Why do we sometimes bother with history or the myths and secrets hidden behind some objects in a museum or to know a new culture? It is possible for some people to travel without knowing this information or show no interest in the subject at all. It seems that for some, entering a new location or moving away from home, city or country is enough.
Of course, each trip has its purposes. For example, no one goes to the Caribbean to read history. But when we consciously and deliberately choose a place where it does have a story or many, we must somehow quench our thirst for learning, and perhaps this way we can, once, take advantage of the opportunity and live not just our life but others before and after use, as well. You want that, visit Kerman!
Kerman is the most important city in southeastern Iran while being among the 5 historical cities of Iran. Kerman is located almost in the north-facing center of the province and its height above sea level is even higher than Tehran’s. For this reason, it has a relatively mild climate compared to other cities. After Shahrekord, Yasuj, and Hamedan, Kerman is the highest city in Iran, which is built on the plains leading to the high mountains, which have snow all year round.
From 2500 years ago until now, Kerman was named Kerman. If we take the shovels of archaeologists and go to the mountains around Kerman and excavate, we will see the ruins of some forts which date back to the Sassanid dynasty. Therefore, we know that Kerman, which now has a population of 738724, has been a grand city since very long ago.
In the post-Islamic period, attention to Kerman did not decrease, the historical monuments of Kerman approve this theory. Kerman is one of those that suffered from many historical pests. The Arabs invasion, the scourge of the Mongols, the looting Afghans in the 17th century, and last but not least the mass murder of Agha Mohammad Khan Qajar each, in turn, shed blood baths to the city.
People of Kerman have always sought to oppress and establish centers of struggle against these injustices, the most contemporary of which, as recorded in history, was supporting the last king of the Zand dynasty, Lotf Ali. With the betrayal of Ibrahim Kalantar, Shiraz closed its gates to this brave Khan of Zandi, therefore, he took refuge in Kerman, and for defending him people of Kerman paid the ultimate price and had their eyes out by the hand of Agha Mohammad Khan Qajar.
However, the city of Kerman has had a golden and good age as well. For example, during the reign of Shah Abbas Safavid, the ruler of Kerman was a wise, art-loving, and just man who left a lot of buildings behind, and under his supervision, the people of Kerman saw peace. During the Qajar period, after Agham Mohammad Khan committed such a great crime in that city, in general, the governors of this city were fair and good.
Kerman is one of the four high cities in Iran, and this issue has greatly affected its climate and has made it somewhat moderate. In general, Kerman summers are very hot and are not recommended for travel, but from mid-November to the first two weeks of April, is a very good time to visit Kerman. However, the cold weather in winter can be annoying. While not forgetting in the spring, monsoon and spring rains also occur in Kerman, which can sometimes be very heavy.
Kerman handicrafts show Iranian culture and taste. The main handicrafts of this province are Pateh, Kerman carpets, coppersmithing, and engraving. Pateh is a type of needlework that is made of cotton and colored stitches on the background shawl. Designs such as bergamot and cypress are widely used in it and add to the beauty and originality of this work.
Kerman carpets are well-known in the world and due to their quality and ever-lasting materials, it has become a proverb in the Persian language. Kerman industries are also active internationally and Kerman holds the record for most exporters of non-petroleum products. The value and importance of Kerman in the field of tourism are undeniable and it should reach higher ranks.
Places to see in Kerman:
This old garden, which belongs to the late Qajar period was located outside the city of Kerman at the time of its construction and has since become a beautiful garden and mansion. Abolghasem Harandi, the owner, presented it to the Ministry of Culture and Arts of Iran when Reza Shah Pahlavi was passing Kerman.
The tree planting and construction system of this garden are like any other Persian Garden and its mansion is located in the north of the garden. Kerman Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts, and Tourism Organization were established in this garden house for some time.
Currently, the mansion has been turned into a museum. The first floor deals with traditional musical instruments while the second floor is a unique collection of archaeological objects in the areas of Shahdad, Halil Rud, Kerman, and Jazmourian. This complex, which can be up to 6000 years old, shows the peak of very modern civilization, long before the Aryans set foot in this region.
They had a unique Writing System carefully excavated and decrypted by Dr. Azhideh Moghadam the former professor of Tehran University and one of the head Archeologist on the site.
Kerman Traditional Market
In these cities such as Shiraz, Yazd, Kerman, Tehran, Isfahan, and other government citadels, Jameh mosques, public baths, and private mosques are often built side by side. Part of the traditional bazaar of Kerman is made during the Safavid because at that time, trading gained great importance and these markets were set up for the prosperity of people’s livelihood and from there, the whole country. Part of the arches of this bazaar, which is known as the longest row of Iranian bazaars, still has Safavid motifs. You can buy the best handicrafts and the best souvenirs in Kerman province in this market.
Ganjali Khan Bazaar
This part of Kerman’s traditional market is more famous than anywhere else. It is famous for its beautiful architecture and other historical monuments, including the famous bath and mosque of Ganjali Khan. Ganjali Khan, during the reign of Shah Abbas and according to his decree, was the ruler of Kerman at the time, which has marked one of the golden periods of Kerman province with his name. This ruler, like the Shah of Iran, focused on the welfare and development of the city and established this part of the bazaar at a time when Isfahan was chosen as the capital of Iran. Therefore, Ganjali Khan Tasi, inspired by Shah Abbas, did his best to make Kerman admirable. Ganjali Khan Square was the place built by him to create something close to Isfahan’s Naqsh-e Jahan Square. The entrance arch of the market with a Windcatecher has given a very pleasant view to this section.
Ganjali Khan Hammam
One of the most important buildings in the Ganjali Khan complex is the public bathing place. It was built according to the common bathing principles of the time and its water was supplied from an aqueduct that Ganjali Khan himself had ordered to build. In the women’s bath, which is located on the south side, there is an anthropological museum that has tried to display the culture of Kerman with sculptures.
Ganjali Khan Mint
Due to the discovery of a large number of coins and metals such as copper that was used to mint coins in Safavid times, it is known as Ganjali Khan Mint. The plan is square with a good skylight on top of the pergola mansion to make the fine work of coinage easier. At present, this building has been turned into a coin museum in Kerman province and shows various coins from ancient to contemporary Iran.
Ganjali Khan Mosque
This is one of the most beautiful mosques in Kerman, which was more of a private place for Ganjali Khan than. The Muqarnas inside the mosque, the tiles, and the altar is astonishing. Ganjali Khan is said to have built this mosque for his worship, following the Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque in Isfahan, which was partly considered the private mosque of Shah Abbas.
None of the historians and archaeologists have agreed on the purpose or period of the Jabalieh, which is why Perhaps Jabalieh is considered one of the wonders of Iran. The whole building of Jabalieh is made of stone and its octagonal architecture is very remarkable. Some say that this place was a fire temple or the tomb of a Zoroastrian from Sassanid reign, which for cultural reasons, these issues have been rejected because in terms of architecture and ideology is not similar to any of the Sassanid fire temples, religious Mourning, and the burial ritual of the time.
Today, this dome has now become a tombstones museum with many inscriptions, which often go back to very ancient times.
One of the largest mosques in Iran is the Malek Grand Mosque, which is a thousand years old. This mosque, which was renamed Imam Mosque after the Iranian Revolution of 1957, was built during the reign of King Turan, the first Seljuk king, in the fifth century AH, and is one of the four-porch mosques in Iran known as the Seljuk style. The texture of this mosque is very simple, and what is important is its relative size and solitude, which has caused the grandeur of the building.
Zoroastrian Fire Temple
Kerman has Zoroastrian residences. Its fire temple, like Yazd, has many interested visitors and tourists. The building of this fire temple is 90 years old and according to its cleric, the fire of this fire temple has been lit since the Sassanid era.
Let’s not forget that Kerman Province with Kerman as its largest city and capital, has more than what we have just mentioned offering. There are numerous breathtaking beauties outside the city, not that far but you need a car to get there.
The splendid night of Shahdah’s desert with its yardangs all around you, shooting stars and pure peace and the sort of silence that could detach you from anywhere or anyone, an endless epiphany, lies ahead only 100 K.M. away from Kerman. Nature alone has created this, where you find yourself in an environment full of wonder that is somewhat eerie. You constantly feel invisible people staring at you, and if you shout, you shall hear yourself echoing from every single spot.
Fath Abad Garden dates back to the Qajar dynasty and before Kerman’s new urbanizing plan, it was 25 K.M away from the main parts of the city. This garden has a magnificent mansion which is eye-catching at night.
Shazdeh Garden in Mahan is one of 9 Persian Gardens that have been registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and since then, its repairs have been carried out by Iran’s cultural heritage under the supervision of UNESCO.
Mahan is located almost in the center of Kerman province and has several historical sites, one of which is Shah Nematollah Vali Shrine, which is located in a magnificent garden and has a pleasant climate. At first, this shrine was just a dome with four minarets, and today it is a relic of six centuries of architecture in different eras. Its turquoise tiled dome could be seen from far away.