Iran Heritage Trail


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Iran Heritage Trail

Kermanshah is an ancient city in western Iran. Located in the Sefid Kooh mountains, evidence indicates it was inhabited since the Paleolithic age. While the archaeological remains and historical monuments attribute to Bahram of Sassanid dynasty, 4th century CE. To the east, Bisotun is known for its great inscription by Darius I of Achaemenids, carved into the rocks some 1300-meter-high in the mountains in 6th-century BC. Above the inscription, is the famous Bisotun rock-relief.

Home to one of the oldest civilizations, Iran has no shortage of sites to see. When it comes to Unesco World Heritage Sites, it boasts an impressive 19 registered cultural sites; palaces, bazaars, mosques and remnants of the great Persian Empire. Beginning in the south, explore Shiraz and Isfahan before travelling west to visit the historical towns of Shush and Kermanshah around Ahvaz. From there turn north to Tabriz before travelling along the Caspian coast to Tehran. 

And, explore the top 16 Unesco World Heritage Sites in Iran.

What We Love
  • Enjoy Shorabil lake, one of the largest in Iran, known for its mineral-rich water and migratory birds
  • Visit Susa of the Achaemenian times that claimed to be the capital of the world
  • See the prehistoric rock carvings at Bisitun, one of the most peculiar monuments in all of Iran
  • Exclusive tour, guided privately by a multilingual guide throughout the trip
  • Travel any day – shorten or lengthen the tour to suite your wishes.
  • This tour is designed to provide maximum outdoor experience.
What to Know
  • This is a relaxed tour and designed for maximum outdoor experience.
  • Exclusive tour; guided privately by a multilingual guide throughout the trip.
  • Travel any day – shorten or lengthen the tour to suite your wishes.
  • We carefully select the world's best boutique tour companies in each destination.
  • We offer 24/7 support to give you complete peace of mind during your holiday.

Iran Heritage Trail

Shiraz, Isfahan, Kermanshah, Tabriz, Zanjan, Tehran
(16 Days – Travel Any Day)

Day 1 – Arrive
Shiraz Meet and greet at Shiraz’s international Airport and private transfer to your hotel in Shiraz.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 2 – City Highlights Tour
Shiraz With your private guide take a full day city tour to visit ancient tombs of famous poets and visit its beautiful Eram Garden (Garden of Paradise) packed with tall Cyprus trees, incredibly popular with young people who like to relax in its shade. Ravaged by earthquakes over the centuries, Shiraz's surviving treasures are relatively few, but its relaxed atmosphere remains.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 3 – Persepolis Tour
Shiraz Take a private excursion to visit two Unesco sites; the magnificent city of the ancient world, Persepolis and the tomb of Cyrus the Great in Pasargadae. Persepolis was the ceremonial capital of the Persian Empire, the largest empire the world had yet seen. While Pasargadae is the burial place of “Cyrus the Great”, founder of the first Persian Empire.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 4 – Southwest Iran
Ahvaz In the morning, we drive to Southwest Iran, the cradle of Iranian civilization where the Elamites founded the first kingdom in Iran, in the present day Khuzestan Province some 5,000 years ago. It is now the heart of Iranian oil industry and home to the largest river in Iran. En route to Ahvaz (the capital city of Khuzestan) we visit the remains of Bishapour City and Tang-e Chogan (the Valley of Polo) where a collection of bas-reliefs recount us the stories from Sassanid Empire, the second great Persian Empire.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 5 – Ancient Cities Tour
Ahvaz Take a private excursion to ancient cities of Shushtar and Shush. In Shushtar, see the masterpiece of ancient engineering; an ancient irrigation system dates back to Darius the Great in the 5th century B.C. Later, visit the colossal Elamite temple, Chogha Zanbil Ziggurat. Shush claims to have the Daniel Tomb.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 6 – Transfer
Kermanshah As we drive out of Khuzestan Province and its fertile plain, the topography changes. The Zagros Mountains appear and we face a sea of mountains and we will make stops enroute to enjoy the beautiful landscape.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 7 – Bisotun Tour
Kermanshah Take an excursion to Bisotun bas-relief and inscription, a world heritage site. This is a world-renowned historic document narrating how Darius the Great took the throne and how he crushed his rivals and enemies. Here lies the statue of Hercules carved more than 2,000 years ago. Then, we drive back to Kermanshah where we visit Taq-e Bostan, one of the best preserved Sassanid reliefs.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 8 – Kurdish Culture
Urmia Driving north, we will encounter Kurdish population, said to be the descendant of the Medes, who have settled in this region for thousands of years. Due to the time constraints deeper interaction with Kurdish population is difficult, but we may recognize their different costumes and their language.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 9 – Armenian Culture
Tabriz In the morning we drive to the regions populated by the Azeri people. Azeris compose the largest minority population in Iran having different language, customs and even historical background. Enroute, we will visit the tomb of a famous mystic, Shams Tabrizi, and Armenian Monastic Ensemble of old Armenian churches and a world heritage site. Drive to Tabriz.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 10 – Kandovan Village Tour
Tabriz Today we will leisurely explore Tabriz Grand Bazaar, the largest vaulted bazaar in the world and a Unesco site. In the afternoon, drive some 60km out of Tabriz to visit the Kandovan, a unique village where people live in houses carved into rocks.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 11 – Heritage Sites
Sarein We drive Sarein via Ardabil where we visit Sheikh Safi Shrine. This world heritage site is the largest and the most comprehensive Khanqah (Sufi monastery) and the most notable shrine for Sufis built for great grandfather of the founder of the Safavid dynasty. After visiting Ardabil Ethnographic Museum and lunch, then drive on to Sarein, the Iranian city of spas.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 12 – Persian Architecture
Zanjan Drive to Zanjan to visit the 14th century Gonbad-e Soltaniyeh (Soltaniyeh dome), a world heritage site, one of the tallest adobe domes in the world. It is one of the outstanding examples of the achievements of Persian architecture and a key monument in the development of its Islamic architecture. Upon arrival to Zanjan in the afternoon we will visit ancient mosques, its pleasant teahouses and crowded bazaar.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 13 – Throne of Solomon Tour
Tehran Enroute to Tehran, we will visit Takht-e Soleyman (the throne of Solomon), one of the three most important Zoroastrian fire temples in Sassanid era. The remains of this ancient fire temple are still sacred for Zoroastrian followers. Your private guide will narrate some exciting stories about the nearby region of Belgheis Mountains. Then drive to Tehran.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 14 - Walking City Tour
Tehran Take a walking tour with your own private guide and visit the highlights such as the Golestan Palace, the National Museum and the Crown Jewels Museum which has an impressive collection of some of the most famous and spectacular jewels in the world. Later, visit the Milad Tower with over 400m height.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 15 – Kashan Tour
Isfahan In the morning, we leave Tehran for Kashan, a town with long history and great heritage. Visit the beautiful Fin Garden, a world heritage site. Our afternoon is dedicated to seeing historical bridges, a carpet show and finally shopping in Isfahan, the crown jewel of Iran heritage.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 16 – Depart
Isfahan It is easy to spend an entire day meandering in Meidan Emam, alternating between marveling at jaw-dropping architecture and haggling with business-savvy bazaar keepers. It is no wonder that the city of Isfahan is known as nesfe jahan (half the world). One of the first sites in Iran to be registered with UNESCO in 1979, this square was built by Shah Abbas in the 17th century.

Private transfer to the Tehran International airport to connect with your international flight.

Iran Heritage Trail Iran

Make this your holiday

  • Exclusive Tour: your own private multilingual guide throughout the trip  
  • Price Guarantee: costing 25-30% less than similar tours of the same flexibility and quality
  • Tailor Made: customised itinerary to create your dream holiday
  • Duration: shorten or lengthen the tour to suit your wishes
  • Dates: depart and return whenever you choose
  • Hotels: change hotel grade to suit your budget
  • Group Discounts: call 020 8350 6199

When to go Visits to the south coast of Iran are best made in the winter months of December, January and February when humidity and heat levels are at their lowest, while spring (March to mid-May) and autumn (mid-September and October) are the best times to travel around central and northern Iran. Tourists visit Iran during the summer months (June - September) for the sunshine and regional festivals, and during the winter months (November - March) for skiing. So no matter what time you choose to go, Iran is a great place to travel all year round.

Getting There The vast majority of travellers fly to Tehran and return from there but some travellers end their trip in Shiraz, saving some backtracking. Tehran’s Imam Khomeini International Airport (IKIA) sees most of Iran’s international air traffic. It’s small, so delays are possible. Elsewhere, Shiraz, Esfahan, Bandar Abbas and Kish are (in that order) potentially useful arrival or departure points. Iran Air, the government-owned carrier, it offers service with an Islamic flavour (ie no pork, no alcohol).

Visa British nationals need a visa to travel to Iran. You should lodge your visa application with the Iranian Embassy in the UK, well in advance of your date of travel. The application process for an Iranian visa can be long and unpredictable.