XXL TOUR 2022 - option 2 - IRAN 11 days
Price indication*: € 1900 (approximately $ 2250) international flight excluded.
*Some hotels have not yet set rates for 2022. We have included an anticipated raise in room rates in our price indication.
Friday June 24th Arrival in Teheran - Transfer from IKA (Imam Khomeiny Airport) Teheran – stay at Ferdowski hotel (Teheran)
Participants who continue their tour coming from Armenia as well as newcomers arriving from their home country, will be provided a transfer to the hotel.
Free day with a guide at our disposal. Stay at Ferdowski hotel.
Saturday June 25th Tehran - stay at Ferdowski hotel
Our guide will make a selection of the many options we have for today's city tour. Centrally located is the National Museum, with an extensive collection that gives you a good introduction to the history of Iran and Islamic art and culture. In the north of the city you will find the Sa'ad Abad Park where the former residence and working palace of the last Shah dynasty is located in the Niyavaran Palace. The interior remained unchanged since the Shah fled from Iran in 1979.
Teheran bazaar is one of the largest and most visited in the country. At the edge of the mountains we can visit one of the teahouses. With clear weather, a visit the Milad Tower offers a great view of the city and the mountains. No lunch provided, dinner included.
Sunday June 26th Travel from Teheran to Kashan via Qom (250 km – 3 à 4 hours) – stay at hotel Ehsan House (Kashan)
Today we leave the Iranian capital to go southwards to Kashan. Along the way we visit the mausoleum of Ayatollah Khomeini which looks more like a mosque than a mausoleum with stunning architecture. At a short distance is the holy city of Qom, the most important Islamic city in Iran. It comprises of a number of mosques with magnificent mosaic tiles and golden decoration. It is a vast and beautiful complex and the shrine of Fatima is visited by thousands of pilgrims, Women wear traditional chador robes (provided for tourists) and we will have a guided tour. Lunch and dinner (both incl) will be at our final destination, the town of Kashan, known for its marvelous merchant houses. A visit to the Khan-e-Tabatabei, with four courtyards, beautifully decorated rooms with murals and colored stained-glass windows and nearby beautiful Khan-e Abbassi, reflect the incredible wealth of the merchants who have lived here. Another not to be missed home is Bujerdi home, a trader in samovars. Kashan is also home to one of the country’s oldest and most famous gardens, Fin Garden. Iran is a dry desert country, so a highlight for Iranian people is a visit to this beautiful manicured garden, a green oases in the city. There will be free time to browse around in Kashan’s bazaar.
Monday June 27th Travel to Isfahan via Abyaneh village and Natanz (280 km – 4 à 5 hours) – stay at hotel Setareh (Isfahan)
Morning visit and lunch in Abyaneh, one of the oldest traditional clay villages in Iran. Inhabitants still wear traditional garments. Via steep paths you can climb up to the ruins of several castles and enjoy splendid view of the village. We will have lunch (incl) at a hotel and continue our journey to Isfahan with a brief stop at a saffron farm in Natanz. The legendary city of Isfahan is the most famous in the country and often mentioned as one of the most beautiful cities in the world. There are countless ancient mosques, palaces, gardens, bazaars and a madrasa to visit. Dinner (incl) and overnight stay at hotel Setareh in the city center.
Tuesday June 28th Isfahan – city tour - stay at hotel Setareh
Today we have a full day to explore Isfahan. There is much to do in this wonderful city. A 5-minute walk from our hotel brings us to the huge 160 m (520 ft) x 500 m (1,840 ft) Naghsh-e Jahan square adorned with fountains and surrounded by highlights of Persian culture. In the morning we visit the Sheikh lotfallah Mosque, Imam mosque and six-story Ali Qapu palace. All constructed between 1598 and 1629 and listed as UNESCO's World Heritage Sites. We will have lunch (incl) and visit the Armenian Vank Cathedral and Isfahan’s historical bridges in the afternoon. The rest of the day we will have some free time until dinner. You might want to look for the best souvenirs at the bazaar. The immense bazaar is divided into sections, each offering their own products. Rugs, antiques, gold jewelry, clothing, pots and pans, books, water pipes, everything is sold here. Another option is to visit Zayande Rud River at the end of the afternoon. Under several bridges you will find very cozy tea houses. Besides tea you can also try different Iranian delicacies. Dinner included.
In the evening we can visit Zoorkhaneh, "House of Strength," to witness a traditional Iranian sport that is danced to the pounding of drums.
Wednesday June 29th Travel to Koohrang (200 km – 3 à 4 hours) - stay at Hotel Koohrang
Today we will head for the mountains of Koohrang district and will enjoy nice scenery. Here you will not only find an Iranian ski resort at the town Chelgerd, but it is the region where Bakhtiari nomads pitch their tents in summer and it is a beautiful alpine area to take walks. We will visit nomadic families and enjoy their food and dance. Meals will be cooked in a simple way, perhaps a carpet or kilim will be made, and of course, we will endlessly drink tea. Most nomads are extremely hospitable and offer you a warm welcome in their tent. Lunch and dinner will be included. We will stay in a simple hotel in the town of Chelgerd.
Thursday June 30th Travel to Koohrang – Yasuj (360 km – 5 à 6 hours) - stay at hotel Parsian
We will spend the morning in the area to encounter many Bakhtiari nomads. Many Bakhtiari still walk over land the traditional way, on foot with their herds, between winter and summer pastures. Invited in a tent, we can observe their daily life. Bakhtiari often live together with more families and men can be recognized by their clothes with black and white stripes. Many Bakhtiari still live the traditional way and move their herds on foot, between winter and summer pastures. Once invited in a tent, you will quickly be part of the daily life of the nomads, sheep and goat herding and milking. They make dough (a yoghurt drink) the traditional way by shaking vigorously by a bag of sheep skin, or a milk can. In the afternoon our tour continues to Yasuj. Lunch and dinner included.
Friday July 1st Travel to Shiraz (190 km – 3 hours) - stay at hotel Parseh / Karimkhan
Today’s tour leads us to Shiraz and along the way we will meet with another ethnic nomadic group, the Qhasga'i. Some of the families still live in the traditional black tents of goat hair, but more and more families opt for modern canvas tents. In the afternoon we arrive in Shiraz and have two days to explore this city and its surroundings. Shiraz is a famous city in Iran, known for its poets, rose production and gardens. An historical fortress dominates the city center. Lunch included. We will have free time to visit the lively Vakil Bazaar. It stimulates the senses with its scent of dried herbs, festive colors and glittering fabrics. Near the bazaar the beautiful Vakil Mosque is located. Tonight’s dinner is included.
Saturday July 2nd Shiraz – full day sightseeing - stay at hotel Parseh / Karimkhan
Morning is the best time to visit the Masjid-e Nasir-ol-Molk mosque or better known as Pink Mosque. When the morning sun shines through the stained glass windows this creates a fantastic colorful panorama on the floor of the main hall. Close to the mosque there is the Narenjestan Garden. This is a 19th-century garden that belonged to a wealthy family in the Qajar period.
We will also visit the mausoleum of Shah-e Cheragh, the 3rd most important religious site in Iran. The wonderful lighting and mirrors of this shrine make it extraordinarily beautiful. You can see families pray, talk and eat, and you can sit inside and experience it among them. Lunch (incl) at the Soofi restaurant.
One of the most famous poets in Iran is Hafez (14th century) whose tomb is located in a small, quiet park. His poems are part of Iranian life and as ‘hot’ today as ever. Therefore many Iranians visit his tomb as a family outing and consider it a great place to relax and take selfies. In the rear is a traditional tea house where you can enjoy sitting on cushions and drink sweet black tea or smoke a waterpipe. Equally attractive are the gardens at Eram palace. No dinner provided.
Sunday July 3rd Shiraz - visit Persepolis and Naqhs-e Rostam - Night train to Teheran
We travel southwest through a dry landscape to visit Persepolis. Persepolis is the Greek name for the ‘city of the Persian’, even though there have never lived any people. It was a ceremonial capital dating back to the times of the ancient Persian Empire (c. 550–330 BC) and its Aechaemenic kings and declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The remains of this palace town, built by king Darius I and destroyed by Alexander the Great, form a huge complex with magnificent sculptures. The Persian Empire was immense and during the annual New Year (Noruz on March 21), representatives of all the nations that were conquered paid tribute to their king. This parade of people and gifts is depicted in well preserved reliefs, thus providing a lot of information. We will have lunch (incl) near the Persepolis site.
Nearby lie the four Achaemenid royal tombs, with Naghs-e-Rostam (Darius I and II Xerxes I and Artaxerxes I), which are carved into a 65 meter high mountain wall. The tombs themselves are not open to visitors and can be viewed from a distance. There are also some impressive reliefs from the time of the Sassanids. At the end of the afternoon we will be back in Shiraz to go to the train station where our night train will brings us back to Tehran. In the luxurious train we share a 4-person compartment with 2 people. Dinner (incl) will be served on board of the train.
Monday July 4th arrival in Teheran
After arriving in Tehran we will visit the Golestan palace (UNESCO World Heritage Site) in the morning, where we can see the famous peacock throne. This palace dates back to the Khajar Dynasty, ruling Persia from the 4th century for seven generations, and provides a window into how Iranian nobles lived in the past. We will have lunch (incl) and after lunch there is time to visit the Jewelry Museum, heavily guarded in the basement of the Central Bank of Iran. It is one of the best museums in the country with a world-renowned jewelry collection including Daria-i-Noor, the world's largest diamond. The exuberant richness of the jewels on display is is beyond all imagination. Our farewell dinner is at Ferdowsi hotel.
Tuesday July 5th Transfer to IKA (Imam Khomeiny Airport)Teheran
After a beautiful tour through Iran, there is a shuttle to the airport for your flight home.
- flight Yerevan - Teheran for travelers that booked the full tour including Georgia and Armenia
- accommodation with breakfast
- English speaking guide
- A/C bus
- meals as mentioned in the program
- entrance fees of sightseeing places
- transfers airport
- surcharge single room € 310 (approximately $ 370)
- international flight
- any meals not mentioned in the program (indication €35/$42) and drinks
- any personal expenses such as telephone call, laundry, souvenirs, etc.
- tips to guide and drivers (indication: € 1 p. person per day for guide, equivalent for driver)
- visa (please see information under FAQ)
The international flight can be booked after the organizer informs you that the minimum amount of participants (15 persons) has been reached.
Hotel Ferdowski**** https://www.ferdowsihotel.com/en
hotel Ehsan House*** http://www.ehsanhouse.com/
hotel Setareh*** https://setarehhotel.com/fa
Hotel Koohrang**** http://www.koohranghotel.com/
hotel Parsian Azadi**** Google Pasian Azadi hotel Yasuj
hotel Parseh**** Google Parseh hotel Shiraz
hotel Karimkhan http://karimkhanhotel.com/