Ardabil & Ancient Iran Tour



Ardabil & Ancient Iran Tour

Ardabil is an ancient city in northern Iran close to the Caspian Sea. Ardabil is known for its carpets, the best of which is displayed at the V&A Museum in London. The carpets manufactured in Ardebil are inspired by Caucasian patterns such as Shirvan, Karabagh and Gendje, the latter of which are desirable collector's item. Important historical sites include the Shrine of Sheikh Safi, an important Sufi leader of the 13th and 14th centuries and the tomb of Ismail I, founder of the Safavid dynasty.

Historians believe human life existed in Persia around 6000 BC during which many communities settled in the eastern side of the Zagros mountain range. Visit old cities in the region to experience the essence of ancient Persian Empire. Begin in Tehran, then continue to Ardabil and Tabriz, ancient cities in Iranian Azerbaijan. In Western Iran, visit Hamedan an important Achaemenian capital that once graced great palaces and temples. Then travel south to Isfahan and Shiraz.

And, in Hamadan experience Ali sadr Cave that will simply take your breath away.

What We Love
  • Enjoy the rich variety of flora and fauna and aquatic life of Anzali lagoon
  • Leisurely explore the Tabriz Bazaar, one of the oldest bazaars in the Middle East
  • Visit an extraordinary village that looks from a distance like a termite colony
  • Stay in city whose wealth and grandeur inspired the proverb "Isfahan is half the world"
  • Walk in the Eram Garden (Garden of Paradise) in Shiraz, one of the most beautiful gardens
What to Know
  • Exclusive tour, guided privately by a multilingual guide throughout the trip.
  • This tour is designed to provide maximum outdoor experience and may require walking on rough surfaces. 
  • Bring proper walking gear and outdoor clothing. Do not forget your skin and eye protection items
  • We offer 24/7 support during your tour to give you complete peace of mind during your holiday.
  • Depart and return whenever you choose – shorten or lengthen the tour to suite your wishes.
  • We strongly recommend that you take travel insurance for this holiday.

Ardabil & Ancient Iran Tour Masuleh, Ardebil, Tabriz, Zanjan, Isfahan, Shiraz.
(15 Days – Travel Any Day)

Day 1 – Arrive
Tehran Meet and greet at Tehran’s international Airport and private transfer to your hotel in Tehran.
Overnight hotel of your choice.

Day 2 – Walking City Tour
Tehran Take a walking tour with your own private guide and visit the Golestan Palace, a world heritage site and one of the oldest buildings in Tehran. Next to the National Museum which houses objects from prehistory to Islamic era and the Crown Jewels Museum which has an impressive collection of some of the most famous and spectacular jewels in the world. The majority of the items on display were given to Safavid kings as gifts but many pieces were taken by Nader Shah on his conquest of India are also exhibited. These include the Darya-e Nur diamond, The Peacock Throne and the Jewelled Globe. Other pieces include the crowns of the Qajar and Pahlavi Kings. The last place we visit is Milad Tower with over 400m height.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 3 – A Beautiful Village
Masuleh Drive to Masouleh. Masouleh village is a beautiful village perched high on a densely forested mountain side about 60 kilometres inland from the Caspian Sea. The roofs of houses on lower tiers are used as courtyards for houses on the tiers above them. In some cases, public streets are laid out along interconnected roofs. The organic layout and steep stairs have made motor vehicles impractical, so they are banned in the village. About 800 people currently live in the village.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 4 – Caspian Coast
Anzali Drive to the port of Anzali, where we will be visiting Anzali’s great natural sites, including its beautiful beaches and swamps. The Anzali lagoon, with its rich variety of flora and fauna and aquatic life has a special beauty of its own and offers a very pleasurable opportunity for a boat trip.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 5 – Journey thru Beautiful Landscapes
Ardebil Ardebil, is known for the magnificent tomb of Sheikh Safi-eddin Ardebili, a widely revered 14th century sufi philosopher. The journey on this trip has the most beautiful sceneries of North Western Iran.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 6 – Nature Tour
Ardebil Take a relaxed excursion to Sar Ein, located 28 km outside of Ardebil. With its newly developed tourism infrastructure combined with its natural beauty and thermal springs, Sar Ein is the perfect place to relax and enjoy nature.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 7 – Highlights Tour
Tabriz In the morning we will drive to Tabriz. In the afternoon you will have a half day city tour of Tabriz to visit blue mosque, Shah-Goli Pavilion, Azerbaijan museum and the world heritage site of the magnificent grand bazaar. If time permits, we will also visit Azerbaijan Museum, the oldest museum in Tabriz and the Constitution House which was used as the commanding headquarters by the movement of Tabriz people almost a century ago.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 8 – Kandovan Tour
Tabriz In the morning we will embark on a half day city tour of Tabriz to visit blue mosque, Shah-Goli Pavilion, Azerbaijan museum and its magnificent bazaar.

After lunch and some rest, we take an excursion to Kandovan Village, almost 60km from Tabriz. Kandovan like Masuleh is a unique settlement famous for its scenic beauty, but also its uniqueness that comes from the fact that many of its homes have been made in caves inside cone-shaped rock-formations. Thus making the complete village look like a gigantic termite colony. Return to Tabriz.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 9 – Soltaniyeh Tour
Zanjan Drive to Zanjan via Soltaniyeh. The city of Soltaniyeh, the capital of the Ilkhanid dynasty, was founded by the Mongols. Soltaniyeh is one of the outstanding examples of the achievements of Persian architecture and a key monument in the development of its Islamic architecture. The octagonal building is crowned with a 50 m tall dome covered in turquoise-blue faience and surrounded by eight slender minarets. It is the earliest existing example of the double-shelled dome in Iran. Upon arrival to Zanjan in the afternoon we will visit Rakhtshoor-khaneh, Jameh mosque, its two pleasant teahouses and fantastic bazaar.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 10 – Ancient City
Hamedan Drive to Hamedan, one of the oldest cities in the world. Take a half day city tour of Hamedan in the afternoon. Existing attractions are thin on the ground, but the town is a good base for exploring the wider region. Overnight Hamedan
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 11 – Behistun Tour
Hamedan Take an excursion to Behistun (also Bisotun or Bisitun), meaning "the place of god" is a precipitous rock situated at the foot of the Zagros Mountains. It is here that the King of Persia, Darius the Great, in five hundred years B.C. took counsel and where the story of his reign was engraved on the rock of Behistun.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 12 – City Highlights Tour
Isfahan With your private guide, spend a day exploring Isfahan's wide range of Islamic architecture, largely built during the reign of Shah Abbas. Arguably the most stunning of Isfahan's sights is the vast Imam Square, the second-largest square on earth. Consisting of a huge ensemble of majestic buildings, this square is one of most impressive collections in the Islamic world.

Adjacent to the square are the Imam and Sheikh Lotfallah mosques, which are breath-taking in their beauty. The former towers over the southern side of the square with its magnificent blue dome, whilst the latter exhibits exquisitely detailed and complex tile work. Other highlights include the Ali Qapu Palace, Chehel Sotun Palace and the Jameh Mosque.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 13 – City Highlights Tour
Isfahan Today, we have a half day city tour of Isfahan to visit, the 12th century Jame Mosque of Isfahan, known as the museum of Islamic art and architecture and the beautiful Vank Cathedral, a 17th century church in the Armenian Quarters. We are free in the afternoon to go shopping in Isfahan which deserves to be called Iranian city of handicrafts.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 14 – Pasargadae Tour
Shiraz Drive to Shiraz, enroute visiting Pasargad (Pasargadae was the capital of the Persian Empire from the sixth century BC until it was conquered by the Macedonians led by Alexander the Great in 330 BC. Now a town in Iran, Pasargadae was established by the first ruler of the Achaemenid Dynasty, Cyrus the Great.), Naghshe Rostam (aka Necropolis or the city of the dead) and the Persepolis, overnight shiraz.
Overnight hotel of your choice (B)

Day 15 – Depart
Shiraz Today, we begin at the Pars Museum, an elegant octagonal building that is located at the centre of the Zand-era Nazar Garden. Beautifully decorated, the museum contains a lavish 18th century reception room, as well as exquisite decorative plasterwork. Afterwards, continue to the Vakil mosque and adjacent bazaar. Adorned with intricate azure tile work, the mosque's walls, explore the labyrinth of stalls, selling all manner of produce. Often frequented by Kashqai nomads, this is a boisterous and colourful place. Private transfer to the airport to connect with your international flight.

Ardabil & Ancient Iran Tour Iran

Make this your holiday

  • Exclusive Tour: your own private multilingual guide throughout the trip  
  • Price Guarantee: costing 25-30% less than similar tours of the same flexibility and quality
  • Tailor Made: customised itinerary to create your dream holiday
  • Duration: shorten or lengthen the tour to suit your wishes
  • Dates: depart and return whenever you choose
  • Hotels: change hotel grade to suit your budget
  • Group Discounts: call 020 8350 6199

When to go Visits to the south coast of Iran are best made in the winter months of December, January and February when humidity and heat levels are at their lowest, while spring (March to mid-May) and autumn (mid-September and October) are the best times to travel around central and northern Iran. Tourists visit Iran during the summer months (June - September) for the sunshine and regional festivals, and during the winter months (November - March) for skiing. So no matter what time you choose to go, Iran is a great place to travel all year round.

Getting There The vast majority of travellers fly to Tehran and return from there but some travellers end their trip in Shiraz, saving some backtracking. Tehran’s Imam Khomeini International Airport (IKIA) sees most of Iran’s international air traffic. It’s small, so delays are possible. Elsewhere, Shiraz, Esfahan, Bandar Abbas and Kish are (in that order) potentially useful arrival or departure points. Iran Air, the government-owned carrier, it offers service with an Islamic flavour (ie no pork, no alcohol).

Visa British nationals need a visa to travel to Iran. You should lodge your visa application with the Iranian Embassy in the UK, well in advance of your date of travel. The application process for an Iranian visa can be long and unpredictable.