I’m now in Shiraz, Iran. I am on a “side trip” from Tehran to see some of Iran’s amazing historical sights.. Azulo is tucked away in the Tour Guide’s apartment!
I return to Tehran on 20th and then head for Turkey
I say “surprising Iran” because if you believe the Media then Iran is a place to be avoided. Quite the contrary.
It is a lovely country with friendly people who go out of their way to help.Maybe our Politicians don’t see eye to eye but the people are great! The roads are first class and so far the Police have not caused me any headaches!
So far I can’t say the food excites me too much and of course there is NO ALCOHOL which for me that’s a bit of a pain!…. It somehow seems incongruous sitting in a “nice” restaurant having dinner and having to drink water of orange juice. Quite ruins the effect!
My journey from the Border at Bajgiran to Tehran was uneventful. it’s about 900k and I did it in an easy two days.
I stopped at the first town called Quchan for some water and besieged! Azulo and I are always an attraction and I’m always surrounded by people asking me where I’m from and hopping about like Kangaroos when they understand I’m from Australia
Before I left home, I had booked a Private Tour from Tehran to Shiraz about 1000K south of Tehran to see some of Iran’s famous Historical places such as Persepolis and Isfahan. It’s a long detour so I thought Azulo could have another break!
My first two days however were spent touring Tehran. It’s a HUGE city of around 14 million people and seems to go on forever!
Madhi, my “Driver” and Mojgan my “Guide” were terrific. Mojgan speaks excellent English.
.I think I saw everything and was exhausted by the evening!
My timing here is not the best since it’s mid summer and boiling hot but also it’s RAMADAN where Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset. Not eating is one thing but not DRINKING in this heat is extraordinary!
Now Taxi drivers, as we know, are the font of all knowledge and wisdom, so the following is what I have been told, not from the Tour guide but a taxi driver……Apparently,only a small percentage of the Tehran population actually “fast” but this being the ISLAMIC REPUBLIC, the Mullahs insist that NOBODY is SEEN to be EATING OR DRINKING! So, just about all the Restaurants and Coffee shops are CLOSED!
Tehran has many Palaces and Mosques and the Crown Jewels of the Shah’s are amazing. Here are some pictures. Sorry I couldn’t photo the jewels!.
In the Bazaar there was a man with a cage of dozens of sparrows. Now how’s this for enterprise….Nobody wants to eat or keep sparrows so what was his angle? Well, according to Moigan, people buy them and RELEASE THEM! I felt sorry for the poor little birds so i bought one and he immediately flew off to a tree. One lucky sparrow!
Just some other photos for your perusal.
In one of the Palaces there is an exhibition showing the adventures of two Iranian blokes that rode around the world for several years on two MATCHLESS Motorcycles from about 1953. Unlike me, they were met by Presidents and Royalty everywhere they went!
I suppose it was a little more unusual to ride a Motorbike around the world in 1954! Perhaps Mr Abbot will welcome me home?
Shiraz and Persepolis
My tour guide in Shiraz was also excellent. Her name is Sanaz. She took me to all the Palaces Mosques and Gardens in Shiraz. It’s SO hot here that by 12.00 it is almost impossible to concentrate!
My dinner on my first evening was particularly unexciting. it was a soup come stew called Dizi. I was sitting alone in the restaurant when it arrived and I looked at it and had absolutely NO idea how to eat it! There was a bowl of stew and some bread and some salad leaves of some sort. There was this pot with a plunger and I simply had no idea what to do with it! I still don’t know why there was the plunger !
The second day we drove at 7.30 am to Persepolis. Persepolis was founded in 550 BC. It was destroyed by Alexander the Great. Sadly not as lot remains but you can see what an amazing place it must have been. The place is huge and was buried until 1930.
The mausoleums of the Kings is cut into the cliff
I fly it Isfahan tomorrow