Aside from all the historical and architectural masterpieces, Iran has many beautiful villages that are worth visiting. They are a great opportunity to experience rural life in Iran, eat traditional food and support the economy of the locals.
Whether you are a photographer who seeks spectacular landscapes to photograph, or someone who just wants to relax for a few days with a mesmerizing view, these villages are some of the best places you could visit in Iran:
Olasbelangah is a mountainous village near Masal, in the north of Iran. To reach this beautiful region, you will have to pass the twisted roads among the foggy forests of Gilan. In the altitude of around 1500 meters you will see the stunning village of Olasbelangah, surrounded with green hills and tiny cottages. You can spend the night in one of the many wooden cottages available and wake up to the sound of farm animals being grazed by the villagers.
If you want to escape the scorching hot summer heat in Iran, visiting Filband is one of the greatest choices. This village is located in the altitude of 2300 meters, in Mazandaran province, north of Tehran. Filband is basically the summer residence (Yaylak) of Diva Molkshah, a nearby village. Filband has a cool alpine weather during summer. However due to its heavy snowing, it would get inaccessible in winter.
Kandovan is one of the very few cliff villages in the world. This attractive village is located on the foothills of Mount Sahand in the northwest of Iran. Sahand is a volcanic mountain and its lavas have made rocky structures during time. These cliffs are now the home of the villagers – something like Turkey’s Capadoccia but less crowded and more authentic. One of the reasons for the nomenclature of this village is the resemblance between its rocky structures and beehives. Kandovan is the plural form of Kandoo which means beehive in Persian. Honey is also one of the main souvenirs of Kandovan. You can stay in one of these beehive-like houses and there’s also a five-star hotel built into the cliffs.
Abyaneh is a village in central Iran, in Esfahan province. It is said that Abyaneh is one of the oldest residences in the central desert of Iran. Abyaneh is a staircase-like village and it is located on the foothills of Karkas Mountain. The lack of space has also obliged the villagers to build their barns outside the village and far away from their houses. The buildings of Abyaneh are red in color. This is because of the red soil in a nearby mine which has been used for the buildings. The red staircase-like view of Abyaneh, alongside its desert climate has made this village one of the most popular villages of Iran.
Alamout is a fascinating region in Qazvin province. It has both historical sites mostly from the Isma’ilism, as well as natural wonders. One of the great attractions of Alamout region is the Ovan Lake, a charming lake surrounded by the Mountains of Alborz. There are many residences where tourists can stay but camping is also popular around the lake.
#6 Chabahar Darak village
In the most southeast province of Iran, in the outskirts of Chabahar, a breathtaking village of Darak is located. In this area the desert meets the Oman Sea and results in a wonderful landscape. The confluence of desert and sea is a rare happening and there are only a few places on earth that you can witness this beautiful merge. The sandy beach of Darak is a great place to sit and watch the sunrise and sunset.
Palangan is another stair-like village in Iran. This village is located in western parts of Iran, in Kurdistan province. Palangan has a great history as it was built around one thousand years ago and it had been the capital of Ardalan Kurdish monarchy for about four hundred years. Aside from the natural and architectural attractions, you can enjoy many historical and traditional ceremonies that take place in Palangan. Nowrouz (Persian New Year) for instance is celebrated wildly in the village, with traditional Kurdish songs and costumes.
Meymand is a rocky village in Kerman and one of the oldest villages in Iran. The houses of Meymand are dug inside the mountains. What makes this village special is that unlike other cliff villages in the world, Meymand is still the home of the natives. You can see the routines of a desert villager’s daily life in Meymand. For example how they water their fields with the help of Qanat and seasonal rivers or how they use available materials such as wood or wool to make handicrafts.
#9 Hajij village
Hajij is another stair-like village in in Kermanshah province. Aside from its architecture, Hajij is surrounded by many natural attraction. The beautiful mountains of Shahoo, the river of Sirvan and its source in the mountain, all make this village worth visiting. The best time to visit Hajij is in spring and summer. In winter it gets very cold and snowy, so if you are not used to climbing in difficult conditions, try to rearrange your plans to visit Hajij in summer.
If you are staying in Tehran and do not want to travel a long distance, then visiting a nearby village would be a great idea for a change. Baraghan is a village near Tehran with a terrific view and fresh air. You can visit Baraghan anytime of the year, although it gets really beautiful during autumn when the leaves start to change color and turn into red and orange.