Iran is situated in the Middle East and shares its borders with Pakistan, Iraq, Turkey, Turkmenistan, while its shores lie on the Caspian Sea and the Gulf of Oman. Tehran, the capital is a bustling, modern city that also offers well-preserved old buildings and monuments. Persian and other Persian dialects as well as Turkic and Kurdish dialects are spoken throughout the country.

The landscape in Iran is largely barren desert with mountainous regions in the west. Iraq has a history rich in culture, being one of the first countries to be occupied by the Islamic armies in the 7th century. The country boasts magnificent antique sights belonging to the Persian empire, notably in Tabriz with its restored blue mosque built in 1465 and the splendid square in Esfahan, once the capital of Persia, this is also a UNESCO World Heritage monument. Throughout the city there are mosques, palaces, bridges, bazaars and spectacular gardens reminiscent of the Persian Empire.

The salt lake town of Uromieh is also worth a visit as are Ardabil, Astara, Bandar-e Anzali and Rasht. Shiraz the capital of the Fars Province boasts beautiful ninth-century antiquities, while Persepolis is famous for its Ceremonial Seat of Darius, also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

The climate is hot in the summer and harsh in the winter with very little rainfall. It is also a seismic zone.

  • 10

    Arg-e Bam

    The Arg-e Bam was the largest adobe building in the world, located in Bam, a city in Kerman Province of southeastern Iran. The origin of this enormous citadel on the Silk Road can be traced back to the Achaemenid Empire (sixth to fourth centuries BC) and even beyond.

  • 10


    Bam is a city in and the capital of Bam County, Kerman Province, Iran.

  • 7

    Behistun Inscription

    The Behistun Inscription is a multilingual inscription and large rock relief on a cliff at Mount Behistun in the Kermanshah Province of Iran, near the city of Kermanshah in western Iran.

  • 6


    Bishapur was an ancient city in Iran on the ancient road between Persis and Elam. The road linked the Sassanid capitals Estakhr and Ctesiphon. It is located south of modern Faliyan in the Kazerun County of Pars Province, Iran.

  • 6

    Chogha Zanbil

    Chogha Zanbil is an ancient Elamite complex in the Khuzestan province of Iran. It is one of the few existent ziggurats outside of Mesopotamia.

  • 5

    Dome of Soltaniyeh

    The central magnet of Soltaniyeh's several ruins is the Mausoleum of Il-khan Oljeitu also known as Muhammad Khodabandeh, traditionally known as the Dome of Soltaniyeh in Soltaniyeh city, Zanjan Province.

  • 10

    Golestan Palace

    The Golestan Palace, literally the Roseland Palace, is the former royal Qajar complex in Iran's capital city, Tehran.

  • 10

    Hall of a Hundred Columns, Persepolis

    This second largest palace of Persepolis is a magnificent structure located to the north of the Treasury and to the east of the Apadana courtyard.

  • 10

    Imam Square

    Naqsh-e Jahan Square, known as Imam Square, formerly known as Shah Square, is a square situated at the center of Isfahan city, Iran. Constructed between 1598 and 1629, it is now an important historical site, and one of UNESCO's World Heritage Sites.

  • 10

    Jameh Mosque of Isfahan

    Jameh Mosque of Isfahan is the grand, congregational mosque of Isfahan city, within Isfahan Province, Iran. The mosque is the result of continual construction, reconstruction, additions and renovations on the site from around 771 to the end of the 20th century.

  • 7

    Meymand, Kerman

    Meymand is a village in Meymand Rural District, in the Central District of Shahr-e Babak County, Kerman Province, Iran. Meymand is believed to be a primary human residence in the Iranian Plateau, dating back to 12,000 years ago.

  • 10


    Pasargadae was the capital of the Achaemenid Empire under Cyrus the Great who had issued its construction (559–530 BC), it was also the location of his tomb. It was a city in ancient Persia, located near the city of Shiraz, and is today an archaeological site and one of Iran's UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

  • 10


    Persepolis, also known as Takht-e-Jamshid, was the ceremonial capital of the Achaemenid Empire (ca. 550–330 BC).

  • 10

    Shah Mosque

    The Shah Mosque, also known as Imam Mosque, renamed after the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran, and Jaame' Abbasi Mosque, is a mosque in Isfahan, Iran, standing in south side of Naghsh-e Jahan Square. Built during the Safavid period, ordered by the first Shah Abbas of Persia.

  • 6

    Shahr-e Sukhteh

    Shahr-e Sukhteh is an archaeological site of a sizable Bronze Age urban settlement, associated with the Jiroft culture. It is located in Sistan and Baluchistan Province, the southeastern part of Iran, on the bank of the Helmand River, near the Zahedan-Zabol road.

  • 10


    Shush is a city in and the capital of Shush County, Khuzestan Province, Iran. At the 2006 census, its population was 53,897, in 10,689 families. Shush is located beside ancient Susa.

  • 10


    Soltaniyeh is the capital city of Soltaniyeh District of Abhar County, Zanjan Province, Azerbaijan, northwestern Iran.

  • 7

    Takht-e Soleyman

    Takht-e Soleyman, also known as Azar Goshnasp, is an archaeological site in West Azarbaijan, Iran. It lies midway between Urmia and Hamadan, very near the present-day town of Takab, and 400 km west of Tehran.

  • 8

    Taq Bostan

    Taq Bostan is a site with a series of large rock reliefs from the era of Sassanid Empire of Persia, the Iranian dynasty which ruled western Asia from 226 to 650 AD.