Tehran is the capital city of Iran and serves as the economic and business center of the country. A bustling metropolis of 14 million people, it's the largest urban city in Western Asia. A vibrant and bustling city, Tehran is also home to many historic monuments and museums.
Tehran is located at the foot of the towering Alborz mountain range. The city is divided into 2 significant parts, the north and the south. The north area is more prosperous, modern, and expensive, while the south is less attractive yet has a cheaper cost of living.
How to Reach (Modes of Transportation)
By Plane - The main airport that serves the city is the Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport. It is located 55 km southwest of Tehran's north area, and serves scheduled international flights. A secondary airport is also found within the city, which is the Mehrabad Airport, which doubles as a military base. Chartered and domestic flights are served in this airport.
By Train - The Tehran Central Railway Station provides connecting services round the clock to several cities across the country. International routes to Ankara and Istanbul are also available. The Station also has a Tehran-Europe train line.
By Metro - Tehran's Metro system is one of the cleanest and most convenient systems in the world. It currently has 5 lines and runs across 152km around the city.
By Bus - There are 4 bus terminals in the city and are governed by the Tehran Bus Rapid Transit. There are 3 lines and 60 stations, serving an average of 2 million passengers per day.
By Taxi - There are private taxis and shared taxis found within the city center. A taxi becomes shared when drivers on a taxi queue would call out passengers who are heading to the same direction. A total of 4 passengers can fit into 1 single shared taxi.
Motorcycle taxis are also abundant in Tehran, which is a city specialty. They weave through traffic efficiently but an agreed price must be set before taking off.
When to Visit
The best times to visit Tehran are during the Spring and Autumn seasons. Spring is from March to May, when the weather is warm and pleasant and the best time for sightseeing. Autumn is from September to November when the weather is cool. The winter season of December to February is best for skiing and other winter sports.
Culture (Fairs and Festivals) and Traditions
The Tehran International Book Fair - The largest book fair in the Middle East and Asia, this 10-day event hosts hundreds of thousands of books by hundreds of publishing houses all over the world. Over 500,000 in daily attendance is recorded, attracted by the myriad of books and the festivities that include a carnival and exhibitions of Iranian culture.
The Tehran International Festival for Children and Young Adults - A festival of dramatic plays, this international event is held at The Dramatic Arts Center of Iran each year. Four floors of the Center are filled with stage plays and dramas staged by theater troupes from all around the world.
The Tehran International Short Film Festival - Both a competition and screening, this short film festival offers 3 categories: films on violence and extremism, films from Asia, and films from Islamic countries. Held every October, short films from up and coming directors and filmmakers are shown in Tehran's select theaters.
Points of Interest (Places to Visit)
Azadi Tower - The longstanding symbol of the city, the Azadi Tower was built to commemorate the 2,500th anniversary of the Persian empire. It is a great example of Sassanid and Islamic architecture, and is one of the top attractions of the city.
Milad Tower - The 4th tallest tower in the world, its structure can be seen from anywhere in the city. The rotating restaurant placed 390 meters above the ground is one of the most luxurious in the whole of Iran.
Treasury of the National Jewels - This is the largest collection of jewels in the world - with over 51,000 precious stones on display. The highlights include the world's largest uncut ruby and the free standing golden globe made from 34km of gold.
Glassware and Ceramics Museum - Housed in a beautiful mansion with landscaped gardens, this museum used to be the personal home of a wealthy politician of Tehran in the 1920's. Found in the museum are several galleries of enamel, crystals, golds, and many collections of glassware and ceramics.
The Golestan Palace - A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this is the oldest historic monument in Tehran. It's a complex of 17 palaces, plus museums and halls. This lavish, walled palace serves as an outstanding example of Qajari arts and architecture.
There are all kinds of accommodation sprawled across Tehran. However, budget hotels are mostly found in the poorer south, with accommodation rates going higher as you head up north. Hotel rates are also higher in Tehran than the rest of Iran. There is also a lack of good budget hostels for the backpacking tourists, which makes midrange hotels the best option for convenient and comfortable places to stay in the city.
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|Flight Schedule from Tehran to other cities|