Iran quickly became one of my top favorite destinations for so many reasons!
The natural scenery is beyond astounding. The food, even for me as a vegan, is absolutely mouthwatering with so many spices and new tastes melting together.
The architecture; detailed and colorful.
And the people… The people are so friendly and truly makes the travel experience worthwhile.
There are so many astounding places to see in Iran.
In Part One, we put together two highlights. This part of the article introduces the other three highlights that you will be able to explore even with as little as 10 days in Iran.
Get ready for a blend of both off the beaten path and popular places to see in Iran!
Beautiful places to visit
The Maranjab Desert (in Isfahan Province) is one of the most important places to see in Iran. In a country that is 25 percent desert, you can’t miss out on it.
Particularly this desert used to be an important part of the ancient Silk Road and you can visit an old caravanserai which welcomed travelers all the way back to the 16th century. The adventurous can even stay the night!
The Maranjab Desert also holds one of Iran’s Salt Lakes and like any desert, magical sunsets!
As mentioned above, the desert is among the places to see in Iran that you shouldn’t miss out on.
So what about staying in a desert oasis? Garmeh (in Isfahan Province) is the perfect place to combine this with a day out in the desert and half a day exploring the oasis itself.
There are old ruins of clay walls hidden between high grass and date palm trees, an old palace which now gives the feel of a ghost clay town.
Unfortunately, many of the rooms are now used as a local dump ground.
Nevertheless, it’s unique to walk through it and imagine how this place must have looked like back in the days when a wealthy family reigned here.
Make sure you see the natural spring and walk up the hill for views of the green oasis too!
In Garmeh there is one eco-resort which has accommodation. They are the ones offering the desert tours too.
Are you up for an authentic desert experience with a local? It will definitely be an experience of a lifetime where you among other places will see a salt river.
Nestled in the Karkas mountain chain at 2,220 meters of altitude you find one of Iran’s oldest villages, Abyaneh. It’s also called the red village as the houses are built with red clay.
The most unique about the village is that the villagers still speak the same language as they did 2,500 years ago, before Islamic times.
They also have the same customs and dress in the same clothes as back then. You will recognize the women’s flowery headscarves.
To see the classical view of Abyaneh you need to head over to the old fortress ruins on the other side of the hill. The views are spectacular in all directions with the backdrop of the mountains.
The village is easy reached by car from either Isfahan or Kashan, but there is no public transport to get you there.
Both in Garmeh and the Maranjab Desert, they offer camel rides.
There are so many beautiful and unique places to see in Iran that you can gladly spend a lifetime exploring the country, but with these five places, you have a good starting point that covers a lot of what the country has to offer.
However, the most important thing you can do on your trip to Iran is to give yourself time to connect to the friendly people!
* Jonny Duncan is a freelance travel writer and photographer.