Afshin Majlesi


  • A peek into Bronze-Age Tepe Gariran, a gateway to the “Old Routes of Western Iran” 2020-07-07 01:03

    A peek into Bronze-Age Tepe Gariran, a gateway to the “Old Routes of Western Iran”

    TEHRAN – In 1931, the renowned British archaeologist Sir Marc Aurel Stein (1862 – 1943) surveyed Tepe Gariran in western Iran along with several others across the ancient land. His views were published in November 1969 in a book titled “Old Routes of Western Iran: Narratives of an Archaeological Journey”.

  • Excavation sheds new light on mysterious capital of Medes in Ecbatana 2020-06-30 19:10

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Excavation sheds new light on mysterious capital of Medes in Ecbatana

    TEHRAN – Archaeologists have unearthed new cultural relics and architectural vestiges that sheds a new light on the mysterious capital of Medes, which is widely believed to be in Ecbatana, an ancient city on the site of which stands the modern city of Hamadan in west-central Iran.

  • United Nations World Tourism Organization Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili 2020-06-23 21:24

    Iran ‘has earned plaudits’ to ease COVID-19 impact on tourism, UNWTO says

    TEHRAN – The United Nations World Tourism Organization has praised efforts made by Iran's tourism ministry to manage the travel industry during the coronavirus pandemic.

  • File photo depicts a terracotta model of a chariot used by the Kura–Araxes people, 4th-3rd millennium BC. 2020-06-10 18:28

    Excavations reveal rare find of Bronze Age culture in Iran

    TEHRAN – Iran has recently unearthed a rare Bronze Age culture, related settlements and relics following to rounds of excavation in a plain near the north-central city of Qom.

  • File photo depicts people visiting a magnificent Sassanid-era bas-relief in Naqsh-e Rustam, an ancient necropolis near Persepolis in Fars province, southern Iran. 2020-06-09 19:00

    Aerial survey sheds new light on vast ancient city in southern Iran

    TEHRAN – An in-depth aerial survey combined by series of field research has shed new light on remnants of a vast ancient city in southern Iran, which was once in the heart of the mighty Sassanid Empire in its heyday. The discovery has opened up a new window towards the urban engineering and Persian garden arrangements of the time.

  • Travelers sit overlooking the UNESCO-registered Imam Square in Isfahan, central Iran. 2020-06-01 19:09

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Iran’s trump cards to kick-start tourism in post-COVID-19 world

    TEHRAN – As you are well aware, the rapid spread of the novel coronavirus has plunged the travel and tourism industry in the global scene, disrupting life in ways that were unimaginable just a few months ago.

  • A view of the modest mausoleum of Esther and Mordechai in the city of Hamedan, west-central Iran. 2020-05-27 21:41

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Explore mausoleum of Esther and Mordechai

    The purported burial site of Purim’s Persian queen and a pilgrimage site for Iranian Jews

    TEHRAN – The mausoleum of Esther and Mordechai is a Jewish shrine in the city of Hamedan, west-central Iran, where, according to Judeo-Persian tradition is the burial site of the two cousins who played a pivotal role in the Book of Esther (also known as the Megillah).

  • Left shoe with lower leg of “Salt Man 1”on display at the National Museum of Iran in downtown Tehran. 2020-05-26 18:43

    Garments of Iran’s salt mummies to be restored using German expertise

    TEHRAN – A team of experts from Iran and Germany will start a project for purifying, cleansing, and restoring garments and personal belongings of ancient salt mummies which were first found in Iran’s Chehrabad Salt Mine in 1993.

  • Iran’s deputy tourism minister Vali Teymouri speaks in an undated photo. 2020-05-18 19:20

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Iran tourism industry to rebound sooner than expected: deputy minister

    TEHRAN – The tourism industry of Iran will get back on the right track sooner than expected thanks to measures taken to tackle the spread of coronavirus, deputy tourism minister Vali Teymouri has said.

  •  Cars are seen on Road 59, also known as the Chalous Road, which connects Tehran to Chalous, on the southern coasts of the Caspian Sea. The mountainous road is one of the busiest in Iran. 2020-05-17 18:39

    Tourism ministry issues guideline to curb pandemic as travels seen to rise

    TEHRAN – Iran’s Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism, and Handicrafts has issued a guideline comprising health protocols to lessen coronavirus pandemic as many families are expected to start domestic travels during the upcoming Eid al-Fitr holidays (May 24 and 25).

  • File photo depicts a woman reading verses of the holy Quran beside an Iftar spread in the lunar month of Ramadan. 2020-05-11 23:44

    By Afshin Majlesi

    What’s it like visiting Iran during Ramadan?

    They say for all human beings there is a time to sow and a time to grow under the never-ending generosity of the Almighty God.

  • A view of the adobe Bam Citadel before the 2003 earthquake 2020-05-08 20:04

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Iran, quakes, and tourism

    Early on Friday, an earthquake of magnitude 5.1 struck Damavand county, 56km northeast of the capital Tehran, killing two and injuring 33. It made an excuse for writing a note about the impact of natural disasters, specifically earthquakes, on tourism and cultural heritage.

  • Iranian women wear protective masks to prevent contracting a coronavirus, as they walk at Grand Bazaar in Tehran, Iran February 20, 2020. (Photo credit: Reuters) 2020-05-05 18:59

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Normal life not a distant dream as Tehran sees drop in new corona cases

    The average death toll from COVID-19 pandemic in Iran has been on the decline, and also in the capital Tehran, over the past couple of weeks, thanks to a temporary lockdown introduced earlier in March.

  • An undated photo shows vehicles jamming the road that goes from Tehran to the Caspian Sea coast, northern Iran. 2020-05-04 20:30

    Iran formulates coronavirus safety guidelines ahead of anticipated travel surge

    TEHRAN – In response to the coronavirus pandemic, Iran’s Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts has announced new guidelines and instructions to ramp up the safety of travels across the country.

  • Tehran Times: an advocate of cultural heritage, travel and folk awareness 2020-05-03 20:02

    Tehran Times: an advocate of cultural heritage, travel and folk awareness

    Iran’s first UNESCO sites registered when the daily was born

    TEHRAN - Since it was established in May 1979, the Tehran Times has put the priority on covering top stories about Iran’s history, cultural heritage, tourism, folk traditions, festivals and arts as well as notifying potential threats in these realms in line with its main mission to air the voice of the Islamic Revolution.

  • A man takes photos of the historical Agha Bozorg Mosque in Kashan, central Iran. 2020-04-22 19:42

    By Afshin Majlesi

    How is COVID-19 affecting travel in Iran? Experts explain

    TEHRAN – As you are well aware, nearly all travel businesses have been disrupted worldwide in the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

  • A traffic police officer wears a protective face mask and gloves, amid fear of coronavirus disease, as he walks in Tehran, March 26, 2020.  (Credit: REUTERS - WANA NEWS AGENCY) 2020-04-14 19:34

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Ubiquitous coronavirus: Do travel blockades work?

  • Foreign travelers pose for a photo in front of the UNESCO-registered Tchogha Zanbil, a ruined Elamiate-era ziggurat in southwest Iran. 2020-04-06 23:45

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Susa, a top destination for history buffs

    Apart from what our goals for traveling could be, it lets us experience diverse wonders, cultures, history, foods and beauties from around the world. There’s history everywhere, but history buffs doe love specific destinations.

  • A combination photo compares Hafezieh, the mausoleum of the illustrious Persian poet Hafez, full of visitors in March 2019 (R), with the one taken in March 2020 being deserted over coronavirus fears. Hafezieh is a major cultural and tourism spot in Shiraz, southern Iran. 2020-04-06 00:25

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Why Iran expects tourism boom after coronavirus

    TEHRAN – The novel coronavirus pandemic has brought travel to a standstill nearly all over the globe, including Iran, causing huge job and revenue losses.

  •  File photo shows an Iranian boy buying a flower vase, ahead of the Iranian New Year, Noruz. 2020-04-03 22:09

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Age-old Noruz traditions altered by coronavirus in Iran

    Iranians experienced totally-changed traditions during this Noruz (the two-week New Year holidays started March 20) in the face of the novel coronavirus pandemic that has crippled the tourism and hospitality industries worldwide.

  •  Firefighters prepare their fogging machines to disinfect a street against the new coronavirus as people watch, in western Tehran, March 13, 2020. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi) 2020-03-15 19:36

    By Afshin Majlesi

    New year travels plunge amid virus outbreak

    For many Iranians, the new year’s eve conjures up memories of holidays and traveling along dreamy beaches, silky warm seas, lush sceneries, and endless sunshine.

  • An aerial view of the ruined Alamut Castle, which stands perched on Alborz Mountains, northern Iran. 2020-03-14 21:19

    On the track of Iran’s ‘Assassins’ in once impenetrable mountainous castle

    TEHRAN – Nested on top of a hill in a relatively remote village amidst the northern Iran’s Alborz Mountains, a well-fortified castle was sheltering the followers of Hasan-e Sabbah (1070–1124), spiritual leader of Islam’s heretical Ismaili sect, known as ‘Assassins’.

  • Tourism minister asks people to delay travels in face of coronavirus 2020-03-04 19:29

    Tourism minister asks people to delay travels in face of coronavirus

    TEHRAN – Iranian tourism minister has asked people to postpone or reschedule tours so as to help the tourism industry deal with the coronavirus outbreak.

  • Anna Karsten (born 1988 in Warsaw) is a travel blogger, traveler, and social media personality. She and her writing and photography have been featured in the New York Times, Forbes, CNN, National Geographic and Travel Channel. 2020-03-02 18:45

    By Anna Karsten

    Is it safe to travel to Iran as a solo female traveler?

    Before I started reading more into Iran, all I heard about this country were stories about its politics. In the media, Iran seemed like a place where no one would ever want to visit. Can you imagine solo female travel in Iran?

  • Rig-e Jenn: An extraordinary landscape named after elves! 2020-03-01 19:17

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Rig-e Jenn: An extraordinary landscape named after elves!

    TEHRAN – Eastern Iran is dominated by vast deserts known worldwide for having harsh sun-scorched landscapes, parts of which more attractive for adrenaline chasers.

  • Saint Stepanos 2020-02-29 23:54

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Northwest Iran: A verdant realm of ancient churches & monasteries

    TEHRAN - To the untrained eye, Iran’s earliest churches may seem modest structures to some but they bear testimony to a vast panorama of architectural and decorative scenes associated with Armenian culture blended with other regional cultures: Byzantine, Orthodox, Assyrian, Persian and Muslim.

  • An undated photo depicts Iran’s pavilion at the International Tourism Fair (ITB) in Berlin, Germany. 2020-02-28 18:03

    By Afshin Majlesi

    Virus worries forces cancelation of travel fairs

    TEHRAN – Dozens of travel fairs and conferences have so far been postponed worldwide due to concerns about the coronavirus outbreak, disrupting deals worth billions of dollars.

  • Discover Neanderthal tooth, Iron-Age funerary offerings at Tehran show 2020-02-19 20:50

    Discover Neanderthal tooth, Iron-Age funerary offerings at Tehran show

    TEHRAN – The National Museum of Iran in downtown Tehran is showcasing a collection of charming and exquisite delights of Iranian history in an exhibit that comprises photos and documents related to an enigmatic tooth which has been recently proved to belong to a Neanderthal child, as well as Iron-Age funerary offerings for the afterlife!

  • A general view of Istakhr 2020-02-19 18:42

    Discover Istakhr, ancient royal residence near legendary Persepolis

    TEHRAN – The ancient city of Istakhr, which was once a royal residence for Sassanid kings of Persia, is located in the vicinity of the UNESCO-registered Persepolis.

  • Iran to pursue visa-free travel with Russia at Moscow tourism fair 2020-02-18 18:58

    Iran to pursue visa-free travel with Russia at Moscow tourism fair

    TEHRAN – The Iranian tourism minister on Monday said that the country will follow up on the issue of visa-free travel for mutual tourist groups with Russia at the upcoming [27th edition] Moscow International Travel & Tourism Exhibition (MITT), which will be held from March 17 to 19.