During centuries, Tabriz has been one of the most important cities in Iran in different aspects, such as, history, culture, and industry. It also plays a great role by influencing the country on economic, and political matters.
The city is located in East-Azerbaijan province. While the national language in the country is Farsi (Persian), the language spoken in this province along with West-Azerbaijan and Ardabil provinces, is Azari and Farsi is considered as the second one.
The city is not only famous for a number of valuable museums but also Azari people are famous for cooking delicious confectionery and a wide range of cuisines. The most popular dishes in the city are Kufteh Tabrizi, Abgoosht, Ash-e Mast, and Dolma. In addition, Ghorabie, Loz, Baklava, Nougha or Louka, and Eris or Ris, are some of the most delicious sweets from the city. We highly recommend tasting these delightful foods and sweets when you travel to Tabriz.
Here is a list of top 10 places to visit in Tabriz for you, to give you an idea of places you can see, when you travel to Tabriz.
UNESCO registered The Tabriz Bazaar Complex as a World Heritage Site in 2010. It is worth to know that the bazaar was the first one in its kind to be nominated as a valuable monument.
The magnificent Bazaar consists of 24 caravanserais (sets of rooms sets around the courtyard), and 22 impressive sub-bazaars, which covers about 7 kilometer2. The sub-bazaar are known as Timcheh (domed halls).
It is believed that the main part of the complex was built over a millennium ago, however much of the fine brick vaulting dates back to the 15th century.
The Bazaars in Iran don’t have commercial usage only, and they play a great role in hosting religious ceremonies. One of the most important and popular ceremonies also held all over the country is the Day of Ashura.
One of the most valuable and significant places to visit outside Tabriz is Kandovan Village, located in the southern part of Tabriz with a distance of approximately 55 Kilometers. The reason why the village is so popular is the Rock Houses in the village which were built around 700 years ago. People still live inside the volcanic rocks carved in form of dwelling chambers.
There is also a unique hotel in its kind with a rocky restaurant, a tranquil coffee shop and the only rocky conference room in the world. The hotel built by observing natural rocky architectural principles of the village, and it provides a new and pleasant experience to tourists during their stay.
Among several landmarks in Tabriz, The Blue Mosque, or as it is named in Azeri, Goy Masjid, is one of the most well-known mosques in the country. The intricate blue tile work along the walls and the ceiling of the Mosque are why it is so popular. There is also Islamic calligraphy in the interior design. Its blue hue earned the mosque the moniker “Turquoise of Islam.”
The main building was originally built in 1465, but due to the strong earthquake in 1779, it sustained heavy damage. Unfortunately, there was no reconstruction done on the building till 1973, when the Iranian Ministry of Culture, draw some attention on this magnificent piece of architecture. However, the reconstruction never finished, and only the iwan of the entrance is remained from the original structure.
The Azerbaijan Museum, located at the heart of the city, not far from the Blue Mosque. The museum exhibits a great collection of impressive items which deserves spending visit for at least an hour. There are three halls at the museum, and the most unique artifacts date back to the Iron Age. Other objects have been excavated in Azerbaijan province are also featured prominently, although it is the harrowing sculptures in the basement reflecting on the themes of violence and war, which will stay with you. Also notable among the exhibits of the museum are the sculptures of Ahad Hossein, which is said to depict life and war.
The Qajar Museum of Tabriz, which was originally the house of Amir Nezam, is one of the oldest quarters in the city, which was built in the period of the Crown Prince Abbas Mirza (1789-1833). The house turned to the museum in 2006 and exhibits items dedicated to the Qajar dynasty (1781-1925).
Amir Nezam Garousi served in various governmental positions. He is best remembered for his exemplary prose in the Persian language.
The same as most cities in Iran, the Jame Mosque, along with a bazaar, a school, and a caravanserai, stands at the heart of the city. The same architecture is true for Tabriz and therefore the Jame Mosque is situated just across the main Bazaar. The mosque has taken a battering from various earthquakes over the centuries and has undergone various reconstructions. Due to the large number of constructions at the place for centuries, it has a unique architecture which is a mixture of old and new features. It is most noteworthy for its two tall three-tiered minarets and as well as the impressive mosaic work framing the mosque’s entrance.
The Constitution House of Tabriz which is known as Khaneh Mashrouteh in Farsi is a symbol of fighting despotism and reminiscent of struggles by Sattar Khan and Baqer Khan, who were the two key figures in the Iranian Constitutional Movement.
In 1868, the two-story building was constructed with a number of rooms and halls by Haj Vali Me’mar-e Tabrizi. The skylight and corridor of the house which is decorated with colorful glass and mirrors are the most magnificent part of the house. On the first floor you can see the sculptures of famous Iranian constitution revolutionaries and some of their personal belongings.
Tabriz Municipality Palace which is also known as Sa’at Tower (Clock Tower) is currently used as the city hall and main office of the municipal government of Tabriz.
The building was constructed in 1934 as the Tabriz municipal central office. However, after World War II, it turned to Government Office used by the Azerbaijan Democrat Party. IN 1947, when Iranian troops regained control of Tabriz, the building was again used as the Tabriz municipal central offices, a function which has continued up to the current day.
Recently some parts of the building are used as a museum which exhibit historical maps of Tabriz, photos of new establishments and major constructions works in Tabriz, and the most important of all the golden key of Tabriz.
The exact date of the establishment of the place is not known. However, it was first mentioned by Hamdollah Mostowfi in his Nozhat ol-Gholoub book, which dates back to the 14th century. Approximately, 400 poets, mystics and luminaries of Iran and the region have been laid to rest at the place. It is known for sure that the first poet buried in the complex was Asadi Tousi.
Other famous Persian poets buried there include Anvari Abivardi, Zahireddin Faryabi, Falaki Shirvani, Shams al-Din Sajasi, Mojiroddin Balaghani, Homam Tabrizi, Khaghani, Qatran Tabrizi, Mani Shirazi, Lesani Shirazi, Shakibi Tabrizi, Maghrebi Tabrizi, and Shapour Neyshapouri.
The last poet who has been laid to rest in the place is Ostad Shahriar, having written a great number of poems in both Farsi and Azeri. The mausoleum of Shahriar is located in the middle of the complex at a height of 30 meters.
Elgoli Park, which was named Shah Goli Park previously, is the most popular place for families to spend a few hours with their children. The park is located at the southeast of the city center, with an eye to the city due to its high altitude. At the center of the park is a small artificial lake, with a palace dating back to the Qajar Dynasty.