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Tehran is a city full of surprises. Starting life as a small village in the foothills of the Alborz Mountains, it quickly grew until Agha Mohammed Khan, the first of the Qajar kings, declared it as the country's capital in 1778. Today you can book a flight to Tehran with Qatar Airways and discover a bustling city that still has strong links to its Persian ancestry. Flights to Tehran are now available from major international departure points, and the country is welcoming tourists and visitors from around the world.
The most iconic monument to visit on any trip to Tehran is The Azadi Tower, a magnificent and imposing structure built to commemorate the 2,500th anniversary of the Persian Empire. Gold and jewellery was a key part of that empire, and to see some of the finest examples of the skills of the Iranian and Persian goldsmiths head to the Treasury of the National Jewels. Here you’ll find the world’s largest uncut ruby, and an astonishing golden globe made from 34 kilos of gold!
The Golestan Palace complex harks back to the extravagances of the Qajar rulers, while the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art is a strikingly modern building that houses one of the world’s most eclectic modern art collections. Round off your trip to Tehran with a visit to the many markets and souks, including the Tehran Bazaar, which has been operating on its current site for over a thousand years.
A trip to Tehran is a chance to explore the diverse countryside of Iran and the spectacular and unexpected contrasts of towering mountains and dense forests. The walking trails of Darakeh and Darband at the base of the Alborz Mountains offer a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the city, while the Park-e Jamshidiyeh (also known as the Stone Garden) offers spectacular views and some more challenging hikes. Back in the city a wealth of museums house everything from stunning collections of Persian and Islamic art (check out the Time Museum in particular) through to modern paintings and sculptures. For the truly quirky, check out the Safir Office Machines Museum – a museum dedicated to office machines of all types.
Any trip to Tehran has to include at least one course of Cholow Kabab, which is rice served with roasted meat: barg, koobideh, joojeh, shishleek, soltani, chenjeh, and a true taste of the country and its culture. Iranian cuisine includes a wide variety of foods ranging from khoresh (stew that is served with white Iranian rice: ghormeh sabzi, gheimeh, fesenjān, and others), āsh (a thick soup), kuku (vegetable soufflé), polo (white rice alone or with addition of meat and/or vegetables and herbs, including loobia polo, albaloo polo, sabzi polo, zereshk polo, baghali polo and others), and a diverse variety of salads, pastries, and drinks specific to different parts of Iran.
The traditional drink accompanying Iranian dishes is doogh, a combination of yogurt, still or carbonated water, salt, and dried mint. Other drinks include sherberts known as Sharbat, and ‘Khak Shir’.
Travel to Tehran for the retail experience and you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Not only are there plenty of souks and markets (as well as the huge Bazaar, of course), but there are also plenty of high-end outlets selling designer brands. Head for the Golestan shopping centre & Milade noor for designer goods and couture clothes. If you want to add to your jewellery collection then the boutiques of Geisha, Milade Noor and Karim Khaan St should be your destination.
Qatar Airways flights to Tehran arrive at Imam Khomeini Airport.
Visa restrictions for entry into the country will depend on your country of origin, length of stay and whether your trip is for business or pleasure. So before you fly to Tehran please check the visa and passport requirements.
Currency: Iranian Rial (IRR)
Voltage: 220 V 50 Hz
Plugs: Type C
International dialing code: +98