Iran may not appear to be your typical tourist destination, and it's true that theocratic juntas, a mania for all things nuclear, and tales of authoritarian shahs from the past aren't exactly attractive vacation ingredients. Iran, on the other hand, is not like the rest of the Middle East.
Millennia of rising and declining civilizations – the Persians, Parthians, and Safavids – have all come before the current nation, and their splendor and wealth have contributed to the pride and stability that many neighbors (even if they won't admit it) admire. Today, this means Iran is speeding into the future while holding tenaciously to its illustrious past — a strange duality that pervades the entire country.
In Tehran, you can visit boho coffee shops and avant-garde art galleries, or visit grand madrassahs in Esfahan and Yazd. At Dizin, you may carve the pistes, while at Persepolis, you can follow in the footsteps of Xerxes and Darius.
Let's have a look at some of the top spots to visit in Iran: