeous mosques here, such as the Nasir al-Mulk Mosque.
Walking inside Nasir ol-Molk is like walking inside a kaleidoscope. Nicknamed “the Pink Mosque” for its rosy-hued tiles, you’ll love discovering the hidden nooks of arguably Iran’s most beautiful mosque.
Exquisite ceilings, magnificent frescoes, and grand courtyards filled with pomegranate trees are what you’ll get in one of the breathtaking historical homes in the desert city of Kashan.
The Borujerdi House is a historic house museum in Kashan. It was built in 1857 by architect Ustad Ali Maryam for the bride of Borujerdi, a wealthy merchant. The bride came from the affluent Tabātabāei family, for whom the architect had built the nearby Tabātabāei house several years earlier.
This city is best seen in the spring before it’s too hot and while you can catch the rosewater festival.
Kandelous is a small village in Zanus, located in Mazandaran province. Bearing 4 thousand years of history, the village is one of the first and most ancient settlements of man in the north of Iran. You can find 8500 known species of plants in this small village.
Kandelous is known for it’s museum founded by Dr. Ali Asqar Jahangiri 1360-1368.
The museum has unique works from ancient to contemporary art and history in different fields.
This military complex was initially built on two mounts during the Sassanid era and rebuilt a few centuries later. Known as the “castle of a thousand steps” because that’s how many you have to climb to get to the top, Rudkhan Castle is worth the effort.
For such a small island, Hormuz is brimming with dreamy nature and tranquility. Shades of red, yellow, and orange color the land area, which contrasts beautifully with the Persian Gulf’s blue water.
A dream for geology and nature enthusiasts, this island is also home to deer and other fauna.
Discovered less than a century ago, the formations in Katalekhor Cave are said to date back to the Jurassic period. This cave sits outside of Zanjan, and though it is less visited than Ali Sadr Cave, the two are thought to be connected.
Bisotun and Taq-e Bostan are two historical sites located near each other in the Kermanshah Province. Rock reliefs and the statue of Hercules are fascinating remnants of Bisotun, as is the prehistoric “hunter’s cave” said to have been inhabited 40,000 years ago.
Rock reliefs are also under the archway of Taq-e Bostan, the most notable image of which depicts the last king of the Sassanid Empire with Ahura Mazda (the creator in Zoroastrianism) and Anahita (a Zoroastrian diety).
Iran’s first natural UNESCO site and hottest place on earth for seven years, the barren Lut Desert offers an unusual tranquility. The sand ridges, known as yardangs, continuously change their shape, so if you visit the same spot at a later time, it might look completely different!
Are you traveling to the north?
Then definitely take the famous Chalus Road. Steep roads snaking down the mountainside, tunnels carved in solid rock, and natural springs and bodies of water make this one of the most scenic routes in Iran.
The first Iranian site registered with UNESCO, Chogha Zanbil is a 13th-century BC ziggurat in the Khuzestan province. Baked bricks with cuneiform inscriptions are layered in the structure, and a centuries-old footprint of a child in the stone is roped off towards the back.
Chogha Zanbil is the first place in the architectural history, which glass was used in it and unlike other ziggurats it is built like a can, which means each floor starts from the ground.
Qeshm offers pristine nature and a world of mystery, but if there’s one attraction not to miss, it’s the Valley of the Stars. Marl and sandstone make up the other-worldly rock formations, and with a little imagination, you can see animals, faces, and hands among other things.