Journey through Iran, May 2003
(click on thumbnails to see a bigger image)

Part 3: Tabriz and Caspain Sea region

From Esfahan we travelled on by bus through tehran to Tabriz in the north west. The lovely mountain village of kandovan is only 40 kms away and makes a nice excursion. Dont photograph the women in this village! I tried and got yelled at (probably by her husband).

pic 1 View to Tabriz from Elgoli park
pic 2 Iran's mini-Capadocia: Kandovan
pic 3 Someone's porch
Pic 4 Obviously it was laundry day in Kandovan
Pic 5 Kandovan main street

After Tabriz we took the bus to Ardabil where we met our guide for the next trekking in the Talesh region. Mountain tourism in Iran is still completely underlit. This also means that local agencies have very little experience with organising trekkings and still dont really know what tourists really want. If you want to do a trekking here make sure it's exactly clear what you want to do and expect. This area really has great potential for hiking and trekking and is completely different from the rest of Iran.

Pic 6 Our first campsite in the Talesh region on the shores of lake Noor
Pic 7 View to lake Noor in the early morning
Pic 8 The highest point of this trekking, roughly 3100 meters
pic 9 View to the 4800 meter high vulcano Mount Sabalan
pic 10 Road going down into Talesh.

pic 11 The sheperd family who were our hosts for one night
pic 12 The hut where we spend the night.
pic 13 The highlands of talesh. In summer months home to hundreds of semi-nomadic sheperds.
pic 14 Lower down in the valley.
pic 15 ...and even lower. Rice fields everywhere

After the trekking we travelled on to the city Rasht from where we visited the village Mansuleh. After a (disappointing) visit to the Anzali lagoon we went back to Tehran where a plane brought us back to the Netherlands the next day.

Pic 16 View to Talesh city. Not really scenery many people would connect with Iran
Pic 17 Women working in the fields.
Pic 18 View to the lovely village of Mansuleh
Pic 19 Life goes on as usual in Mansuleh
Pic 20 Fishing boats in the harbour of Anzali

In all it was a incredible journey through a fascinating country full of strong contrasts. Despite the beautifull scenery and amazing architecture and history the countries greatest asset remains its incredibly friendly and hospitable people. Just go there and be pleasently surprised by what the country has to offer.

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All pictures on this site are taken by Marinka or me. They are not to be used on any other publication without our permission.