From Kebabs to Khoresht: Eating Your Way Through Iran

Spice Stand at Shiraz Bazaar - Iran
Spice mountains, Shiraz bazaar.

“Eat an onion from each new place you visit to adjust your body to the local cuisine.” — Words of wisdom from one of our guides on the subtle appreciation of eating one’s way through Iran.

Traditional Iranian cuisine combines the savory of fresh herbs and spices like saffron, merges it with the sweet of pomegranate, barberry and cinnamon and tops it all off with a flourish of nuts, dried fruits and beans. The result: not to present one distinct flavor, but to serve up layers that keep the taste buds guessing as to what is and what’s coming next.

Although this article could be entitled Persian Food, today’s greater Iran is ethnically broader than its Persian roots. So too its cuisine. Influences on the Iranian table draw from across Central Asia, Turkey, throughout Mesopotamia, and most notably from its own Azerbaijani Turkish population — to yield a cuisine that is influenced by it all, yet somehow distinctly different.

Kebab Master - Outside Kermanshah, Iran
Kebab master at a truck stop outside of Kermanshah, Western Iran.

Here are a few favorite, notable and common Iranian dishes that we found in the weeks we traveled across Iran.

Let’s eat! Nusheh jân!

Iranian Food Staples


Kebabs for Dinner in Rasht, Iran
An assortment of kebabs for dinner in Iran.

Kebabs are taken very seriously in Iran – so seriously that the kebab menu alone may run a few pages and feature every style and cut of skewerable grill-worthy meat imaginable. The first few times someone invites you to dine with them in Iran, you’ll be tempted to think the entire country kebab-powered.

Lamb, minced or in chunks, is most popular. And kebabs are often served with grilled tomatoes, a healthy plate of rice and flat bread, and raw onions. (One roadside kebab stand thought we were crazy for suggesting the onions be grilled.) Our favorite: kebab koobideh, minced lamb mixed with herbs. You’ll find that one kebab order is often more than enough for two people to share.


To say that rice, a 4,000 year old staple of Iranian eating, is hugely important to the Iranian food landscape: culinary understatement. In our cursory look, taste and research of the subject of Iranian rice, it’s clear that a full-length dissertation could be written about the subject, after which arguments of clarification of terms and names of dishes will ensue.


Trademark fluffy white Iranian rice served with kebabs, stews and other mains.

Tah Deeg (Tah dig)

Bottom of the pot rice crust served by itself or merged with slices of potato, flats of bread, meat, vegetable, fruit and nuts like pistachio.


Baqala Polo (Rice with Dill and Beans) - Shiraz, Iran
Shirazi baqala polo (rice with dill and beans).

Like its cousins pilaf and plov), polo is a generic term for rice mixed or blended with nuts, vegetables, beans and dried fruits.


Drained, sieved rice cooked until its moist, then layered with bread or potato and blend them with oil in bottom of pot. It’s topped with a bit of saffron and small minced pistachios.


Soft, clumped rice with a slight crust served in Northern Iran. Kateh polo is softer than Abkesh and is usually served in traditional restaurants in villages and rural areas.

For a delightful and detailed layman’s guide to making Iranian/Persian rice the right way, check out this post.

Khoresht (Iranian Stew)

Iranian Stews - Tehran, Iran
Tehrani buffet: several types of khoresht with a chunk of tal deeg rice crust.

After kebabs, stews are the most common dishes you’ll find on the menu at local restaurants in Iran. Most often, Iranian khoresht will feature some sort of vegetable blend (e.g., lentils, spinach, mixed vegetable sabzi, beans, tomato, or eggplant) with a bit of meat thrown in. Khoresht is often served with rice and serves as a comfort food (e.g., as in chelo khoresht, rice and stew).

Some khoresht favorites include: Khoresht-e-Ghorme-sabzi, a stew of meat, vegetables and beans that features a bit of a greenish appearance; and Khoresht-e-Ghymeh, a stew of meat, potato, tomato and split peas.

Other Iranian Main Dishes

Zereshk Polo

Chicken and Berberries - Tabriz, Iran
Zereshk Polo with chicken.

Literally, barberry rice. However, quite often served with grilled chicken or served alongside kebab.


Though technically a khoresht, fesenjen (Khoresht-e-Fesnjan) stands alone. At turns tart, sweet and savory, fesenjan is a stew of ground walnut, pomegranate juice mixed with your meat of choice (chicken is most common). Regional variation will yield, sour and savory fesenjan in Northern Iran while you’re apt to get something a little bit sweeter elsewhere.

Fesenjan is typically a special occasion dish, so you won’t find this on the daily menu in most restaurants. You may have to make arrangements to have it prepared especially. Ask around. It’s most certainly worth the effort.

Dizi and Abgoosht

Dizi, Iranian Stew - Hamadan, Iran
Straining the liquid from dizi in the mountains outside of Hamadan.

Dizi and abgoosht are competing names for stone pot Persian stew that’s consumed following an almost ritualized eating procedure.

Dizi is a hearty, heavy dish fit for the mountains, featuring mutton soup broth thickened with chickpeas, onion, potato, tomatoes, turmeric and various other white beans, all cooked in ceramic pot. The liquid is then strained away and served in a bowl on the side. As an interactive bonus, you’re given a pestle-type instrument to crush and mash to a pulp the solid bits (gusht-e kubideh) left in your stone pot. Served with flat bread (piti) and the occasional side of pickled vegetables.

Tabriz Köfte (Koofteh Tabrizi)

Tabriz Kofte and Fresh Herbs - Jolfa, Iran
Homemade Tabriz köfte piled high with fresh herbs and green onions.

When offering Iranian food recommendations, a good Iranian friend said of Tabriz Köfte: “A huge meatball with surprises inside, very nice if you can find it.”

We were fortunate to try it twice, once in a restaurant and once homemade as part of a picnic at St. Stephanos church. The latter was the clear winner for freshness and taste.

Tabriz Köfte can be found in the northwestern part of Iran, the provincial capital of which is the city of Tabriz. It’s a variation of the traditional Turkish köfte (minced meatball). The Tabriz köfte is essentially an oversized meatball made from either minced meat and spices (or for vegetarians, barley and spices), served with piles of fresh greens and herbs. After all those kebabs, Tabriz köfte strikes the body as refreshing, particularly when it’s served on flatbread with all those greens.

Lubia Sabz

Iranian green been stew. We list this dish not because we had the good fortune to eat it, but because in retrospect we should have sought it out, particularly because we’d traveled with a vegetarian during one segment of our trip and she had a notably difficult time finding vegetables untainted by meat. If you are vegetarian and traveling in Iran, ask for lubia (beans) and in particular, lubia sabz.

Mirza Qasemi (Mirza ghasemi)

A tasty vegetarian dish that hails from the Northern Iranian Caspian region. It’s based on roasted skewered eggplant seasoned with garlic, tomato, turmeric, oil or butter, and salt. The seasoned eggplant is then turned with eggs. The whole thing is then served with bread or rice.

Ash (Soup)

Traditional Iranian Soup in Mountains
Enjoying a bowl of ash-reshteh in a mountain hut, Masuleh.

A thick, almost stew-like soup. However, you’ll find ash in all varieties of thin and thick depending on where you are in the country and who happens to be stirring the pot. We enjoyed one of our favorite bowls of ash with a bunch of guys crammed into a soup cafeteria on their lunch break in Tabriz. Another tasty variety is Ash-Reshteh (nooodles, vegetables and herbs) that we had the good fortune to enjoy in the mountains village of Masuleh.

Iranian Street Snacks

Fava beans

Steamed and Spiced Fava Beans - Kermanshah, Iran
Spiced fava bean mountains, in the Hamadan hills.

Steamed & spiced fava beans are a popular street snack, especially in the mountains. Delicious with some vinegar, red pepper and marjoram. After all the meat we’d eaten in Iran, our group was thrilled to inject some legumes into the diet. We ate almost the entire stash below. Joking (kind of).

Street Beets (Roasted Red Beets)

Ardabil Beets in Iran
Roasted red beets on the streets of Ardabil.

I don’t know if roasted red beets are typical to the Iranian street food scene, but this display of roasted beets on a stick in the Northern Iranian town of Ardabil was one of the more beautiful and unique street food presentations we’d seen in a while.

Street beets, who knew?


Interesting how the Farsi word for bread (nan) is similar to the Indian term. Linguistic history often gives a sense of how much we all have in common and how far back that shared history really goes.

Lavash (Nan-Lavash)

The thin, flaky, sometimes almost paper-y (wallpaper-y) bread found widely throughout the Middle East and neighboring regions.

Sangyeh (Nan-Sangak)

Lavash Fresh from Oven - Kermanshah, Iran
Mmmm. Sangyeh, Iranian flat bread fresh from the bakery.

A stretchy elliptical bread usually baked on a bed of small stones or pebbles. Perhaps the most common bread you’ll find across Iran. Comes plain or in varieties topped with sesame or other seeds. If you’ve done everything right, you should have secured a few slabs of sangyeh as gifts (that is, for free) along your travels across Iran.

Barbari (Nan-e-Barbari)

A thick bread, oval-shaped and the famous bread staple of the northwestern Iranian town of Tabriz. Perfect to bring along and share on train ride from Tabriz to Istanbul. Our guide, Ali, knew this and bought us a bagful to help us survive our 60-hour journey.

Iranian Desserts

Falooda (Faloodeh) Shirazi

Shiraz Paloodeh (Ice Cream) - Iran
Bowl of faloodah, old school Iranian ice cream in Shiraz.

Vermicelli noodles sloshed in a cold syrup of sugar and rose water. You can also ask for a sweet lemon juice variety. A specialty of the town of Shiraz. In the short time that we hung out in the old Shiraz bazaar we were offered so many bowls of falooda that we had to start turning them away. Locals are proud to share this with visitors.

Iranian Ice Cream

Iranian Ice Cream in Shiraz
Pistachio and saffron ice cream in Shiraz.

Iranian ice cream gets its own entry because it has been said that Iran is the birthplace of the miracle we’ve come to know as ice cream. We’re not here to dispute or affirm that, however. The local varieties we’d tasted were sweet, often fruity, not especially creamy, and somewhat strappy compared to the ice creams and gelatos we’ve come to love. In any event, do as the locals do and take a dip of flavors, especially saffron and pistachio.

Aab Havij Bantani (Carrot Juice Ice Cream Float)

Carrot juice ice cream float, often garnished with cinnamon, nutmeg or other spices. In full disclosure, we thought the mixture was a bit sweet and preferred to drink the carrot juice plain, sans ice cream. But it’s worth trying at least once.


Pistachio Halva - Tabriz Market, Iran
Pistachio halva at the Tabriz Central Bazaar.

This is a popular dessert across this part of the world, especially in neighboring Turkey. A sweet made from ground sesame paste (tahini), halva not only satisfies the sweet tooth but it’s also packed with protein. One could call it the original power bar.

Nokhodchi (Chickpea Cookies)

Nokhodchi (Chickpea Cookies) - Esfahan, Iran
Melt-in-your-mouth nokhodchi (Chickpea Cookies) in Esfahan.

OK, these things are amazing and fabulously unique to Iran. Four leaf clover-shaped cookies made from finely sifted chickpea flour, rose water, powdered sugar and sweet spices like cardamom — topped off with finely chopped pistachios. The result: melt in your mouth magic.

Buy kilos of them, for as easy as they are to make at home, to make them well is an art exquisitely executed by only the finest bakeries in Iran.


Traditional Persian nougat based on the milky sap collected from angebin, a plant from the Tamarisk family found only in the dry outskirts of the Iranian city of Esfahan. Gaz is spun with various ingredients including rose water, pistachio, almond kernels and saffron. Gaz is a specialty in the tourist center of Esfahan where you’ll find shops selling all variations and qualities. Stock up if you are looking for gifts for the sweet-toothed. Hint: Look for and purchase the gaz varieties with the highest pistachio count.


Fruit Leather - Kandovan, Iran
Apricot and pomegranate lavashak (fruit leather) in Kandovan province.

Persian-style fruit leather. Iran is a dried fruit mecca, so fruit leather fits. The taste, consistency and value is absolutely nothing like you’ll get from packaged fruit roll-ups in your local grocery store. The sweet-tart fruit flavor will make your mouth pucker like never before, after which you won’t be able to stop tearing off strips and eating large chunks like an animal. Some of our favorite lavashak flavors include pomegranate, apricot and sour plum. Beware of lavashak vendors, however. You may think you’re buying only a small piece, but you’ll end up with enough fruit leather to make an outfit.

Koloocheh (Klucheh)

Klucheh, Iranian Cookies - Fuman, Iran
Koloocheh from the town Fuman, northwest Iran.

Decorative yet tasty cookies that are special to the town of Fuman (northwestern Iran). The town is flush with bakeries selling only these cookies. Koloocheh are stuffed with a cinnamon, walnut and sugar filling. When they are fresh and warm just out of the oven, they are special packages of melt-in-your-mouth goodness.


Iranian Desserts at Rasht Market, Iran
Khoshkar bakers at the Rasht central market.

If you come across a pastry-ish cookie-like confection that looks like a gauze bandage, you’ve found reshte and khoshkar, specialties of the Caspian area (and specifically the town of Rasht). The khoshkar bandages or leaves are stuffed with walnut, sugar and cinnamon, are typically fried and soaked in a sweet liquid. Reshte are similar to Khoshkar, but come without walnuts or sugar.

Our good friend from Rasht highly recommends these delights be consumed with a good cup of black tea.

Iranian Drinks


Iranian Doogh (Yogurt) - Yazd, Iran
Do you like doogh? The word alone fascinates us.

Doogh is a chilled thin plain yogurt drink, often served with mint and other dried herbs sprinkled on top. Doogh is surprisingly refreshing on a hot day. It also serves as a perfect complement to stomach-plunging, meat-heavy meals like kebabs.

Iranian “Beer”

Pomegranate Beer in Iran
Pomegranate “beer” in Iran

Although Iran is a dry country, every restaurant features a listing of something very generously referred to as “Iranian beer,” which is essentially a non-alcholoic fruit malt beverage, which under no circumstance ought to be referred to as beer. Perhaps the only equivalents outside of Iran would be drinks such as root “beer” and ginger “beer.”

Note that Iranian beers come in all different flavors, with pomegranate being our fitting favorite. Once you come to terms with the fact that you aren’t really drinking beer, you might actually find it refreshing.

Fresh Juice Stands

Juice Guys of Shiraz - Iran
The friendly juice guys of Shiraz. Melon, carrot, and pomegranate juices ready to go.

Fresh fruit juice abounds on city streets, especially in southern Iran. Our visit happened to coincide with pomegranate season and we drank generous glasses of it at every opportunity. Not to mention, pomegranate consumption in volume feels both cleansing and invigorating. Our other favorite juices include carrot and melon. Usually very reasonably priced.

Tea (chai)

Tea time in Tehran #dna2iran Iran
Black tea with a crystalized raw sugar wand. Taken in a misty tea house, Tehran.

Iranian tea rooms are hubs of social gathering. In Iran, it’s not just about drinking tea, but about lounging back on pasha-worthy cushions on the ground and spending hours with friends and colleagues. Tea houses may also offer qalyan (large water pipes or hookah), in which you can smoke sweet-flavored tobacco flavors like vanilla, apple, orange and mint.

Typically, black tea is served with crystalized raw sugar on a stick. Stir your tea with your crystalline staff and watch the sugar crystals melt away. A magic wand, of sorts.


When it comes to alcohol, Iran is about as bone dry as it comes. So you are going to find it very difficult to find alcohol at all. Having said that, rumors have it that alcohol such as locally brewed wines can be had in the back corners and behind closed doors of private affairs such as weddings. We don’t recommend you actively seek it out.

A Note for Vegetarians and Vegans in Iran

Iran, unfortunately, is not an ideal destination for vegetarians as vegetarianism is primarily understood on the level of “a little less meat in the stew.”

Can you find and eat vegetarian food in Iran? Certainly. Having said that, you might be limited to street snacks, breads, yogurt and picking in and around meals. If you are a vegetarian traveling to Iran, consider learning the names of a few key vegetarian dishes above, as well as “I am a vegetarian” in Farsi so that you are able to request them and be understood.

Regardless of what you prefer to eat and when you prefer to eat it, allow your curiosity to guide the culinary dimension of your trip through Iran. And you’ll also likely find yourself amidst conversations you’d never imagined having while traveling there.

Nusheh jân!

Disclosure: Our trip to Iran is in cooperation with G Adventures as Wanderers in Residence. We paid our own transport to and from Iran, some expenses on the ground and for an additional one week private tour. As always, the opinions expressed here are entirely our own.


We traveled to Iran with the G Adventures Discover Persia Tour. If you plan to book this or another tour with G Adventures, please consider starting the process by clicking on the ad below. The price stays the same to you and we earn a small commission that helps us to continue sharing stories like this. Thank you!

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  1. marylouise says

    Dan, Audrey

    Always a JOY to read and marvel at Dan’s photos. Iran may well be

    a travel destination for me. Your post on Iran is suburb!

    A New Year filled with joy and all best things. Marylouise

  2. says

    So much of this looks mouth-wateringly delicious! I’m not so sure of the street beets, but I’ll definitely take some saffron ice cream, please. I would love to get to Iran and try many, many of these flavors! Tasty post! Thanks

  3. says

    @marylouise: Big thank you and happy new year to you. When you go to Iran, eat heartily!

    @Corinne: Saffron ice cream, good choice! Next up on the blog: our street beet ice cream recipe. Shhh, don’t tell anyone.

  4. says

    Wow! Now I want to go to Iran :) I just came across your site via a Twitter RT that came up in my feed – I’m sure glad I clicked on it. I’m always fascinated by different cuisines when I travel. I plan to follow along with more of your adventures. Happy Travels!

  5. says

    Oh my! All I (thought I) knew about Iranian food before reading this was that they used pomegranate in ways I wouldn’t and liberal amounts of saffron. What a lovely introduction! Yum yum yum.

  6. says

    @Lauren: Great to see you here. Glad we’re in touch. If you go to Iran, be sure to let us know!

    @Sam: Thank you!

    Well, saffron and pomegranate are certainly the most noteworthy and unique elements of Iranian cuisine (though some may argue with me on that). Barberry is also one of those special ingredients that seems to pop up quite a lot.

    In any event, I’m glad we were able to further widen your horizons about Iranian / Persian cuisine. Enjoy!

  7. says

    Thank you for the beautiful pictures. I always wanted to visit Persia but my wife has concerns about a few issues including wearing a head scarf. Did you find the country restrictive in the way you dress or act?

  8. says

    What an interesting range of foods you’ve shown there. Kebabs are well known in many places but the rest looks interesting especially the Iranian stew.

    Such a shame they don’t cater well for vegetarians, but that shouldn’t be a problem for me.

  9. Ali says

    Thanks for your nice report about Iranian foods. As an Iranian cook I have to say 2 things:
    – If you just try Iranian foods in restaurants it seems that Kebab is the most famous food, but it’s wrong. Kebabs are easy making foods, but the main Iranian food is different types of Khoresht. It’s hard to find other khoreshts except the two mentioned ones. A well done Khoresht needs hours of simmering which is hard for the restaurants. You should try a mom-made khoresht. And even just about Ghorme Sabzi different regions have their our recipes.
    – What you really missed in Iran is diverse types of our salty or sour vegetable and fruit pickles. Definitely something hilarious :)

  10. says

    whilst I can’t pronounce any of those names I really enjoyed this article! I specially took note of the Tah Deeg (Tah dig) and well…. once I started taking notes of food I couldn’t try or pronounce I have made it a thing to do on my bucket list to go on this eating tour. Dont know if I missed if you mentioned who the tour was done with… the food just looks amazing!!

  11. says

    @Ali: “Mom made” — I absolutely love that tag. Everything mom-made is better. Everything.

    Salty and sour pickles. Love the sound of that. What are the most common Iranian pickles made from?

    @Rebecca: I know. Food is a fun entry point into the culture and language. We were in a Iran for 3 weeks — mentioned at the conclusion of the post, but I’ll include it again for good measure. The first two weeks were with G Adventures on their Discover Persia tour. The final week was spent with an independent guide (an English teacher, actually) arranged with G Adventures’ tour partner in Iran. Any questions, please let us know!

  12. says

    Wonderful! My wife is Iranian and went back to visit family last Spring. Iranian food is the best, and the pictures you have are amazing – and are making me hungry. My mother-in-law makes the kebabs, rice, khoreshts, etc. My favorite khoreshst is eggplant. Gaz kermooni (gaz from Kerman) is my favorite dessert.

    Wonderful photos! More people need to see Iran for what it is – wonderful people, delicious food, great culture, etc.

    Did you smoke the hookah? You didn’t say :)

  13. says

    Love your photos and, yes, I’m a fellow Iranian food lover as well.

    I haven’t yet managed to get to Iran, but it’s on my list as my father worked there for several years before the revolution and absolutely loved the country, the people and, of course, the food :)

    Nice blog, btw.

  14. says

    @Rachel: Thank you. Where did your father work in Iran? I trust he ate well.

    Let us know when you decide to go. And be sure to give us a report on any new Iranian food discoveries you make!

  15. Jessica says

    Dear Dan & Audrey I hope you enjoyed the trip.
    which city did you like the most ?
    I heard Shiraz is a great city to visit !
    My uncle says a lot about their hospitality .

  16. says

    @Jessica: Oh, it’s difficult to say which city in Iran we enjoyed the most as they are surprisingly diverse. Shiraz was great and was probably among the best in terms of interaction with locals and also Iranian visitors, many of whom invited us to spend time with them or even in their homes.

  17. fahime says

    Thanks for your nice report about Iran. I invite every one to visit my country.I promise our people treat you as well cause we believe that we should respect our guests and make them feel comfortable and happy :)

  18. says

    Eat an onion at every place you go to adjust yourself to the local cuisine

    That there is the best advice i could give anyone as onions are almost always part of any local foods.

  19. says

    @Rob: For all the food we’ve eaten in the world, onions included, Iran was surprisingly the first time we’d heard the “eat an onion advice.” Now it’s a keeper.

    • says

      Thanks, Joe.

      We refer above to Khoresht-e-Ghorme-sabzi. Do you know what the difference is between the two? I suppose that version has some meat thrown in.

  20. izzy says

    Awesome, Richmond Hill in Toronto has many restaurants however had the opportunity to try Fesenjen in a small hol in the wall iranian restaurant run by an older gentleman who cooks and serves all his food himself.The fesenjen was thick, slightly sweet and presented with the option of meat for extra. A completely different experience . Call it the Mole of Iran.

    • says

      Thanks, Izzy. This sounds really terrific. Fesenjen, the mole of Iran. Love that concept. Especially like the idea of an old guy in a hole in the wall serving his own version of it. Will definitely check that out!

  21. says

    My father lived in Iran just before the revolution and my mother visited him a number of times. I couldn’t go as I was finishing up university. Still regret it to this day but I’ve eaten more than my fair share of Iranian food since.

    Have to say it’s still one of my top 3 cuisines. In fact, in decades of eating Iranian cuisine I’d venture to say I’ve never eaten a dish I didn’t like.

    Lovely photos, btw.

    • says

      Thank you, Michelle. Glad you enjoyed our photos and the piece. Iranian cuisine is pretty remarkable.

      I understand you could not visit Iran because of university, but are you considering a visit to Iran one of these days?

  22. Ali says

    Well, we have two things which both are pickle in English: Torshi (sours) and Shoor (salties).
    Iran is a dry land and in people needed to save fruits and vegetables in different ways for winter like keeping vegetables in salty water or vinegar. Torshi has a lot of verities, basically it’s chopped vegetables, herbs and spices with vinegar. For shoor we use salty water instead of vinegar, although we use a bit of it for taste. The combination and the spices are different from one region to another. The southern ones are more spicy with stronger vinegar. You can find some recipe on youtube.

    • says

      Thanks so much for your contribution to our Iranian food discussion. Aside from the addition of another food item, I particularly like the background and context that you provide.

  23. Lily says

    I love this weblog. Your photos look great and your writing is informative, and witty. Thanks for it. You make me feel hungry.

    I’m a persian but I lived most of my adult life abroad. I find you travel account of Iran very realistic and true. I only wish more open minded like you would travel to Iran and would tell people that the media image of Iran is very biased and distorted.

    I lived in Iran for about 2 decades and I never saw any classmate, friend, relative or neighbour who disliked Americans, never. In fact very often you hear “oh they are Americans! They are cool like us ” !

    I strongly hope one day the two countries: the super power of the ancient world and the super power of the modern world can have freindly relationships and people can travel between the two countries easily. It will bring a lot of peace and humanity to the world.

  24. Paul says

    Great article. Looks like you really got a chance to get into what Tehran has to offer. Once you’ve been the only problem is that you can’t wait to go back again!

  25. Rebecca says

    Thank you so much for your wonderful blogs on Iran. My husband and I are thinking of travelling to Iran next year. As we are New Zealanders we are (I think!) able to travel to Iran without an official guide. I know that you have no direct experience of travelling in Iran without a guide, but from what you saw do you think it would be do-able/enjoyable? Or do you think we’d be better off sticking with a guide? I would say we’re reasonably adventurous and generally enjoy independent travel, but we have no experience of travelling in the Middle East. Very interested in your thoughts!

    • says

      Rebecca, thanks so much for your kind words regarding our blog posts on Iran. I do think that it would be enjoyable to travel in Iran without a guide or tour. You’ll be very safe and you’ll find that you’ll have no shortage of local people wanting to take care of you and offer you advice :) I would recommend hiring a guide for Persepolis and other ancient sites that you might be visiting as the historical/cultural context that a guide can bring enhances the experience and understanding of what you are seeing around you. But if you enjoy independent travel then you shouldn’t have any problem in Iran :)


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