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7 - DAY ITINERARY OF NORTHWEST IRAN WITH OVERLAND CROSSING INTO ARMENIA

Naghsh-e-Rostam: Sassanian King Shahpur I on horseback DAY 1: Arrival in Tehran. Arrive in Tehran on EK622 at 09:30 a.m, meet and transfer to Laleh Hotel. Have lunch at the hotel, and start sightseeing in the afternoon with visits to Iran National Museum and the Glass and Ceramic Museum. O/N at Laleh Hotel.  

DAY 2: Tehran – Chalus (about 300 km.) Drive to Chalus via scenic mountainous Chalus Road, and enjoy the beauties of nature as you cross over the gorgeous Alborz Mountains. You will drive through the lush green forests to get to Chalus right on the Caspian Coast which is the largest lake in the world. O/N at Enghelab Khazar Hotel.  

DAY 3: Chalus – Rasht (about 200 km.) Leave for Rasht driving along the Caspian Coastal Road. In Rasht you will visit the fresh fish and vegetable market and then you will drive up the mountains to go to the ancient village of Masuleh, one of the oldest and longest inhabited villages in Iran and pronounced as a heritage site by the Iranian Cultural Heritage Organization. Back to Rasht for O/N at Kadoos Hotel.  

DAY 4: Rasht – Ardabil (about 270 km.) Drive through the high mountains of northwesternThe Azadi Square Monument Iran and pass by many remote villages to get to Ardabil where you will visit the tomb of Sheikh Safi-eddin Ardebili, a widely revered Sufi philosopher of the 14th century who made Ardebil his home. He was the forefather of the well-known Safavid kings, and since his death at the age of 83 his mausoleum has been the Mecca of thousands of pilgrims every year.  O/N at Sarein Laleh Hotel (5*)  

DAY 5: Ardabil – Tabriz (about 220 km.) Leave for Tabriz, after arrival in Tabriaz check in at the hotel, have lunch and start sightseeing in the afternoon with visits to  Azarbaijan Museum, displaying objects found in northwestern regions of Iran from prehistoric times until 19th century; the Blue Mosque (1465 A.D) known to the world as the Turquoise of Islam; and Arg-e-Alishah, an old mosque which was turned into a fortress in the later periods.. O/N at Tabriz International Hotel (4*)  

DAY 6: Tabriz - Marand - (about 70km.) In the morning you will visit the old covered bazaar of Tabriz. You will have enough time to walk around the bazaar and enjoy watching the hustle and bustle of shopping in this old bazaar. Then you will leave Tabriz for the ancient town of  Marand (about 70 km.) where some believe lies the body of prophet Noah’s mother. You will visit the old Jame’ Mosque of this town with its beautifully decorated Mihrab. O/N stay at Marand Tourist Inn.  

Early summer in a mountainous regionDAY 7: Marand – Jolfa – Megri/Nodooz – Border (about 140 km.) Leave for Jolfa (about 70 km.) to visit St. Stephanus Church, which is one of the oldest and most beautiful Armenian churches in the area (10-12 century A.D). The church that is named after St. Stephanus, one of the first Christian martyrs, is located in the green valley of Dareh Sham, some 15 km. west of the city of Jolfa. A thick tall wall made of stones with seven watchtowers has provided a good protection for the church. On the facade of the church one can see pictures of Mary and Jesus, as well as angels and apostles beautifully carved on stones. On to Megri/Nodooz (about 70 km.) to cross the border and enter Armenia.

 


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