Tasua and Ashura

Traveling to Iran during Muharram

Muharram, the first month of lunar year for Muslims, accompanies some rituals and religious practices all around Iran. The Day of Ashura is the most important religious holiday in Iran and if you happen to be in Iran on this special day, you will experience a different atmosphere in the country. Iranian people commemorate Karbala Battle in Iraq which occurred 1400 years ago between Prophet Muhammad’s grandson, Imam Hussein, and the king of Iraq at the time. Muharram in Iran would be a unique cultural experience for every tourist; most tourist attractions are closed on two days of tasu’a and Ashura, though there are things to do and places to visit on these two days. Here is the guide to what to do and expect during Muharram in Iran.

Ta’zieh: A UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage

Ta’zieh is a type of performance art, a drama narrating the story of the brave war and martyrdom of Imam Hussein and his family and friends in Karbala. Ta’zieh was registered on UNESCO’s List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2010. This performance embraces four components of poetry, music, song and motion. It is performed only by men and women’s role are also played by men. Many men and women are gathered to watch this graceful play on the Day of Ashura and you are recommended to go for this Iranian performance if you happen to experience Muharram in Iran.

 

Manners and dress codes

Muharram and particularly the Day of Ashura are based on religious culture, therefore, you are expected to show respect for the sorrow of Iranian people on this day. You may see many Iranians wearing black in mourning of their Imam (religious leader). Wearing black is the most representation of grief for a dead person in Iranian culture. Although you are not expected to wear black as a tourist, just an acceptable covering of your body and hair for women is appreciated. Laughing loudly in the public may also be frowned upon.
One of the rituals of Muharram is the free food many houses and mourning groups share in the street; you are welcomed to have as much free food as you wish among these groups. In case you see one of these groups only ask for some food and they will offer you wholeheartedly. It is widely believed among Muslims that the food cooked for Imam Hussein contains spiritual value and that is why you should not be embarrassed to ask for it.

The best places to visit Ashura memorial event in Iran

Every city in Iran and every region has is own rituals for mourning. Hence, there are places that have developed a kind of glorious rituals practiced by local people.

Muharam in Iran-Yazd

Yazd province has a particularly remarkable ritual in Muharam.

These top places and the location include:

Khaneye Honarmandan Iran, Tehran

Iranshahr, Forsat St.Taleqani St., Tehran, Iran.

Amir Chakhmaq Complex, Yazd

Nakhl-Gardani ceremony in Ashkezar during Ashura mourning. Amir Chakhmaq Complex, Yazd, Iran

Hosseinieh Ghasem Ibn- Alhussein, Natanz, Iran

Hosseinieh Ghasem Ibn- Alhussein, Natanz, Iran

Taziyeh Nooshabad, Kashan

Nooshabad, Kashan, Iran

For any inquiry about traveling to Iran, please contact us via info@idt.ir.

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