The village of Maymand, which has been inscribed in the list of world heritage in 2015, is one the most exceptional living complexes that has been formed according to the needs of human beings.
This living complex is located amid gardens laid out along the banks of a network of seasonal rivers which cross the area from north to south.
The village is like a small gap in surrounding verdure, and one finds almost endless gardens and naturally-planted ravines on the road to the village and immediately behind it. The village enjoys a uniquely favorable location which provides its residents with both suitable accommodation and convenient access to the surrounding pastures and gardens.
Since earliest times, the village residents, with a deep knowledge of the village’s situation and its surroundings as well as its valuable natural resources such as water, flora and fauna and the soil itself, have learned to value the abundance of natural resources in their settlement, and to live in such a way so as not to disturb the serenity of nature around them.
For this reason, after thousands of years of continuous human habitation at the site, the natural environment here has remained pristine. It is this remarkably unspoiled territory that surprises any visitors to the area.
What overwhelms the visitors most is how the locals have learned to make peace with nature, to take whatever necessary from it without causing the slightest trouble to their environment.
In this cycle, the interaction of human beings with nature can be found in all aspects of the villagers’ life; food, clothing, hand crafts and everyday tools and objects, the building materials and methods of construction, architectural patterns, living spaces, lifestyles and people’s behavior are all inspired by the very nature and soil in which they are born, raised and eventually rest.
The nature of cultural landscape of Maymand
The nature of the Maymand region strikes visitors with its unusual richness. Each having its own value, these natural, sometimes contrasting patterns together form unique and harmonious mosaics of landscapes with an unprecedented beauty; in one corner, there are endless flat fields with single Beneh trees (wild pistachio) scattered here and there while in Sar-e-Āghol one can see Markhāneh, Kūz& Darkūz and Kapar. Elsewhere hills covered with miscellaneous flora and herbal plants and Mar woods (wild almond) are seen with green valleys which accommodate Sar-e-Bāgh and eventually troglodytic amazing houses inside the mountains astonish the viewer’s eyes with their natural patterns.
Social structure and lifestyle
People of Maymand call themselves tribesmen; however their lifestyle features elements of both of a tribesman and villager. Each tribe in Maymand settles down in a specific area of the region, which means each village is dedicated to one tribe, e.g. Lākhorīn village belongs to Lākhorīnī tribe.
In each tribe there exist a number of sects or families, the name of each being gradually used as the family name of the people of that sect. (E.g. Ebrāhīmī sect/family from Lākhorīnī tribe) Currently, tribal structure has been gradually changed or weakened and previous values affecting life and architecture have become much diluted. Among the people, migrants from Yazd, Kerman and some Azeri can be also tracked.
On 4 July 2015, the village was added to the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list.