Situated in a plain surrounded by two mountain ranges offering a mild climate and magnificently impressive gardens to this city,Shiraz, is one of Iran's oldest cities and the fourth biggest in the country. It was the capital of Persia during the Zand dynasty and hosts few interesting historical sites.
The provincial capital of Fars, known as the cultural capital of Iran, is the heart of Iran’s history and a center of the rich Persian literary heritage. Shiraz has been a cradle of civilization and art for many centuries. some famous philosophers, thinkers and poets produced their masterpieces in this beautiful city. Shiraz is known as the city of flowers and nightingales, as well as the "City of roses and poets", referring to its beautiful Persian gardens and two very famous poets; Sa'di and Hafez. There are quite a few beautiful mosques and other historical buildings showing the fantastic architecture, tile works and mirror works of Zand and Qajar era.
Shiraz is the city of poetry and perfume. In addition to city's beautiful gardens and monuments, Persepolis, one of the world's largest and most famous monuments is located nearby. This city with all its urban and historical features is a popular destination for domestic and foreign tourists specially In May, when Shiraz becomes an earthly paradise with its spring blossoms. In addition to all the attractions of this city, Shirazi people are also among the factors that make tourists interested in traveling to this place - nice, cheerful and hospitable.
Before visiting this city, read more about the sights of Shiraz and the attractions of the city.
Although the exact date of its construction is unknown, many stories about Eram Garden of Shiraz have been written in travelogues of western travelers who passed by Shiraz in 17th and 18th Centuries. According to authentic historical documents, the garden was built during the Seljuk Era following the order of Sultan Sanjar, but this was not the end, and in later centuries, Shiraz rulers restored various parts of it.
In Qajar era (19th C) during the reign of Nasser al-Din Shah, the garden became part of the royal estate and was given to the rulers of Shiraz, therefore a new mansion was designed and founded by Hussein Ali Khan Nasir al-Molk.
Two unique features of the Eram Garden of Shiraz are the variety of vegetation and the architecture employed in construction of Mansion which follows a complex of different styles such as Achamenid pillar capitals, Zandieh architecture and Qajar external tile work decorations.
One of the most colorful mosques of Iran with one of the most beautiful tile work and architecture typical from the Qajar era and extensive colored glass work in its decoration. The mosque was built in 1888 by Nasir al Mulk a famous Qajar prince.
Nasir Al-Molk Mosque is one of the most beautiful mosques in Iran in terms of tiling and Muqarnas. The mosque has a large courtyard that is located on the north side. The entrance has a large arched façade decorated with colorful tiles. The mosque has two naves, east and west.
The use of stained glass in the interior design of Iranian architecture as well as in windows has been common. But using this unique beauty in construction of a mosque adds a lot to its beauty.
The famous poet Hafez (14th century) is buried in Shiraz. The Tomb of Hafez or Hafezieh consisting of an open pavilion structure and a columned hall is situated in the Musalla Gardens on the north bank of a seasonal river and house the marble tomb of Hafez. The present buildings, built in 1935 and designed by the French architect and archaeologist André Godard, are at the site of previous structures built in 18th century. The tomb, its gardens, and the surrounding memorials to other great figures are a focus of tourism in Shiraz.
The famous poet Saadi's (Sadi, Sa-di) Mausoleum. Marble tomb dates from 1860s, an octagonal shaped building, walls inscribed with Saadi's poems in tile. Saadi, the poet and mystic of 13th century AD, is recognized not only for the quality of his writing, but also for the depth of his social thoughts. The following poem of Saadi is inscribed at the entrance to the Hall of Nations of the UN building in New York:
Of One Essence is the Human Race,
Thusly has Creation put the Base.
One Limb impacted is sufficient,
For all Others to feel the Mace.
The Unconcerned with Others' Plight,
Are but Brutes with Human Face.
Naranjestan Ghavam, Shiraz, Iran. Built 1879-1886, was the residance of governer of Fars province in Qajar period (19th century) . Significantly represent Iranian Architecture during Qajar era. Since 1998, the complex is used by the faculty of Art and Architecture of Shiraz University.
Castle of Karim Khan (or Arge Karim Khani ) is a rectangular castle built in central Shiraz , in18 th century , during the reign of Karim Khan Zand, who used it as his main residence. It has four circular watch towers at its corners. Inside the Arg, there are different buildings, the north building was used in winter, the south building for summer use, and west building was four all seasons. Outside of the building has simple presentation but on the contrary, inside the rooms used to have beautiful decorations , mostly gone after an arson happened in 20th century.
A traditional bazar built in 18th century. It comprises arched alcoves with wide platforms in between, and seventy-four high and well-proportioned arches sustaining the roof, and there is a high domed crossing, where the east and west bazars diverge from the main bazar. Vakil Bazar is ranked among the most colorful bazars of middle east.
From the reign of Karim Khan Zand - VAKIL- beautiful works and monuments have been left in Shiraz. One of these masterpieces is called Vakil Bath (Hammam Vakil), which has an area of 11,000 square meters, 8660 meters of infrastructure, 120 meters long and 80 meters wide. It was built by Karim Khan Zand in the Darb Shahzadeh neighborhood, now Taleghani Street. The bathroom is in the form of a cube and its entrance is located on the north side. The north façade of the bathroom overlooked the play area, which was later demolished and replaced by a short street. Vakil Bath is known as very valuable in terms of architecture and aesthetics and has now been turned into a carpet museum of Iran by the Cultural Heritage Organization of Fars Province.
Vakil Bath, Shiraz, Iran
A former palace built in 1863, which is currently housing the Weapon museum.Originally Golshan Garden, constructed at the request of Mohammed Khan Qavamol-Molk about two hundred years ago. The current main building was constructed by Mirza Ali Mohammadkhan Ghawam II in 1863. After his death the garden was eventually inheritted by a lady called Afifeh, thus being called Afif Abad.
Quran Gate, Shiraz, Iran
Quran Gate locally known as Darvazeh Ghor-an, is the ancient gated entrance to Shiraz from north. Zand king, Karim Khan added a room at the top of the gateway to house a holy Quran so travelers leaving the city, passed under the Quran to be blessed for a safe trip! The complex also includes tomb of Khaju-ye Kermani, teacher of Hafez and a court poet contemporary to Sa-di. The view of Shiraz is breathtaking from this spot!
Persepolis, also known as Parseh, is a mirror of the ancient history and culture of Iran, which was commissioned by Darius the Great in 518 BC. with an area of about 125,000 square meters, as one of the architectural masterpieces of the world, Persepolis is in fact the peak of elegance and creativity of Iranian art in using the culture of different naions such as Egyptians, Babylonians, Greeks, Medes and Armenians. Darius's purpose in building this building was to build a capital in his empire that was unparalleled, and for this purpose, he chose the vast plain of Marvdasht with its ancient historical background.