BLACK CHURCH (22 DAYS – 21 NIGHTS)
Duration: 22 days trip – 21 nights
Start: Tehran, Iran
Finish: Tehran, Iran
Flight: Kerman – Tehran
Included meals: 22 Breakfasts, 0 Lunches, 0 Dinner
Accommodation grade: 3, 4, and 5-Star Hotels
Transport: Private Car, Van, A.C. Minibus, and Bus
Internet: Free Wi-Fi in Vehicle and at the hote
» Retrace Persia’s 7000 years of history on this tour which takes you through diverse contrasts of scenery and cultural developments.
» Amongst a wide range of historically significant buildings, you will visit, are the very old Black Church at Tabriz and the even older city of Yazd.
» Further on you will have the chance of seeing the magnificence of Isfahan, (half the world), the serenity of Shiraz, a city of saints and poets.
» In Hamadan (ancient Ecbatana) you will visit, Avicenna’s tomb, and Iran opens its gates to you one by one from old castles and palaces to new gardens and museums.
» Discover Pasargadae and Persepolis, cities of the Achaemenid Empire that rank among the world’s greatest sites of antiquity.
» On this tour, you will visit Bishapour that trace back to the Sassanid era and is a combination of Persian and Roman art and architecture that hadn’t been seen before Bishapur construction.
Arrive at Tehran airport, welcome by a Gashttour representative. Then transfer to hotel and rest. O/N Tehran
After breakfast, we will visit Saad Abad Palace Complex which was the complex first built and inhabited by Qajar monarchs in the 19th century. After an expansion of the compounds, Reza Shah of the Pahlavi Dynasty lived there in the 1920s. Then, visit the Archaeological and Islamic Art Museums. The pre-Islam archaeological museum covers Persia’s history from the fifth millennium BC to 648 AD while the Islamic art museum provides a display of Islamic works of art. Then, toward the Golestan palace complex, which is a UNESCO heritage and dates from the 18th century AD. O/N Tehran
(485 Kilometers distance)
Cross the magnificent Alborz Mountain range in a modern air-conditioned coach, and drive towards the Caspian Sea at Anzali. On the way, we will visit the enchanting mountain village of Masuleh whose architecture is unique. The buildings have been built into the mountain and are interconnected. Then continue our journey to Anzali. O/N Anzali
(245 Kilometers distance)
We will visit Anzali Marsh in the morning. This large freshwater lagoon is frequented by a wide variety of migratory waterfowl. In the afternoon, we drive north to the Azerbaijan border at Astara thence westwards to Ardabil. O/N Ardabil
(70 Kilometers distance) [Round Trip]
In Ardabil, we will visit Sheikh Safi Al-Din Ardabili’s Shrine (the great Sufi mausoleum complex). There the dome of Allah Allah (about 56 feet high) rises above the tomb’s UNESCO heritage. Continue to Sarein, a Spa region at the base of a mountain, which sources numerous hot mineral springs of various temperatures known for their therapeutic qualities. Then, return to Ardabil. O/N Ardabil
(225 Kilometers distance)
Drive towards Tabriz, the center of a very ancient civilization dating back to 7000 B.C. We shall visit Goli, a pleasant hillside garden surrounding an artificial lake on the eastern outskirts of Tabriz. Later we will visit the Blue Mosque UNESCO heritage and Bazaar. O/N Tabriz
(460 Kilometers distance) [Round Trip]
We shall visit the Black Church, a 1000-year-old Christian UNESCO heritage site within which is the grave of Saint Thaddeus, with Black and white stones utilized in its construction. Later, return to Tabriz and continue southwards to visit the village of Kandovan. This village exemplifies manmade cliff dwellings, which still inhabited the troglodyte homes, excavated inside volcanic rocks. O/N Tabriz
(555 Kilometers distance)
Drive to Hamadan, en route we will visit the UNESCO heritage-listed site of Azar Goshashb (Takht-e Soleyman) dating from 1500 years ago, and the originally fortified site, which is located on a volcano crater rim. The citadel includes the remains of a Zoroastrian fire temple built during the Sassanid period. Then, continue to Hamadan. O/N Hamadan
The city of Ecbatana of the Medes, now called Hamadan and has a history as a place of learning. The tombs of the medical writer Avicenna and the poet Baba Taher are marked by recent monuments. We shall visit the tomb of biblical Ester and Mord Khay, which is revered as a Jewish shrine. Also, we visit an archaeological excavation site and museum at Hegmataneh hill. O/N Hamadan
(195 Kilometer distance)
Drive to Kermanshah, en route to Kangavar we will visit the ruins of the Anahita complex, built in honor of the female goddess of water. Continue to Bisotun, could be regarded as a museum of the Persian civilization from ancient times to the present day and UNESCO listed Bisotun as one of the World Heritage Sites. We view the huge cuneiform inscribed tablet of Darius I and a bas-relief of Hercules preserved in the mountainside. O/N Kermanshah
(575 Kilometers distance)
Drive to Isfahan, en route we will visit the Falak-ol-Aflak castle (Shapour Khast) that dominates the delightful mountain town of Khorram Abad. The castle is amongst the most important structures built during the Sassanid era. Since it was built over 1800 years ago, it was transformed into a museum complex. Then, drive to Isfahan. O/N Isfahan
In the morning, we will visit Naghshe Johan square, a huge open square in the center of Isfahan which is listed as a UNESCO heritage. The square periphery is marked by outstanding Safavid buildings which include the Ali Qapu palace, the Imam Mosque, the Sheikh Lotfollah (ladies) mosque, and to the north the expansive bazaar where we can see artisans crafting metal work, Persian miniatures, printing intricate designs on cloth and other activities. In the afternoon, we will visit Si-o-Se Pol (thirty-three arches) and Khajoo bridges spanning the Zayanderud River. Then, we will visit Music Museum. O/N Isfahan
We will visit the Armenian quarter of Jolfa and its Vank cathedral and adjacent museum. Later we shall visit the Friday mosque with its superlative brick and tile work then continue to the shrine of the shaking minarets and finally visit Chehel Sotoun a Safavid reception palace renowned for its huge wall frescos depicting Persian history. O/N Isfahan
You can fly directly to Shiraz or end your tour at this point and fly back to Tehran if you so desire.
(330 Kilometers distance)
Drive to Yazd, en route we will visit a carpet workshop in Naein. Then, we will visit the Narin castle and an old Caravanserai in Meybod. There we can also visit an active pottery market. Afterward, Continue to Yazd. O/N Yazd
Yazd is a very ancient city. Marco Polo wrote of the fine attributes of that city. It is like a living museum. We will visit narrow alleys, a bathhouse converted to a first-class restaurant, and see the high wind towers which form efficient cooling systems in this desert climate. Then, visit the Dowlat Abad gardens built in the 18th century for a former ruler. Later visit the Syed Jafer shrine, which is decorated with tens of thousands of mirror tiles illuminating the whole mosque. In addition, The Friday mosque dates from the 14th century, and at a silk weaving workshop, we see exquisite brocades still being made on traditional looms and at last Athletic House (Zour Khaneh). O/N Yazd
(460 Kilometers distance)
Drive to Shiraz, en route we will visit Pasargadae, the tomb of Cyrus the Great first Achaemenian king UNESCO heritage, Necropolis (tombs of Achaemenian kings), and the highlight of the tour at Persepolis UNESCO heritage the ceremonial capital of the Achaemenians at the height of their domination. We continue and pass through the Quran gate to enter Shiraz. O/N Shiraz
(280 Kilometers distance) [Round Trip]
Early morning departure to visit Bishapour, an ancient partly excavated Sassanian city built as a commemoration of Persia’s victory over the invading Romans. According to an inscription, the city was found in 266 by Shapur I (241-272), who was the second Sassanid king and inflicted a triple defeat on the Romans, having killed Gordian III, captured Valerian, and forced Philip the Arab to surrender. In addition, we will visit six Bas-reliefs on the rock walls of Tang- e Chogan depicts the Persian’s victory over the invading Romans. During our return to Shiraz, there may be an opportunity to see Qashqai nomads in their annual migration. O/N Shiraz
We will visit the Eram Garden which was built during the middle of the thirteenth century. Besides, we visit Naranjestan Gardens with its outstanding tile working, mirroring, etc., which was built between 1879 and 1886 by Qavam Family and visit Nasir-ol-Molk Mosque. Then, toward Hafez and Saadi mausoleums who were 2 famous Persian poets in the world. Afterward, we will visit the Vakil mosque complex and the most astonishing mirror decoration of the Ali Ibn Hamzeh Holy Shrine. O/N Shiraz
You may end the tour now and fly back to Tehran if you so desire.
(580 Kilometers distance)
Drive to Kerman en route we will visit, Sarvestan to visit the Sasanid places. The Sarvestan Palace was built by the Sasanian king Bahramgur in the 5th century AD and was either a gubernatorial residence or a Zoroastrian fire temple. Then, continue to Kerman. O/N Kerman
(385 Kilometers distance) [Round Trip]
We will visit the remains of Bam citadel which was the largest adobe building in the world and is listed by UNESCO as part of the World Heritage Site “Bam and its Cultural Landscape”. Then, will visit the magnificent Mausoleum of Shah Nematollah e Vali, the great Sufi, and the lovely Shahzadeh (Prince) Garden in Mahan. Then, return to Kerman. O/N Kerman
(1:35 Hours distance by Plane)
Kerman is famous for Persian carpets. There we will visit the 17th-century Ganjali Khan complex including one of the most interesting and ancient bazaars in Iran, a bathhouse with a collection of wax figures showing original bathhouse procedures, and a traditional teahouse. Afternoon, transfer to the airport and fly to Tehran. O/N Tehran
Transfer to Tehran International airport for your departure from Iran.