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Iran Real Food Adventure

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highlights
  • Discover why Iranian cuisine is so globally influential while tasting crispy rice dishes like tah chin, breads such as soft sangak or fragrant spices such as cinnamon or cardamom
  • Cook cultural culinary favourites in welcoming Iranian family homes – from the sumptuous spiced meat and rice of biryani to sharp and fruity fesenjan stews
  • Sample regional delicacies at some of the finest sweet stores in Iran during a visit to Yazd, snacking on crunchy almond qottab or chewy soft baqlava as you go
Start and end in Tehran, the Iran Real Food Adventure trip is a guided food trip that takes 10 days. You will travel through Tehran in Iran. Iran Real Food Adventure is a small group trip which includes accommodation in hotels, transport, meals and others.

Iran’s charm begins with its stunning environment – snow-capped mountains, rolling deserts, ancient cities and crowded bazaars all add to an unforgettable tapestry of a culture less experienced. However the heart of this charm truly lies in the palate – within the odorous spices, succulent meats and mouth-watering stews created through thousands of years of perfected techniques. Saffron, cheeses, crispy rice and succulent meats all contribute to full flavoured meals capable of taking anyone to another place. It’ll happen to you too. Once you dine on tah chin, fesenjan or any of the other dishes on this Real Food Adventure, it’ll only take a hint of saffron to throw your thoughts back into the depths of that bazaar – that unforgettable moment where the taste of Persia first hit your tongue.

Before booking on this trip we recommend that you read the ‘Safety’ section in the trip notes regarding special safety considerations for Iran trips.
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Salam! Welcome to Tehran, Iran.

Welcome to Iran. You will be met on arrival at Tehran International airport and transferred to your hotel.

This marvellous city sits at the bottom of the Alborz Mountains – their snowy peaks serving as a photogenic backdrop for the colourful buildings below. Tehran is commonly known as one of the country’s most liberal metropolitan areas and this may become obvious through an adventure into the depths of their hospitality scene. Lamb, chickpeas, tahdig (crispy rice pies) and potatoes are all big staples in Iranian cuisine – just don’t forget they’re best washed down with a cup of dugh (minty yoghurt drink).

Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting today at 6 pm at the Rastan Restaurant, which is just a quick walk from your hotel. Once you arrive, get to know the other travellers over a juicy Iranian kebab served with a side of local bread or rice – the kebab’s rich aroma should have you smelling it well before it reaches the table. Once you’ve filled up, wash it all down with a cup of tea and crawl into bed before tomorrow’s adventures.

It’d be easy to call Iran a land of kebabs, but the country’s gastronomy is a little more complicated than that. Read on below in the ‘special information’ box to learn a bit about a staple of Iranian cuisine.
Get prepared for the first step of your Iranian Real Food Adventure on a trip through the market. Here, gather the ingredients in preparation to cook up today’s lunch, tahchin. Translating to ‘arranged at the bottom’, this traditional Persian dish consists of crisp saffron-infused rice layered with onions, chicken, rice, yoghurt, eggs, oil, salt and pepper. It’s often made for special occasions; the layer of rice at the bottom (known as tahdig) becomes crispy and crunchy as it bakes against the pan and it’s often said to be the best part of the meal. A cooking class at a local house gives the group a chance to learn how to cook this Persian favourite – right before tucking in to their delicious dishes. Afterwards, take to the streets of Tehran on a guided orientation walk. The Golestan Palace marks one of the stops on this excursion, and the dazzling colours of the walls and stained glass windows are definitely worth a photo or two. There’s also a stop at the bustling Tehran Bazaar before returning to the hotel for a free evening.
Known as a top destination for travellers to Iran, Esfahan has a lot to offer for those looking to explore Persian culture. The gardens, Islamic buildings and the UNESCO heritage-listed Naqsh-e Jahan Square are just a few of the highlights the city has to offer – it’s hard to miss something that isn’t full of colour or boasting some gobsmacking architecture. Start off the journey through one of the country’s largest metropolises on a guided walk past the Naqsh-e Jahan Square and its resident mosque before heading onward to the Sheik Lotfollah Mosque and the palace of Ali Qapu.

Once the evening kicks in, prepare to cook up a delicious homemade Persian biryani. The delicate layering of rice interspersed with spices and meat relies on a Persian steaming method known as ‘dam pohkt’, meaning ‘steam-cooked’. While it can be served up with a variety of meats and spices, tonight’s dish consists of shoulder lamb, onions, Iranian sangak bread, cooking oil, salt, black pepper and turmeric. Fill up, hit the hay and prepare for more adventures through Isfahan once the sun rises tomorrow.
Thanks to a variety of diverse factors such as climate, regional soil and altitude differences throughout the region, the Esfahan Province is widely regarded as one of the most important agricultural sites in Iran. This means there’s plenty of fresh produce growing in the area outside the city, just waiting to be harvested. Take a visit to a nearby farm during the day and get a feel how the local farmers work these lands. Afterwards, travel back into town for a visit to the famous bazaar of Esfahan, located in the old part of the city. Fresh fruit, rugs, trinkets, memoirs and entire shops dedicated to saffron are hallmarks of the typical Persian bazaar – just make sure to stick close to the group as these busy halls can easily sweep up lost people.
With mazes of streets, winding lanes and archways upon archways, Yazd is much of a city as it is a labyrinth – keep a map handy and try not to get lost! Begin your adventure through the ‘City of Windcatchers’ on an orientation walk. Visit the Masid-e Jameh, a stunning example of an Azari mosque that boasts the tallest minarets in the country, check out the symmetrical alcoves of the Amir Chakhmaq Complex, then head on to the Water Museum to experience some impressive architecture before arriving at the old mud brick city.

Tonight’s dinner consists of a Yazd favourite – a delicious, traditional Iranian stew called gheimeh yazdi. Pop into a local house before digging in. Your hosts will lay out a tablecloth on the carpeted floor, the way most Iranians still dine.

When cooking the dish, start off by preparing turmeric, onions, peas and lamb or beef. From that point, the onions are cooked until soft, then the meat is sautéed in the same pan. Peas are boiled in a separate pot until their skin is removed, then added to the meat before the turmeric is fried in with the lot. Add a dash of water, then once the meal is almost ready to eat, throw in some salt, spices and tomato sauce to finish up the stew. Some cook the meal with dried limes and a pinch of cinnamon, but in spite of these different techniques, every Persian loves gheimeh thanks to its heart-warming flavours and authentic home-cooked nature.
Take to the streets of Yazd for a wander through the finest sweet stalls in Iran. Many generations of confectioners have operated in this area for centuries, selling treats unlike anywhere else in the world. There’s haji badam, small round balls made with chickpea flour, eggs, sugar, almonds, cardamoms and nutmeg; nan berenji, a round cookie made with rice flour, cardamom and rosewater and sprinkled with poppy seeds and souhan, a grainy version of brittle made with pistachios instead of peanut. There’s also the flour-based baqlava, made with almonds, pistachios, cardamom and rosewater. The best seller of all is qottab, an almond-shaped and infused cookie with a crispy shell rolled in powdered sugar.

After loading up on sweet treats, visit a local workshop that makes sugar cubes before heading on to a traditional bakery for a bite of gata or koloocheh. The afternoon is free for exploration through the streets of Yazd.
Today’s adventures begin in Shiraz with an orientation walk through the town, visiting locations such as the Karimkhan Citadel and the Pars Museum. A stop at the Vakil Bazaar offers a taste and an insight into the making of traditional Iranian ice-cream and faloudeh, a delicious cold desert consisting of noodles and frozen rose water syrup with lime juice added to serve.

While the city may have once played namesake to Shiraz wine – not a drop of the stuff has come from the area since the Islamic Revolution of 1979. Yet the region is still full of master beverage producers with some of the local non-alcoholic drinks boasting an unmatched flavour through the use of unexpected ingredients. Different plants such as rose, mint, musk willow, walnut and more are distilled to create drinks with both medical and gastronomic uses – learn more about this at an included visit to a large workshop where some of these beverages are kept and produced.
Drive 60 km northeast of Shiraz into the countryside of the Fars Province on a hunt for the ancient city of Persepolis. The former capital of the Achaemenid Empire, this UNESCO World Heritage-listed site holds some of the earliest examples of the Achaemenid style of architecture – hallmarked by intricate carvings, flat surfaced structures, intricate carvings of humans and lots of stone. A few more kilometres north of Persepolis lies the necropolis of Naqsh-e Rustam, the next stop on the journey. Though parts of this ‘city of the dead’ is said to have suffered major damage over the last millennium, the impressive stone carvings on the side of the necropolis’ massive cliff face are still a spectacular site to this day.

After exploring these ancient cities, head to a cheese making process in the evening. Persians are big lovers of cheese, so expect some excellent flavours which you might get to sample if you’re lucky. A traditional panir cheese recipe creates a very delicate, mild tasting cheese with hints of mint and lime. Lighvan cheese is a little more sour – it’s covered with holes and usually ends up served at breakfast or dinner with a piece of fresh bread. An Iranian favourite is Persian feta, which involves taking a block of Greek style feta, drying it out, brining it for a day before serving it up dry with sunflower oil, lime zest and garlic – it’s a flavour you can’t beat.
After a free morning in Shiraz, prepare for a flight back to Tehran (approximately 1.5 hours) for the last leg of the trip. The final meal today will most likely be the most memorable; fesenjan, a rich tangy chicken stew with walnuts and pomegranate sauce. This dish is typically served as a holiday favourite during Shab-e Yalda, a winter solstice tradition that predates Islam by thousands of years. To prepare it, begin by lightly sauteing the chicken in olive oil until lightly golden. A sauce is then created from ground-up toasted walnuts, pomegranate molasses and other spices (usually cinnamon and saffron), then simmered until the sauce turns a rich walnut colour. The end result - a truly spectacular, one of a kind sauce that’s sweet, tart and rich in flavour. Undertake this food experience in a typical Iranian house with a local family, sharing laughs, smells and tastes on the final night of your journey.
Today marks the end of your Real Food Adventure, there are no activities planned for the final day and you are free to depart at anytime. Please note you must check out of the hotel by 12pm.
what’s included
Accommodation
  • Hotel (9 nights)
Meals
  • 9 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 5 Dinner
Transport
  • Private Transport , Public Bus , Plane
Included Activities
  • Tehran - City walking tour
  • Tehran - Tah-Chin Morgh, Cooking Class
  • Tehran - Iman Mosque entrance and guided tour
  • Esfahan - Ali Qapu Palace
  • Esfahan - Sheik Lotfallah Mosque
  • Esfahan - Biryani Cooking Class (Dinner)
  • Esfahan - Gaz Tasting and Bazaar Visit
  • Yazd - Guided walking tour
  • Yazd - Gheimeh Yazdi, Cooking Class (Dinner)
  • Yazd - Amir Chakhmaq Complex & Square
  • Yazd - Water Museum
  • Yazd - Food Focused City Orientation Tour
  • Yazd - Traditional Sweet Shop & Bakery Tour
  • Shiraz - City walking tour
  • Shiraz - Traditional Beverage Demonstration
  • Shiraz - Karimkhan Citadel
  • Shiraz - Vakil Bazaar
  • Shiraz - Pars Museum
  • Persepolis - Entrance and Guided tour
  • Persepolis - Naqsh-e Rustam Necropolis
what’s excluded
  • International Flights
  • Any international flights to/from Tehran are not included in this price. We always recommend that you arrive 1 day prior to your tour starting date.
  • Travel Insurance
  • Travel insurance is not included in this Iran Real Food Adventure tour. Travel insurance is mandatory to buy. We recommend purchasing it from World Nomads.
Get a PDF file with detailed trip information: Download Trip Notes for Iran Real Food Adventure
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Good to know
Payment

A deposit of 400 USD is required to confirm this tour. The remaining balance will be charged 57 days before departure. For any departures within 14 October 2019 full payment is required.

Travel Insurance

The Iran Real Food Adventure tour requires that you have adequate and valid travel insurance covering medical and personal accidents, including repatriation costs and emergency evacuation. We recommend using World Nomads' travel insurance.

Visa

For this Iran Real Food Adventure tour getting the required visa(s) is the responsibility for each individual traveller, as visa requirements vary depending on your nationality. We recommend to check with your local embassies representing the countries that you are travelling to, as part of this itinerary.

CancellationNo additional cancellation fees apply for this Iran Real Food Adventure tour. You can cancel the tour up to 58 days prior departure and avoid paying the full amount, but your deposit paid is non-refundable. No refund applies for cancellations within 57 days of departure.
Trip Details
  • Last modified (date)

    25 Jul 2019

  • Trip title

    Iran Real Food Adventure

  • Trip code

    HPZF

  • Validity

    Validity: 01 Jan 2019 to 31 Dec 2019

  • Introduction

    Iran’s charm begins with its stunning environment – snow-capped mountains, rolling deserts, ancient cities and crowded bazaars all add to an unforgettable tapestry of a culture less experienced. However the heart of this charm truly lies in the palate – within the odorous spices, succulent meats and mouth-watering stews created through thousands of years of perfected techniques. Saffron, cheeses, crispy rice and succulent meats all contribute to full flavoured meals capable of taking anyone to another place. It’ll happen to you too. Once you dine on tah chin, fesenjan or any of the other dishes on this Real Food Adventure, it’ll only take a hint of saffron to throw your thoughts back into the depths of that bazaar – that unforgettable moment where the taste of Persia first hit your tongue.

    Before booking on this trip we recommend that you read the ‘Safety’ section in the trip notes regarding special safety considerations for Iran trips.

  • Style

    Original

  • Themes

    Food

  • Transport

    Private Transport,Public Bus,Plane

  • Physical Rating

    2

  • Joining point instructions

    A private arrival transfer is included on this trip. Please ensure you have provided your booking agent with your flight details at least 30 days prior to travelling to Iran and that this transfer is confirmed. If you are travelling on a British, US or Canadian passport, you must pre-arrange private transfers through Intrepid Travel. On arrival you may be asked to fill out a standard customs declaration form, which you show to the customs officer, who stamps it. It’s best that you keep this form until you leave Iran. Please look out for our transfer operator after clearing customs, who will be holding a sign with your name.

    If you have difficulty locating the driver please make your way to the information desk in the airport to contact our local operator. Please advise them that you have booked through Intrepid's local operator;'Uppersia - Pazira. Our local representative can be contacted on +989 337 408 300

  • Finish point description

    The Roudaki Hotel is located in the heart of Tehran. Museums, shopping malls, recreation centres and palaces are all within easy access. The hotel boasts a restaurant on the ground floor with a relaxed and pleasant atmosphere serving a variety of Persian dishes, noodles and seafood. WiFi is available throughout the hotel.

    The hotel has 48 suites, all with 40 square meters of space. The rooms are all equipped with a LCD TV, free WiFi, 24-hour central air-conditioning, refrigerator, safe box and more.

  • Group leader

    All Intrepid group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders.

    Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense, you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you were interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.

  • Is this trip right for you

    Iran is one of the safest and friendliest places you can travel but it is very conservative. It is very important that before you sign up for this tour you are committed to following a strict dress code (particularly for women) in what may be quite warm weather. Things don't get much more different to home than this!

    On arrival in Iran, all women must wear a headscarf and must also have their arms and legs covered. Men must also be conservatively dressed.

    Alcohol is strictly forbidden in Iran and severe penalties will be incurred by anyone attempting to bring it into the country. Drug laws are also extremely strict and travellers face lengthy jail terms if caught. If found obscene material (including glossy magazines showing people in immodest poses), and controversial literature will all be confiscated by custom officials. Upon arrival, it is likely that you will be whisked through customs but note that random bag checks do occur.

    The pathways around some of the sites may be uneven, rocky or dusty. Some of the guided trips may involve quite a lot of walking in the elements. Please bring comfortable walking shoes and be prepared with hats, sunscreen, water or layers for cooler weather.

    Iran is a big country and this trip covers a lot in two weeks, so be prepared for some long travel days with lots of opportunity to take in the great landscapes.

    Please note that we use a local supplier for our arrival transfer. As tourism is a developing industry in Iran, it is possible your driver will not speak English.

    Please note that travellers cannot use debit or credit cards while in Iran. You will need to bring all the money you will need for your entire trip with you. Please read through the money matters section of your essential trip information for further details.

    Getting a visa for Iran can be a frustrating and time-consuming process. It may take a couple of weeks to get your authorisation code, and then it can take up to 30 days to receive your visa back from the embassy or consulate. Rules can and do change often - this is the nature of the destination. We are here to help you through it.

  • Health

    All travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, we reserve the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund.

    You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations and anti-malarial requirements before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements (including a spare pair of glasses) as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip.

    DRINKING WATER:
    As a rule we recommend you don't drink tap water, even in hotels, as it may contain much higher levels of different minerals than the water you are used to at home. For local people this is not a problem as their bodies are used to this and can cope, but for visitors drinking the tap water can result in illness. Generally this isn't serious, an upset stomach being the only symptom, but it's enough to spoil a day or two of your holiday. Many hotels and lodges provide safe drinking water, while bottled water is another alternative. Water consumption should be about two litres a day. Rehydration salts, motion sickness tablets, and diarrhoea blockers are available from many pharmacies.

  • Food and dietary requirements

    While we will endeavour to cater to dietary requirements where possible, please note that many meals and food activities on Real Food Adventures are set in advance in order to deliver a well-rounded experience of a country’s cuisine. In many countries, dietary restrictions are uncommon and not well understood. If you have dietary requirements and are concerned about whether this may impact on your ability to participate fully in all food-related activities on this trip, please contact your agent at time of booking for further information. If you have dietary requirements and/or food allergies, you must notify your booking agent prior to departure so it can be determined whether your dietary requirements can be met.

    Meals & Beverages:
    Please refer to the inclusions section for the included meals and food activities. Beverages (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) are not included with meals unless specified or part of a beverage tasting activity. 

  • Money matters

    When it comes to money matters on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities, tipping and laundry. It’s always better to bring a little more than you think you’ll need.

    Also make sure you’ve read your trip details thoroughly so you know what’s included in the trip price and what isn’t. This should make budgeting a little easier. You’ll find this info in the Inclusions section of your Essential Trip Information (that’s this document).
    Please note: all recommendations for additional costs, tipping etc. are in USD. You will need to convert these into the relevant local currency.

    MEALS NOT INCLUDED

    Depending on the style of trip you have chosen (Basix, Original or Comfort), included meals will vary.

    Breakfast. If breakfast is not included, you can expect to pay between USD5 to USD10 at a local café.

    Lunch. Lunch at a touristy restaurant should cost around USD10 to USD20. However, local street food can be substantially cheaper.

    Dinner. At dinner time, your leader will normally recommend restaurants where you can safely try the local specialties of the region. Expect meals to cost between USD15 to USD25 for a main.

    These are indicative prices only. If you are in a tight budget and are happy to eat just local food you can eat cheaper than this. If you want to try the finest food at the finest restaurants, then you can expect meals to cost as much as in western countries.

    TIPPING

    Known as 'baksheesh' in the Middle East, tipping is a part of everyday life and is more than just a reward for services rendered. In countries where wages are extremely low it is an essential means of supplementing income. This practice is not merely reserved for foreigners and locals have to constantly hand out 'Baksheesh' as well - to park their cars, ensure fresh produce and pick up their mail. If you are satisfied with the services provided, a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate and always appreciated. While it may not be customary to you, it's of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels.

    Usually the equivalent of around USD5 to USD10 per person, per day to cover tips is fine. Over the years we have found that many of our travellers find the need for tipping to be both tiresome and embarrassing, especially if they don't have the correct small change. To overcome this, your leader might raise the idea of a group tipping kitty. At your group meeting, your tour leader may discuss the idea of running this kitty, whereby everybody contributes an equal amount and then your tour leader pays the tips as you go. The leader will keep a running record of all monies spent (except restaurant tips). The record can be checked at any time and any money remaining at the end of the tour returned to group members. This kitty does not include tips for your leader and crew.

    TIPPING GUIDE

    To give you a bit of guidance, we’ve put together the following tipping notes. These are just suggestions, based on feedback from past travellers and our staff on the ground.

    - Basic restaurants – Round up to the nearest figure or leaving the loose change is generally fine.
    - Up-market restaurants – When checking the bill, if there’s an addition of 10% service charge, there’s no requirement for tipping. Otherwise, 10% of the total bill amount is appropriate.
    - Local guides – Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your leader. We suggest USD2 to USD3 per person, per day for local guides.
    - Your tour leader: You may also consider tipping your tour leader for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference; however as a guideline USD2 to USD4 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.

    EMERGENCY FUNDS

    We try to plan for every eventuality, but there are still some things beyond our control. Please make sure you bring an extra USD500 for emergencies (e.g. natural disasters or civil unrest). Sometimes these things necessitate last minute changes to our itineraries, and we can’t guarantee there won’t be some extra costs involved.

    CREDIT CARD, ATMS AND MONEY EXCHANGE

    With the exception of Iran, ATMs are widely available in major towns and cities throughout the Middle East and Turkey. Credit and debit cards are the best way to access money throughout most trips (note though that charges are made for each transaction). Credit cards are generally available in tourist shops and restaurants. Visa and Mastercard are generally preferred over American Express, Diners, etc. Smaller venues take cash only.

    Check with your bank before departure that your card is accepted in the countries you are travelling to. Also ensure your bank is aware of your travel plans as - suspecting fraud - they may cancel your cards after the first few international transactions.

    Be aware that your withdrawing limit may vary from country to country (regardless of your withdrawing limit in your home country) and it can be as low as the equivalent to USD100 per day.

    TRAVELLERS TO IRAN PLEASE NOTE:
    Iran is very much a cash economy. This means travellers can rarely use debit or credit cards while in Iran. There are virtually no opportunities to withdraw cash in Iran. ATM’s are non-existent. Credit cards are also only accepted sporadically; there may be rare occasions in tourist-orientated shops that credit cards are accepted, otherwise cash is the main method of trade in Iran.

    If you are arriving into Tehran on Thursday afternoon or Friday we highly recommend passengers exchange money at the Airport as all other currency exchange houses in the city will be closed until Saturday.

  • Climate and seasonal

    RAMADAN 2018:
    In 2018, the important month of Ramadan will be in progress from 15 May through until 14 June, and the Eid ul-Fitr festival will be held directly at its conclusion for 3-4 days. Ramadan is a festival of sacrifice where the devout refrain from eating or drinking during daylight hours. During Ramadan, business hours are shortened, including opening hours at some tourist attractions. Alcohol is not permitted during daylight hours and many restaurants will be closed. While you should expect some delays and inconveniences during this period, the month is a fantastic opportunity to travel in a Muslim country and witness this unique period, particularly the nightly celebrations when the sun sets and the fast is broken. Please note that although the Eid ul-Fitr festival can also be a fascinating time to travel it's a period of national holiday. Most government offices and businesses will be closed and some tourist site opening hours may be affected.


    WEEKEND & PUBLIC HOLIDAYS IN IRAN:
    Thursday (afternoon) and Friday are the weekend in Iran. Please note that there may be changes to operating hours of sites, museums and stores. Iran also has a lot of public holidays. The dates of many of these holidays change annually as they are scheduled according to the lunar calendar. If you are arriving over a weekend or public holiday we recommend you change some money beforehand as Currency Exchanges will be closed over these days

    IRANIAN NEW YEAR:
    Please note that the Iranian New Year will take place from 19 March to 2 April 2018. Many Iranian banks and government offices will be closed for the week of this period. Iran Authorisation code request forms will not be accepted or processed during this time by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tehran

  • A couple of rules

    Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land, but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter and in particular, the local people who make our destinations such special places. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our group leader or local representative has the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

    Everyone has the right to feel safe and secure on their trip. We don’t tolerate any form of sexual harassment, either between passengers or involving our leaders or local operators. Sexual relationships (consensual or otherwise) between a leader and a passenger are unacceptable. If you ever feel another person is behaving inappropriately please inform us immediately by contacting the emergency contact number detailed in these trip notes.

    ALCOHOL, DRUGS AND CONTRABAND:
    Alcohol is strictly forbidden in Iran and severe penalties will be incurred by anyone attempting to bring it into the country. Drug laws are also extremely strict and travellers face lengthy jail terms if caught. If found, pork products, obscene material (even glossy magazines showing people in immodest poses), and controversial literature will all be confiscated by custom officials. Upon arrival, you as a foreigner will likely be whisked through customs but note that random bag checks do commonly occur.

  • Accommodation notes

    HEATING AND AIR-CONDITIONING:

    As a desert region, this part of the world has extremes of weather. Winter months (approx December to March) can be very cold. All of our hotel accommodation contains suitable bedding, and simple light bedding is provided during camping activities such as an overnight felucca, desert camps or at the Red Sea Beach camp stay. Most of our travellers find the bedding provided here adequate, but for your own comfort and if you are particularly sensitive to the cold, consider bringing your own sleeping bag, thermals, scarf, gloves and a warm jacket. Some of our guesthouses / hotels don't supply heating. In many cases this would be a major financial and environmental strain on our hotels and the local towns. Summer (approx June to August) can be very hot everywhere we travel, which means that it can be quite uncomfortable for those not used to the heat. Not all our hotels have air-conditioning, and in those that do, it's not always functioning.


    ACCOMMODATION

    Accommodation on this trip is on a twin-share basis unless stated otherwise. If you require a double bed please request this with your booking agent. Double beds are subject to availability and can not always be guaranteed.

  • Your fellow travellers

    As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.

    SINGLE TRAVELLERS:
    Our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and don't involve a compulsory single supplement. Single travellers share with people of the same gender in accommodation ranging from twin to multishare. Some of our itineraries have accommodation booked on a mixed gender share basis and where applicable this will be specified in our Essential Trip Information. On a selection of our trips, you have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure that you have your own accommodation (where available). Please note that this only applies to accommodation during the tour - pre-trip and post-trip accommodation will be booked on a single room basis.

  • Itinerary disclaimer

    ITINERARY CHANGES:
    Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you print and review a final copy prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any changes once on tour.

    OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES:
    A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested and they can assist.

    Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.

    DEPOSITS
    Please note deposits on this trip are non refundable and non-transferable as per our terms and conditions. You are required to pay a non-refundable deposit of $400 per person per trip for your booking to be confirmed.

  • Accommodation

    Hotel (9 nights)

  • Joining point description

    The Roudaki Hotel is located in the heart of Tehran. Museums, shopping malls, recreation centres and palaces are all within easy access. The hotel boasts a restaurant on the ground floor with a relaxed and pleasant atmosphere serving a variety of Persian dishes, noodles and seafood. WiFi is available throughout the hotel.

    The hotel has 48 suites, all with 40 square meters of space. The rooms are all equipped with a LCD TV, free WiFi, 24-hour central air-conditioning, refrigerator, safe box and more.

  • Finish point instructions

    We highly recommend you arrange a private departure transfer through Intrepid Travel. If you are travelling on a British, US or Canadian passport, you must pre-arrange private transfers through Intrepid. Taxis can be arranged for around USD$50. The trip can take up to two hours depending on the time of your onwards flight and subsequent traffic conditions.

    If you have any difficulties with your departure transfer, please contact our local representative, Uppersia- Pazira Travel Company on +989 337 408 300

  • Transport notes

    There are some long travel days and some rough travelling in areas away from main tourist routes. Windy roads, rough surfaces and cramped conditions make for some challenging travel experiences. On some long travel days we depart early in the morning to ensure we optimise our time at our next destination. If you experience travel sickness we recommend you consider medication to help ease the discomfort.


    SECURITY WHILE TRAVELLING:

    Occasionally you may experience armed security and convoys between select towns or regions. Convoys are used to ensure all travellers are transported safely and, in many cases, tourists are only allowed to travel in scheduled convoys of buses and jeeps. On rare occasions you may have an armed guard in your vehicle. We want to warn you so you are not alarmed. This is a practice designed to keep tourists safe, although at time it can appear a little overkill.

    INTERNAL FLIGHT:
    Please note this flight is included on your trip. The baggage allowance is 17kgs for checked bags.

  • Emergency contact

    GENERAL ISSUES ON YOUR TRIP
    While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

    We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.

    You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete.

    In case of a genuine crisis or emergency, you can reach our local operator on the number below:


    Intrepid's Local Operator: +98 933 740 8333

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The Advantages of Bookmundi
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  • Secure Online Payment and Financial Guarantee Each and every trip is required to go through Bookmundi's secure payment platform, powered by Stripe and supported by SSL. All payments are therefore carried out in secure manners. We are furthermore member of the Danish Travel Fund which gives you a 100% financial guarantee for any money you pay on Bookmundi, even if we went bankrupt (which we we will not!).
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  • Country: {{!!tripPlannerKeysNames[myRequest.id].geoLocation?tripPlannerKeysNames[myRequest.id].geoLocation:myRequest.country}}
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  • Group Size: {{myRequest.no_of_adults > 0 && myRequest.no_of_children > 0?',':''}} {{myRequest.group_type=='Single'?'1 Person':myRequest.group_type=='Couple'?'2 People':''}}
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  • Tour Type: {{myRequest.tourtype | tourtypefullName}}
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  • Trip Details: ... Read More Read Less
How our Travel Expert Service Works
  • 1 We connect you with a hand-picked and qualified travel expert who can match your trip requirements. The advantage of working directly through a travel expert is that you get the best and unfiltered advice from the very beginning.
  • 2 The travel expert will help you with creating and customising a trip for you. If you have any questions or concerns relating to the trip, the travel expert will also be able to help you with those.
  • 3 When you feel that your trip is exactly per your wish, you'll be able to book the entire trip here on Bookmundi.
The Advantages of Bookmundi
  • Selected Local Travel Experts All our local travel experts have been chosen based on rigorous selection criteria. In fact, we reject 98 out of 100 local travel agencies, and thereby giving you access to the top 1-2% local travel experts.
  • Secure Online Payment and Financial Guarantee Each and every trip is required to go through Bookmundi's secure payment platform, powered by Stripe and supported by SSL. All payments are therefore carried out in secure manners. We are furthermore member of the Danish Travel Fund which gives you a 100% financial guarantee for any money you pay on Bookmundi, even if we went bankrupt (which we we will not!).
  • Trip Replacement or 100% Reimbursement Bookmundi has hand-picked your local travel expert. Our role, as your trusted third party, is therefore to make sure that your entire experience runs as seamless and secure as possible. We guarantee to you that in the unlikely event where a local travel expert cancels your trip after your deposit or full payment has been made, we commit to replacing these services with another equally qualified agency so that your trip can go ahead as planned, or failing to replace it, we will give you a 100% reimbursement.
New customised trip enquiry by {{getFirstName(activeuser)}}:
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