June 2020

BBC News

Ancient Persians were inspiration for mail delivery services

The Achaemenid Persians (approx. 550-330 BCE) were able to deliver, through the use of a system of couriers on horseback (known as pirradaziš in Old Persian), messages from one end of the massive Persian Empire to the other in a matter of days. According to scholars, a message could be sent from Susa, the administrative capital of the empire in western Iran, to Sardis, in what is now western Turkey, in between seven and nine days, following the Royal Road, a sort of highway connecting the two cities.


A Travel Writer Finds Surprise and Awe in Iran

Reading and writing about Iran could not prepare Pico Iyer for the warm, modern society that greeted him. “At every turn I was reminded why I’d been warned, as an American, to be ready for more sophistication than I’d know what to do with. When friends of friends swept me off to lunch at a cutting-edge arts complex, all the talk was of Daniel Day-Lewis and Antigone.”

Radio Farda

Iran bans using Kurdistan’s ‘human mules’ as tourist attraction

Angry reactions to a travel agency advertising the perilous mountain paths used by “human mules”, has caused the government to ban tourism to the region. The controversy over the tours started a few days ago when social media users shared an image of a travel agency’s poster in Uraman, Kurdistan Province, in which the smuggling paths used by the porters were advertised as “tourist attractions”.

Tehran Times

Reopening travel to Iran set for mid-summer – government official

TEHRAN – Iran’s tourism ministry has forecast that the country will start hosting foreign travelers as of mid-summer with the priority given to travelers from the neighboring countries.

May 2020

Tehran Times

Easing lockdown, Iran reopens UNESCO-registered Persepolis, other tourist destinations

TEHRAN – Iran has recently reopened the UNESCO-registered Persepolis, which was once the ceremonial capital of the mighty Achaemenid Empire, as well as many other tourist destinations to sightseers and history buffs, marking another phase in the easing of one of the world’s restrictions over the coronavirus outbreak.


Iran tourism reels from coronavirus impact

Dw story covid
The coronavirus crisis has dealt a blow to the struggling tourism industry in Iran. Since the US canceled the international nuclear treaty and imposed new sanctions, there have been fewer international tourists.

April 2020

Tehran Times

Iranian windmills closer to UNESCO status

Iranian windmills
Iran is closer to registering the ancient windmills in Razavi Khorasan province on the UNESCO World Heritage list as the country has recently completed some of the required documentation.

Iran Front Page

Corona notwithstanding, German Doctor Visits Ancient Persian Route on Horseback

Orlika’s trip to Iran amid the global concerns about the coronavirus pandemic has even surprised her host.

Tehran Times

Post-coronavirus: Iran formulating action plan to return tourism to normal

Iran’s tourism has announced it is developing an action plan to get the country’s travel back on track after the threat of novel coronavirus is over. Like many other countries, Iran’s travel industry has suffered huge losses in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Atlantic Council

COVID-19: The last nail in the coffin of Iran’s tourism industry?

Now, that Iran’s government has taken actions to temporarily bring the country’s domestic tourism industry to a halt, there are concerns about when or whether this sector can recover. Theoretically, a government bailout could keep the industry alive, but the government is, apparently, not planning on giving the tourism sector a boost because they are not in a fiscal position to save such industries. Consequently, many companies will go into the red assuming they do not completely collapse. The most optimistic assessment would conclude that, because of Iran’s natural beauty, diverse archeological sites, rich culture rooted in ancient history, and the Iranian people’s reputation as hospitable hosts, the crisis in the country’s tourism sector will be temporary.


Behind the Scenes of the VICE Guide to Iran

Back in November 2019, a documentary crew of four, headed by VICE founder Suroosh Alvi, went to Iran. We were lucky enough to have no particular brief, so we took the opportunity to travel the length of the country at what we thought was a time of upheaval but what turned out to be the most peaceful that country has been ever since.

February 2020

Independent (UK)

Iran and Uzbekistan, World’s 3rd and 4th fastest growing tourist destinations in 2019

The Registan was the heart of the ancient city of Samarkand of the Timurid Empire, now in Uzbekistan.
The Registan was the heart of the ancient city of Samarkand of the Timurid Empire, now in Uzbekistan.

Top of the pack was Myanmar, which saw a 40.2 per cent per cent increase in visitors, followed by Puerto Rico (31.2 per cent) and Iran (27.9 per cent), although Iran is likely to suffer a drop in 2020 given the current political climate.

January 2020

Nikkei Asian Review

Hotels empty as tourists shun Iran over geopolitical tensions

A man takes a boat on a lake in a tourism area of Iran's Kurdistan Province.

Iran’s tourism industry hit by protests, plane shootdown and threat of war with US. All U.S. and Canadian travelers canceled trips to Iran after the downing of the jet, Hormatollah Rafiei, head of the Association of Air Transport and Tourist Agencies of Iran, was quoted as saying by Iran’s Labour News Agency. He added that 80% of bookings from Australia and 60% of those from Europe and Asia had been called off.



What You Should Know About Travel in Iran—and the Rest of the Middle East—Right Now

Jameh Mosque in Isfahan, iRAN

As tensions escalate after the assassination of Iran’s top general, we turned to travel experts for advice on visiting the Middle East right now. In short, don’t cancel anything just yet.

Los Angeles Times

What treasures might be lost in Iran if war happens?

Iran in 1998

I can tell you what I’ve been thinking about: two strange, wonderful weeks in 1998, when I got to explore that country, camera in hand, during a brief upswing in Iranian-American relations.

Along with countless lives, the global treasures I saw then are what’s at stake now.