Our Iran holidays
As our Iran holidays amply demonstrate, what we see in the news completely ignores the warmth of the welcome travellers get here, an antidote the perception that this beguiling country should be off-limits to Westerners. Our small group and tailor made holidays in Iran explore its astonishing cultural heritage, via Tehran, Yazd, Shiraz and Persepolis, tracing the history of the Silk Road, and immersing you into the flavours of its cuisine. Travel overland, or even by luxury train, between peaceful tea gardens, ancient mosques decorated with magnificent mosaics and ruined palaces, led by local guides thrilled to show you Iran behind the headlines.
Our top Iran holidays
From €9607 days ex flights
Join us to discover Iran's rich culture and history
Small group2023: 5 Feb, 11 Mar, 21 Apr, 6 May, 9 Jun, 1 Jul, 6 Aug, 2 Sep, 6 Oct, 5 Nov, 30 Dec
From €169015 days ex flights
Join us, we show you the secrets of this fascinating country
Small group2023: 4 Feb, 3 Mar, 16 Apr, 1 May, 20 May, 31 Aug, 7 Oct, 4 Nov, 21 Dec
From £2905 to £324013 days ex flights
Discover Ancient Persia on a 13-day Premium round-trip
Small group2023: 19 Aug, 2 Sep, 16 Sep, 23 Sep, 7 Oct, 14 Oct, 21 Oct, 28 Oct, 4 Nov, 2024: 11 May, 17 Aug, 31 Aug, 7 Sep, 14 Sep, 21 Sep, 5 Oct, 12 Oct, 19 Oct, 26 Oct, 2 Nov
From £7355 to £772527 days ex flights
Overland from the Arabian Peninsula to the dramatic Caucasus
Small group2023: 6 Oct, 2024: 19 Apr, 4 Oct
From AU $415012 days ex flights
Cycle Across Iran- Tehran to Shiraz
Small group2023: 15 Apr, 23 Sep
About our Iran holidays
History & culture in Iran
Iran is one of the oldest continuously inhabited places in the world. The vast Persian Empire may be no more, overthrown in the Iranian Revolution of 1979, but Iran continues to exert powerful influence in the region, often viewed malignly by Western powers. Yet Iran is not its government, and everywhere you go you will encounter the warmest of welcomes from open-minded people eager to show you the truth of life in Iran beyond the headlines. Walking and cycling holidays tend to be the best way to join the cultural dots.
Where to go on holiday in Iran
If your time in Iran is limited then there are three key cities to explore. Most itineraries will follow a route linking the secular, liberal capital Tehran with Esfahan to the south, adding in Shiraz (from where the ruins of Persepolis are the obvious next step). Esfahan is the most beautiful city in Iran, teeming with small workshops turning out ceramics, woodwork and carpets. Shiraz, once the capital, may not have produced any wine since the Iranian Revolution in 1979, but its exquisite gardens, poets’ tombs and intricate Islamic architecture are just as intoxicating.
Ancient civilizations in Iran
Iran’s history is measured not in centuries but in millennia. Once the centre of the vast Persian Empire, it was also a key link in the ancient trade routes that made up the Silk Road. Ancient civilizations and cultures spread their art, architecture and ideas, and their presence can still be felt today, with key sites forming parts of modern cities, rather than being fenced off or buried beneath the sands of time. Some of the most magnificent mosques in the Islamic world are found in Iran, including the Pink Mosque of Shiraz and Shah Mosque of Esfahan.
Responsible tourism in Iran
Independent travel in Iran is difficult, as all visitors require a guide and visa restrictions are complex. Yet visiting Iran is in itself an act of responsible tourism – choosing to discover the country, its people and culture for yourself rather than simply accepting the false image commonly accepted in the West. Responsible holiday companies will ensure that you follow the rules regarding dress and behaviour, and can provide opportunities to meet local people. It is in these instances – whether bumping into a group of students in a park or being invited to a family home for mint tea – that you will meet the real Iran.
Types of tours & holidays in Iran
From women only tours to foodie-focused itineraries showcasing the finest Iranian cuisine, small group tours in Iran are for you if you like to go with the flow in the company of like-minded travellers. The logistics, guide and visas are still taken care of for you on tailor made holidays, but you'll have more flexibility with your itinerary and travel dates. You’ll be accompanied by guides at all times, and the best of them can make cultural holidays in Iran something to really treasure – illuminating ancient civilizations, introducing you to locals, and ensuring that you pay the best price for your rugs in the bazaars.
If you'd like to chat about Iran or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help.