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Shiraz

INTRODUCTION

Overview and History

Shiraz is the sixth most populous city in Iran and is the capital of Fars Province, the city’s 2009 population was 1,455,073. Shiraz is located in the southwest of Iran on the Roodkhaneye Khoshk (Dry river) seasonal river. Shiraz has a moderate climate and has been a regional trade center for more than one thousand years.

The earliest reference to the city, as Tiraziš, is on Elamite clay tablets dated to 2000 BC. In the 13th century, Shiraz became a leading center of the arts and letters, thanks to the encouragement of its ruler and the presence of many Persian scholars and artists. Shiraz was the capital of Persia during the Zand dynasty from 1750 until 1781, as well as briefly during the Saffarid period.

Shiraz is known as the city of poets, literature, wine and flowers. It is also considered by many Iranians to be the city of gardens, due to the many gardens and fruit trees that can be seen in the city. Shiraz has had major Jewish and Christian communities. In Shiraz industries such as cement production, sugar, fertilizers, textile products, wood products, metalwork and rugs dominate. Shirāz also has a major oil refinery and is also a major center for Iran’s electronic industries: 53% of Iran’s electronic investment has been centered in Shiraz. Shiraz is home to Iran’s first solar power plant. Recently the city’s first wind turbine has been installed above Babakoohi mountain near the city.

Handicrafts

The crafts of Shiraz consist of inlaid mosaic work of triangular design; silver-ware; pile carpet-weaving and weaving of kilim, called gilim and jajim in the villages and among the tribes

Transportation

  • Airports

Shiraz International Airport serves as the largest airport in the southern region of Iran. After undergoing renovation and redevelopment work in 2005, Shiraz Airport was identified as the second most reliable and modern airport in Iran (after Imam Khomeini International Airport of Tehran) in terms of flight safety including electronic and navigation control systems of its flight tower. In addition to domestic flights to most major Iranian cities, Turkish Airlines began operating direct flights between Istanbul and Shiraz on 14 March 2011 with weekly 5 flights. The flights are on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday from Istanbul and on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from Shiraz.

  • Metro

A metro system is being built in Shiraz by the Shiraz Urban Railway Organization which will contain three lines. The length of the first Line will be 22.4 km, the length of the second line will be 8.5 km The length of the third line will be 16 km. 21 stations will be built in route one. The three lines when completed will have 32 stations below ground and six above and one special station which will be connected to the railway station.

  • Bus

Shiraz has 71 bus lines with 50,000 buses.Iran’s third Bus Rapid Transit was opening in Shiraz in 2009 with 2 lines.2 other lines be opening in 2010.

  • Train

Shiraz is connected with the rest of Iran’s railway network. The trains arrive and leave from Shiraz Railway Station, Irans largest railway station according to surface area. It has passenger trains, operating 6 days per week to Isfahan, Tehran and Mashad.

  • Roads

There are 700 000 cars in the city of Shiraz.

Climate

Shiraz has a moderate climate with regular seasons.

Shiraz contains a considerable number of gardens. Due to population growth in the city, many of these gardens may be lost to give way to new developments. Although some measures have been taken by the Municipality to preserve these gardens, many illegal developments still endanger them. The rainfall in recent years, during which atmospheric conditions have changed perceptibly, has been comparatively sufficient, and has reached 23 inches in a year, but the average rainfall is between 14 and 18 inches.

TOURISM ATTRACTIONS

• The tombs of Hafiz, Saadi, and Khaju e Kermani (whose tomb is inside a mountain above the city’s old Qur’an Gate). Other lesser known tombs are that of Shah Shoja’ (the Mozafarid emir of Persia, and patron of Hafiz), and the Haft Tanan mausoleum, where 7 Sufi mystics are buried. The Tomb of Baba Kuhi sits atop a mountain overlooking the city, and the tomb of Karim Khan Zand is at the Pars Museum of Shiraz. One of the most historical buildings is the Kian. This building was constructed around the time of Cyrus the Great, and has been a popular tourist attraction ever since.

• The oldest mosque is Atigh Jame’ Mosque, which is one of the older mosques of Iran, followed by Vakil Mosque and Nasir al-Mulk mosque. The Vakil Mosque is situated west of the famous Vakil Bazaar. It covers an area of 8,660 square meters and was built in 1187 (AH) during Zand Dynasty. On the two sides of the entrance gate there are magnificent tile-works and arches. The left and right corridors of the entrance gate are connected to the main room.

• Shah Chiragh (“The King of Lights”) Shrine.

• The citadel of Arg of Karim Khan sits adjacent to the Vakil Bazaar and Vakil Bath at the city’s central district. The most famous of houses are Zinat-ol-Molook House and Gahavam’s House, both in the old quarters of the city.

• The Qur’an Gate is the entrance to Shiraz. It is located near the gorge of Allah-o-Akbar and is flanked by the Baba Kuhi and Chehel Maqam mountains.

• The Eram Garden (Bagh-e Eram) in Shiraz is a striking location for visitors with a variety of plants as well as a historic mansion. Although the exact date of the construction of the garden is not clear, historical evidence suggests it was constructed during the Seljuk Dynasty on the orders of the celebrated Seljuk monarch Sanjar. Other historical Persian gardens Afifabad Garden and The Museum of Weapons and Delgosha Garden.

Within a relatively short driving distance from Shiraz are the ruins of Persepolis, Bishapur, Pasargadae, and Firouzabad. At Naqsh-e Rustam can be found the tombs of the Achaemenid kings as well as the Ka’ba-ye Zartosht, which has been thought to be either a Zoroastrian fire temple or possibly even the true tomb of Cyrus the Great. Maharloo Lake is a popular breeding ground for various bird species.

Naqsh-e Rostam site contains funerary related works belonging to the Elamite (second millennium BCE), Achaemenid (550–330 BCE) and Sassanid (226–651 CE) eras. Naqsh-e Rostam is a site believed by archaeologists to have been a cemetery for Persepolis, where Achaemenid, Parthian and Sassanid royalty were laid to rest. Located about 3–4 kilometers northwest of Persepolis in Iran’s Fars province, the site contains funerary relat

The tallest tower in Shiraz is Eram Tower with 150 meters. In 2013 a Shiraz TV Tower be opening with 200 meters.

Accommodation

Name

Stars

Phone No.

Website

Address

Aryo Barzan Hotel

4

+98 711 2228959

Link

Roodaki Avenue, Shiraz, Iran

Chamran Grand Hotel

5

+98 711 6289491

Link

Chamran Blvd., Shiraz, Iran

Homa Hotel

5

+98 711 2288001

Link

Meshkinfam St., Shiraz, Iran

Pars International Hotel

5

+98 711 2332255

Link

Zand Boulevard, Shiraz, Iran

 

Things to do

Shiraz during Eid al-Adha

The Islamic festivities are not the major ones in Iran and are not celebrated like what is done in the Arabic countries. The specific day of Eid al-Adha is a public holiday but the routine life goes on.

The transportation system runs normally and the monuments and shops are open.

For the Iranians with Arab origins this Eid is of course an important one and they celebrate it largely everywhere in the cities.

The only thing happens is that people sacrifice and divide meat between people.

If you happen to be in the southern areas you will feel it. For example in Qeshm Island, people keep the doors open for anyone to enter and serve them with different kinds of cookies, fruits etc.

Bishapur

Bishapur is far from Shiraz. It takes 2 hours drive to reach Bishapur. The building complex includes a central chamber, a large courtyard, which had been covered with remains of mosaics, remains of a temple dedicated to Anahita, the goddess of water and fertility. This complex is surrounded by city walls. Across the road from here on either side of a gorge along the river which flows also through Beshapur complex , there are also six Sassanian rock reliefs.

Tomb of Hafez

The Tomb of Hafez and its associated memorial hall, the Hāfezieh, are two memorial structures erected in the northern edge of Shiraz, Iran, in memory of the celebrated Persian poet Hafez. The open pavilion structures are 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, the most well-known of which was built in 1773. The tomb, its gardens, and the surrounding memorials to other great figures are a focus of tourism in Shiraz.

Vakil Bazaar

Vakil Bazaar (Persian: بازار وکیل‎) is the main bazaar of Shiraz, Iran, located in the historical center of the city.

It is thought that the market originally was established by the Buwayhids in the 11th century AD, and was completed mainly by the Atabaks of Fars, and only was renamed after Karim Khan Zand in the 18th century.

The Bazaar has beautiful courtyards, caravansarais, bath houses, and old shops which are deemed among the best places in Shiraz to buy all kinds of Persian rugs, spices, copper handicrafts and antiques.

Like other middle eastern Bazaars there are a few numbers of mosques and Imamzadehs constructed adjacent or behind the Bazaar.

Things to see

Quran Gate

Qur’ān Gate (Persian: دروازه قرآن‎ Darvāzeh Qor’ān) is a historic gate in the southern-central Persian city of Shiraz, Iran.

It is located at the northeastern entrance of the city, on the way to Marvdasht and Isfahan, between Baba Kouhi and Chehel Maqam Mountains near Allah-O-Akbar Gorge.

The Gate was first built during the reign of ‘Adud ad-Dawla. By the time of the Zand dynasty, it had sustained a lot of damage, so it was restored and a small room on top was added, in which were kept hand-written Qur’āns by Sultan Ibrahim Bin Shahrukh Gurekani. The two Qur’āns are known as Hifdah-Man. Travelers passing underneath the gates were believed to receive the blessing of the Holy Book as they began their trip or journey from Shiraz.

During the Qajar dynasty, the gate was damaged by multiple earthquakes; it was later restored by Mohammad Zaki Khan Nouri. In 1937 the two Qur’āns were taken from the gate and were taken to the Pars Museum in Shiraz, where they remain today. In 1949 the arch of the gate was restored by Hosein Igar, a merchant also known as E’temad Al-Tejar.

Today the gates are part of a city park where Shirazis relax and picnic during their leisure hours.

Afif-Abad Garden

Afif-Abad Garden (Persian: باغ عفیف آباد‎; also known as Golshan Garden) is a museum complex in Shiraz, Iran.

Located in the affluent Afif-Abad district of Shiraz, the complex was constructed in 1863. It contains a former royal mansion, a historical weapons museum, and a Persian garden, all open to the public.

Afif Abad Garden is one of the oldest gardens in Shiraz.

During the Safavid Period it was used as a palace by the Safavid Shahs.

The current main building was constructed by Mirza Ali Mohammadkhan Ghawam II (Persian: ميرزا علي محمدخان قوام الملك دوم‎) in 1863. He bought a nearby ghanat to water his garden. After his death the garden was eventually inheritted by Afife, thus being called Afif Abad.

In 1962, it was restored by the army. It is now functioning as a weapons museum.

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