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Iran; the Land of Four Seasons      


Historical Attractions
Archeologically speaking, The Iranian Plateau is recognized as one of the oldest Asian localities wherein civilized communities started their emergence. According to well-based archeological evidences, Iran has been being considered a civilized abode of human race for many years. The discovery of archeological remnants of extinct civilizations alongside of rivers and fountains (e.g. Tepe Silak in Kashan, Teppe Hesar in Damghan, Torang Teppe in Gorgan, Teppe Hasanlou in Azarbaijan, Teppe Marlik in Roudbar) is a strong prerogative for justifying historical and arecheological claims of many researches that Iran has been a country with old and colorful civilizations. Furthermore, UNESCO has acknowledged seventeen historical sites of the country as the world heritage sites. This international acknowledgement depicts Iran as a forbearer of antiquity and tradition.
These acknowledged historical sites are: Armenian Monastic Ensembles of Iran, Bam and its Cultural Landscape, Behistun Inscription, Golestan Palace, Gonbad-e Qa…bus, Jameh Mosque of Isfahan, Naqsh-e Jahan Square of Isfahan, Pasargad, Persepolis, Shahr-e Sukhteh, Sheikh Safi al-din Khanegah and Shrine Ensemble in Ardabil, Shushtar Historical Hydraulic System,
Soltaniyeh, Tabriz Historic Bazaar Complex, Takht-e Soleyman, Chogha Zanbil and the Persian Garden.


Cultural Attractions and Museums:

Iran’s cultural richness in different areas includes oriental art forms, literature and mysticism. Mysticism, mythology, philosophy, poetry, music, folk literature, handicrafts, architecture and decorative arts are some
instance of cultural resources of the country. Nowrouz Ceremony, Radif of Iranian music, Folk Music of Bakhshis in Khorasan Province, Ta’zieh rituals, Zurkhaneh and heroic ceremonies, carpet weaving, story-telling through professional raconteurs, traditional architecture, Persian Gulf maritime life, and Qalishuyan in Ardehal Rituals can be considered as instances of Persian culture, some of which have been acknowledged by UNESCO.
Iran’s museums are rife with cultural, historical, natural, anthropological and artistic materials. Numerous museums, palace, gardens and private collections showcase Iran’s cultural, aesthetic and natural richness. The
Number of active museums in Iran reaches. Some of the most famous museums of the country are: Museums of Tabriz, Maragheh, Urumieh, Khoy, Miandoab, Kashan, Isfahan, Kermanshah, Mashhad, Tus, Lorestan and Khuzestan. In Tehran, there are Reza Abbasi Collection Gallery, Carpet Collection Gallery, Gallery of Contemporary Art, Glassware Collection Gallery, Clock Collection Gallery, Gallery of Cinematic Art, Museum of National Jewelries, Museum of National Arts and Iran’s National Museum.


Iran and Its Colorful Climates

In recent years, tourism as an emerging industry has been established in a number of countries. The advantages and enriched diversity of Iran’s tourism attractions have entailed the necessity to consider tourism as one of  the economic priorities.


Irans Geographical Locality

Iran, with 1.648 million square kilometer total area, is located in the south west of Asia. Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Azerbaijan, Iraq, Pakistan, Turkey and Turkmenistan are its neighboring countries and its southern blue borders are the Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf.


Sport Attractions

Among all oriental countries, Iran has been one of the most acivte ones in sport and physical education, especially in archery and horse-riding. Pahlevani and Zoorkhaneh rituals (heroic sport) are a kind of ancient Iranian sport and its administrative arena is called Zurkhaneh, whose literal translation is “the House of Strength”. This kind of sport, being an ancient emblem of herosim, is acknowledged by UNESCO as one of the seventeen international attractions of the country.
Different kinds of sports such as wrestling, soccer, volleyball, handball and tennis are popular in Iran and most cities are equipped with required facilities and services. Even hazardous sports such as skiing on snow, water and grass are common recreational activities in the country.


Health Tourism

Iran is a prone destination for health tourism. The existence of different mineral springs has paved the way for the development of hydrotherapy centers in the country. The spa centers in Sareyn in Ardabil and Larijan in Mazandaran Province are the most famous instances of facilitated mineral springs for pubic utilization. Furthermore, mud therapy in Urmia and sand and salt therapy in Iranian deserts are other instances where health tourism can implement its roots. Iran is also known for its alternative medicine.

For instance, recreational centers of Alborz and Zagros mountain areas provide visitors with therapeutic health service. It is worth mentioning that in medical tourism, Iran enjoys considerable potentials in therapy of stem cells, spinal injuries, kidney and liver transplant, ophthalmology and radiology. Affordable costs and high level technical efficiency of specialized surgeries are the characteristics which make Iran a destination of medical tourism of the region. Considering lethargic condition of people’s daily lives, health tourism can offer a golden opportunity for those who seek therapy alongside with peaceful relaxation. Therefore, well-equipped spa centers of Iran can be a prime choice of such seekers.


Religious Attractions:

Ancient Persia is the origin of Zoroastrianism, one of the ancient religions of the world. The official religion of Iran is Islam (with 56.99 of the population being its follower) and the majority of Iranian Muslims are Shia. Followers of Judaism, Christianity and Zoroastrianism are also recognized as equal citizens with political and economic rights. One of the main religious purposes of travel to Iran is pilgrimage. The major pilgrimage destinations in Iran are: Holy Shrine Complex of Mashhad, Fatima Masumeh Holy Shrine in Qom, Shah Cheragh Holy Shrinein Fars, Tomb of Daniel the Prophet
in Susa. As mentioned earlier, Ta’zieh rituals and Qalishuyan in Ardehal Rituals are officially acknowledged by UNESCO as international instances of tradition and culture.


Natural Attractions

Iran is the land of four seasons in which you can find all kind of weathers simultaneously. Due to the diversity of climate and geographic situation, during the winter in some cities the weather seems summer time while several cities during the summer enjoy mild weather in spring.
More than 8000 plants species, 168 mammal's species, 520 bird species, 174 fish species, 433 butterfly species and around 25000 insect species have been recognized. More than 500 springs with intact areas, dozens of waterfalls, wild rivers with eye-catching sceneries, natural lakes, evergreen woodlands and pleasant natural aroma of mountain bushes are other dimension of miraculous nature of this country. Damavand Mount, the humid forest in the north of the country, central desert, Lout Desert, Golestan National Park, Miankaleh Pond, Touran Biosphere Reserve, can be referred to as other Iranian natural precious attractions. It is considerable that rare species of wildlife such as Asian Leopard and Pleske’s ground jay or Persian ground jay are endemic to Iran.

Persian Souvenirs and Handicrafts In Iran, there is a wide range of items that can be utilized as magnificent souvenirs. These items can be provided for different levels of affordability and personal preferences. Carpets, rugs, silverworks, marquetry and wood carvings in Isfahan; Qashqai Carpets and weavings in Shiraz; carpets, rugs, Kilim and various type of nuts in Tabriz; Carpets and pistachio in Kerman; Saffron in Mashhad are some instances with which one can provide proper souvenirs for his/her loved ones The Persian handicrafts are the manifestation of art, culture, and ancient civilization which overwhelm any visitor with its daintiness and magnificence. The rich millennial Persian civilization, manifested in Persian handicrafts, astonishes tourists. Such astonishment generates the aesthetic craving of their permanent accession in tourists’ hearts and minds. The most significant and well known Persian handicrafts are carpets and Kilims. The Persian carpets with its design, textures and permanent color acquire international acknowledgement. More than 229 kinds of handicrafts have officially been recognized in Iran. From these recognized items, Persian carpet-weaving of Fars Province as well as the designs and patterns of carpets of Kashan have been acknowledged by UNESCO as an antique token of grandeur and significance. Other remarkable kinds of Persian Handicrafts are brocade, vitreous enameled materials, velvet weaving, pottery, and ceramics.


Persian Cuisine

There are over 400 different kinds of food and confections in Iran. The ingredients are generally cereals, grains, vegetables and red/ poultry meats. The existence of various tribes has made the Iranian cuisine culturally diversified. Aab-Gousht, Ghormesabzi and many types of Kebabs are some of the inst aces of popular food in Iran. Nutty sweets are considered desirable confections of the country.


Persian Hospitality

One the most significant characteristics of Iran’s tourism is Iranians’ sincere sense of hospitality towards tourists. This will make their journey extraordinary and delightful. Having being rooted in deep cultural beliefs, Persian etiquettes and polite behavioral features will encourage tourists to embark on further visits to the country.