The long history and the vast area of Iran have led to amazingly variant climatic conditions, cultural attractions, and natural landscapes. That is why Iran is famous as a destination for all four seasons, a land that offers loads of opportunities for all nature and adventure lovers who dream of various thrilling experiences such as climbing, canyoning, skiing, marine activities, and safari.

What is famous in Iran? Well, the best of Iran includes 24 UNESCO Cultural Heritage Sites and two UNESCO Natural Site as well as 13 Intangible Cultural Heritage registered on UNESCO and many more registered on Iran National Heritage List, that has made this country resemble like a live museum for all avid culture lovers, too. And surprisingly there are still more places you can visit!

Iran’s top attractions appeal to many international tourists from all around the world. Most itineraries offer 7 days to a 14-day tour to Iran, and yet they miss many tourist attractions in Iran! As long as you stay here, there is no shortage of Iran tourist attractions and there are places worth visiting.

If you have decided to visit historical places in Iran or Iran’s fascinating sceneries you can trust Iran Doostan Tours Co. We have a good three decades of experience in operating incoming tours to Iran and our professional experts would offer you the best Iran tourist map with reliable itineraries and high-quality services. Regarding a great deal of Iran attractions, we offer a diversity of package tours to Iran ranging from exciting adventure tours such as climbing and bird watching to awesome cultural tours to world heritage sites. MICE tours, safari tours, religious tours, and medical tours to Iran is also among the variety of services we offer.

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Naghshe Jahan

Naghshe Jahan Square (Naqsh-e Jahan)

Every day in the tranquility of morning the sun rises over Naghshe Jahan Square and shines over the mosaic work of Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque to create a beautiful scene with cream and pink colors in front of your eyes.

Naghshe Jahan square is a showcase of the Safavid Dynasty, which makes it obvious to every visitor who takes a tour to Iran that Isfahan was the capital of Persia not too long ago.

The three main components of power in Persia during the Safavid days are present at Naqsh-e Jahan square. The bazaar as the merchant’s power, the mosque as the clergy’s, and the palace as the king’s power are gathered in this square.

Around Naghshe Jahan square sits hundreds of stores selling handicrafts unique to this city.

Two striking mosques face Imam Square. The smaller one, Sheikh Lotfollah was built for the women of the Shah’s harem. In your tour to Iran, if you have had a precise look at the numerous mosques of the country, you probably have realized that minarets and courtyards are among the main parts of a mosque. But Sheikh Lotfollah’s neither has minarets nor a courtyard because it was not for public use and the Shah decided to make it special.

Lattice windows, exquisite tile work, and elaborate decorations with light Turkish blue and dark Persian blue make the Imam mosques’ atmosphere calming and spiritually healing. Islam forbids images therefore mosques have decorative designs and scripts.

And there is the Shah’s palace on the opposite side of Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque. A six-story palace named Ali Qapu meaning “The Great Gate”. The king of Persia would sit on the terrace on the third floor of Ali Qapu to watch Chowgan (polo), maneuvers, and horse racing with his special quests. The walls and ceilings of rooms, corridors, and stairways are decorated by stunning paintings of Safavid artists.

Naghshe Jahan Square, a vitrine of the most beautiful artistic works from the Safavid era, became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1979 and is the highlight of every culture tour to Iran.

If you are planning to visit Iran, here is the link to Iran online visa form.


A Persian Thanksgiving on Yalda Night

The origin of Yalda Night

On the days that Zoroastrianism was the official religion in Iran on the last night of autumn people would stay at a cave and watch the sunrise, the birth of Mithra, on the next morning. Today after thousands of years people do not celebrate this night in the same manner they did in the days of Zoroaster. Today, the name of Yalda reminds people that on this important night of the year they must gather up and enjoy each other’s company on the longest night of the year. At this night Iranians believe that the best way to appreciate the extra minutes to enjoy the company of the family and loved ones.

How is Yalda celebrated in different cities in Iran?

You may be surprised to know that Iranians celebrate Thanksgiving too, but in their own manner and in a different time. Actually, Yalda night is a thanksgiving night for Iranians. Everyone gathers in the grandparents’ house and they say praying to thank the lord for the previous year’s blessings and to increase the next year’s health, wealth, and joy. Staying up till dawn to celebrate this night and reading the poems of Divan-e Hafez is the tradition for celebrating Yalda. On Yalda our ancestors lit the fire for extra lightening to help the dawn to overcome this longest darkness.

People of Tonekabon, one of the Northern cities of Iran, believe that they must have 40 different snacks for the night. In Khorasan, people make a sweet called Kaf at this night through a very happy ceremony called Kafzani.

Like any other celebrations, Yalda has its own food and snacks and every item has found its way on the table for a good reason. Pomegranate, one of the main fruits of the night protects us from the evil spirits which are at their peaks on this longest darkness of the year. The delightful taste of pomegranates with angelic powder can truly give you the superpower to overcome the Ahriman (enemy in Farsi)!

You will see watermelon and mixed nuts on the table for sure. In the past years that fruits were available in the season only the host, usually the oldest in the family, would carefully save grapes and watermelons for the upcoming Yalda. Eating the mixed nuts will bring days full of prosperity and watermelon and yogurt will save you from the hot days of the summer days.


A simple yet gorgeous design of fruits and nuts to celebrate Yalda Night in Iran.

There is a tradition similar to the “trick or treat” on Halloween night. The bachelorettes cover up their faces, so they couldn’t be recognized, and they knock on the neighbor’s door and ask for a treat. If seven houses did not recognize young girls whatever they wished for will be granted.

In Persian literature Yalda night has been associated with loneliness and the long wait to meet the loved one as Sa’adi says:

‘The sight of you each morning is a New Year Any night of your departure is the eve of Yalda’

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mehregan festival

Mehregan Celebration; The Persian Festival of Autumn

Autumn starts with the month of Mehr in Persia, and its 16th day is the celebration of light, friendship, kindness, and love in the ancient Avestan calendar, Mehregan. Mehr is the symbol of the Sun in Persian culture, and this glorious star is said to be the eye of Mitra, the goddess of light. Mehregan Celebration is the ritual of nature and the sun. Its message is good words, good deeds, and good thoughts. Its lesson is to become like nature, always changing for good, being generous, and being like the gorgeous sites of our beautiful planet.

What is Mehregan Celebration?

195 days after Nowruz is the festival of the autumn in Iran. It is Thanksgiving Day for Iranian farmers. In older days Mehregan was harvest day and some of the crops were sent to the king as a gift. On Mehregan, friends, and family gather to celebrate the beginning of the beautiful fall season. On this day people go to visit their loved ones, especially the ones that have been missed for a long time to enjoy the beauty of this vibrant-colored season together.


People gather around and celebrate Mehregan Festival in Matinabad every year.

Mehregan History

The festival dates back to the pre-Islamic era. It is one of the few pre-Islamic festivals celebrated by the general public in contemporary Iran. This festival marked the end of harvest and the beginning of winter. Ancient and medieval authors have recorded its celebration as occurring both before and after Islam. Mithra and Ahura Mazda were watching over a plentiful harvest and sustenance for the upcoming winter as a sign of our mutual promises and duties with the divine.

How is Mehregan Celebrated?

Mehregan celebration is as important as Nowruz for Persians and it has its own unique traditions. Violets, sweets, rose water, candles, flowers, and fruits especially apples and pomegranates are set on a violet-colored tablecloth to start the fest. Almond and pistachio are among the requirements to make this tradition as Persian as possible. Violets characterize Mehregan as the symbol of light, love, and friendship that dates back to the ancient days of Persia. Espand (rue seeds) will be thrown in the flames to be safe from the evil eye on this happy day. The ceremony begins with saying a prayer in front of a mirror. Hugs and kisses are exchanged after a handful of Noghl (sugar plum) is thrown over each other’s heads.

mehregan celebration

Freshly harvested products, such as beetroot, radish, and pumpkin, play a big role in this tradition.

Mehregan Traditions

In most households, the entire family and guests stand in front of the altar table, facing the mirror during the ceremony. A traditional ritual here includes prayer and hymns followed by drinking fruit juices like pomegranate juice or sherbet, a classic Iranian beverage. And the application of the kohl from the Sormeh-dan is considered a blessing against evil forces which in traditional Zoroastrian communities, can mean the forces of Ahriman, the Evil Eye, and other such cursed actions. As guests and household members embrace and exchange gifts, seeds are thrown around with joy and cheer.

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