Mystical Iran 

18 Day Escorted Tour, 19 May – 05 June, 2018  

MAY 2018

Afternoon departure on Qatar Airlines to Tehran via Doha.
SUN 20 Welcome to the capital of Iran
Arrival in Tehran the capital city of Iran at about 1030. After clearing Immigration & Customs we meet our tourist guide and travel to our hotel for a quick check in followed by lunch at a local restaurant. After lunch we visit the complex of Golestan and Shamsolemareh Palace. It is a UNESCO heritage site that consists of 17 palaces, museums, and halls, and it is worthwhile to spend a few hours here to visit its luxuriously decorated rooms, large dining area and ballroom, and well landscaped Gardens and fountains. This evening we travel up to Bame-e in the mountains just outside of Tehran for the fantastic view of the city have to have dinner. Overnight Tehran.
After breakfast a half day city tour of Tehran with first a visit to the National Museum of Iran which represents many different periods of Iran’s rich history. Then to the glorious Jewelry Museum, that houses the Royal Jewels such as tiaras, crowns, elaborate thrones and many other interesting antiques. We then proceed to the Grand Bazaar which is an old historical market with unique architecture where locals trade in gold, carpets, spices, fabrics, handicrafts and traditional food. After lunch we drive to Kashan and overnight in a traditional boutique hotel. (B)
After breakfast travel to Kashan and visit Tabatabaie and Borojerdi House, both traditional houses with unique Persian architecture. We also visit Sultan Amir Ahmad Bathhouse and Fin Garden, a UNESCO world heritage site. Kashan is also famous for manufacturing carpets, silk and other textiles. We continue to Abyaneh for overnight stay. Drive 3 hours (B)
Today we will spend some hours in Abyaneh. Abyaneh village is a beautiful ancient village in which people still live the way they used to 2500 years ago. Here we will also be attracted by the traditional clothing to the extent that we can’t resist trying them on or taking them as souvenirs! Men wear long loose black pants with long coats, and women wear flowery loose shirts and crimp skirts. They wear colorful scarves too. This is a great place for taking amazing photos. From here we will proceed to Isfahan. On arrival, and after a short rest, we have a half city day tour. We first visit Vank Cathedral in Julfa, located in the Armenian quarter in Isfahan, with its beautiful shop stores and cozy coffee shops. An excellent place to taste Armenia coffee famous in this region. This evening we go walking in the city streets to soak up the atmosphere. Beside the Zayandehroud River we visit the Siosepol and Khaju ancient bridges. Overnight Isfahan. Driving 3.5 hours. (B)
Full-day city tour in Isfahan, one of the largest cities of the ancient world with its many beautiful boulevards, covered bridges, palaces, mosques, minarets and monuments. Naghsh-e Jahan Square is a famous attraction of the city that has been registered by UNESCO as an outstanding example of Iranian and Islamic architecture. Isfahan also has a wide variety of historic monuments and is known for its paintings, history and architecture. Start our full-day city tour with a visit to Naghsh-e -Jahan Complex consisting of A’li Qapu Palace, Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque, with its great dome, and Imam Mosque. We visit also the Qeisarieh Traditional Bazaar, and the Hasht Behesht Garden next to the main square. We will taste some great local food in this city, like Beryani, and buy the Gaz sweets of Isfahan which is famous worldwide. Overnight Isfahan. (B)
Another city tour of Isfahan. This time we visit the Jame Mosque, a magnificent mosque which dates back to Saljooqi era. We also visit Chehel Sotoun Palace, which is a great pavilion with 20 columns that reflect as 40 with their images in the water. Continue on to, Monarjonban and Bird Garden, a beautiful large garden park of approximately 55000 square meters, located on the banks of the Zayandeh Rood River. Overnight Isfahan in Setareh hotel. (B)
In the morning we drive to Yazd. On the way we have make stops in Meybod and Naein. In Meybod we visit Narin Castle, or ‘Narin Ghal’eh’, a mud-brick fort. Then in Naein we will visit Jame Mosque, one of the oldest mosques in Iran that dates back to the 8th century BC, followed by a visit to a traditional workshop for weaving cotton, plus we will explore some man-made underground caves. We continue to Yazd for overnight accommodation. Drive time 6 hour (B)
Full day city tour in Yazd to visit the Tower of Silence. The Tower of Silence is a circular raised structure built by Zoroastrians for excarnation – that is for dead bodies to be exposed to and exhumed by carrion birds. Jame Mosque is built in Ale Bouye era about 750 years ago. Next we visit Zoroastrian Fire Temple where is kept the eternal flame of fire, then Dowlat Abad Garden, a Unesco heritage site, with its small pavilion build in 1750. Finally a visit to Amir Chakhmaq Square, built in the 15th century by Jalaleddin Amir Chakhmaq, the governor of Yazd during the Timurid era. Overnight hotel Labe khandagh in Yazd. (B)
Today we drive to Kerman, with a half day city tour of the Ganjalikhan Complex and Safavid Complex which consists of a school, a square, caravanserai, public baths, water reservoir, mosque and a bazaar. All these are located in the old city center and created by Ganjali Khan. Also we will make a visit to Jeme Mosque. Overnight in Kerman. Drive time 4.50 hours. (B)
After Breakfast drive to the incredible Shahdad Desert with its amazing ‘Kaluts’, and unique nature. We will spend considerable time here taking in this amazing geographical region and amazing scenery. Overnight Kerman. Drive time 3 hours (B)
This morning drive to Mahan most famous for Iran’s best examples of historical and cultural monuments. We first visit Shazdeh Garden, a spectacular historical garden with beautiful high trees, staged fountain and unique pool. Then on to Shah Nematolah-vali Mausoleum, a beautiful mausoleum with attractive tiles and artistic wooden doors and paintings. We then drive to Rayen to see the Rayen Citadel, an adobe castle that dates back to the Sassanid era and covers a 20000-square-meter area, Back to Kerman for overnight accommodation. Drive time 3 hours. (B)
Today we drive to Shiraz., This stunning ancient city is known as the city of poets, literature, monuments, gardens and flowers. Along the way we will visit Pasargadae, the ancient great city of Cyrus, and enjoy a local lunch in an Iranian house with live music as a special gift. Travel on to Shiraz, overnight Shiraz. Drive time 7 hours (B,L)

JUNE 2018

After breakfast we will proceed to with a visit to Nasir Olmolk Mosque, so named in popular culture as the Pink Mosque due to its usage of considerable pink color tiles for its interior design and related to the Qajar Dynasty, Mirza Hasan ‘Ali Nasir al-Mulk, Next we visit Qavam Palace, with its beautiful ceiling paintings, plus the Naranjestan Garden with its magnificentl orange trees. We will then visit the Zand Complex that includes a bitadel, bath house, mosque and a traditional Bazaar, all built in the Zandiye dynasty by Karim khan. Overnight Shiraz. (B)
In the morning drive to Marvdasht to visit the ‘masterpiece’ historical sites of Necropolis and Persepolis. Persepolis, or Takht_eJamshid, is one of the ancient masterpieces of Iran. UNESCO declared the ruins of Persepolis a World Heritage Site in 1979. We travel back to Shiraz and visit Eram Garden, a 12th century garden with many ancient trees and beautiful highly scented flowers. Visit also Hafez Temple, with its beautiful big garden and once home to a famous Persian poet,. Overnight Shiraz. Drive time 2 hours (B)
Half-day city tour of Shiraz to visit Shahe Cheraq Mausoleum, an old holy shrine, where locals can pray in its quiet peaceful location, and is famous for its gorgeous mirror works. Next to Atiq Mosque whose whitewashed mud-brick structure dates from the 7th century and have greeted the Muslim pilgrims on the caravan routes that crossed this area for centuries. And finally Saadi Temple, a famous mausoleum of Saadi, a popular Persian poet, with its great surrounding garden. This afternoon we transfer to the airport for our flight to Tehran. Overnight Tehran (B)
This morning there is an optional half day city tour of the Saad Abad Complex which contains many palaces and museums. Otherwise we can relax, shop or explore the city on our own. In the evening we transfer to Tehran International Airport for departure flights back to New Zealand on Qatar Airlines via Dohar (B)
Arrive Auckland.

$5999.00 per person share twin/double, $6580.00 per person single

  • Return economy airfares and taxes ex Auckland
  • All sightseeing as specified in the itinerary
  • Entrance fees to all museums, heritage sites, palaces and other sites
  • Transport by air conditioned luxury coach
  • English speaking guide through out
  • Breakfasts daily (B)
  • Lunch at Iranian House with floor show
  • Visa authorization number
  • Services of a tour escort from New Zealand
  • Souvenir Gift
  • Domestic flights to/from Auckland
  • Visa fees (approx USD100 per person)
  • Tips (USD90 per person, collected by the tour escort in advance)
  • Porterage
  • Lunches and dinners
  • Travel insurance (compulsory)

Project Expeditions Booking Form   Download PDF