Located in the western part of Asia, Iran, also known as Persia, is home to one of the earliest civilizations in the world. Most of the influences that we got from the Persians, as well as their contributions to the world, are still being used in the modern times. Iran is surrounded by other Western Asian countries like Armenia, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan. It is also a regional power, owing to its location adjacent to three different regions of Asia. A vacation in Iran wouldn’t only be relaxing and rejuvenating, but intellectually enriching as well.
Teheran, the country’s capital, is one of the world’s largest cities. It is also the largest area and city in Western Asia. Despite its size and urban appeal, Tehran is still worth the visit (even if you’re also from another urban jungle). Before embarking on your journey, book for car rental in Iran and enjoy the cityscape. Visit Tehran’s symbols, the Azadi (Freedom) Tower and the Milad Tower, built to commemorate the glory of the Persian Empire. Aside from these structures, there are also several other churches, mosques, museums and other remnants of Iran’s glorious past. Try to stay for more than two days in the city to fully explore all its treasures.
Aside from Tehran, Iran also boasts of its second largest city, Mashhad. If Tehran houses the architectural remnants of the Persian Empire, Mashhad, on the other hand, is home to the most popular literary figures in Iran. Look for a car for rent in Iran and head on over to the hometown of Ferdowsi, the Iranian poet who wrote the national epic of Iran, the Shahnameh. Other artists produced by Mashhad are Mohammad-Reza Shajarian and Mehdi Akhayan Sales. It is also known as the place where Imam Reza was martyred, and thus a shrine can be found in this city to commemorate this event. A helpful reminder in visiting shrines in the Islamic world: don’t forget to bring head scarves or any head covering (for both men and women), especially if you are planning to visit shrines and mosques. Also, avoid wearing skimpy clothing, despite the heat. If you are not careful enough, you might find less-than-hospitable Iranians.
One thing you should remember when vacationing in Iran is the fact that almost everything that you might see can be historical, or has an important role in their culture. After spending time in Tehran and Mashhad, rent a car in Iran and visit yet another historical city, Isfahan. Don’t miss the Naghsh-e Jahan Square, which is one of the largest city squares in the world. It is also an excellent example of Iranian and Islamic architecture. Due to its majesty and importance in the country’s culture, it has been named as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Learning more about one of the world’s first civilizations is not only enriching, but fulfilling as well. It would make you yearn to know and travel more. It’s almost as good as studying, but about ten times better. After a relaxing vacation in Iran, you’ll surely want to try and visit more of the world.
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