Transport with a splash of color

Most trips overseas for the intrepid traveler involve overland travel.  There’s sometimes unavoidable on small islands in the Philippines and the desert expanses of the Middle East.  The road offers adventure, perspective to a new place and experiencing the local color. Some of us have quickly found that schedules in most places do not goContinue reading “Transport with a splash of color”

A typical day for visitors on a guided tour of Iran

What does a typical day on a guided tour in Iran look like? Curious on what actually goes down when you are an American on a mandatory guided tour in Iran?  It’s not as bad as it sounds and there’s no choice in the matter since we are Americans. My husband and  I, like manyContinue reading “A typical day for visitors on a guided tour of Iran”

Shiraz: Few more interior pics of the Arg of Karim Khan

Here’s more pictures of the interior of the Arg of Karim Khan. I asked what this hole was for and my guide just said “It’s just a hole” and strudged his shoulders. Doh…Sometimes you have to ask those dumb questions. It was probably just for air since it gets pretty steamy in this area ofContinue reading “Shiraz: Few more interior pics of the Arg of Karim Khan”

Good times…when the Zand Dynasty made Shiraz Persia’s Capital

The fortress known as Karim Khani Citadel today shows signs of age.  There’s a tilting tower, missing columns and a Qu’ran missing.  It’s almost 300 years old so all of this isn’t unexpected.  The structure was the main residential palace of Karim Khan-e-Zand and his dynasty and later in the mid 20th century home to prisonersContinue reading “Good times…when the Zand Dynasty made Shiraz Persia’s Capital”

Tons of pictures of Shiraz: Another visit to the Valik Mosque

Late day light and visit to the Vakil Mosque It was the third day into my trip to Iran and my husband and I were ready to take out on our own.  The jet lag had finally faded and the streets of Shiraz were becoming more familiar.  We were on a “tour”  but it wasContinue reading “Tons of pictures of Shiraz: Another visit to the Valik Mosque”

Pictures of Shiraz: First visit to the Vakil Mosque

The first visit to the Valik Mosque located or attached to the Valik Bazaar. The mosque, built between 1751 and 1773, is the best example of architecture constructed during the Zand Dynasty when Shiraz was the capital of Persia. It has withstood many earthquakes and invasions. The mosque is now a registered historical site andContinue reading “Pictures of Shiraz: First visit to the Vakil Mosque”

Naqsh-e Rostam: Achaemenid Empire and Murderous Sibling Rivalry

Naqsh-e Rostam doesn’t look like more than a few holes in the side of a hill of limestone.  This hill is where four great leaders of Persia once laid to rest – Darius the Great, Xerxes I,  Artaxerxes I and Darius II.  These men lived at a time where brother killed brother in order to gainContinue reading “Naqsh-e Rostam: Achaemenid Empire and Murderous Sibling Rivalry”

Pic of the Day: Shiraz’s Bibi Dokhtaran Mausoleum at night

Iran Pic: Fantastic view of the Bibi Dokhtaran Mausoleum from the roof of the Our Suite at the Niayesh Traditional Hotel in Shiraz Iran. Great place to smoke some Shesha and toss back a few pomegranate Danjeh Aria’s after a day of touring Persepolis.

Trip to Iran: Shiraz Jet-lagged and caffeinated

The ride to the hotel is pretty much a blur. We learned that a light rail line would be completed sometime.  Construction started in 2001 and it’s still not completed.  I can relate since I spent most of my childhood waiting for the completion of the “Big Dig” in Boston.  Mahmoud also informed us his sisterContinue reading “Trip to Iran: Shiraz Jet-lagged and caffeinated”

Iran Tour: the not so ugly four-letter word

We arrived in Shiraz in the early hours and there’s nothing like be greeted with a smile and have a car waiting at 4am. The tour was going to take us through the center of Iran – starting in Shiraz and ending in  Tehran.  We decided to go overland the whole way for a fewContinue reading “Iran Tour: the not so ugly four-letter word”

Tomb of Hafiz in Shiraz

The Musalla Gardens is where the great Persian poet K’aja Sams-al-Din Mohammad Sirazi or later more famously known as Hafiz lays to rest.  A tall pillared mosaic ceiling and slender outlying evergreens shade Hafiz’s marble resting place. The works of Hafiz are influential in modern Persian society with its timeless themes, romantic dreams, and abilityContinue reading “Tomb of Hafiz in Shiraz”

Day 1 and 2: JFK to Shiraz via Ataturk International

Our ride from JFK to Shiraz and here’s how it went down: Airbus from Manhattan to JFK (1 hour) JFK to Istanbul (10 hours + 6 hour layover + 7 hour time shift) Istanbul to Shiraz (3.5 hours + 2 hour delay + 1.5 hour time shift) Shiraz Airport to hotel (longer than normal halfContinue reading “Day 1 and 2: JFK to Shiraz via Ataturk International”