Esfahan (Isfahan)

Esfahan (Isfahan), photo by Fulvio Spada
Esfahan (Isfahan) (photo by Fulvio Spada)
 

Esfahan (aka Isfahan) is a historic city located in central Iran, in the foothills of the Zagros mountain range, and known for its temperate climate.

An ancient town and capital of Persia from 1598 to 1722, Estfahan offers distinctive architecture, tree-lined boulevards anda low-key pace of life.

It is also home to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites located near each other: (a) Meidan Emam, Esfahan and (2) Masjed-e Jāmé of Isfahan.

Esfahan is situated on the main north-south and east-west routes crossing Iran, about 265 miles (430 km) south of Tehran.

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Overall Atmosphere: Cultural
A Cultural Atmosphere includes both the historic (eg, landmark town centers) and the contemporary (music, nightlife, etc).

Cultural Interests tend to be:
(a) indoors-oriented, and therefore not as linked to weather conditions for enjoyment
(b) relatively physically accessible, while also not being physically demanding.
Featuring mainly indoors-oriented historical or contemporary attractions.
 

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Novotel Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport

Novotel Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport offers accommodation in Maḩmūdābād. The hotel has a spa centre and sauna, and guests can enjoy a meal at the restaurant. Average score from 8 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

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See all hotels in Esfahan (Isfahan).
Hotel NameRooms FromGuest Rating
Ibis Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport

Ibis Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport

Ibis Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport offers accommodation in Maḩmūdābād. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant. The rooms have a flat-screen TV. Each room comes with a private bathroom equipped with a shower. Average score from 6 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$123

$123-
Novotel Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport

Novotel Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport

Novotel Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport offers accommodation in Maḩmūdābād. The hotel has a spa centre and sauna, and guests can enjoy a meal at the restaurant. Average score from 8 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$154

$154-

Highlights:

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Cultural
Palaces and Chateaux
As a former capital, with royalty that needed proper housing, Esfahan has a number of historic palaces:

Ālī Qāpū (The Royal Palace). Built in the early 17th Century, it is forty-eight meters high with seven floors, each accessible by a difficult spiral staircase. In the sixth floor music room, deep circular niches are found in the walls, having not only aesthetic value, but also acoustic. It is rich in naturalistic wall paintings by Reza Abbassi, the court painter of Shah Abbas I, and his pupils, with floral, animal and bird motifs.

Chehel Sotoun (The Palace of forty columns). Built in 1647, it is called Palace of forty columns, although it is actually twenty columns, with the remaining twenty reflected in the pool in front of them. The function of this palace was for holding religious-national ceremonies and royal festivals and for receiving royal ambassadors and guests.

Hasht Behesht (The Palace of Eight Paradises). Built in 1669, reportedly for the King's harem.

Talar Ashraf (The Palace of Ashraf). Built in 1650.
Islamic Landmarks
The stunning mosques of Esfahan are among the most beautiful and interesting in the world.

Imam Mosque. Built during the Safavid period, it is an excellent example of Islamic architecture and regarded as one of the masterpieces of Persian Architecture. It is especially known for its seven-color mosaic tiles and calligraphic inscriptions.

Sheikh Lotf Allah Mosque. Another masterpiece of Safavid Iranian architecture.

Hakim Mosque. One of the oldest mosques in Esfahan.
Combination
Unusual Local Feature

Historic Bridges

Esfahan is known for its beautiful, historic bridges, including:

Pol-e Khaju (Khaju Bridge). Built in 1650, this is perhaps the finest bridge in Esfahan. It was built by the Persian Safavid king, Shah Abbas II. This structure originally was ornamented with artistic tile works and paintings serving as a teahouse.

Si-o-Seh Pol (The Bridge of 33 Arches). Built in 1602, this is one of the most famous examples of Safavid bridge design.

Pol-e Shahrestan (The Shahrestan Bridge). This is one of the oldest surviving bridges in Iran, built in the 14th Century (C.E.).

Pol-e-Joui or choobi (Joui bridge). It is another of the town’s oldest bridges, built in 1665 during the Safavid era.
Also of Interest:
Cultural
Unusual Local Feature
Historic Landmarks
Combination
Parks, Gardens, Zoos

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