Facts about Iran
Facts about Iran
Things You Should Know About Iran and Its People
Iranians Are Extremely Hospitable
You can see it everywhere – from shy smiles, to curious questions about where you’re from, Iranians are welcoming to visitors and are generally happy to see travellers coming. In traditional hotels and houses, they’ll treat you like family and you might even be invited for a homemade meal, just from a person on the street! No wonder Couchsurfing is so popular there. I haven’t tried Couchsurfing in Iran myself, but have heard the only potential ‘threat’ is that a host might be too friendly and might want to accompany you everywhere. What a threat, right?
Iranians Care About Their Country’s Image Abroad
Persia has a long history and Iranians carry a lot of national pride in them. Some people you’ll meet might be critical to certain past or present representatives, but the overall feel you’ll get is that they are proud to be Iranian. Most Iranians are hopeful that you as a traveler to Iran will then tell everyone how great it’s been there! You are often asked about what you thought of Iran.
Women Have a Certain Level Of Freedom
Iranian women’s freedom is obviously far from what we’re used to in Europe, but compared to other countries in the region women have relatively more rights. As opposed to e.g. Saudi Arabia, women are allowed to drive. Many households are ruled by women. Mothers have the upper hand at home while outside, it’s the men. This dynamic seems to work quite well for Iran.
Iran Is Developed and Advanced
The infrastructure in Iran runs smoothly and people are well educated. Of course the people you’ll speak to will be mostly those with a good level of English, but that’s quite a big part of the young educated population. It’s a fact that it takes 10 years to gain a PhD in Iran! So those who study are very serious about it.
Iranians Are So Diverse – You Can Even Meet Green-Eyed People!
There are many ethnic groups living in Iran. You can see representatives of nomadic tribes and of the neighboring countries who have fully assimilated and become Iranians. You’ll be amazed by the big bright blue or green eyes of many!
Iran Is A Safe Travel Destination
No matter what your nationality or religion, you’ll be perfectly fine. Don’t cause conflicts and follow the local rules and you have nothing to worry about.
It’s Cheap To Travel Around Iran
Iran is really cheap for us visitors from the Western world. Even with the high inflation and outdated prices in guidebooks (Lonely Planet should issue a new edition in 2016, let’s see..), prices are still relatively low.
Iran Is The No. 1 Nation For Picnics
I’ve never seen anything like it! Any patch of grass, or actually even a concrete sidewalk, is an ideal picnic spot! People roll out a Persian carpet, get out flasks with tea and some snacks and their favorite pastime is on! Some even bring gas stoves and actually cook their meals. If you’re in Esfahan, walk around the Imam Square in late afternoon, you’ll see many locals sitting down for a picnic with family or friends. If you’re lucky, you might even be invited to one.
Iran Is Not Touristy
Among the friendly people who’ll approach you, there might be an occasional vendor, but even if you’re taken into a carpet shop for a cup of tea, you’re in no way obliged to buy anything and you can easily get out of there. The lack of ‘pushiness’ from street vendors is refreshing! But it might not last forever. Iran is becoming increasingly more popular among travellers, so go visit while it’s still unspoiled by mass tourism!