• Duration

    15-day trip

  • Start

    Tehran, Iran

  • Finish

    Tehran, Iran

  • Group size

    Min 2, Max 12

  • Included meals

    Full board

  • Accommodation grade

    3-star and Traditional hotels

  • Transport

    Four-wheel drive, Van

  • Physical rating

    □□

  • Trip notes

    Printable trip note (Coming soon)

From Deep Deserts To Historical Cities

Explore Iran Nature & Culture in 15 Days

TRIP HIGHLIGHTS & ITINERARY

Exploring both nature and culture of central parts of Iran will take us all the way into one of the deepest and most pristine deserts which has not been crossed by humans until a few years ago. We will experience why Rig-Jen desert was abandoned during history. We will learn how people in the vast neighboring desert brought water and civilization to a few remote villages and named it Mesr Desert. Via old abandoned routes we will visit other desert micro-climates and civilizations. They lead us to our final tour destination Yazd, the main civilization in Central Iran.

Tour Highlights

  • Journey through a vast ocean of untouched nature in Rig-Jen and Central Desert
    Explore the beginnings of different desert civilizations
    Visit beautiful villages with unique history and stories
    Visit the main cities of Iranian civilization (Isfahan, Shiraz, Yazd & Kashan)
    Eco-friendly travelling with experienced team

Free Special Entertainments (Optional)

  • » Half a day experiencing the Nomadic life and staying alongside an Iranian nomad family that is likely to be one of the most memorable parts of your journey. Read more…
  • » Half day Persian hospitality tour to spend time with an Iranian family, learn and help to cook homemade foods and eat like Iranian people. Read more…
  • » One-day tour of Iran’s Northern railway and crossing the Alborz mountains on SURFIRAN's private train (Departure every Thursday 6:30 AM to 10:30 PM). Read more…
  • » Watch a Zurkhaneh performance.  Zurkhaneh is a form of traditional martial arts in Iran, where men practise callisthenics 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. Read More…
  • » Visit an old system of water supply called QanatRead More…

Travel Itinerary

DAY 1: TEHRAN

After arriving in Tehran, our professional tour guide will meet and greet you, then you will be transferred to your hotel for rest.

Overnight: Standard Hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

DAY 2: TEHRAN – KASHAN 2 H 42 MIN (244 KM)

Leaving Tehran behind, we’ll travel south to Kashan to visit Bagh-e Fin Garden. This very early Persian garden reflects ancient landscaping principles that trace their roots to the time of Cyrus the Great in the 6th century BCE. Today, it’s a delightful setting where you can meet young Iranian families who are out to enjoy their day.
You’ll also visit the historic Borujerdi House here in Kashan. With fine decorative motifs handcrafted of stucco, impressive domes, wall paintings and inlaid mirror mosaics, this former merchant’s home is regarded as a masterpiece of traditional Persian architecture. It also boasts 130-foot tall wind towers to catch lofty breezes that can cool the entire house.


Overnight: Standard Hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

DAY 3: KASHAN - ABYANEH – ISFAHAN 3 H 27 MIN (261 KM)

After leaving Kashan,we’ll first stop this morning will be at Abyaneh village. The houses of Abyaneh bear an ancient architectural style, featured by the use of clay as the construction material and latticed windows and wooden doors. Your overland journey continues to Isfahan.

As the 17th-century capital of the Safavid Empire, Isfahan was one of the world’s greatest cities – architecturally striking, wealthy beyond imagination, and politically powerful with diplomats from around the world coming to its court – it was the heart of a vast Persian Empire that stretched from the Euphrates River in present-day Iraq to the Oxus River in Afghanistan.


Overnight: Standard Hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4: ISFAHAN

Continue your exploration in Isfahan at another UNESCO World Heritage Site. Simple at first glance but wondrous in its rich detail and bold design, the Masjed-e Jamé is another masterpiece of Iranian architecture, covering nearly 5 acres in the heart of this historic city. This is one of the oldest congregational mosques in the country, and its construction and embellishment over the past twelve centuries illustrate a number of important periods in Islamic architecture.

Next up is Chehel Sotun. Set in a landscaped and forested park in front of a tranquil reflecting pool, this graceful pavilion was built by Shah Abbas II for entertainment and court receptions. Entering through a portico with twenty slender wooden columns, you’ll discover soaring halls embellished with frescoes, paintings and mosaics; the Hall of Mirrors is especially breathtaking!

This afternoon, your exploration continues in Imam Square. This 17th-century site is one of the largest public spaces in the world. Here in the square, you’ll visit the 17th-century Shah Mosque, revered as a masterpiece of Islamic architecture and easily recognised by its magnificent tile-work and soaring cupola and minarets. In the Ali Qapu Palace, you’ll marvel at its beautiful music rooms and the balconies where Safavid kings would sit to enjoy the polo matches unfolding in the square below. You’ll end your day exploring the Qeisarieh Bazaar that surrounds Imam Square. With hundreds of local vendors that specialize in traditional arts and crafts, it’s a wonderful place to shop for pottery, enamel, jewellery and delicately inlaid board games.

In the city’s Armenian quarter, you’ll delve more deeply into the region’s complex history as you visit several churches including the 17th-century Vank Cathedral with its lavishly decorated interior and unique blend of Islamic and European architectural elements.


Overnight: Standard Hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

DAY 5: ISFAHAN

You are free to spending the day at the city center, Bazaar and shopping.


Overnight: Standard Hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

DAY 6: DUNES OF THE JENN DESERT

Today the safari experts of RO Nature Adventure will pick you up from your hotel and for the next 4 days, they will show you spectacular parts of the central desert with their equipped four-wheel drives. Our route to the desert will take us through different desert climates from colourful mountains to the dunes of Rig-e Jenn desert. We will go off-road to get on the dunes and explore this desert.

After that, we will continue to our accommodation in a desert village. We will show you the lifestyle of the villagers as well as the artists who moved to these villages to develop their art in a pure environment.
Camping is also possible upon request.


Overnight: Local hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

DAY 7: OUR EGYPT

We continue our journey to the desert named Mesr, which means Egypt in Persian. A few hundred years ago, a cameleer came to this side of this desert to find his lost camel. When he saw the beauty of the place he said: “I will make my own Egypt here”. He started to dig a water channel for 5 km to bring water into the area and build a small village with the name of Mesr. This village was destroyed by a flood a few years ago.

The beautiful desert in this region is named after the village. We will pass through some small oases which still bear traces of old desert architecture. In the evening we will sit around the fire on the dunes until the sky is full of stars. At night we will drive back to a village on the side of the central desert and stay in a beautiful local house and enjoy their hospitality.


Overnight: Local house
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

DAY 8: MEETING THE LOCALS

Today, we will continue to explore the desert. As we cross it, we will see dunes, colourful mountains and canyons. In the evening we will arrive in Garmeh. This village has the biggest palm gardens in the region and is the beautiful home of the pioneer of traditional local accommodation in Iran, Maziar Aledavood. We will stay at his Ateshooni House for the night and enjoy the live special music that you will not hear anywhere else in the world.


Overnight: Local house
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

DAY 9: ON THE ROUTE TO CIVILIZATION

After a morning stroll through the palm gardens and the water cave in the village, we will head to our next desert destination, the ancient village of Kharanagh. It has fortress-like 4 stories architecture which are at least 3000 years old. Upon request of our guests, we can visit the Zoroastrian temple of Chak-Chak before we bring our guests to their hotel in Yazd.


Overnight: Local guest house
Single Room Not Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

Day 10: YAZD

Yazd is one of Iran’s oldest continuously inhabited cities, 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 centre of Iran’s Zoroastrian community, which is where you’ll begin the day’s sightseeing.

At the Tower of Silence, you’ll learn about one of the traditions of this ancient pre-Islamic religion: Until the mid-1900’s, the dead were transported to this tower where they were left to decompose and be devoured by birds.

Zoroastrian tradition considers a deceased body to be “unclean” and this process of excarnation prevents contact with either fire or earth – both of which are considered to be sacred. At the still-active Zoroastrian Fire Temple, you’ll see a flame that is said to have been burning for the past 1,500 years. It’s an important pilgrimage site for the faithful and here our expert guide will offer additional insight into one of the world’s oldest monotheistic religions.

In Amir Chakhmaq Square, you’ll see a very impressive Hussainiya – a congregation hall for Shia commemoration ceremonies. With three tiers of recessed alcoves, all perfectly proportioned, its facade is one of the city’s most photographed landmarks.

Then visit the Jame Mosque, built in 1324, where you can gaze upon the tallest minarets in the country.

At Zendan-e Eskandar, you’ll find an ancient domed structure with a deep, circular brick-lined pit that resembles a dungeon. According to legend, the complex was built by Alexander the Great to hold prisoners during his conquest of Persia. Others believe it was constructed by the Persians to hold Alexander himself.

Among the many other historic sites to be seen in Yazd are beautiful old homes and the Dowlat Abad Garden. Standing by the garden’s long reflecting pool, you’ll be shaded by ancient cypress trees. Ahead 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.


Overnight: Standard Hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

DAY 11: YAZD - PASARGAD AND PERSEPOLIS 5 h 20 min (449 km)

Leaving Yazd behind, your first stop this morning will be in the Pasargadae (A registered site in UNESCO world heritage). Your overland journey continues to Naghsh-e Rostam (Necropolis) and Persepolis (A registered site in UNESCO world heritage).

Pasargadae was the first dynastic capital of the Achaemenid Empire, founded by Cyrus II the Great, in Pars, the homeland of the Persians, in the 6th century BC. It was the capital of the first great multicultural empire in Western Asia. Spanning the Eastern Mediterranean and Egypt to the Hindus River, it is considered to be the first empire that respected the cultural diversity of its different peoples. This was reflected in Achaemenid architecture, a synthetic representation of different cultures.

Naqsh-e Rustam is one of the most spectacular and awe-inspiring ancient sites of the Achaemenid Empire, consisting of the colossal tombs of Persian kings dating back to the first millennium BC.  It stands as a lasting memory of a once powerful empire that ruled over a significant portion of the ancient world.

The archaeological excavations of Persepolis rank with Ephesus and Pompeii as among the world’s most impressive sites of antiquity. Among scholars of the ancient Persian world, it’s regarded as a masterpiece of Achaemenid architecture, urban planning, construction and art.


Overnight: Standard Hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

Day 12: SHIRAZ

After breakfast will start your full day tour of Shiraz. It is the best time to communicate and exchange information with each other about everything in addition to visiting many sites.

At first, you will visit Nasir-al-Mulk Mosque (Pink Mosque). 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 colourful ball is hit by the first sun ray and explodes to thousands of butterflies all around.

Then you will visit Narenjestan Garden, laid out in the 19th century during the Qajar Dynasty.

After that, you will also visit Karim Khan Citadel. 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.

If time permitted, You’ll visit the lovely garden tomb of Sa’adi and tomb of Hafez, two of our most outstanding poets to feel the taste of Persian Literature. Hafez is one of the great poets who impressed everyone with his mastery. His poems give us a special feeling and the peace in his tomb is really outstanding. Sa’adi is a poet, philosopher and mystic who is known as the father of an alternative tourist. About seven previous centuries he travelled to different countries and cities. Then he collected all his experiences in verse and Rhymeprose in two books named Boustan and Golestan. These two books give you Lots of inspiration and information. We will get a chance to pay homage to tombs of these great poets.


Overnight: Standard Hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

Day 13: SHIRAZ

You are free to spending the day at the city center, Bazaar and shopping.


Overnight: Standard Hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

Day 14: SHIRAZ – FLIGHT TO TEHRAN

Early in the morning, you’ll be escorted to the Shiraz Airport for your departure flight to Tehran.

This morning we take you a World Heritage Site, the lavish Golestan Palace. Built during the Qajar Dynasty that rose to power in the late 1700’s, this fabulous walled complex is centred 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.
Time permitting, we can walk around the Tehran Bazaar, few steps far from Golestan Palace. Continue along the Bazaar route, we go to the Timche Akbarian. Timche Akbarian dates back to almost 260 years from the Qajar era when its main purpose was for exchange and gold. Later it was developed into the first bank of Iran ran mainly by Jews who were the prominent residents of Oudlajan neighbourhood.
As of today, there’s no bank or money exchange but the place has been delicately restored into a Dizi Sara and the tea house where tea comes in thin waist cups and along with sugar canes.
Dizi doubtlessly is one of the most delicious and traditional Iranian food. Eating it has a special custom. Dizi is a Mesopotamian stew usually made with lamb, chickpeas, white beans, onion, potatoes, tomatoes, turmeric and dried lime. Everything is mixed and cooked together.
In the afternoon, you’ll go to see the National Museum of Iran which is an institution formed of two complexes, including the Museum of ancient Iran and Islamic Era.


Overnight: Standard Hotel
Single Room Available
Included Meals: Breakfast

DAY 15: TEHRAN (DEPARTURE)

Our tour guide will transfer you to Imam Khomeini International Airport according to your' flight time.


Included Meals: Breakfast

WHAT’S INCLUDED

  • Arrival and departure airport transfer from/to Imam Khomeini (IKA) Airport
  • Domestic flight from Shiraz to Tehran
  • All nights accommodation in standard grade hotels
  • Land travel in Iran by air-conditioned coach
  • Services of an Iranian tour lecturer throughout the tour
  • Meals: 15 breakfasts, 0 lunches, and 1 dinner.

WHAT’S EXCLUDED

  • International air fares, taxes and surcharges
  • Travel insurance
  • Items of a personal nature such as laundry or phone calls
  • Visa costs
  • Visa Autorization Number
  • Tips to local guides and drivers
  • Entrance Fee

SPEAK TO OUR EXPERTS

Sarah AzadmehrSARAH AZADMEHR
azadmehr@surfiran.com
+98 910 928 3853

ELHAM BABAEE
elham@surfiran.com
+98 921 218 6082

TAILOR-MADE TOUR

This tour is also available for booking privately for travel anytime through the year, and we can also customise the itinerary to fit your personal requirements. Please contact us for details and prices.

DATES & PRICES

START DATEEND DATEDBL ROOM (P/P)SGL ROOM REQUEST
28 september 201812 October1790.00 EUR2100.00 EUR
06 October 201820 October 20181790.00 EUR2100.00 EUR
30 November 201814 December 20181790.00 EUR2100.00 EUR

Price Information

Prices listed are on a per person basis, sharing accommodation (unless otherwise stated). Prices do not include international flights.

Most tours are based on customers sharing twin-bedded rooms. If you book as an individual, you will be roomed with someone of the same sex. However, on many tours we offer the opportunity to pay a supplement to pre-book a single room.

IMPORTANT NOTES

  1. An arrival transfer is included on this trip
  2. This trip starts at 9:00 in the morning on day 2
  3. On day 14 there is an included internal flight from Shiraz to Tehran.
  4. The maximum check-in baggage allowance is 17 kg per person plus hand luggage.
  5. Please note deposits for this trip are refundable and transferable (We only deduct the bank transfer fee) as per our terms and conditions.
  6. A single supplement is available on this trip.

Accommodation

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 travellers may choose to pay a single room supplement to guarantee themselves a single room throughout the tour. Alternatively, they may choose to share a twin room with another traveller of the same sex. If there are no other single travellers available to pair up with at the time of your booking, then we will add the single supplement to the tour price, but will refund this or deduct it from your balance payment if we are able to pair you up later on.

Transport

In your trip we use private AC Van, Middle Bus or Bus throughout this tour, subject to the final size of the group.

Transfers

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.

Dates & Prices

We run regular small-group departures on this tour. All departures are guaranteed to run if a minimum of 6 travellers is reached. If we do not reach this minimum number, we will offer you the option to either pay a supplement to do the tour exactly as planned, to change your date, to transfer to 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 any special offers.

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.

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.

Joining Info

These tour joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.

  • Joining Point: Watch this space as we announce the point soon.
  • Address: Tehran
  • Time and place: 09:00 am on day 2

ENQUIRE ABOUT THIS TOUR

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CALL US

Prefer speaking to us over the phone? Our specialists would love to help you out!

+98 (21) 8884 3831

Or simply drop us an email at contact@surfiran.com

Opening Hours:
8:30am – 5.00pm Sunday to Thursday

  • WhatsApp 24/7

    +98 921 218 6082

Reviews

Just came back from Iran and I can say that I'm really enthusiast from people and visited places. A very big thank to SURFIRAN because of their help, organization and professional way to manage everything that we need. I do suggest to visit Iran and contact SURFIRAN. they can really help you and make your life easier!

Jacopo and RobertoVisited February 2017Read more

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.

StephenVisited November 2016Read more

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.

Christiane RobichonVisited May 2016TripAdvisor

Most we enjoyed the landscape and wildlife we saw, it was just amazing and not comparable with nature we found in Germany and Europe, one of my greatest experiences! Second we enjoyed the kindness of you guys (Mehdi, Negin and her family, and the two houses we stayed) it was like meeting family and friends :)

Christian, Robin and TimVisited October 2016TripAdvisor

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.

Johannes Visited October 2016TripAdvisor

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