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Shiraz

Shiraz

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 About Shiraz
Shiraz
The capital of Fars province, city of poets, wine and flowers

Shiraz is the capital of Fars province, one of the most beautiful, historical cities in the world. Farsi (Persian or Parsi) the language of Ancient Fars (Pars), has become the official language of Iran (Persia). 

Shiraz with more than 850,000 inhabitants situated in southwestern Iran, in the inland around 200 km from the Persian Gulf, at an elevation of 1,800 meters above sea level. 

Different people have lived in the Fars province such as the Aryans, the Samis and the Turks, who worked together to form the Iranian culture. 

The first Capital of Fars, some 2500 years ago, was Pasargad. It was also the capital of Achaemenid King Cyrus the Great. The ceremonial capital of his successor, Darius I (or Darius the Great), and his son Xerxes, was Persepolis. Today, only the ruins of these two capitals remain. Stakhr was another capital of Fars. It was established by the Sassanids and lasted until Shiraz finally assumed the role of the regional capital. 

Shiraz is also the birthplace and resting place of the great Persian poets Hafez and Saadi. There are two remarkable monuments in Shiraz. One is dedicated to Hafez, the master of Persian lyrical poetry. The other one is dedicated to Sa'adi, the author of the famous Golestan, a book of sonnets called the Garden of Roses.


According to Islamic historians, Shiraz came into existence only after the Arab conquest of Iran. The Arab invasion, in fact, contributed to its importance and by the 13th century, Shiraz had grown into one the largest and most popular Islamic cities of the era. Shiraz lies spread out like an immense garden on a green plain at the foot of the Tang Allah-o-Akbar Mountains.

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The most interesting buildings in Shiraz are located in the old part of the town. Among them are about a dozen mosques, some with bulb- shaped domes, and others with pear shaped domes and cupolas. These mosques are mostly scattered in among the old houses.


The Masjid-e-Vakil (the Regent Mosque) has an impressive portal containing faience panels in floral designs with various shades and colors on each side. The northern iwan (verandah) is decorated with shrubs and flowers, mainly rose bushes. The ceiling in Mihrab Chamber (altar) is covered with small cupolas resting on twisted columns. Vakil Bazaar, which is close by, was built by Karim Khan Zand. Here silversmiths and jewelers still apply their trades of exquisite inlay work. Persian carpets and other traditional Persian handicrafts may also be purchased in the Vakil Bazaar.


About 50 km. Northwest of Shiraz, at the foot of the Rahmat Mountains, one encounters the vast platform and remains of Persepolis, the grand ceremonial Capital built by Darius I (Darius the Great) and his successors some 2500 years ago. Archeologists are still combing through the debris and ashes that have covered Persepolis since Alexander the Great destroyed it in 330 BC. Most of the structures have already been revealed.

Pasargad is located about 77 km away from Persepolis. It was built by Cyrus the Great. Among the interesting sites at Pasargad is a stone platform 80 m. long and 18 m. wide. It is believed to have been the foundation of a palace. Close by are the ruins of a building called the Prison of Solomon which was probably a fire temple.

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The most important monument in Pasargad is undoubtedly the tomb of Cyrus the Great. It has seven broad steps leading to the sepulcher, which measures 534m. in length by 531m in width and has a low and narrow entrance. When Alexander the Great looted and destroyed Persepolis, he paid a visit to the tomb of Cyrus. It is recorded that he commanded Aristobulus, one of his warriors, to enter the monument. Inside he found a golden bed, a table set with drinking vessels, a gold coffin, some ornaments studded with precious stones and an inscription of the tomb, which reads.

 

"Passer-by, I am Cyrus the Great, I have given the Persians an empire and I have ruled over Asia. So do not envy me for this tomb."

 

Getting There

By plane

Shiraz International Airport (IATA: SYZ) (ICAO: OISS) has regular flights to all major and some smaller cities in Iran.

 

By train

Shiraz Train station has recently been finished and there are Trains to Isfahan and Tehran. However, the bus journey is shorter (2hrs less), so that might be recommended.

 

By car

Motorways connect the city to Isfahan, Kerman, BushehrAhvaz and Yasouj, and Bandar-e Abbas is reachable by highway.

 

Get around

For non-Iranian visitors, taxis are probably the most convenient mean of transport. However be sure to haggle for a good price prior to getting into the car.

If an unmarked car stops while you are hailing a taxi, don't be alarmed. Many taxis in Shiraz are unmarked and also as a means to supplement their income, is not uncommon to find private car owners touting themselves as taxis.

However it always best to find a taxi through a reputable "telephone taxi" agency. For a set fee, drivers of these agencies will take passengers to their destination, drive them around town and also wait for them while they shop or run errands. All hotels and local residents will have a phone number of one these agencies. There are also taxis driven by women that specifically cater to women passengers.

The city also has a reasonable bus service.

People and Culture

Talk

Don't hesitate to talk to people, especially youths. Almost all of them speak English well enough to talk to you, answer your questions and chat with you. They're all very welcoming and like getting into conversation with you. Some of them might even invite you to be their guest.

Buy

Retail stores usually open between 09:00 and 13:00, reopening again from 17:00 to 21:00. It is customary to haggle for a discount, which is referred to as a Takhfeef.

  • Bazaar Vakeel - a huge ancient bazaar specializing in fine carpets, textiles, antiques and handicrafts and spices . There is also a wonderful courtyard with a pool located in the bazaar perfect for photographs. It is called 'Saraye Moorshirr'. Visit Sharzeh and Hamam Vakeel for a great dining experience located just outside the bazaar.

 

  • Khan-e Zinat ol-Molk (The house of Zinat ol-molk), Next to Naranjestan Qavam. Historical house and adjoining gardens that house the Fars Dignatories museum.

Shopping malls

  • Aftab Fars Shopping Centre, MaaliAbaad Blv.
  • Hafez Shopping Centre, Afifabad Blv.
  • Persian Gulf Complex, Sepidan Hwy. Near Sadra and Golestan Towns
  • Setareh e Fars Shopping Centre, Afifabad Blv.
  • Sina Shopping Centre, Motahhari Blv.
  • Zaytoon Shopping Center, Paramount Intersection.
  • Soltanie Shopping Center,Motahari square

Some places in SHIRAZ you can visit for excite

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Main sights

  • Hafez Tomb - Mausoleum of Hafez- Hafez (1324-1391), the greatest master of Persian lyric poetry and the literary giant of the 14th century in the west and central Asia, was born in Shiraz, lived all his life here, sang its praises in unsurpassed verse and was buried in a garden known after him as the Hafezieh, in the northeast part of the city. The extraordinary popularity and the wide appeal of this great poet among all Persian-speaking people make his tomb a cherished placed, visited by all. This mausoleum too was rebuilt in the early 50’s. A flight of stone steps reaches to the tomb under a tiled cupola resembling a dervish’s hat. The tombstone is beautifully inscribed with two of Hafez’s poems or Ghazals. Visitors to the tomb can still, as they have done for centuries, take the omens, or Faals, by picking a page at random from a volume of Hafez, kept for this purpose. Entry 150,000 rials for foreigners.
  • Saadi Tomb - Recommended. Mausoleum of Saadi: Here lie the earthly remains of one of Iran’s greatest poets-Sa’di. Even from the very early days after the poet’s death, the mausoleum of Saadi became a place of pilgrimage to lovers of poetry and literature. In 1808 AD Karim Khan Zand renovated the mausoleum. The tomb was rebuilt in the early 50’s. The porch with its tall columns of pinkish marble is a traditional feature of Iranian architecture.
  • Arg of Karim Khan - formerly a prison, but now an architectural wonder on exhibit. The design of the citadel combines military and residential architecture, for it was the home of Karim Khan and the military center of the dynasty. Tile works depicting legendary tales were added at the entrance gate of the citadel during the Qajar period.
  • Afif Abad Garden (Bagh-e-Afifabad) - a garden and houses owned by the Ghavami family. Highly recommended. It contains a former royal mansion, a historical weapons museum, and a Persian garden that is one of the oldest gardens in Shiraz, all open to the public.
  • Eram Garden (Bagh-e-Eram) - Highly recommended. This stunningly beautiful complex contains a vast network of gardens, as well as a colorful palace and a system of small artificial rivers flowing throughout the entire area. Tourists can admire the wonderful flora or follow the little canals' intricate system. Make sure the weather is sunny before coming here!
  • Narangestan Qavam (Bagh-e-Naranjestan)is both traditional and historical house, It was built in the mid-to-late 19th century by Mirza Ibrahim Khan. The Qavam "Naranjestan" preserves the elegance and refinement enjoyed by the upper class families during the 19th century. The mirrored porch was a focal point of the house, overlooking onto gardens lined with date palms and flowers.The house today is a museum open to the public. Highly recommended.
  • Delgosha Garden (Bagh-e-Delgosha)
  • Nasir al-Mulk Mosque it was built during the Qājār era, the mosque has extensively colored glass in its facade, and other traditional elements such as panj kāseh-i (five concave) in its design.
  • Jame’e Atigh Mosque
  • Vakil Mosque was built between 1751 and 1773, during the Zand period; however, it was restored in the 19th century during the Qajar period where its exuberant floral decorative tiles date from.
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    • Vakil Bath - An old public bath, highly recommended.
    • Vakil Bazaar - has beautiful courtyards, caravansarais, bath houses, and old shops where hundreds of vendor are housed, which makes it deemed among the best places in Shiraz to buy all kinds of Persian rugs, spices, copper handicrafts and antiques. Highly recommended.
    • Saray-e-Moshir - a caravansary at the south entrance of Bazaar Vakil, which now functions as exhibition space for Iranian handicrafts. highly recommended.
    • Mesgarha Bazaar
    • Moshir-e-Now Bazaar
    • Shah Cheragh - Highly recommended. Seyed Amir Ahmad, known as Shah-e Cheragh, the brother of Imam Reza, came to Shiraz in the latter half of the 8th century. He passed away in the city and his tomb is now a respected place of pilgrimage. The structure, tile work and the dome of the mausoleum have been rebuilt several times over the centuries. The tomb, the beautiful silver doors and the exquisite mirror work are the handicrafts of masters and contemporary artists of Shiraz.
    • Abesh Khatoon Tomb
    • Seyed Taj-e-din Gharib Tomb
    • Khan school
    • Ghal'eye Karim Khan
    • Christians Church
  •  

     

    • Qoran Gate (Dar vazeh Quran) - the city's main entrance. The original gate was built as an ornamental decoration by the Buwwayhids (Buwayhid dynasty) about 1000 years ago, but this was replaced 60 years ago by new gate, which is considered one of the finest architectural designs in Iran and has won numerous awards. From the the gate walk up the stone stairways to enjoy picturesque and panoramic views of Shiraz. The tomb of Khajooyeh Kermanee, a famous poet is also located here. Hidden in the alleys on the hill-side are numerous restaurants that serve the finest Chelo Kebab. It is an excellent place for picnics and taking photographs.

    Eat

    • Kebab with rice - like elsewhere in Iran, the mighty old kebab with rice is a common fare, though Shiraz does offer a local variation on the national dish.
    • Shirazi Salad - A delicious and famous salad available throughout Iran, made with cucumbers,

    tomatoes, onions and a simple lemon juice and olive oil dressing.

    • Kalam polo - A traditional food is just cooked in Shiraz. Some delivery food restaurants serve this food , it can hardly find in normal restaurants. It is a dish made of Rice, meat balls, chopped cabbage and some other vegetables and spices.
    • 'Ash Shirazi - It is a kind of soup made of vegetables and meat. It serves all over the city early in the morning. People eat this for breakfast. But please note that it just serves really early in the morning. Starts from 5 to 7 a.m.
    • Masghati Halva - a great dessert and snack.
    • Nokhod(Chickpea) Cookie - delicious cookie made of chickpea, known as one of Shiraz's souvenirs.
    • Shirazi Paloodeh - Paloodeh is an ice cream made of rice starch, which takes the form of noodles. It is flavored with "Sharbat" (sugar,water), which can be of different flavors. Shirazian Paloodeh is the best Paloodeh in Iran especially when mixed with Bahar-e-Naranj Distill. 
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    • Restaurants

      Almost all of these places have Live music playing

      • Haft khan, buffet and classic restaurant, Iranian and international cuisine
      • Bel passi, Italian Rstaurant
      • Brentin,
      • Lotus Restaurant, on the 13th floor of Pars International Hotel
      • Lotus Restaurant, on the top floor of Setareh-e-Fars Shopping Center
      • Kaktoos Restaurant
      • Shater Abbas
      • Sharzeh Restaurant, a classic old restaurant located just outside the Vakil bazaar
      • Soofi Restaurant, traditional restaurant located at Sattarkhan St.
      • Hammam-e-Vakil (Vakil Bath), classic old style restaurant
      • Parmin Restaurant
      • Shandiz Restaurant
      • Sita Traditional Restaurant, with Live Iranian Music
      • Gambron SeaFood Restaurant, serving famous food from the whole of Persian gulf
      • Dragon, Chinese Food
      • Noor , Lebanese Restaurant,Chamran Blv
      • Zeytoon , Classic restaurant, Iranian restaurant.
      • Shater abbas , Traditional Iranian restaurant , located in khak shenasi St. and another one in Chamran ave.

      Get out

      Pasargad was a Persian capital built by Cyrus the Great in the 6th century BC. Around 500 BC, Darius I built a new capital at Persepolis 50 km away. Both are now listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List and both are near Shiraz.

      Persepolis (Takht-e-Jamshid)

      • Takht-e-Jamshid (Persepolis) - The center of the great Persian Empire, ceremonial capital of the Achaemenians and the showpiece of Achaemenian art, Persepolis (Capital of Persia in Greek) is a historic site in Fars Province, 60 km to the northeast of Shiraz. Iranians call it Takht-e Jamshid (The throne of Jamshid), Jamshid being the first, probably mythical, ruler of Iran. This magnificent court was the summer residence of the Achaemenian emperors and their official reception quarters. It must be by some strange accident of history that Persepolis was never mentioned in foreign records, for it was here that representatives of all the varied peoples of the empire gathered to pay homage, and bring tribute, to the King of Kings, probably each spring, at the time of the ancient Now Ruz festival. Although set on fire and destroyed by Alexander in a gesture symbolizing the destruction of Persian imperial power, its still impressive ruins permit a fairly complete reconstruction of its original appearance.
      • Palace of Apadana
      • Bishapur
      • Firouzabad
      • Ghal'eh Dokhtar
      • Palace of Ardashir – The Palace ruins of Sassanid king Ardashir I 
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      • Etymology

        The earliest reference to the city is on Elamite clay tablets dated to 2000 BCE, found in June 1970, while digging to make a kiln for a brick factory in the south western corner of the city. The tablets written in ancient Elamite name a city called Tiraziš. Phonetically, this is interpreted as /tiračis/ or /ćiračis/. This name became Old Persian /širājiš/; through regular sound change comes the modern Persian name Shirāz. The name Shiraz also appears on clay sealing found at a 2nd-century CE Sassanid ruin, east of the city. By some of the native writers, the name Shiraz has derived from a son of Tahmuras, the third Shāh (King) of the world according to Ferdowsi's Shāhnāma.

        History

        Pre-Islamic

        Shiraz is most likely more than 4,000 years old. The name Shiraz is mentioned in cuneiform inscriptions from around 2000 BCE found in south western corner of the Shiraz city. According to some Iranian mythological traditions, it was originally erected by Tahmuras Diveband, and afterward fell to ruin. The oldest sample of wine in the world, dating to approximately 7,000 years ago, was discovered on clay jars recovered outside of Shiraz (according to the referenced article, this discovery was made in Hajji Firuz Tepe, a Neolithic village in Iran's northern Zagros Mountains, more than a thousand kilometers north of Shiraz).

        In Achaemenian era, Shiraz was on the way from Susa to Persepolis and Pasargadae. In Ferdowsi's Shāhnāma it has been said that Artabanus V, the Parthian Emperor of Iran, expanded his control over Shiraz. Ghasre Abu-Nasr (meaning "the palace of AbuNasr") which is originally from Parthian era is situated in this area. During the Sassanid era, Shiraz was in between the way which was connecting Bishapur and Gur to Istakhr. Shiraz was an important regional center under the Sassanians.

        Modern Times

        The City's municipality and other related institutions have initiated restoration and reconstruction projects. Some of the most recent projects have been the complete restoration of the Arg of Karim Khan and of the Vakil Bath, as well as a comprehensive plan for the preservation of the old city quarters. Other noteworthy initiatives include the total renovation of the Qur'an Gate and the mausoleum of the poet Khwaju Kermani, both located in the Allah-u-Akbar Gorge, as well as the restoration and expansion of the mausoleum of the famous Shiraz-born poets Hafiz and Saadi. A lot of different construction projects is currently underway, which is going to modernize the City's infrastructure. The Shiraz 1400 chain of projects is set to transform the city and greatly modernize the infrastructure.  After the Islamic Revolution of 1979, Shiraz was re-established as the capital of Iranian Art and Culture. Shiraz is known as the capital of Persian Art, Culture and Literature.

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        Culture

        Shiraz is known as the city of poets, gardens, wine, nightingales and flowers.[47][48] The crafts of Shiraz consist of inlaid mosaic work of triangular design; silver-ware; carpet-weaving, and the making of the rugs called gilim (Shiraz Kilim) and "jajim" in the villages and among the tribes.[citation needed]

        The garden is an important part of Iranian culture. There are many old gardens in Shiraz such as the Eram garden and the Afif Abad garden. According to some people,[who?] Shiraz "disputes with Xeres [or Jerez] in Spain the honour of being the birthplace of sherry."[49]

        Shiraz is proud of being mother land of Hafiz Shirazi, Shiraz is a center for Iranian culture and has produced a number of famous poets. Saadi, a 12th and 13th-century poet was born in Shiraz. He left his native town at a young age for Baghdad to study Arabic literature and Islamic sciences at Al-Nizamiyya of Baghdad. When he reappeared in his native Shiraz he was an elderly man. Shiraz, under Atabak Abubakr Sa'd ibn Zangy (1231–1260) was enjoying an era of relative tranquility. Saadi was not only welcomed to the city but he was highly respected by the ruler and enumerated among the greats of the province. He seems to have spent the rest of his life in Shiraz. Hafiz, another famous poet and mystic was also born in Shiraz. A number of scientists also originate from Shiraz. Qutb al-Din al-Shirazi, a 13th-century astronomer, mathematician, physician, physicist and scientist was from Shiraz. In his The Limit of Accomplishment concerning Knowledge of the Heavens, he also discussed the possibility of heliocentrism.

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        a142 Shiraz

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