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Updated 9/12/18

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Four Tours
 
2018
Northwest & Caspian with Bahman • September 1 - 9, 2018 Click Here
Treasures of Iran with Bahman • September 6 - 18, 2018 Click Here
 
2019
Treasures of Iran with Bahman • February 28 - March 13, 2019 Click Here
Treasures of Iran with Bahman • April 4 - 17, 2019 Click Here
Northwest & Caspian with Bahman • November 2 - 10, 2019 Click Here
Treasures of Iran with Bahman • November 7 - 19, 2019 Click Here
Compare all of our Iran Routes here

 

 

Would you like to see pictures of our previous trips to Iran?
Click here
(pictures by Scott Peck- April 2015)
Click here (YouTube video by Scott Peck- April 2015)
Click here (pictures by Dimitri Kalatzis April 2014)
Click here (pictures by Gwen Erwood February 2014)
Click here (pictures by Gwen Erwood November 2013)

Martha Raak's Iran for Carnegie Mellon Click Here - November 2010
Click here (pictures by David Lewis - April 2010)
Click here (pictures by Gwen Erwood - April 2010)
Comments from all our past tours to Iran Click Here
Comments from travelers as of 4-8-10 Click here

Click here for Abadan Society Group photo (2009)
Click here (pictures by Mary Flores - November 2009)
Click here (pictures by Gwen Erwood - April 2009)
Click here, here, here or here (pictures by Gwen Erwood - November 2008)
Click here (pictures by Paulette Lewis - November 2007)
Click here for group photo in Iran (2005)
Click here for photo of Suzanne in Iran (2001)
Click here for Abadan Society Group photo (2000)

We're organizing photo albums for all our tours.
They may be accessed through the scrapbook link on our website.
Gwen

This was a wonderful and unique travel experience that I will treasure.  Great itinerary, fabulous guide who treated us like family and incredible shopping.

Barbara

Barbara S, Passage Through Persian History & Culture November 2017

••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••

The meals Bahman ordered or recommended were always good choices and everyone seemed to find their favorite(s).  Needless to say we all pretty much got addicted to the saffron ice cream.  

I am so glad that a friend gave me your company information so many years ago (before she stopped traveling due to health issues) as I don't think we could have had a better Iranian experience with another company and with anyone except Bahman.  He really made the trip.

Thanks again,

Ethel

Ethel, Passage Through Persian History & Culture November 2017

••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••

THIS IS NOT THE FULL BROCHURE

We invite you to call Sarah or Gwen at 1-800-762-4216 to request the full brochure. The brochure will include Important Traveler Information (and answers to most questions) and a Reservation Form. We can send the brochure through the Postal Service or as a PDF attachment. If you would like to receive a PDF, probably the best way to keep the message from going into a SPAM filter is to send a message to sarah@serioustraveler.com. If you are already on our mailing list, no need to complete the entire brochure request form.


 

 

 

 


Led by Bahman Zenhari

Three options to take the trip!

Treasures of Iran combined with Northwest & Caspian tour

September 1 - 18, 2018 • 18 days
$7540 double occupancy beginning in Tehran and ending in Shiraz
plus Iranian Visa $201
Single Supplment $1480
Airfare additional

Northwest & Caspian Tour

September 1 - 9, 2018 • 9 days
$4380 double occupancy beginning and ending in Tehran
plus Iranian Visa $201
Single supplment $820
Airfare additional

Treasures of Iran Tour Only

September 6 - 18, 2018 • 13 days
$5480 double occupancy beginning in Tehran and ending in Shiraz
plus Iranian Visa $201
Single Supplment $1180
Airfare additional

Enjoy the photos below from our many past tours ot Iran!
Click on images to enlarge.

Dear Intrepid World Traveler,

The first question you are sure to ask is, “Is it safe to travel to Iran?” I sincerely believe it is as safe as anywhere else in the world. After personally escorting nearly a dozen tours and sending many more, the most recent in March 2018, my confidence is undiminished.

We operated our first tour to Iran in 1999 and have had groups of all sizes since that time. Some experienced travelers are returning for a second or even third trip. Through the years, the acceptance of Americans has, if anything, increased.

I have a challenge for you! See for yourself! Don’t let the naysayer diminish your enthusiasm. Many who say they will never go there themselves, do not have the resources, health, or most importantly, desire to make “the trip of a lifetime.” These are the exact words of one of the travelers on our November 2017 tour, and if you would like to talk with her or others who have traveled to Iran, we’ll gladly provide references. We’ll also provide links to photo albums. You may also visit our website to click on the links.

A U.S. State Department travel warning exists for Iran, as it has for several years. Travel warnings and the Level 4 warnings are often political tactics, which can be considered much more desirable than other forms of conflict. Call me if you have any concerns. We’ll prepare you completely with briefing material on customs and regulations including attire.

Whether you have a specific interest in arts and crafts or wish to explore the archaeological and cultural aspects of Iran, this trip should appeal to everyone who has an appreciation for beauty. The intricacy of craftsmanship is a bedrock of Persian culture.

This tour can be taken three ways: 1) Choose to take the trip as a full 18-day look at Iran from the beautiful Caspian region in the Northwest to the delightful cities of the South, 2) If you’ve been to Iran but want to return for the Northwest and Caspian region along with Tehran, this is a perfect nine-day tour, 3) For a look at just the Treasures of Iran, take the trip beginning in Tehran for a 13-day tour heading south. We strongly recommend Turkish Airlines, which works well with all three options.

With our highly educated and very personable local guide by your side, your driver and his assistant, you can rest assured that you will have an amazing experience to treasure and share with others.

Gwen Erwood, Travel Concepts International President

(Click for larger view)


All This Included

• Travel in Security with our experienced Iranian tour manager with tips for guide and driver prepaid
• Meet the warm and friendly people of Iran
• Taste local delicacies with ALL MEALS breakfast-B, lunch-L, dinner-D included daily in Iran
• Enjoy carefully selected hotels
• Travel by private motor coaches
• Experience the beautifully displayed museums, private homes and meetings with artists
• Visit the ancient capital of Iran, Persepolis
• Spend three nights in the historic city of Isfahan at the deluxe Abbasi Hotel
• Prepare thoroughly with our pre-trip study packet
• Treasures of Iran only portion escorted from the U.S. with a group of just 10 participants - maximum 15
• Flight bag, luggage strap and document holder

 

 

Northwest & Caspian Day by Day Itinerary

Eleven UNESCO World Heritage Sites
on the full 18-day trip

1. Soltaniyeh
2. Tabriz Historic Bazaar Complex
3. Sheikh Safi al-din Khanegah and Shrine Ensemble in Ardabil
4. Golestan Palace, Tehran
5. Meidan Emam, Isfahan
6. Masjed-e Jame of Isfahan
7. Historic City of Yazd
8. Persian Qanats including: Yazd and Fin Garden
9. Persian Gardens including: Fin Garden, Gardens at Tomb of Hafez, Gardens at Chehel Sotoon and Prince Garden
10. Persepolis
11. Pasargadae

September 1 ARRIVE TEHRAN
Saturday

We suggest using Turkish Airlines TK870 which departs Istanbul, IST at 10:15 AM and arrives Tehran, IKA at 1:50 PM. See page 9 of the brochure for more flight suggestions.

Khosh amadid (Welcome) to Iran! We’ll proceed through entrance formalities at the airport, claim our luggage, be warmly greeted and transfer from IKA (Imam Khomeini Airport) to the new deluxe Espinas Hotel (approximately 1 hour). A welcome dinner is included before a good night’s rest to recover from jet lag. (D)

*****Espinas Hotel/Azadi Hotel

September 2 TEHRAN - ZANJAN
Sunday

We are off to the northwest en-route to Zanjan by coach (4 hours). En route visit the magnificent 14th century Gonbad-e-Soltaniyeh, the tomb/tower of Olijaytu, the last Mongol/Il-Khanid Ruler of Iran (1304-1330). The monument is remarkable in many different architectural aspects, including its huge dome, which is about 167 feet high and ranks amongst the largest domes in the world. Gonbad-e-Soltaniyeh is one of 13 UNESCO World Heritage sites in Iran. Then we go to Zanjan city to see a historical public bath and finally check in to our Zanjan hotel for dinner and overnight. (B-L-D)

****Zanjan Grand Hotel, Zanjan

September 3 ZANJAN - TABRIZ
Monday

Today we drive to Tabriz ,departing in the morning. Upon arrival in Tabriz, after a 4-1/2hour drive, we have lunch and then an afternoon tour of Tabriz, the third largest city in Iran after Tehran and Mashad. To Herodotus, even in ancient times, this area had a turbulent history. In the 13th Century it was the Mongol capital. On our tour, we’ll see the Blue Mosque built by Shah Jahan in 1465, the small exquisite Azerbaijan Museum, and the Citadel. See the El Goli Safavid site and park with the beautifully renovated old building surrounded by a large pool.
Settle in to our hotel for dinner and overnight. (B-L-D)

*****Tabriz Pars Hotel, Tabriz

September 4 TABRIZ - KANDOVAN
Tuesday TABRIZ

This morning we tour of Kandovan volcanic village in Osku of the Eastern Azerbaijan Province. There we find man made cliff dwellings, which are still inhabited. They are similar to the rock houses found in Cappadocia, Turkey and locally call “Karaan”.

In the afternoon we’ll have a chance to stroll to the Safavid summer residence of Shah Goli, a short walk from the hotel. Tabriz was the capital of the Safavid dynasty until the end of the 16th Century, when it was moved to Isfahan. There, as you will learn, half the world was to be found in the huge square, Naqsh-e Jahan. The other half was in Tabriz. Research has shown that this area, today rich in the production of nuts and fruits, might have been the site of the Garden of Eden. Other research interestingly places Eden under the waters of the Persian Gulf. (B-L-D)

*****Tabriz Pars Hotel

September 5 TABRIZ - ARDABIL - ANZALI
Wednesday

We leave Tabriz for the Caspian Sea with a visit to Ardabil to see one of Iran’s precious jewels, the mausoleum and museum of the Shekh Safi-eddinn Ardabil, the great Sufi Leader of the 14th century and the forefather of the Sufi inspired Safavid kings, and another UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visit includes the tomb of the Sheikh, the tomb of Shah Isma’ail, the Founder of the Safavid Dynasty, and the ‘Chini-Khaneh’ (China House), where the famous collection of Chinese blue and white porcelain, ordered by Shah Abbas for his ancestor’s tomb, is on display. The gardens, amongst the exquisite tile work, is a gathering place for both visitors and friendly local people alike. Late afternoon we’ll continue to Anzali which is the oldest port in the Caspian area. Upon arrival, check in to our modest beach resort hotel for short rest and dinner of fish caught in the warm waters of the Caspian Sea, and perhaps some caviar; and then have a stroll under the stars by the sea. (B-L-D)

***Sepid Kenar Hotel, Anzali

September 6 ANZALI - MASULEH
Thursday TEHRAN

Today we depart stopping enroute in Masuleh. See this beautiful 1,000 year-old village in the mountains of the Alborz, protected by the Iranian Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization. Have a leisurely walk through the multi-layered paths of the village, with its quaint shops, and perhaps enjoy some tea. Then relax on a scenic drive back to Tehran. (B-L-D)

*****Espinas Hotel/Azadi Hotel

September 7 TEHRAN
Friday

This sprawling city became Iran’s capital in the 18th century under Agha Mohammad Khan, the founder of the Qajar Dynasty. Tehran (meaning warm slope) is located south of the impressive snow-capped Alborz Mountains and the city is known for its large museums, art centers and palaces.

We begin with the National Archaeological Museum, the country’s foremost museum established in 1937. A good introduction to Iran, the museum is divided into two parts: Prehistoric and Pre-Islamic periods. See a stone capital of a winged lion from Susa and the sixth century BC audience hall relief of Darius the Great from the Treasury at Persepolis. We are then guided through the Glass and Ceramics Museum, which was once an extraordinarily beautiful private residence during the Qajar period, and later was used as the Egyptian Embassy. Here we can find glass and ceramic artifacts dating back to the second and first millennia BC. See the Carpet Museum with its beautiful modern architecture and a façade resembling a carpet-weaving loom. Founded in 1978 the museum provides a historical background for the evolution of this art form. We return to the hotel for dinner. (B-L-D)

*****Espinas Hotel/Azadi Hotel

September 8 TEHRAN
Saturday

Today we have a full-day tour of Tehran. Our first stop will be the Saadabad Palace Complex set among the lush trees on the Northern Tehran slopes, which was founded under the Qajar Kings in the 19th century. In the afternoon, see theState Crown/Jewels Museum, which holds one of the most fabulous collections of treasures in the world. Finally we see Golestan Palace - a masterpiece of the Qajar era and a UNESCO site. You’ll marvel at the mirrored entry-way and stairway leading up to the dining rooms and ballrooms featuring Persian crafts integrated with western influences. We have dinner at the Espinas Hotel and overnight.

For those not continuing on for the Treasures of Iran trip, you will have your room available until you are transferred to the airport tonight. Many flights depart after midnight, early morning September 9. (B-L-D)

*****Espinas/Azadi Hotel

September 9 DEPART TEHRAN
Sunday

Early this morning be transferred to the Tehran, IKA airport. We suggest departing by Turkish Air flight TK875 which departs for Istanbul at 3:25 AM. Turkish Airlines has connections from Istanbul to many U.S. gateways nonstop. Flight schedule always subject to change. Order of sightseeing subject to change.

 

Treasures of Iran
September 6 – 18, 2018 • 13 Days

September 6 ARRIVE TEHRAN
Thursday

We suggest using Turkish Airlines TK870 which departs Istanbul, IST at 10:15 AM and arrives Tehran, IKA at 1:50 PM. See page 9 of the brochure for more flight suggestions.

Khosh amadid (Welcome) to Iran! We’ll proceed through entrance formalities at the airport, claim our luggage, be warmly greeted and transfer from IKA (Imam Khomeini Airport) to the new deluxe Espinas Hotel (approximately 1 hour). A welcome dinner is included before a good night’s rest to recover from jet lag. (D)

*****Espinas Hotel/Azadi Hotel

September 7 TEHRAN
Friday

This sprawling city became Iran’s capital in the 18th century under Agha Mohammad Khan, the founder of the Qajar Dynasty. Tehran (meaning warm slope) is located south of the impressive snow-capped Alborz Mountains and the city is known for its large museums, art centers and palaces.

We begin with the National Archaeological Museum, the country’s foremost museum established in 1937. A good introduction to Iran, the museum is divided into two parts: Prehistoric and Pre-Islamic periods. See a stone capital of a winged lion from Susa and the sixth century BC audience hall relief of Darius the Great from the Treasury at Persepolis. We are then guided through the Glass and Ceramics Museum, which was once an extraordinarily beautiful private residence during the Qajar period, and later was used as the Egyptian Embassy. Here we can find glass and ceramic artifacts dating back to the second and first millennia BC. See the Carpet Museum with its beautiful modern architecture and a façade resembling a carpet-weaving loom. Founded in 1978 the museum provides a historical background for the evolution of this art form. We return to the hotel for dinner. (B-L-D)

*****Espinas Hotel/Azadi Hotel

September 8 TEHRAN
Saturday

Today we have a full-day tour of Tehran. Our first stop will be the Saadabad Palace Complex, which was founded under the Qajar Kings in the 19th century. In the afternoon, see the State Crown/Jewels Museum, which holds one of the most fabulous collections of treasures in the world. Finally we see Golestan Palace - a masterpiece of the Qajar era and a UNESCO site. You’ll marvel at the mirrored entry-way and stairway (pictured on page 2) leading up to the dining rooms and ballrooms featuring Persian crafts integrated with western influences. We have dinner at the Espinas Hotel and overnight. (B-L-D)

*****Espinas/Azadi Hotel

September 9 Tehran - Kashan - Natanz
Sunday Isfahan

Today we enjoy a leisurely coach ride from Tehran to Isfahan. En route we stop in Kashan to see the historical garden of Fin, which was first planted during the Safavid period and kept alive with water from the nearby Suleymaniye Spring/Qanat. The Zand and Qajar monarchs expanded this beautiful walled Persian Garden, with many open pavilions added. A museum on the site displays artifacts from nearby Teppe Sialk, which is one of the most important archaeological sites in Iran, dating back to 4000-5000 BC. We can also see some of the many restored merchant houses in Kashan such as the Borujerdi and Taba-Tabai House, with very fine examples of the “Badgirs” or wind-catchers. Kashan city, whose name in Persian is equivalent to ceramic, has given its name to ceramic in the Persian language. Kashan is the epitome of everything grand from old Persia: mosques, caravansaries, gardens and homes.

Further along the way we stop at the charming town of Natanz to visit a beautiful Islamic Complex of Friday Mosque, Monastery and Tomb of Sheikh Abdol Samad Isfahani. We will also enjoy a tea break under the shade of a beautiful and old plane tree just outside the complex and visit a nearby traditional pottery workshop. We continue our drive Isfahan.

Isfahan (Esfahan) is perhaps the most beautiful of all Iranian cities. It is located 250 miles south of Tehran at an elevation of nearly a mile. With historical buildings, bridges and eye-catching sites, Isfahan is one of the most significant tourist attractions in Iran. It dates back 2500 years and was the capital of Iran during three historical periods. The golden age of Isfahan was in the Safavid era from 1505 to 1736 and much of the art and architecture you will be seeing will be from this period. Shah Abbas I masteredone of the world’s grandest experiments in city planning in 1598. Mosques, palaces, bazaars and public parks were built over the next thirty years.

We’ll stay for three nights at the exotic Abbasi Hotel which was built in the 1960’s on the site of a 17th century caravanserai. It is the most sought-after hotel in Iran. Dinner and overnight at the hotel. (289 miles traveled) (B-L-D)

*****Abbasi/Kowsar Hotel

September 10 ISFAHAN
Monday

Today’s full-day tour begins with a visit to Chehel Sotoon Palace (or Forty Pillars Palace) with its beautiful reflecting pool and UNESCO recognized Persian Gardens. Shah Abbas II (1647 AD) built it as an official court and a reception hall. Today you are guests of honor!

Continue to the Armenian Quarter to visit the richly decorated Vank Cathedral. Begun in 1606 at the time of arrival of Armenian immigrants to Isfahan, it was completed between 1655 and 1664 under the supervision of Arch-bishop David, with the encouragement of the Safavid rulers. It is the historic focal point of the ArmenianChristian Church in Iran. The dome and walls have colorful paintings representing the story of Creation.

This afternoon visit a carpet workshop to see Iran’s world-famous carpets as we sip tea and have the opportunity to purchase if interested! Return to our hotel for a short rest. Before dinner we walk to a famous miniaturist’s art gallery to see how this world-renowned art work is done. Dinner is at Shahrzad Restaurant this evening. Overnight in Isfahan. (B-L-D)

*****Abbasi/Kowsar Hotel

September 11 ISFAHAN
Tuesday

Enjoy a full-day tour of Isfahan. Begin by visiting the first of its two UNESCO sties - Meidan Emam to see the Ali Qapu Palace, Sheikh Lotfollah and Royal Mosques. Meidan Emam or Naghsh-e Jahan (literally image of the world) complex is the central focus of Isfahan. Its royal square measures 1674 feet by 540 feet and is enclosed by double-storied arcades. The square drew merchants and ambassadors to the Safavid court for centuries. It’s unmatched in elegance and spaciousness anywhere in the world! It is seven times the size of the Piazza San Marco in Venice, and puts the grandeur of the surrounding palaces and mosques into appropriate proportions. On the north side is the entrance to the Royal Qaysariyyeh Bazaar. On the east side is the Lotfollah Mosque. Constructed between 1603 and 1617, it served as a private chapel for the Imperial family. You’ll see exquisite 17th century Persian tile work on the domed ceiling. On the west side is the Ali Qapu Palace. To the south is the Shah or Royal Mosque, dedicated to Shah Abbas the Great. To many it is considered to be the most beautiful mosque in the world! Lunch at the Bastani Restaurant.

If construction in the area permits, we will visit the antique Friday Mosque, or Masjed-e Jame, Isfahan’s second UNESCO Site.As it stands now, it is the result of continual construction, reconstruction, additions and renovations on the site from around 841 AD to the end of the twentieth century. Archaeological excavation has determined an Abbasid hypostyle mosque in place by the 10th century. Buyid construction lined a façade around the courtyard and added two minarets that are the earliest example of the double minaret on record. Overnight in Isfahan. (B-L-D)

*****Abbasi/Kowsar Hotel

September 12 ISFAHAN - MEYBOD - YAZD
Wednesday

Depart early this morning for Yazd. While motoring en route from Isfahan, stop in Meybod to see the Ancient Narin Qaleh or castle, a 17th century Safavid caravanserai. This town is a jewel! See Zilo weaving, learn about the courier service dating back 2,500 years, see the pigeon house, and explore the oldest and largest ice house dating from the Safavid era.

Depending on our arrival time, have a city tour upon arrival of Yazd before transferring to the hotel. (B-L-D)

****Moshir Garden/Da’ad/Safaiyeh Hotel

September 13 YAZD - KERMAN
Thursday

Today we enjoy a half-day tour of Yazd, which is dotted with badgirs throughout to help cool this desert city naturally. It is the second oldest city in the world according to UNESCO, from an architectural viewpoint. We begin at the Zoroastrian Fire Temple. While a majority of the population is Muslim, there is a large minority of both Jews and Zoroastrians. Bahman will explain the Zoroastrian religion, which at one time was the state creed but faded away after the Arab conquest. Zoroastrians are followers of the prophet Zarathushtra (Zoroaster in Greek), who was born in the 7th century BC in what is now a part of Afghanistan. The religion is monotheistic and dualistic, and it influenced Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The Magi, or three wise men, who are said to have visited Jesus at his birth, are considered to be Zoroastrians. Zoroastrians revere fire as a symbol of God and keep eternal flames burning at their temples. Today there are 400,000 Zoroastrians left in the world of which about 60,000 live in and around Yazd. Others have established a prosperous life in the Bombay (Mumbai) area of India, where they are known as Parsees (Persians). Zoroastrians morality is summed up as, “Good thoughts, good words, good deeds.”

See the Water Museum and learn about Qanats, an advanced technology system first developed about 1000 BC to bring mountain water through underground conduits to the plains. It rivals the Roman system of Aqueducts. Today there are about 22,000 qanats that provide 75% of Iran’s fresh water.
Masters of power technology, in the 7th century BC, Persian engineers also developed an advanced wind-power machine, the windmill, invented by the Babylonians.

In the afternoon, our scenic 5-hour drive is through some beautiful pistachio orchards. Arrive and transfer to the Pars Hotel.

Overnight in Kerman. (B-L-D)
***** Pars Hotel

September 14 Kerman - Rayen - Mahan
Friday Kerman

Today after breakfast we have a half day excursion to Rayen and Mahan. Drive up into the mountains to the town of Rayen and visit one of the oldest citadels in Iran (over 2000 years old).

We continue to Shahzadeh (Prince) Garden and stroll through the beautiful garden with its waterfall cascades (late 19th century Qajar period garden/mansion). Lunch today will be in the garden.

In the afternoon, we visit Mahan to see the blue-tiled Mausoleum of Shah Nematollah-e-Vali, the great 14th century Sufi leader. Then around 3 pm return to Kerman. Although it’s Friday we can still pay a visit to the beautiful bazaar, Ganj Ali Khan wax museum, Old Mosque and theological school dating from the 17 century. Overnight in Kerman. (B-L-D)

***** Pars Hotel

September 15 Kerman - Sarvestan
Saturday Shiraz

Drive to Shiraz, the city of nightingales, historic monuments, poets and philosophers, warriors, kings and orchards. En-route visit the Sassanian Palace at Sarvestan, the 5th century AD structure is thought by many to be a hunting lodge or small palace built by Bahram V (420-440 AD).

Continue to Shiraz passing through the majestic mountainous routes and seeing two large salt lakes on the way. Welcome to Shiraz, the present-day capital of the Fars Province, the heartland of Iran, which gave its name to the Persian language: Farsi. It was capital of the Zand Dynasty (1747-1779) and one of the most important cities of the medieval Islamic world. Shiraz is situated in a plain surrounded by two mountain ranges. The city is well known for its mild climate and friendly people. We stay three nights at the 5-star Homa Hotel in Shiraz. (B-L-D)

***** Homa Hotel/Pars/Zandiyeh Hotel

September 16 Shiraz
Sunday

Full day city tour of Shiraz. First we pay our respects at the Garden and Tomb of the beloved poet Hafez. Have your fortune read and make a wish! Visit some of the famous gardens of this “City of Roses and Nightingales”, including Nasir-ol-Molk the pink-tiled 19th-century mosque and Qajar period Narenjestan Garden/House (or Qavam House) with its beautiful mirror work and elegant wooden features.

We enjoy lunch at the famous Haft Khan Restaurant before continuing to a shop to see both nomadic and city carpets.

Then we will step back in time as we wander through the Vakil Bazaar with its blue tiled dome roof. It is considered by many to be the most beautiful bazaar in the world. The bazaars take travelers completely away from the outside world and immerse them in an age-old rhythm of life. Here the atmosphere is full of the market cries of vendors, the hammering of the coppersmiths, the activities of carpet weavers, silversmiths and cloth printers, the grilling of kabobs and the preparation of spices. Return to the hotel. Overnight in Shiraz. (B-L-D)

*****Homa/Pars/Zandiyeh Hotel

September 17 Shiraz - PERSEPOLIS
Monday PASARGADAE
Naghsh-é-Rostam

Get ready for a truly wonderful day! After breakfast, we’ll drive about 35 miles to Takht-e Jamshid or as the Greeks called it, Persepolis, a ruined capital of ancient Iran. It is one of the greatest artistic legacies of the ancient world and perhaps one of the most beautiful and spectacular archaeological sites surviving today. In the 6th century BC, the Achaemenian King Darius I, created Persepolis as a palatial precinct for an empire which eventually became larger and more efficiently ruled than any other in the ancient world. He erected the monument on a mountain slope called Rahmat above a plain he considered holy. Persepolis was reserved only for ritual celebrations. In the spring of each new year, the dynamic ruler and his court gathered at Persepolis to receive the tribute of subject nations and to reestablish universal order for the coming year. Step back in time as we enter through the Gate of All Nations. The arrival of the erstwhile delegations was announced by trumpeters who stood at the top of the staircase in front of the Gate of Nations. They were then led to the Hundred Column Palace to the presence of the king. Superb bas reliefs depict the flow of ritual processions that once passed through the palaces and audience halls of the Achaemenian Kings. We’ll explore the Gate of Xerxes, the Apadana Palace, the Treasury, the Harem and the private palaces of the different rulers. Xerxes and Artaxerxes I who ruled Persia in the 5th century BC completed Persepolis. The Achaemenid Kings used the palaces up until Alexander the Great destroyed them in 330 BC as revenge for the sacking of Athens during the Persian Wars with the Greeks.

To top off the afternoon with a visit to Pasargadae, the capital of Cyrus the Great and site of his simple but imposing tomb. Finally we visit Naghsh-é-Rostam, which contains the rock carved chambers of four Achaemenian tombs, believed to be those of Darius the Great, Xerxes, Artaxerxes and Darius II. The ornamental facades are rock reliefs from the Sassanian dynasty depicting various scenes of imperial conquests as well as a probable fire temple from Achaemenian times. Later, return to Shiraz via the Quran Gate and Jahan Nama Seljuk Garden followed by dinner and overnight. (B-L-D)

*****Homa/Pars/Zandiyeh Hotel

September 18 DEPART SHIRAZ
Tuesday

A transfer to the Shiraz, SYZ airport is included. We suggest departing by Turkish Air flight TK885 which departs for Istanbul at 3:00 AM. Turkish Airlines has connections from Istanbul to many U.S. gateways nonstop.

Note: Flight schedule always subject to change.

Order of sightseeing may be revised.


 

THIS IS NOT THE FULL BROCHURE

We invite you to call Sarah or Gwen at 1-800-762-4216 to request the full brochure. The brochure will include Important Traveler Information (and answers to most questions) and a Reservation Form. We can send the brochure through the Postal Service or as a PDF attachment. If you would like to receive a PDF, probably the best way to keep the message from going into a SPAM filter is to send a message to sarah@serioustraveler.com. If you are already on our mailing list, no need to complete the entire brochure request form.

 

 

© 2018 Travel Concepts International, Inc. CST 2005743-40

Travel Concepts International, Inc.
Cultural Tours to Better Understand the World and Its People

5500 Bucks Bar Road • Placerville, CA 95667 U.S.A. • Voicemail/Telephone/Fax 1-530-621-3007
Voicemail/Tollfree in U.S.A. 1-800-762-4216
G
wen@SeriousTraveler.com • Web site www.SeriousTraveler.com