Easing lockdown, Iran reopens UNESCO-registered Persepolis,  other tourist destinations

May 29, 2020 - 21:58

TEHRAN – Iran has recently reopened the UNESCO-registered Persepolis, which was once the ceremonial capital of the mighty Achaemenid Empire, as well as many other tourist destinations to sightseers and history buffs, marking another phase in the easing of one of the world’s restrictions over the coronavirus outbreak.  

The UNESCO-registered Dome of Soltanieh, the mausoleum of Shah-e Cheragh (“King of Light”), the mausoleum of Sadi, and the National Museum of Iran were amongst destinations being reopened over the past couple of days.

Persepolis lies just only an hour’s drive from north-east of Shiraz, itself a major tourist destination of the country. The ancient city boasts extensive structures, including monumental staircases, exquisite reliefs, and imposing gateways as one of the great wonders of the ancient world.

Earlier this month, Cultural Heritage, Tourism, and Handicrafts Minister Ali-Asghar Mounesan announced that open-air recreation centers and natural landscapes could be reopened in Iran under the condition of observing health protocols to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

“We requested the Ministry of Interior, provincial authorities, police, and security guards to collaborate with us and prepare the ground for people to visit natural landscapes and use open-air recreation centers during a time when a lot of mental pressure is imposed on the society as a result of coronavirus pandemic.”

Iran expects to reap a bonanza from its numerous tourist spots such as bazaars, museums, mosques, bridges, bathhouses, madrasas, mausoleums, churches, towers, and mansions, of which 24 being inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list. Under the 2025 Tourism Vision Plan, it aims to increase the number of tourist arrivals from 4.8 million in 2014 to 20 million in 2025.

AFM/MG

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