Iran - A tale of tea, sand and kebab

Traveling around the country, visiting Tehran, Esfahan, Kerman, Yazd, Shiraz, Persepolis, Bagh-e Shahzde, Mashhad, Rayen, Meymand, Ardashir-Kwarrah, Dasht-e Lut, Pasargadae, Meybod and more.

  • Badger badger badger

    The roofscape of ancient town Yazd is covered by badgirs. These are ingenious constructions acting as medieval air conditioning systems.


  • Desert rose

    The 1800-year old palace was built by Ardashir Babakan, the founder of the Sasanian empire. But even among the deserted ruins, life finds a way. However it's not really a rose but a papaver (opium poppy).

    Ruins of Ardashir-Kwarrah

  • Life between the rocks

    Somewhere in Meymand

  • More tea

    Invited for tea in village somewhere in Meymand

  • Open air kitchen

    Having breakfast in nomad camp

  • Welcome to Mos Eisley

    I bet Obi-Wan would feel at home here.

    Alley in Yazd

  • Below the minarets

    We sat down in the mosque at sunset and watched as the hordes of people arrived for the evening prayer, ushered by the endless pre-recorded chants from the loud minaret speakers.

    Abbasi Jame Mosque in Esfahan

  • King of the hill

    It's great fun climbing the kaluts (sand castles) in the Lut desert towards Afghanistan.

    Reine in Dasht-e Lut

  • Bridge over river Zayandeh

    There used to be lovely tea houses located on the many bridges across the Zayandeh river. For various reasons they have been forced to shut down, one by one. The only one remaining is located on the north side of this 298 meters long bridge.

    Si-o-Seh bridge in Esfahan

  • Looking for Baal

    Naqsh-e Jahan is the second-largest square in the world after Tiananmen Square in Beijing, or so they say.

    Reine at Naqsh-e Jahan in Esfahan

  • The sound of silence

    Instead of a traditional burial, the Zoroastrians placed their dead on top of a Tower of Silence. The bodies were then picked clean by vultures and their bones later stored in the wall.

    A Tower of Silence south of Yazd

  • Not really a final rest

    Cyrus the Great was perhaps the greatest leader of ancient Persia, praised in the Bible for his humanitarian rule. The large tomb is located in his capital city of Pasargadae. Unfortunately it had already been plundered when Alexander the Great visited the site 200 years after Cyrus' death.

    The tomb of Cyrus in Pasargadae

  • Cave man

    Reine having tea in a cave in Meymand

  • Beyond the mud

    The 1800 year old town of Meybod consists of mud-brick buildings with gardens featuring pomegranade trees.


  • There is no shuffle here

    The 1800 year old town of Meybod consists of mud-brick buildings. This man is creating bricks by mixing clay with straws.

    Worker in Meybod

  • Raiding the citadel

    The town of Rayen is located at the foot of Mount Hezar, the 4th highest mountain in Iran.

    Citadel ramparts in Rayen

  • Ascend

    Just one more hill. Just one.

    Climbing kaluts in Dasht-e Lut

  • Sins of the father

    Since Xerxes sacked Athens in 480 BC, it was probably inevitable that Alexander the Great had to burn Persepolis to the ground in retaliation 150 years later.

    Palace of Xerxes at Persepolis

  • On this rock

    Notice the person for scale comparison.

    The tomb of Xerxes at Naqsh-e Rustam

  • I dream in color

    This amazing mosque was completed in 1888.

    Nasir al-Mulk, Shiraz

  • House of strength

    Attending a Zurkhaneh training/workout. This is the strangest thing I've seen in a long time.

    Zurkhaneh at Saheb A Zaman in Yazd

  • The lost boys

    The really cool guys are hanging around beneath the bridges.

    Under the Khaju Bridge in Esfahan

  • Inside the fire temple

    Admiring the view from Ateshkadeh-ye in Esfahan

  • Tea time

    Bazar in Kerman

  • Of love and nightingales

    The 12th century poet Hafez remains an idol 700 years after his death. The marble tombstone is visited by happy faces and the area more resembles a picnic spot than a burial site.

    Tomb of Hafez in Shiraz

  • Salty feet

    Reine at Daryache ye Namak

  • Headhunter

    The proud chef with a sheep head.


  • Braaaaaains

    This is where zombies goes for a late night snack. The mind is a terrible thing to taste.

    Having sheep brain in Tehran

  • Follow the light

    This town really needs better signs.

    The anonymous entrance of our hotel in Yazd