Curious about travelling to Iran? I’ve written this 2-week cultural Iran roadtrip itinerary to show you what’s possible to see as an independent traveller, how to prepare for your trip and also some practical points to take notice of! Iran still seems to be more of an offbeat place to travel for the adventurous ones, but it doesn’t have to be!
I hope this inspires you to go!
I’m not gonna lie, I was a little bit more intimidated to come to a country where visa requirements are tighter, where the dress code is stricter and where you need to plan your budget in advance.
However, since the day I arrived, I’ve been greeted by nothing but the friendliest, warmest Iranians who showed me their city, shared their culture and tea with me and made me feel so welcome.
Iran has one of the richest and oldest art heritages and encompasses amazing untouched natural places reaching from waterfalls, hot springs, rain forests, tropical beaches and magical deserts but also boasts modern and culturally rich cities that will surely enchant you just much as they did me!
However, the best thing about Iran might not be the mosques and sights, but its people.
General Tips for your Cultural Two-Week Iran Roadtrip Itinerary
Visa – Is it Hard to Travel to Iran?
In order to obtain a tourist visa for Iran, you can apply at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs yourself or you opt for an agency if you want to have a stress-free experience. I used TAP Persia and was super happy with the service. The cost is around 20 Euros and they help with your Iran itinerary and are available for any questions throughout your stay.
You will receive a code via email, pay the visa fee and pick up your visa once you arrived in Iran.
Apply for your Iran Visa at least 8 working days ahead of time if you are from any country that isn’t the United States, Canada or the UK. Citizens from these countries should apply 2-3 months in advance and the process might look different.
I know that US citizens can only travel Iran as part of a tour, where a designated guide accompanies you from when you arrive at the airport to when you leave Iran.
Cost: 75 Euros or 82 Dollar
Credit Cards are blocked in Iran. Any foreign bank cards will not work in Iran because of the sanctions. It’s best to get enough cash in US Dollars, Pounds or Euros before you fly.
Apply for a Mah Card. This is the best thing that one could hope for – Mah Card is a travel prepaid card service designed for short-term visitors to Iran. With this one, you can pay nearly anywhere in Iran! You can either load money onto the car beforehand online or you meet with a representative once you are in Tehran and he loads the card for you. Once you finished you trip, you can apply for a refund of what you haven’t used. I cannot recommend this one enough, as you wouldn’t need to run around with a big stack of cash! (Not sponsored, but I truly loved it!)
What Do I Wear in Iran?
If you are a woman, remember to dress in clothes that cover your legs/upper arms before you board the plane and take a scarf already with you. You only need to put it on once you leave the plane though.
Check if your travel insurance covers Iran and see if you can include it in your current insurance. TAP Persia also offers Iran insurance for the duration of your stay! When you arrive at the airport, you will likely be asked if you have insurance.
Personally, I had problems with the registration of my passport at the airport sim card store, so I got my card from the hostel. The price for Irancell is around 7-8 Euros for 10 GB of data.
The Iranian Government blocked several social media and communications platforms such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, but also applications from the US.
As a side note, I travelled Iran as a remote worker, so for me, it was crucial to access all sites. Beforehand I signed up for a trial with ExpressVPN and it worked fantastically!
The internet in Iran is good for simple tasks. I had no issues with WiFi in places like Tehran, Kashan, or Isfahan – with the exception of Yazd and Shiraz where the quality in hotels/guesthouses was a bit more on and off.
Some other apps and sites I needed to use my VPN for: Mailchimp, Slack, PayPal, Booking.com, Adobe Creative Cloud, Instagram Reels
You can freely use without a VPN: WhatsApp, Google, Gmail
The current entry requirements in July 2022 were to show proof of booking of your first night in a hotel or guesthouse.
You can find many guesthouses, hostels or small hotels are on Hostelworld these days. As part of this Iran itinerary, I suggest you check the major site 1stQuest to book your accommodation. I found it easiest to check on their availability through WhatsApp or Instagram as none of the before-mentioned websites reliably show the hotels availability (its apparently rare for hotels to update this)
Is it Safe to Travel to Iran?
Travelling through Iran for two weeks as a solo female traveller has been nothing short of amazing. The ease of getting from one city to another, a feeling of safety no matter where you are (besides when crossing the road), the possibility to pay with a card wherever you go and the hotels having staff working 24/7 just added a cherry on top.
In comparison, travelling in Iran is safer than travelling in South America. With the exemption of crossing the street and driving in a car – I have felt incredibly safe in Iran. As in any country, general common sense should be applied regarding keeping an eye on your belongings etc.
One more thing to add for female solo travel – in all two weeks of my Iran itinerary I have not encountered any form of sexual harassment, catcalling or alike.
I’d say if you come here, have an open mind and trust that the people who approach you really are that curious to see you, happy to practice their English WITHOUT any ulterior motives. Iranians really are unique in their being, more charming and jokey than serious, more welcoming than judging.
General Info On Iran
Iran or Persia is not an Arab country but an Islamic state and Iranians speak Farsi. The word Iran actually comes from the Aryan
Iran used to have a Monarchy, in which the Shah was the ruler of the country. In around 1979 there happened the ‘Iran Revolution’ in which Ayatollah Khomeini took over and brought an Islamic approach to the country.
Women can own property, vote and work, although its still common that Iranian women stay at home once they are married and have kids.
Iran is the second largest state in the Middle East, being 17 times bigger than the United Kingdom and naturally rich in oil.
Map of all the sights you get to visit when on your Iran Two Week Itinerary:
Cultural Two-Week Roadtrip Iran Itinerary
Day 1 to 2 Tehran
Tehran is the capital of Iran with about 8.6 Million habitants. It’s a huge city with a developed metro network that covers the whole city. In the Nothern part, you find the wealthy residential areas with high-end restaurants and boutiques whereas the South tends to be more the historic part of the city.
From the airport, I recommend you take a taxi which probably will cost around 10 US Dollars/Euros. There is also a train or metro that goes into town. It’s not the fastest and you might need to change it a few times. However, it’s the cheapest option for a ticket price of 165.000 IRR.
If you have some extra time, I’d spend a good 3-4 days in the city to really find some hidden gems!
This must be Tehran’s most stunning place and a must on your Iran itinerary. The Golestan Palace is a 19th-century former royal residence and built in the Qajar dynasty. It’s Tehran’s oldest government building registered by the UNESCO Heritage List.
The Golestan Palace consists of 17 structures, including museums, halls and palaces, and a marble throne. For me, the outside facade was the most impressive feature and wandering through the garden provided some fantastic photo locations!
It combines traditional Persian architecture paired with the most stunning mirrorwork and Western influence.
General entry is 1.000.000 IRR (3 Euros)
There are around 12 halls to visit and each one has a separate entry ticket. If you were to buy all tickets, you would pay around 23 Dollars.
Grand Bazaar Market
If you start your trip in Tehran I recommend you visit the Grand Bazaar and nearby shopping centre. It is here where you can find anything from colourful headscarves to tunics, and trousers which you might need for your stay (I know I did). Here you can also find lots of tasty street food, juices and snacks!
Expect to pay around 1 Euro for a scarf and around 3-4 Euros for a tunica.
Former American Embassy
In 1979 a group of Iranian students stormed the embassy and held more than 50 Americans hostage for 444 days – since that day, the situation between the two countries has been difficult.
Nowadays it’s a museum which you can visit. From the outside, you can find different, ever-changing murals showing anti-US messages.
One of the nicest features of Tehran is the contrast between old and new, historical houses and modern architecture. The Tabi’at Bridge is a splendid structure that connects two parks and spans over lots of greenery. From there you got a fantastic view of Northern Tehran, its mountain range and of the Southern part – perfect for sunset!
Best place to stay in Tehran:
Tehran Heritage Hostel is a great option! The staff is super friendly, the rooms are bright and modern and breakfast is included!
Best place to eat and drink in Tehran:
Moslem Restaurant for great Persian food
Santo Coffee for some real Iranian coffee shop vibe
Getting from Tehran to Kashan
The bus drive is around 4.5 hours and costs 650.000 IRR (2 Euros). Buses depart from Tehran’s southern bus terminal.
Day 3 Tehran to Kashan
Kashan quickly turned into one of my favorite places of Iran and definitely deserves a spot in every two-week itinerary to Iran! This oasis desert town in the province of Isfahan is a calm, small town that lets you breathe after some busy days in Tehran. The little lanes of the old town which are made of mud clay are incredibly quiet during the day, and together (or maybe because of it), it gives the city a magical feeling. I just loved it there!
The weather in Kashan is way hotter than in Tehran, so most shops tend to close between 1 to 5 pm, including the Bazaar.
So in the evening, pay a visit to the authentic Grand Bazaar and experience its liveliness once the sun goes down. Most Iranians flock to public spaces once the temperatures come down.
House of Lucie
The newest cultural addition to Kashan is a branch by one of New York City’s largest photography exhibition venues called House of Lucie. Settled in a renovated Qajar-era house – this gallery is nothing short of beautiful. It features more than 300 photographs from honoured artists
Entry is free.
Day 4 Kashan
A few of the main ones include Borujerdiha Historical House, The Tabatabai House, The Abbāsi House and Manouchehri Traditional House.
Borujerdi house was nominated as the most beautiful historical house in Asia by UNESCO a few years ago. There’s also a love story behind it: when a man fell in love with the daughter of a wealthy family, he appointed a famous architect to construct this house to impress her, with success!
Tabatabaee Historical House is another example of how luxurious life looked like back then. A successful carpet merchant ordered the mansion to be built for his wife. One of the striking features is this 5-door room with colourful windows
The price per house is roughly 500.000 IRR (2 Euros) and despite what other blogs suggest, there is no more combi ticket that allows you to visit multiple houses. Each house has its own price.
Have a stroll through the nearby old town and visit the few tourist shops. One famous feature of Kashan is its rosewater production. In the centre you can see the process of how they make it and you can visit a few shops and try it yourself. Iranians put rosewater in almost everything, from their tea to the ice cream. This one is so unique to try when in Iran and definitely should have a place in your Iran itinerary.
There is also a market for infused spice waters like cinnamon water or basil water.
Sultan Amir Ahmad Bathhouse
The Sultan Amir Ahmad Bathhouse is an authentic 16th-century bathhouse or hammam with some of the most beautiful interiors. It gives a fantastic insight into the importance of bath culture not only for cleaning purposes but also for social life.
Don’t forget to have a look to the roof for the cute bath
Entry: 500.000 IRR
In the afternoon, check out the UNESCO site of Fin Garden. The historical Persian garden is a bit outside of the city centre but its architecture is outstanding, making it one of Kashan’s highlights. Crazy to think there is so much greenery and water in the middle of the desert!
The garden got completed in 1950, making it one of Iran’s oldest extant gardens. It so deserves a visit on your two week Iran itinerary.
Entry: 1.000.000 IRR
Best place to stay in Kashan
Sana Historical House – As the name suggests, this is a renovated historical house – when if not here are you able to experience sleeping in a Persian historical house? I found this to be the best choice as its centrally located, offers breakfast as part of the rooms and starts with prices from 10 Euros for a single room.
Best places to eat and drink in Kashan:
Sangpoloy Café for coffee or a drink in the evening
Mozzafari Traditional Restaurant
Abbasi Traditional Restaurant
Day 5 Kashan – Abyaneh – Isfahan
Kashan is the perfect place for adventures to the desert (with an overnight stay in a camp) and half-day trips to Abyaneh.
Visit Abyaneh, a traditional Iranian Village
Abyaneh is a 2,500 years old traditional village around 80km from Kashan. It sits at a higher altitude and people from Kashan frequently visit to escape the heat and picnic in the gardens. The village is mostly famous for its ochre mudbrick houses and red soil – also called the Red Village. In here, the villagers keep the traditions, costumes and cultures alive till today.
One big feature is the women who are to this day wear a white hijab with embroidered red flowers and colourful dresses. Have a wander around, drink some chai and soak in this trip to the past! It’s definitely a must for every two-week Iran itinerary!
There is also the option to take private taxi from Kashan via Abyaneh to Isfahan. This option costs around 35-40 Euros and takes the whole day but allows you to tick one of Iran’s oldest villages off the list.
Getting from Kashan to Isfahan
From Kashan there are hourly buses to Isfahan which leave from the only bus terminal. The drive is around 2.5-3 hours and costs 500.000 IRR. You can buy your ticket in the bus with the driver – but remember to bring cash!
Note: there are no buses from Kashan to Yazd! You can try to go to Fin Toll Station and wait for a bus that goes Tehran – Yazd.
Day 6 to 9 Isfahan
Isfahan is Iran’s third biggest city with a population of 2 million people. It’s one of Iran’s top tourist destinations as it hosts sights such as Shah Mosque, Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque, and Vank Cathedral.
Shah Mosque or Great Abbasi Mosque was built during the Safavid dynasty and is regarded as one of the Persian masterpieces of architecture. Standing below the grand design just leaves you speechless!
To get an undisturbed shot of Shah Mosque I recommend going around 7 am.
The mosque itself opens its doors to visitors from 9 am. The mosque was built around 400 years ago and took 2o years to complete. The architecture is just outstanding, you can visit the tile workshop in which they explain the restoration process and even take part in ‘Friendly Islamic Talks’ within the former Madrassa.
Entry: 1.000.000 IRR
Chehel Sotoon Palace
Chehel Sotoon Palace is a Persian pavilion in garden that Shah Abbas II used for entertainment and receptions. The palace contains many frescos and paintings, depicting various battle scenes.
Azadegan Tea House
This place is more than just a tea house but an absolute one-of-a-kind place. The whole interior is made up of original, authentic relics that usually would have ended up in a museum! From old photographs, to lamps to antiques I wouldn’t even know the name of, you find them there! They serve delicious Persian food at affordable prices, and around lunchtime its always buzzing.
The Grand Bazaar of Isfahan stood really out to me because of its size and how you can see the men and women working on their craft, not posed! Especially in the morning, you can see women painting ceramics near the Shah Mosque and it’s the prettiest thing! Strolling over this market is just one of the best things to really see the variety of beautiful artworks, rugs and carpets, spices and sweets there is to Iran!
Naqsh-e Jahan Square
Also known as Shah Square, Naqsh-e Jahan Square is the main tourist spot of Isfahan and UNESC O World Heritage site. In Farsi, it means “The Image of the World” and the place really is always buzzing. Especially around sunset, many Iranians flock there dor a picnic to enjoy the weather. Visit the square and go up to Aali Qapu Palace for some nice views of the square or head to Cafe Museum terrace to admire the view from above.
Mollabashi Historical House
It’s not just Kashan that is famous for Persian historical houses, Isfahan also has his fair share. The historical residence of Mollabashi has an outstanding room with mirrors, beautiful carpets and coloured windows that’s just picture perfect.
This place has a gorgeous courtyard! Sit down, admire the garden and have a coffee.
Entry is 1.500.000 IRR (6 Euros)
Moshirolmolk Historical House
Another beautiful example of Iranian architecture from the Safavid era. It got a fantastic interior with a lovely gallery and calligraphy exhibition.
Entry is 1.000.000 IRR (3 Euros)
Best places to eat and drink in Isfahan:
Emarat Namakdan Cafe as it sits in a museum like mansion that you can also visit. Amazing food, atmosphere and free to visit the museum!
Medoon Cafe for your coffee fix!
Jolfa restaurant in the Armenian quarter
Best place to stay in Isfahan
Heritage Hostel: They got fantastic breakfast, lovely new single and dorm rooms and a fantastic atmosphere. The staff speaks great English and is super helpful. I’d always stay there again! (not sponsored)
Getting from Isfahan to Yazd
It takes around 4-5 hours from Isfahan and the cost is around 900.000 for a VIP bus (3 Euros/US Dollars).
Day 8 Isfahan to Yazd
Yazd is another desert town in the name like the province of Yazd. The city is famous for its wind catchers, and towers that are designed to ‘catch’ the wind, direct it downwards and allow the building to be cool. In the old town of Yazd, you also find windy ochre-coloured mudbrick walls (similar to Kashan), some unique clothing shops and modern restaurants.
One thing to note about Iranian cities is that they tend to be very green, with most streets lined with trees. The centres of the cities are always clean, with no stray dogs around.
One of the things that stood out to me was the amount of rooftop cafes and restaurants. I highly recommend visiting Art Café. It’s a beautiful space with a boutique on the ground floor, and a fantastic rooftop terrace with a 360-degree view of the city. If you purchase one of the fresh pressed pomegranate juice you’ll also receive the handmade mug that it comes in. Try to get here for sunset!
Alexander’s Prison, is a legendary place named after Alexander The Great and built during his invasion of Iran. Later, this 15th-century building turned into a school and is now hosting a museum & handicraft shop. In reality, no one ever confirmed whether Alexander The Great actually constructed this building. Lovely area for a sunset stroll anyways – the light is amazing!
I found the Grand Bazaar to be a special one, with unique leather handbag designs, concept-store-like vibes and trendy coffee shops that I would have expected from Tehran.
Sadly I was short on time, but a few great sights are outside of town. Some tours leave Yazd for places such as Meybod, Chak Chak-Kharanaq and different Fire Temple. Most of the guesthouses will help you organize a tour on site. Definitely plan in some more time for your two week Iran itinerary!
Jameh Mosque of Yazd
The Jameh Mosque of Yazd dates back to the Sassanid era and sits on the site of a Sassanid Fire Temple. It’s another beautiful architectural masterpiece, with spectacular decorations and tile work.
Entry: free to visit!
Best places to eat and drink in Yazd:
Yazd Art House for a drink and rooftop vibes
Fooka Restaurant for traditional Persian food
Papasi Cafe – new coffee shop that got some boho Bali vibes and great coffee!
Best place to stay in Yazd:
Friendly Hotel: A decent place with a gorgeous courtyard right in the center of the city. Private rooms start from 10 Euros, including breakfast.
Day 9 Yazd – Shiraz
This one is more of a travel day although in the morning you still have time to wander the streets of Yazd and perhaps the Fire Temple or the Yazd Water Museum. I suggest taking the bus at midday to avoid the heat and get to Shiraz in the evening.
Shiraz is Iran’s third most populous city, surrounded by mountains and known for its poets, literature, handcraft and wine (historically the name refers to the wine that was produced in Shiraz).
There area a few buses across the day leaving from Yazd to Shiraz. The ticket price is 1.250.000 IRR (4Euros/US Dollars) for a 7-hour ride.
Day 10, 11, 12 Shiraz
Nasir al Mulk Mosque – Pink Mosque
This one is an absolute must and has to be part of your Iran itinerary – the Nasir al Mulk Mosque or also known as ‘Pink Mosque’. The Pink Mosque features stunningly with tiles decorated arches and stained glasses that reflect onto the carpet in the most amazing way. It’s like stepping into a Kaleidoscope.
It should be said that the best time of year to visit the mosque (and to catch this amazing reflection) is winter, in the morning. It all depends on how the sun hits the glass. However I would say it’s so worth visiting in any time of the year and you will always get some sort of reflection.
Try to visit early morning, ideally on a weekday!
Remember to wear or bring extra socks, to go inside. Also, the staff will give you a Chador to wear on top of your clothes.
Entry is 1.000.000 IRR (3-4 Euros/US Dollar)
At the time of visiting, it wasn’t allowed to take photos with a professional camera.
Shah Cheragh Shrine
The Shah Cheragh Shrine must be the most dazzling building I’ve ever seen. The mirror work on the walls and ceiling is just unbelievable and makes this one one of my Iran favourites!
The shrine is a holy pilgrimage site and hosts the tombs of two brothers from Imam Reza.
There is a different entry for women and men and inside, each gender has a respective area that they can visit. They give every tourist a guide to walk you through the complex, for free! He will accompany you and bring you a general part of the men side of the mosque. Already at this point, you can admire the stunning interior and he will give you some explanation.
I’m standing in front of this wall and he asks me what I see. I said, “a distorted version of myself”. He said, “yes indeed that is what was meant to be”. Humans are not supposed to be whole or ‘perfect’. We are only a part of the whole (like one of these mirror pieces), because being whole or complete is only reserved for God. That’s what separates us.
Entry: 1.000.000 IRR (3-4 Euros/US Dollar)
At the time of visit in July 2022 it was not allowed to take photos with a professional camera, your phone is ok though.
The Arg of Karim Khan
The striking Citadel of Karim is right in the city centre and hard to miss. This beautiful complex with its 12-metre-high walls was built during the Zand dynasty and used to have a few lives. At first, the citadel was one of the richest residences during the Qajar era and once it ended it became a jail.
Entry: 500.000 IRR
Eram Garden is not only inscribed in UNESCO it also inspired the famous Iranian poets Saadi and Hafez, and was mentioned in many of their poems. This one is must for any Iran itinerary, and many say the garden is most beautiful in spring when all the flowers blossom however it’s a beautiful one to visit at any time of year.
Tip: Visit the nearby Baba Bastani ice cream shop which serves Shiraz’s best ice cream. It’s only a 5min walk away.
Entry: 1.000.000 IRR (3-4 Euros/US Dollars).
If you have been to the Sultan Amir Ahmad Bathhouse in Kashan, you will be disappointed. The Vakil Bathhouse felt more like a tourist trap, although it got some nice ceiling work, and you can find wax figures. That part is somewhat interesting to get an insight into how a bathhouse used to look and what kind of people used to go there.
Vakil Mosque sits next to the Vakil Bazaar and is one of the last buildings from the Zand dynasty. Inside you find 48 integrated stone pillars in spirals that make it one spectacular place to visit! It also got this calm change from other places. It’s incredibly relaxing, and the arches are a dream for photographers.
You can freely take photos, play with compositions and admire the architecture.
Entry: 500.000 IRR (2-3 Euros/US Dollar)
Once you stay in the old city it’s hardly possible to overlook the Grand Baazar. Divided between North and South, it gives in insight into how the locals shop, buy and wear. What I noticed was that in Shiraz the fabrics of the Hijabs and clothing was way more sparkling and colourful than in the other cities.
Qavam Traditional House
Shiraz of course also has some stunning Traditional Houses that show how the rich merchants resided back in the day. Qavam house features a fantastic garden area, and hosts various rooms with different styles – mirrors, paintings, and tile work. On the ground floor, you find a painting school and interesting souvenirs as well as a boutique selling the prettiest scarves.
Entry: 500.000 IRR
Maharloo Lake or Pink Lake
Did you know there is a Pink Lake in Iran? I initially didn’t and when I heard of it, I knew I had to go. Maharloo Lake is a seasonal salt lake just 25km south of Shiraz.
Due to heavy evaporation, the lake’s bed is covered by salt, making it one of the most surreal places I’ve seen. The pink colour comes about because of a certain type of algae that you can only see in summer.
If you go for sunset you can witness how the colour changes from faint baby pink, to a dark Shiraz-like or burgundy reddish pink. The combination with the white salt makes this a fantastic sight. Also, the haziness of the heat, made this visit one of the most memorable sunsets in Iran.
No Iran itinerary would be complete without having visited the ancient site of Persepolis. The ceremonial capital dates back to 500 – 330 BC and was especially used for the Iranian Nowruz celebration, the Persian New Year. Persepolis, as part of UNESCO, is one of the world’s greatest archaeological sites.
The area of the ruins is massive and you can easily spend half a day wandering around. Besides some wonderful well-preserved rock reliefs, you can also find ancient texts, tombs and palaces.
In the end, it was Alexander The Great who destroyed Persepolis, leaving it in ruins that barely can represent the grandeur and meaning it used to hold.
Entry: 1.000.000 IRR
On-site are various guides available, and as I found this place interesting I chose to have one. The price for an English-speaking guide for 1 hour is 2.000.000 IRR (7 Euros/US Dollar).
A place that fascinated me even more so was the burial site of Naqsh-e Rustan. The often overlooked burial place of four Achaemenid kings is an eye-catching site that shouldn’t be missed in your Iran itinerary, especially when visiting the nearby site of Persepolis.
These colossal tombs are some 22 metres in high and were cut directly out of the mountain face, sitting far above the ground to prevent violation.
What an impressive reminder of the powerful Persian Empire that ruled between 500 BC and 330 BC.
Best places to eat and drink in Shiraz:
Joulep Bistro for dinner and great views of the little square
The coffee shop next to Joulep Bistro
Parhami Restaurant for great Persian dishes and atmosphere
Baba Bastani for the best ice cream in Shiraz. Prepare to queue!
Best place to stay in Shiraz
Alan Boutique Hotel: Fantastic newly renovated 400 years old Persian residence that’s now a boutique hotel. It serves fantastic breakfast, got lovely staff and a beautiful interior.
Cost of Travel for Your Two-Week Iran Itinerary
Is Travel to Iran cheap?
As your credit and bank cards don’t work in Iran you need to make a budget beforehand for your two-week Iran itinerary. So, bring enough cash with you into the country. This was a part that certainly made me a bit nervous.
The cost of living for an Iranian is comparatively high, and salaries are low. I’ve met lots of people who explained they have two jobs in order to pay the bills. However, for a traveller, prices in Iran are economical.
Single/double rooms in a modern hostel/or guesthouse cost between 10-20 Euros with ensuite bathroom and breakfast included. Dorm rooms can start from as low as 4 Euro for an 8-bed dorm. A room in a Persian boutique hotel can be as low as 40 Euros per night.
If you visit nice restaurants, prices start from around 3-7 Euros per meal. If you go for street food or kebab shops, the costs are even lower.
Bus or metro rides cost between 2-6 Euros roughly, depending on the distance.
Entrance tickets to museum and sights are around 2-4 Euros each with the exception of the Golestan Palace which can cost up to 20 Euros.
In total I spent around ~550 Euros/Dollar for two weeks!
If I remember one thing of this country, it’s the people and how friendly and curious they are. Considering their not always easy past, they have been nothing but welcoming, interested and excited to see (and to be able to speak to) a foreigner. Some want to practise their English, some even their French or German!
I’d suggest leaving some spare time within your two-week Iran itinerary to spend time with people wherever you might meet them!
For Iranians, it’s a thing called Ta’arof, that they have to offer you something of whatever they are eating, drinking or having – more often than not, it’s not to be taken seriously. It’s more out of politeness that they offer you a free taxi ride or a bite from their ice cream. You just insist, and pay as you normally would ? However with tea, in my experience, it was safe to assume they mean it and really want to share it with you.
Tea or chai is a big part of Iranian culture, something that most buses carry with them, that most men cook on a open stove and that is always offered. I had more than one bus ride where the driver brought me some chai – Merci!
If you want to see more of my travel photography, head over to my travel portfolio.
Pin this Iran itinerary for later!