Iranian Culture and Heritage Tour
Visit Iran in 9 days
Discover the rich culture and fascinating history of ancient Persia on our incredible Iran tour. Join our group as we travel to some of the most significant archaeological sites and beautiful cities in the world. Starting in Tehran, you will journey through breathtaking landscapes, arid mountains, and rural villages, learning about the traditions and cultures that have shaped this land for thousands of years.
We’ll explore the vibrant cities of Shiraz, Yazd, Meybod, Naein, Isfahan, Kashan, and witness the awe-inspiring beauty of Persepolis. But the true highlight of any visit to Iran is the warm hospitality of its people. Known as some of the friendliest in the world, locals are always eager to welcome visitors with a smile and share their unique customs and way of life.
With comfortable accommodations and transportation provided, you won’t want to miss this opportunity to experience the once-forbidden land of Persia firsthand. Book your spot on our unforgettable Iran tour today!
DAY 1: TEHRAN
After arriving at Imam Khomeini International Airport (IKA) in Tehran, our representative will meet and greet you at the airport. The local representative will transfer you to your hotel to rest.
DAY 2: TEHRAN – SHIRAZ (1 HR FLIGHT)
This morning, we will take you to a World Heritage Site, the lavish Golestan Palace (A UNESCO World heritage site). Built during the Qajar Dynasty, that rose to power in the late 1700s, this fabulous walled complex is centered on a landscaped garden with tranquil pools.
Many of the elements you’ll admire today, date to the 19th century when local Qajari architects and artisans were looking to integrate traditional Persian style with elements of Western and Russian origin. The palace buildings are among the oldest in modern Tehran and they are still regarded as a crowning achievement of the Qajar era.
Then, we will walk around Tehran Bazaar.
In the afternoon, you will visit the National Museum of Iran, where you can see fabulous historical items from 5000 BC to the advent of Islam in Iran which shows a brief history of our land.
Later in the day we will fly to Shiraz.
DAY 3: SHIRAZ
After breakfast, you will visit Nasir-al-Mulk Mosque (Pink Mosque) few steps far from Vakil Bazaar. It built by the order from one of the lords of the Qajar Dynasty, Mirza Hasan ‘Ali Nasir-al-Mulk, it took 12 years to complete in 1888. Its interior reveals a magnificent masterpiece of design with stunning colors. This is a space where light and worship intertwine. The mosque comes to life with the sunrise and colors dance throughout the day like whirling dervishes. It reflects on the ground, walls, the arches and the towering spires. It even reflects on the visitors as if a colorful ball is hit by the first sun ray and explodes to thousands of butterflies all around.
Then you will visit Karim Khan Citadel from outside, built during the Zand Dynasty.
You’ll have time to explore and shop in the bustling Vakil Bazaar, home to hundreds of stores, beautiful courtyards, and even an ancient caravanserai.
After that, you’ll visit the lovely garden tomb of Hafez, one of our most outstanding poets to feel the taste of Persian Literature. Hafez is one of great poets who impressed everyone with his mastery. His poems give us a special feeling and the peace in his tomb is really outstanding.
AUTHENTIC COOKING CLASS AND FOOD TOUR:
In the afternoon, we prepare and have dinner together with a Shirazi family. Very welcoming and friendly, this experience also allows you to discover the essence of Iran throughout a Persian family, recipe, stories and the pleasure to share a meal.
DAY 4: SHIRAZ – YAZD
We have a full day of driving today to reach our destination of Yazd (A UNESCO World heritage city).
We will have some stop in our way to visit legendary city of Persepolis (A UNESCO World heritage site), former capital of Darius the Great and founded in 512 BC. There was no more impressive construction in the ancient world, except perhaps Karnak in Egypt,
Darius built the terrace, the Apadana (great audience hall), the Tachara (palace), the monumental staircases and his son, Xerxes, added the harem and the Hall of 100 Columns.
Alexander the Great entered Persepolis in January 330 BC and then committed an uncharacteristic act of wanton destruction that still mystifies historians today, burning the mighty city to the ground. Though a shadow of its former self, the soaring pillars, terraces and sculptures of Persepolis still remain, but probably most impressive are the bas reliefs which line the site, telling the story of ancient governors and kings that came to Persepolis to pay tribute to the Persian Emperors.
Then visit Pasargadae (A UNESCO World heritage site), tomb of Cyrus the Great and former capital of the Achaemenid Empire. We will spend some time exploring the site and though not as striking as Persepolis, there is a great viewpoint where we can look over the site and the surrounding area.
Continue to Yazd and check in to our hotel.
DAY 5: YAZD
Yazd is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in Iran. Its silhouette punctuated by minarets and the ingeniously designed wind towers that capture desert breezes to cool homes during the hot summer months. Yazd is also the center of the Zoroastrian community in Iran, where you will start the day of sightseeing.
At the Tower of Silence (also called dakhmeh), you will discover one of the rites of this ancient pre-Islamic religion. Until the mid-1900s, when a man dies, his immortal soul, three days later, is carried away by the wind to the place of judgment, on the bridge of Chinvat. Corpses were considered impure objects that could not be put in the ground, in water or even thrown into fire without infecting one of these three elements. Only the king’s corpse was divine and therefore entitled to a tomb.
At the still active Zoroastrian Fire Temple (Atashkadeh), you will see a flame that has been burning for 1500 years. It is an important place of pilgrimage for the faithful and our expert guide will offer you additional insight into one of the oldest monotheistic religions in the world.
In Amir Chakhmaq Square, you will see an impressive Hussainiya – a congregational hall for Shia commemoration ceremonies. With three levels of recessed alcoves, all perfectly proportioned, its façade is one of the city’s most photographed landmarks.
The next place to visit is the Friday Mosque, built in 1324, where you can see the tallest minarets in the country.
Among the many other historical sites to visit in Yazd are beautiful old houses and the Dowlatabad Garden (A UNESCO World heritage city). Standing by the long reflecting pool in the garden, you will be shaded by ancient cypress trees. In front of you is an 18th century hexagonal pavilion with a beautiful stained glass window and a graceful wind tower, the tallest in Iran. All around are flowering fruit trees and other ornamental plants and trees.
Tonight, we will watch a Zurkhaneh performance. Zurkhaneh is a form of traditional martial arts in Iran, where men practice calisthenics and other body-building exercises in a ring. In 2010 Pahlevani and Zoorkhaneh rituals inscribed on the representative list of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
DAY 6: YAZD – NAIN – ISFAHAN
Our next stop will be in Meybod, the pottery center of Yazd. Founded in the Sassanid period, cradle of the Mozaffarid dynasty which reigned in Fârs and Kermân in the 14th century.
Meybod, located on an old trade route, also offers a number of fascinating sites to visit, including its caravanserai. Built in typical Safavid style, this former desert inn has verandas, shaded passageways and nearly 100 rooms, some of which are now used as artisan workshops.
At the local icehouse, you’ll learn all about the thick clay construction and underground chamber that allowed local residents to store ice and food before refrigeration, even in the intense summer heat!
En route we visit Nain, one of the ancient cities with origins dating back to the 8th century. We visit the Jameh Mosque of Naein (World heritage site).
Your visit to the province of Isfahan continues. Capital of the Safavid Empire in the 17th century, Isfahan was one of the largest cities in the world. Marvelous architecture, unimaginable wealth and a powerful political force with Europeans, Ottomans, Indians and Chinese coming to Isfahan, the heart of a vast Persian empire stretching from the Euphrates into Iraq current at the Oxus in Afghanistan. Indeed, its grandeur inspired the rhyming proverb, Isfahan nesf e jahan (Isfahan is half the world).
DAY 7: ISFAHAN
Your exploration continues on Imam Square (also called Naqsh-e Djahân Square or Royal Square). This 17th century site is one of the largest public spaces in the world. Here in the square, you will visit the 17th century Imam Mosque (Masdjed-e Imam), considered a masterpiece of Islamic architecture and easily recognizable by its beautiful tilework, cupola and its minarets (World heritage site).
You will also visit the Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque, also known as the Ladies Mosque, as it was built for the Shah’s Harem, renowned for its colorful domed ceiling, where the light creates the image of a peacock. In the Ali Qapu Palace (the High Gate), you will be amazed by its magnificent music rooms and the balconies where Safavid kings would sit to enjoy the polo matches taking place in the square below.
You will end your discovery of the square by visiting the Qeysarieh Bazaar (or royal bazaar). With hundreds of local vendors specializing in traditional arts and crafts, it’s a wonderful place to shop for intricately inlaid pottery, enamel, jewelry and board games.
Our next stop will be Chehel-Sotun Palace (A UNESCO World heritage site).
Set in landscaped, wooded grounds opposite a tranquil reflecting pool, this elegant pavilion was originally built by Shah Abbas I in the early 17th century. and finished by Shah Abbas II in 1947 for amusements and short receptions. Entering through a portico with twenty slender wooden columns, you will discover huge rooms decorated with frescoes, paintings and mosaics; the hall of mirrors is beautiful!
In the city’s Armenian Quarter, you’ll delve deeper into the region’s complex history by visiting several churches, including the 17th-century Vank Cathedral, with its richly decorated interior and unique blend of Islamic and European architectural elements.
Tonight, we will visit one of the local restaurants to see and experience how one of the most famous Isfahani meals, Biryani cooked. We will have dinner at the restaurant.
DAY 8: ISFAHAN – KASHAN – TEHRAN
Leaving Isfahan behind, we’ll travel north to Kashan, a town originally famous for its textiles and ceramic production, but now better known for Fin Garden.
Fin Garden (A UNESCO World Heritage Site) is our first stop; a relaxing and visually impressive Persian garden with water channels all passing through a central pavilion. There is also the chance to buy some rose water, a local specialty, outside of the site.
Then, you will visit Boroujerdi Traditional House. It was built about 130 years ago in the reign of Qajar dynasty (1857) by Iranian famous architect Ustad Ali Maryam. The owner was Haj Seyed Hasan Natanzi, a well-known merchant who mostly dealt with people of Boroujerd city. That’s why the house is known as Boroujerd’s House.
Day 9: TEHRAN (DEPARTURE)
Our representative will transfer you to Imam Khomeini International Airport according to your flight time.
Going to Iran was for me and my friend a long term project. We booked a luxury train trip in 2019 but unfortunately the tour was canceled because of covid. Surfiran offered us a 9-day tour this year and Saye cooperated with us wonderfully in preparing our trip. Read More
We especially appreciated her help in securing a visa for my girlfriend.
We were also lucky that we were the only ones registered in our time slot, so we had an excellent guide, Mehdi, all to ourselves. He knows a lot about Iran’s rich history and current social and cultural life and he willingly answered all our questions.
We visited a lot of very interesting places, learned a lot about the rich historical background of Iran, the hotels were very luxurious, comfortable with fabulous breakfasts, people were very friendly, they smiled at us, established communication, were interested in where we came from and wanted to take a photo with us.
Back at home we recommended Iran to all our friends.
We organized a 3 weeks tour in Iran through SURFIRAN. SURFIRAN is a very Professional travel agency who understands their customers needs and expectations. Our stay in Iran was just fabulous, the program built by SURFIRAN was great, we have seen many and many very interesting sites and locations.
We visited Iran on October 2016 with SURFIRAN travel and tours company. Organization of round trip, hotel accommodation and flights were perfect. Our guide Mostafa was absolutely excellent, helpful, friendly and his information about Iran were very informative. Thanks a lot ! Will come back soon.
Everything was arranged very efficiently. Nothing went wrong. Our guide, Mostafa Farhadi, was remarkable. Not only was he a brilliant driver, but his knowledge of the culture, history and contemporary life of Iran was amazing. He also had superb contacts in all the places we visited.
Dates & Prices
We regularly run this small-group tour. All departures are guaranteed to run if a minimum of 2 travelers is reached. If we do not reach this minimum number, we will offer you to either pay a supplement to do the tour exactly as planned, to change your date, to take another tour, or we will provide you with a full refund. Departure dates and prices are listed on our website and in our brochure. Please check the website for the most up-to-date prices and special offers.
Passports and Visas
Passports should be valid for at least six months after your departure from the country. Please do not bring an almost full or almost expired passport. Visa arrangements are the responsibility of the traveller. For more information about how to get an Iranian visa please visit this page.
We use good quality hotels rated at the Iranian Local House and 3-star level on this tour. Local star ratings may vary slightly from international standards. Accommodation is based on double or twin en-suite rooms with air conditioning.
All couples will have a private double room.
Single travelers must pay extra to have their private room.
We use a private AC van, middle bus or bus throughout this tour, subject to the final size of the group.
The tour includes a 24-hour airport meet & assist service in Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport, your arrival and departure airport-hotel transfers and all other transfers.
Booking & Payment
If you would like to book a place on this tour, please complete the online reservation form on our website. We will then contact you with more details about how to complete your booking. Payments may be made by making a bank transfer. Full details will be provided in your booking confirmation email. Please contact us if you would like any more information or have any questions before making a booking.
Prefer speaking to us over the phone? Our Specialists would love to help you out!
Or simply drop us an email at [email protected]
8:30am – 5.00pm Sunday to Wednesday
Talk with a SURFIRAN travel specialist who can help organize your trip.