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Day 1 1393
December 22 2014
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Persian Ceramics: 9th - 14th Century


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Flights Resume between Iranian city of Shiraz and Bahrain's capital Manama

- Direct flights between Iran's southern city of Shiraz and the Bahraini capital, Manama, were resumed after three years of suspension, the managing director of the Bahraini airline Gulf Air announced. - 12/20/14

Mortar shelling hits Karbala suburbs as 17 million pilgrims gather for Arbaeen rituals

- No Iranian was among the victims of the multiple Karbala suburb explosions Thursday night, the cause of which is cited to be mortar or mini katyusha shelling. The attacks on the largest peaceful gathering of Shia Muslims occured at a time that according to Iraqi sources at least 17 million pilgrims had arrived in Karbala until Thursday to participate in Arbaeen rituals - to be held on Saturday -- and the number is still increasing. - 12/12/14

Photos: Over one million Iranian pilgrims flock to Iraq to mark Arba'een

- Iran's Traffic Police Chief Eskandar Mo'meni on Monday estimated that more than 1,200,000 Iranians would attend this year's Arba'een procession, which falls on December 13 this year. Iranian officials have announced that more than 900,000 Iranians have entered Iraq so far. - 12/9/14

Intriguing Iran

- For most Americans, visiting Iran doesn't make it onto their vacation radar. Yet for me and my wife Harriet, experiencing the wonders of ancient Persia has topped our bucket list for quite some time. -Michael J. Solender, Charlotte Observer - 12/6/14

Photos: Iran, Turkmen, Kazakh presidents attend landmark ceremony to open joint railway

- Iranian, Turkmen and Kazakh Presidents met and conferred in Incheborun railway station on Wednesday in a landmark ceremony to celebrate putting into operation of joint railway networks. President Rouhani said the project will pave the way for economic development of the three nations and the entire region. - 12/3/14


- In 2010, Irish surfer Easkey Britton took time off from finishing a PhD in Marine Science to surf this moonscape of a coastline (Chabahar, Iran). It was a lark, a chance to see and surf someplace new, a serious adventure. It ended up being the beginning of a brand new surf culture: the women surfers of Iran. -Surfer - 12/2/14

IAAB Announces Study Abroad in Iran: YAR Institute

- IAAB is extremely excited to announce the launch of a three-week full-immersion summer course in Iran, under its groundbreaking new initiative, the YAR Institute: Youth Advancing Research. IAAB's YAR Institute is designed to create the next generation of leaders informed and engaged on Iran. - 11/25/14

Aviation Official: 15 US Flights Using Iranian Airspace Everyday

- Managing-Director of Iran's Airport Company Mohammad Ilkhani said that Iran has the safest and most secure airspace in the region, adding that over a dozen US flights use the Iranian airspace everyday. "A sum of 15 flights from US cargo and passenger airlines use the Iranian airspace everyday," Ilkhani told reporters on the sidelines of the 7th International Air and Aviation Industries Exhibition on Kish Island on Tuesday. - 11/25/14

Photos: International Air Show kicks off in Kish, Iran

- The Kish Development and investment company fully supported by Kish Free Zone Organization is holding the 7th edition of the International Iran Kish Air Show with the cooperation of Civil Aviation Organization of Islamic Republic of Iran (CAO-IRI) from 18-21 Nov. 2014 on Kish Island in Persian Gulf. - 11/20/14


- Before I traveled to Iran, I didn't want to read anything about Iran. Certainly nothing written by mainstream American news media, which often draws an absurdist caricature of the country. I wanted to arrive with an open heart. -Monica Byrne - 11/17/14

Iran's Kish Air Show: Investment Opportunities

- The 7th Biennial Kish Air Show opens on November 18 on the Persian Gulf Island. The 4-day exhibition is aimed at helping participants understand changes in the Iranian aviation industry, discover attractive business opportunities and meet new partners as well as competitors. - 11/17/14

Tehran, Lisbon sign air transportation contract

- Iran and Portugal have signed an air transportation contract, announced the head of the Civil Aviation Organization of Iran on Sunday. Alireza Jahangiri added that for the first time in the past 35 years, Iran has concluded an aviation deal with an EU member-state. - 11/10/14

Several Iranian provinces punished by heavy rain, snowstorms

- Heavy rain and snow has hit 11 provinces in Iran, and in some areas roads have been closed due to blizzards. Alborz, Khuzestan, Chahar Mahal Bakhriyari, Khorazan Razavi, Isfahan, Kermanshah, Gilan and eastern parts of Tehran are among the provinces dealing with heavy precipitation. - 11/6/14

12.000 European tourists register to visit Iran

- Head of Iran Tourism Operators' Association Ebrahim Pour-Faraj said 12.000 European tourists have registered for visiting Iran via Golden Eagle Danube Express. The luxurious train with 13 wagons can carry only 150 passengers, and it should arrive in Iran 80 times if it wants to bring all of the tourists to Iran. - 11/2/14

5 amazing places in Iran you've never heard of

- It might not be on everyone's travel radar, but Iran has a well-worn tourist circuit, encompassing attractions in the ancient cities of Shiraz and Isfahan. For those wanting to get off the beaten path, the country has a wealth of lesser-known destinations that rival the stunning beauty and historical significance of their more famous counterparts. -Roshanak Taghavi, CNN - 11/2/14

All Aboard! European Travelers Arrive in Mashhad, Iran

- A luxury special train carrying European tourists arrived in Holy City of Mashhad in northeastern of Iran on Wednesday October 26th. Mashhad, considered the second largest holy city in the world, attracts more than 20 million tourists and pilgrims every year, many of whom come to pay pilgrimage to Imam Reza, the 8th Muslim Shi'ite Imam, - 11/1/14

Photos: Luxury Train From Europe Arrives In Tehran

- The five-star tourist train Golden Eagle traveling from Hungary to Iran arrived in Tehran on Monday October 27, ending its first tour. The 70 tourists onboard the train are mostly British or Australian and have paid anywhere between 10,000 and 24,000 euros for their two-week trip. - 10/28/14

Next Stop: Iran

- The number of international travelers in Iran has been steadily increasing, up from 2.2 million people in 2009 to 3.6 million in 2011. During the first half of 2014 travel increased 215%, in what government officials have called a "tsunami of tourists." - 10/20/14

Luxury tourist train on two-week tour ending in Tehran

- On October 15, a luxury train left Budapest with 70 passengers onboard for a first-time trip through the Balkans, the Bosphorus and Kurdistan with a final destination of Tehran. Littler says: "There is a huge vacuum in the tourist industry for people who would like to go to Iran but want to do it in comfort and safety." - 10/19/14


- Journey 2,500 years back in time to discover the ancient secrets of Persia on this 13-day itinerary incorporating some of most well preserved archaeological sites in the world. Welcome to the once-forbidden land of Iran. -NY Times - 10/13/14

Photos: European tourists arrive in Isfahan by train for first time

- A group of European tourists arrived in the historical city of Isfahan in central Iran on a train for the first time, director-general of Isfahan's Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization said on Wednesday. Fereydoun Allahyari said the group was composed of 65 tourists from Australia, France, Germany, Britain and Austria. - 10/9/14

Majlis Development Committee Spokesperson: Iran-140 Will Not Return to Skies

- The Majlis Development Committee spokesperson says that the Iran-140 airplanes will no longer be permitted to fly over the Iranian airspace. Speaking to Rooz, Mehrdad Lahouti claimed that the Majlis Development Committee's report on the Iran-140 plane crash will be read on an open Majlis session next week in the presence of the Iranian transportation minister. -Fereshteh Ghazi - 10/7/14

Road accident deaths decline in Iran

- Iran's Coroner's Office has released a report indicating 7,489 people were killed in road accidents in the past five months. IRNA reports that this number indicates a 8.2-percent decline compared to the same period last year. - 10/3/14

World's largest wide-body jetliner lands in Iran for first time

- The world's largest wide-body passenger airplane, Airbus A380, has touched down at Iran's Imam Khomeini International Airport (IKIA) for the first time. The airliner, belonging to Dubai's Emirates Airline, landed at the airport, located 40 kilometers south of Tehran, at 16:00 local time (1230 GMT) on Tuesday with more than 260 passengers on board - 10/1/14

Number of transit flights through Iranian space unprecedented

- Presently 900 foreign plane have transit flights trough the Iranian air space, which is unprecedented in the history of the Iranian aviation, said the Managing Director of Iranian Airports Company Mohammad Ali Ilkhani. - 9/28/14

John Simpson: Iran is the most charming country on Earth

- For John Simpson, Iran's incredible monuments, dazzling landscapes and hospitable people make it a holiday destination beyond compare -Telegraph, UK - 9/10/14

First-ever European luxury train to set off Iran journey

- The first European private train to enter Iran will make a two-week journey from Budapest to Tehran in October. The first "Golden Eagle-Danube Express" train, which comprises 13 lavishly-decorated wood-paneled 1950s carriages and berths for about 70 guests, will set off from Budapest on October 15. - 8/27/14

Report details century of fatal air accidents in Iran

- Iran's Deputy Minister of Roads and Urban Development reported on Wednesday August 20 that the average age of the Iranian air fleet exceeds 20 years, and in the past 100 years to date, two thousand Iranian have died in air accidents. - 8/21/14

Iran's air routes ready to receive more foreign flights

- Iranian air space is ready to receive more foreign flights, said Managing Director of Aviation Operation Control Department of Iranian Civil Aviation Organization Saeed Akbari said. "Flights passing across Iranian air space have doubled," Akbari said, adding the country is set for attracting more flights across its air space. - 8/18/14

Iranian researcher uses ear for identification in airport, border

- Iranian researchers at Amir Kabir University Of Technology have developed a method to identify people in airports and border areas through ear specifications. "Biometrics, such as fingerprint and iris are used for identification of people. We used ear as a biometric in this study," said Mina Shahriari, author of the study. - 8/18/14

Photos: Plane crashes near Tehran's Mehrabad Airport; 39 dead

- Thirty-nine people were killed and nine were injured in a plane crash near Tehran's Mehrabad Airport on Sunday, and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani immediately ordered the transport minister to prepare a comprehensive report on the cause of the incident. - 8/11/14

Tourism Key To Job Creation, Economic Growth In Iran: Finance Minister

- Iranian Finance and Economic Affairs Minister Ali Tayyebnia says the administration of President Hassan Rouhani believes that the promotion of tourism is the key to job creation and economic growth. Ecotourism and medical tourism are the top priorities, the IRNA news agency quoted Tayyebnia as saying on Thursday. - 8/2/14

Number of Passing Flights through Iranian Airspace to Increase

- The number of flights by the UAE's Emirates Airline through the Iranian airspace will increase after Ukraine closed its airspace following the crash of Malaysia's MH17 flight, Deputy CEO for Aeronautical Operations at Iran Airports Company (IAC) Ebrahim Shoushtari announced on Saturday. - 8/2/14

Mesmerizing Interiors Of Iran's Mosques Captured In Rare Photographs By Mohammad Domiri

- Mohammad Domiri, a talented architectural photographer from northern Iran, takes stunning photos of grandiose mosque architecture throughout the Middle East. -boredpanda - 7/29/14

Explorer 'dices with death' as he treks Iran's longest river for a MONTH

- A Northern Ireland adventurer who traced the longest river in Iran from source to sea, has described it as 'dicing with death'. Leon McCarron walked, kayaked and biked along the waterway - from the snowy mountainous headwaters of the south west to the Persian Gulf - in a country still largely shrouded in mystery. -Connie Allfrey, Daily Mail, UK - 7/29/14

Boeing to provide Iran Air with plane parts: Report

- Aerospace giant Boeing has reportedly signed a deal with Iran Air to provide the Iranian flag carrier airline with plane parts. A regulatory filing which was issued on Wednesday reads that Boeing will provide goods and services "related to the safety of flight" for Iran's flag carrier airline, AFP reported. - 7/25/14

'Tsunami of tourists' head for Iran

- Tehran may be a capital of some 12 million people, but remarkably it has only three large five-star hotels. A fourth is under construction yet most of Tehran's accommodations remain smaller apartment style hotels. Farman Ghafarian owns two of these enterprises -- Tehran Grand Hotels One and Two. The recent spike in visitors has him thinking expansion. -Reza Sayah, CNN - 7/21/14

TripAdvisor grants Certificate of Excellence to tomb of Persian Poet Hafez

- TripAdvisor, a U.S. travel website that provides directory information and reviews of travel-related content, has granted a Certificate of Excellence to the tomb of Hafez in the southern Iranian city of Shiraz, Fars Province. - 7/12/14

Iran's Khar Turan 2nd largest biosphere reserve in world

- The national park of Khar Turan, located southeast of the Iranian city of Shahrud, is believed to be the second largest biosphere reserve in the world. Khar Turan national park, with an area of around 1.5 million hectares, is the world's second largest biosphere reserve after Africa's Serengeti, says the park's Chief Ranger Ali Akbar Ghorbanloo. - 7/8/14

Aircraft Manufacturers Vying for Iran Market

- Major aircraft makers and spare part producers have reached out to the Iranian companies to grab a share of the country's potentially lucrative market once the anti-Iran sanctions are eased, an Iranian official said. - 7/7/14

Foreign tourist visits to Iran up 215% in spring 2014

- Visits to Iran by foreign tourists rose 215 percent in spring 2014 compared to spring 2013, the deputy director of Iran's Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Organization said on Monday. - 6/24/14

Iran's 5200-year-old Shahr-e Sukhteh (Burnt City) joins UNESCO World Heritage List

- The 5200-year-old Shahr-e Sukhteh (Burnt City) located in southeastern Iran was registered on UNESCO's World Heritage List on Sunday. The site was registered with no opposing vote during the 38th session of the World Heritage Committee - 6/23/14

Photos: Train Crash Kills 1, Injures 30 in Northern Iran

- A passenger train collided with a freight train in Northeastern Iran, killing at least one people and injuring dozens. The incident happened at a railway station near the city of Damghan in Semnan province on Thursday night. - 6/6/14

Historical sites of Iran attract international networks

- Iran's Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts, and Tourism Organization (CHTHO) has issued licenses for 20 international networks to produce programs about the historical sites of Iran. - 6/5/14

Iran Reports Its First Death From MERS Virus

- Iran reportedly has suffered its first fatality from the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). Reports by state media on May 29 about the death come a day after the first cases in Iran were publicized. - 5/30/14

Iran Reports Its First Cases Of MERS Virus

- Iran has recorded its first two cases of the potentially fatal Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). Iranian media quote Health Ministry official Mohammad Mahdi Gouya as saying the virus that causes MERS was confirmed in two sisters in the southern province of Kerman. One is reported to be in critical condition. - 5/28/14

Tsunami of foreign tourists hitting Iran: Official

- When taking into account Shia pilgrims and visitors from neighboring countries, more than 4 million foreigners toured Iran from March 2013 to March 2014, each accounting for an estimated $1,200 of revenue, Iranian Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts, and Tourism Organization (CHTHO) Director Masoud Soltanifar said. - 5/24/14

Photos: Mianeh suspension bridge, mountainous nature attract tourists

- Mianeh, northwestern Iran, has attracted many eyes from Iran and around the world with pastoral beauty. The suspension bridge over the mountains of the region remains a good place for bungee jumping and diving. -Salar Pouyan, MNA - 5/19/14

European tourist visits to Iran up 240%

- The entry of European tourists to Iran has risen 240 percent between April 9 and May 10 compared to the same period last year, Iranian Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts, and Tourism Organization Director Masoud Soltanifar said on Saturday. - 5/19/14

American Skateboarders in Iran

- The short film posted above is part of videographer Patrik Wallner's skateboarding documentary, the Visualtraveling series, which features countries that people wouldn't normally associate with skateboarding. In "The Persian Version," an international group of professional skateboarders offer a truly unique way to see Iran, where I was born. -Jasmin Ramsey - 5/4/14

You've got to watch this skateboard tour of Iran. It's beautiful

- If National Geographic made skate videos, they'd probably look like "The Persian Version" - a dazzling, 30-minute film that follows a crew of professional skaters as they zigzag across Iran, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey. -GlobalPost - 5/2/14

Iran Wants 400 New Passenger Planes By 2025 If Sanctions Lifted

- Iran's top civil aviation official says Iran wants to buy 400 new passenger airplanes by 2025 to replace the country's aging fleet if sanctions over its contested nuclear program are lifted. Ali Reza Jahangirian of Iran's Civil Aviation Organization told journalists in Tehran on April 30 that 40 percent of the country's commercial airliners have been grounded due to a lack of spare parts. - 4/30/14

21 Gorgeous Photos That Show Why Iran Is A New Tourist Hotspot

- Iran is becoming a tourist hotspot this year, with tour operators reporting significant increases in tourists booking trips to the Middle Eastern country. Perhaps that's because of a slight thaw in its relationships with the West, or simply because of the allure of exploring a little-known tourist destination with few other tourists around. -Jennifer Polland, Business Insider - 4/30/14

U.S. Government Allows Boeing To Sell Plane Parts To Iran

- Aircraft manufacturer Boeing says it has been granted a license from the U.S. Treasury Department to export spare parts for commercial airplanes to Iran. Also on April 4, General Electric (GE) said it received U.S. permission to overhaul 18 engines sold to Iran in the late 1970s. - 4/5/14

Photos: Nakhcheer cave

- Nakhcheer or Chal-Nakhjir is a cave situated in Markazi Province of Iran. It is a limestone cave approximately 70 million years old. Parts of the cave including its internal lake have been prepared for easy tourist access. It was discovered in 1989 and registered as a national monument in 2001. Its interior is made of crystals, dolomite sediments,stalactites and stalagmites. - 4/4/14

Iran is 2014's surprise tourism hit

- Tour operators have seen a significant rise in bookings for holidays to Iran, as improved relations with the West and an expectation that Foreign Office travel advice will be relaxed boost tourist interest -Lizzie Porter, Telegraph, UK - 4/4/14

Photos: Nasir al-Mulk Mosque (Pink Mosque) in Shiraz, Iran

- The Nasir al-Mulk Mosque or Pink Mosque is a traditional mosque in Shiraz, Iran. The mosque was built during the Qajar era, and is still in use under protection by Nasir al Mulk's Endowment Foundation. It was built by the order of Mirza Hasan Ali Nasir al Molk, one of the lords of the Qajar Dynasty, in 1876 and was finished in 1888. - 4/2/14

Thousands of Iranian travellers caught in snowstorms

- A new wave of cold and snow in various regions of Iran has stranded thousands of Norooz travellers on the road, and in one instance two people were killed due to landslides. Nine provinces in the north and northeast of the country have seen a sudden drop in temperature along with heavy snowfalls. - 4/2/14

Photos: Mother Winter wrestles with Amoo Norouz in Tabriz!

- On the 11th day of spring and Iranian New Year (Norouz), the city of Tabriz in East Azerbaijan province of Iran was caught offguard by a snowfall and had to wear white again! The Norouz decorations around the city were also given a white coat to remind the people that the Naneh Sarma (Mother Winter) wasn't quite ready to give up her rein to Amoo Norouz (Uncle Norouz) yet! - 4/1/14

No casualty in Tehran-Mashahd train derailment

- Iran's East-North Railway general manager has said that a train with passengers from Tehran to Mashhad jumped off a track near Shahroud on Sunday, and fortunately there have been no report of casualties. - 3/31/14

Photos: Norouz Travelers in Isfahan

- Isfahan is located on the main north-south and east-west routes crossing Iran, and was once one of the largest cities in the world. It flourished from 1050 to 1722, particularly in the 16th century under the Safavid dynasty, when it became the capital of Persia for the second time in its history. - 3/27/14

Iran announces acquisition of passenger planes

- Iran's minister of transportation and urban development announced that Iran has purchased six passenger airplanes. The Mehr News Agency reports that Abbas Akhondi also said that the purchase of another three airplanes is in the works. - 3/22/14

Interpol: Missing Malaysian Jet Unlikely Terrorist Event

- The head of Interpol says the disappearance of a Malaysian passenger jet does not appear to be related to terrorism. Interpol Secretary-General Ronald Noble says new information about two Iranian men who used stolen passports to board the plane makes terrorism a less likely explanation for the jet's disappearance. -William Ide, VOA - 3/12/14

Iranians in Malaysia dismayed by visa change

- Many Iranians in Malaysia are upset about the ending of the policy that enabled them to obtain a 90-day visa on arrival (VOA), according to the Malaysian Iran Friendship Association (MIFA). - 3/6/14

Photos: International tour guides day celebrated in Kerman

- Many Iranian tour guides and representatives have flocked to Iran's southeastern province of Kerman to celebrate the seventh International Tour Guides festival, Press TV has reported. Nearly a thousand Iranian tour guides along with some foreign guests took part in the gala held on February 21. - 2/24/14

Photos: Bus crash kills 18 in northern Iran

- Eighteen people were killed and 25 wounded after a passenger bus crashed off a cliff on the Haraz Road in northern Iran. Mazandaran officials announced that five of the injured passengers are currently in the intensive care unit and in serious condition. - 2/19/14

Austrian Airlines to resume flights to Tehran

- The Austrian national carrier, Austrian Airlines, will restart flights to Tehran from March 11, 2014 onwards, the deputy director of the Civil Aviation Organization of Iran announced on Saturday. - 2/17/14

Iran takes emergency measures to tackle unprecedented snowfall

- Emergency measures have been taken to resolve the problems that thousands of people are experiencing in northern parts of Iran as a result of the heaviest snowstorm in five decades, which has buried some areas under two meters of snow. - 2/5/14

Record snowfall plagues northern Iranian provinces

- Heavy snowfall has reportedly paralyzed the northern Iranian provinces of Gilan and Mazandaran, knocking out gas, power and water supplies. The Chaloos representative in Parliament reported today, February 3, that 145 townships in western Mazandaran are without water and power, and access to 10 cities has been cut off by snowfall in the region. - 2/4/14

Airbus to increase spare parts export to Iran

- Customer Support Director of Airbus Company in the Middle East region Paul Claassen said on Tuesday that the company is going to increase export of spare parts to Iran. In an exclusive interview with IRNA, he said the recent agreement signed by Iran and G5+1 has provided a suitable opportunity for export of spare parts for Iranian passenger planes. - 2/4/14

Cold weather brings hazards to Tehran parks, Iranian roads

- The head of Tehran's Department of the Environment has warned of cold weather and icy conditions presenting problems at animal sanctuaries in the capital. Hamid Rahati has warned that the sudden drop in temperature predicted for the coming week will demand special care at zoos and animal and bird parks across the city. - 2/3/14

Photos: Snowy City Festival in Boroujen

- The 7th Snow City Festival was held January 28-30 at the Choghakhor international pond close to the the town of Boroujen in the Iranian province of Chahar Mahaal and Bakhtiari. 179 people in 39 groups had registered for the competitions. Among the participating groups, 13 were from other provinces. These groups created many giant snow sculptures which decorated the landscape and captivated the visiting people. - 2/3/14

Photos: Heavy Snow in Rasht, Northern Iran

- First snow of the winter season gave a white cover to the caspian coast city of Rasht in northern Iran on Saturday. Rasht is the capital of Gilan Province and the largest city on Iran's Caspian Sea coast - 2/2/14

Photos: Swans arrive from Siberia in Sorkhroud, northern Iran

- In the recent years, during winter about 5000 swans migrate from Siberia to the wetlands of the Caspian town of Sorkhroud in northern Iran. The swans return back to Siberia after the the cold season ends. The swans bring life and beauty to the wetlands and attract many visitors. Environmental activists are also busy trying to educate the public to be a good host to their guests! - 1/20/14

Saudi plane crash lands in Medina, Iranian pilgrims injured

- Twenty nine pilgrims were injured when a Saudi Arabian Airlines (Saudia) Boeing 767-300ER made an emergency landing at Medina airport in the west of the country early on Sunday, the General Authority of Civil Aviation said, Reuters reported. - 1/6/14
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