The city of Tabriz is located 624 km from Tehran in the north of the country and is the capital of the Azerbaijan region. It lies in a closed valley at 1360 metres above sea level at the foot of an extinct volcano and, with its million or more inhabitants, is now an active industrial and commercial centre, a mandatory transit point between the interior of Iran and the Black Sea.

The countless healing springs in the area promise to relieve a variety of ailments, pains and ailments.
What strikes the visitor arriving in Tabriz above all is the beauty of the mountains that surround it: the British Egyptologist David Rohl even claims to have located the biblical Garden of Eden in the plateau between Tabriz and Lake Urmia.
The city itself is very different from traditional Persian cities and there is a distinctly Russian atmosphere, which can be felt both in the architecture and in the character of the inhabitants. In winter the city is very cold, often covered in snow, while in summer it is often very hot but with low humidity.

Since its foundation, probably in pre-Sassanid times, Tabriz has been on the main trade route between the northern part of Iran and the outside world, but its position and vulnerability to foreign invasion have slowed its development in the past. The area is particularly vulnerable to earthquakes, which have destroyed it more than once.



Kandovan is a village in the Sahand district, in the Osku province, in Iran. The town is an authentic wonder for its houses carved into the volcanic rock, which have the unique feature, unique in the world, of being inhabited to this day. The houses, defined as “troglodytes” because they are inhabited caves, are locally called Karaan, and are obtained in the Lahar (volcanic lava flows or volcanic stone) of Mount Sahand. The typical cone shape of these ancient houses is the result of the flow of lava which, hardening, constituted an easily sculptable porous stone, used as a starting point to build some houses by the ancient inhabitants of Persia.

The Kabud mosque (or blue mosque),

it is the most famous of the city; called pure Jahan Shà, it is so named for the blue color of its dome and the engraved tiles of its external facade. It is also called “Firuze Jahan” or “Firuze Eslam” and was built in the fifteenth century by Jahan Sha Qare Quyunlu at the behest of the daughter of this king who was called Salehè. The entrance door of the mosque is higher than the level of the surrounding street and has an elliptical arch above it. On the sides of the mosque there are two columns that rise in the shape of a helix and in the upper part take on a crescent shape. These columns are entirely covered in turquoise tiles embellished with surreal floral motifs. Entering the door we arrive in the Shabestan, or the prayer room. The walls of the hall are covered with colored tiles and the tiles are so small and so well set that they all appear to be one piece. The drawings on the walls are so fine that they give the visitor the feeling of looking at a painting.

the Jame or Friday mosque

Visitors should definitely not miss the Jame or Friday mosque of the city, one of the eternal monuments of the city whose construction date is not even known with certainty. It is certainly the oldest building in the city, around which the bazaar and the entire historic center developed. The Shabestan or central hall is dominated by arches and domes supported on octagonal columns made of bricks and embellished with very fine plaster workings. In the Ilkanid period, or in the period of Mongol domination, it was restored. In the period of the Aq Quyunlu a new dome was built in the northern part of the mosque but a subsequent earthquake destroyed this part of which today only the columns remain. Much of the original mosque also collapsed and the Qajar dynasty rebuilt and strengthened the building; the current mosque, however, retains the original Mihrab and columns while the other parts were rebuilt after the earthquake.

The Mosque or the fortress of Alisha,

it is a unique work of the Ilkanid period. The building has the highest walls of all ancient buildings in Iran and is the symbol of the city of Tabriz. Qazan Khan built it but the earthquake also destroyed the dome of this building; A splendid hall was also built next to it, inspired by a similar one in St. Petersburg, to house the city’s symphony orchestra, but this hall was also destroyed. Today near the Alisha fortress stands the Mosallà, or the place of prayer for special occasions. Among the peculiarities of this building is that it has resisted earthquakes, attacks, cannon fire better than any other building. According to architecture experts, it is the most impressive example of the engineering technique and ancient architecture of the Tabriz school.

Tabriz bazaar,

it covers an area of ​​1 million square meters and is the largest ancient work in Iran and the largest brick construction in the world. It is not known, even in this case, when it was built exactly; some scholars believe it to be a pre-Islamic building, that is, from the Sassanid era, while others trace it back to the post-Islamic era and to the dominion of the Seljuk Turks. Different parts of the bazaar collapsed as a result of the different earthquakes but due to its importance each time this building was rebuilt. The last reconstruction of the bazaar dates back to three centuries ago or at the end of the power of the Zand dynasty and the beginning of Qajarid power. The Bazaar is an unparalleled center of life and in addition to its economic role, it also plays an important social, religious and political role. In 1975 it was registered on the Iranian National Cultural Heritage list and in 2010 it was the first bazaar in the world to enter the UNESCO list. In this Bazaar you can find the marvel of 160 characteristic elements of the ancient Persian Bazaars such as the caravanserais, the corridors, the hujre ‘(shops), the mosques, the madrasas, the spas, the halls for traditional sports (zurkhane’) and the small sales centers called bazarchè.

Azerbaijan museum,

one of the most important of all





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