Single UNESCO dossier compiled for Masouleh, Hyrcanian Forest

December 24, 2018

TEHRAN – Following sustained efforts to earn UNESCO tags for Masouleh and Hyrcanian Forest, Iran tourism chief on Sunday said they are to be assessed as a single property.

“Masouleh will be presented at the World Heritage summit in the context of the Hyrcanian Forests next July and it is hoped that the file will be registered in the World Heritage list,” IRNA quoted Ali-Asghar Mounesan as saying.

Ancient Masouleh is one of the most famous villages in Iran– and hence one of its most touristic ones. It features the earth-colored houses that are stacked photogenically on top of one another like giant Lego blocks, clinging to a mountainside so steep that the roof of one house forms the pathway for the next.

In October, a delegation of international experts visited four provinces of Golestan, Mazandaran, Semnan and Gilan in a span of nine days in order to weigh Hyrcanian Forest (also known as Caspian Forest).

The forest covers the northern slope of the Alborz Mountain at the southern edge of the Caspian Sea and it contains very rich ecosystems due to the particular orographic and climatic situation (precipitation rich, warm-temperate, high moisture from the Caspian Sea and damming effect of the Alborz Mountain range).

The nomination of the Hyrcanian Forests as a UNESCO World Heritage site had been under attention since 2001 prior to become the recent focus and one of the priorities of the Iranian government in 2017.


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