Things to Love about Iran

Green iranian mountains. A man stands on top of a rock and looks at them.

When you listen to western media you tend to believe that the people of Iran are monsters. Why?

Not only the tabloids are full of stereotypes, hate-mongering and misleading or downright fake news.

Never mind that the US have probably the largest arsenal of weapons of mass destruction. Iran gets depicted as a nuclear threat all the time.

Even educated and so called open minded people in the western hemisphere believe that crap. I do not and I condemn any plans of waging war against Iran.


Asking Iranians about Iran

I do not want to talk about politics though! Instead I asked the Iranian people visiting my blog to tell me what they love most about Iran!

Why do Iranians visit my blog in the first place? Well, some of my articles have been translated into Persian and spread on Iranian social media.

As a true cosmopolitan I already had written down the first three things I love about Iran myself. The others have been crowdsourced from the Iranian people.


Good Things about Iran

OK, long story short: what are the actual things to love about Iran? I haven’t visited the country yet but judged from the list below it’s worth traveling to.

The Art and Design

Poster by Reza Abedini

Iran is famous for some of its artists. Even before I write this post here I knew Reza Abedini, a fantastic artist creating beautiful typography posters.

You can visit his Instagram profile for more current works. He’s not the only one. There are plenty of others who create art and design works.

The Ancient History

Apparently Iran is where our civilization has started. They had the first “charter of human rights” more than 2500 years ago. Yes, that’s even before Christ was born.

It’s called the Cyrus Cylinder and is kept in London so you can view it without going to Iran.

Chess has been invented in Persia as well among many other things you take for granted these days.

There are plenty of UNESCO world heritage sites in Iran as of now.

It’s about time to visit them though as President Trump has threatened to destroy them.

The Mystic Sufi Tradition

For those who are aware of Zen Buddhism the Sufi mysticism that originated in the region Iran is now part of is also an inspiration.

While Zen focuses on sitting meditation the Sufi tradition is rather about dancing.

So called dervishes dance in circles until they reach a higher state of mind where thought disappears. Iranian Sufism is part of Islam.

Poetry and Literature

Rumi quote on feeling lonely

People in the West are likely to know Rumi – the ancient Sufi poet – you probably have seen quotes attributed to him on the Web.

Even the Trump family likes to quote Rumi.

Iranians rather recommend the writings by Molavi. I had to admit I haven’t read Molavi yet until I realized that it’s just another nickname of Rumi. He has plenty of those.

Iranian Food

As I’m no expert on Iranian cuisine I have to link out when it comes to Persian specialties:

Have you been to Iran? What is your favorite Iranian food? Tell us in the comment section!

Nature

The flora and fauna of Iran is simply beautiful. Just view some of the photos. I can’t explain it.

Mount Damavand, Iran

The landscape, especially mountains is also astounding. The Mount Damavand is one of the highest and most exceptional mountains in the world.

Iranians

Apparently Iranians themselves are one of the “things” to love about Iran. The people of Iran describe themselves as

  • faithful
  • peace-loving
  • hospitable
  • generous

In school I had a physics teacher I played Chess with. He was a very good player and I think I haven’t won even once. I also liked his dry type of humor.

I also have a neighbor from Iran who is very friendly and is also a dog owner like me. She does not wear a hijab (burka) though so that’s maybe why she had to leave Iran.

From travel stories I have read here and there I know that Iranians are indeed hospitable.

Iran has never started a war in the last century – thus peace-loving is also true it seems. They had a revolution though to topple the bloody dictatorship by the Shah, a fascist dictator backed by the West.

Then they had to fight a war against Iraqi forces – after US backed dictator Saddam Hussein attacked them. I used to watch the gruesome reports on television when I was a kid. Probably because of or despite that Iranians prefer peace.

Classic Iranian Music

The Sufi tradition has not only spawned mysticism, dancing mediation and poetry as mentioned above.

Sufism has also lead to the creation of classic Iranian music.

Yet the traditional Sufist music is not the only one probably. I’m not an expert on this so I have to link out again. Just listen to classical Persian music here.

Persian Bloggers

Persian bloggers have been very helpful when I was creating this list. Most of them write in Persian though so I did not link to them.

Let it be said that their comments were proof tat you need to love Iranian bloggers. They paint a true picture of Iran as it is.

Don’t let the biased reporting of mass media be your only source of information about Iran!


Are There More Reasons to Travel to Iran and See it for Yourself?

Of course there are many more things to love about Iran. Just read the incredible comments below!

Don’t let fanatical politicians, militarists and other war-mongers convince you that Iran is some kind of hell. Listen to the inhabitants themselves!

Many thanks to all of you who have contributed ideas!

Thanks to everybody for adding so many things you love about Iran! Of course one such post is not enough to contain them all.

Thus I had to choose those most common and easily understandable for the international public…