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Due to COVID-19 pandemic and the WHO instructions on unnecessary trips, the Tourist and Pilgrimage visa issuance have been suspended until further notice. As per with the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Office.
As soon as you receive your visa reference code from us issued by the Islamic Republic of Iran Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) you can then proceed to the consular section of the Iranian mission in your country. You may be requested for an interview.
Usually the reference code (grant notice) will be issued in ten (10 )Iranian working days. Business days in Iran starts on Mondays through Thursdays.
Should you decide to obtain your visa on arrival you can do so as well. Please see to it you arrive with your printed “grant notice”. Pay the amount and you may also pay additional for your Iran travel insurance in which by the way mandatory.
If you choose to apply your visa on arrival at the airport, then be prepare to fall in line and be patient of complete related application form and wait for approval. It is always depends on the immigration officer to allow or deny entry to anyone they deem appropriate.
If you want us to handle your visa application, we will be happy to serve you then. All you have to do is send us your passport font page then we will start processing your application. Simultaneously request you to make the necessary visa service payment to our bank abroad. No more queuing and stress of accomplishing necessary visa application form and wait to approval by Iranian immigration officer at the airport
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Train to Shiraz: A post-pandemic 3-day tour
An itinerary guide for local and international travelers
Planning to visit Shiraz on a tight budget? My latest 3-days and 2 nights Iran tour itinerary for 4 adults and one child might be of help to those of you wishing to explore the new normal – traveling around Iran under covid-19. And I do hope post-pandemic if you may!
If its okay with you to spent a night back and forth on a train from Tehran to Shiraz, I did just that. Our two nights and three days Shiraz tour worked perfectly for me and my family. Though technically speaking we got only two nights and, one-and-a half-day in Shiraz. How is that possible?
Here’s our 3-day Shiraz Tour Itinerary during COVID-19 Pandemic:
Our train leaves Tehran at 8pm. Arrived in Shiraz at 10am the next day. Don’t forget to bring your own food if you choose the without meal option for your train ticket to avoid getting hungry during your over night stay on a moving train. Of course hot meal is being served on the train should the passenger request for it but in our case because of corona virus we opt for our chicken sandwich for safety and budget purposes. Because we want to enjoy our trip so we make sure everything worth-extra spending and goes according to our planned itinerary. In other words we wanted value for our money without giving away our joy while traveling.
As for the food served on the train, there is a possibility you may dislike it. It happened to us on our way back to Tehran – me and my daughter insisted to order a hot meal – zereshpolo ba morgh (rice-raisin chicken) but unfortunately we didn’t enjoy it. It was just a waste of money.
On board the train – back and forth, bottled mineral water, fruit juices and factory-made cake with tea – comes with unlimited hot water (on your request of course) was included in our purchased train ticket. The train also equipped with common squat and sitting toilet in every wagon. This should give you an assurance of comfort traveling on a train in Iran. Water supply also available to wash your face, brushing teeth but passengers are advised not drink from it as the water is undrinkable.
Iran Travel Tip: We could have spent a little more money for less than an hour flight from Tehran to Shiraz but that would meant an extra night – additional amount for our hotel rooms. Even if we made our mind to fly on the next day to avoid extra night expenses to pay for our hotel room, it wouldn’t make much different to our planned itinerary because the airfare was much more higher on that particular date. So we stick to our original three-day Shiraz tour itinerary by train.
I think our budget for Shiraz by train really suits both those local travelers here as well as tourists visiting Iran who got luxury of time to travel, e.g., those planning to visit more of Iran tourists’ destinations. After all Iran is cheap for those travelers with US Dollar or Euro incomes but it doesn’t mean Iran is a poor country. In fact, Iran is a very, very and super rich country. Iranian has the highest living standard in the world.
For the Western European, American, Australian, Canadian, new Zealander, Singaporean, Japanese, Korean or even Chinese travelers to Iran the cost of tour in Iran may be sounds reasonable but for local spenders may be a little bit tight. But the good news is, if you plan your trip to Iran a little bit ahead of your target date and you plan it collectively with local travel agencies in Iran like Jaziresafar Travel, there is a good chance you’ll get best deals tour to Iran.
Day One: Transfer from railway station to Hotel
Outside Shiraz Railway Station our pre-arranged transfer was ready waiting for us. It was about 35 minutes drive to our booked hotel – Aryo Barzan. They allowed us early check-in.
It was already 12 noon when we got our room key– was a blessing and disguise because of covid-19 otherwise as every savvy traveler knows hotel check-in is always 2pm anywhere in the world and there is no exception when it comes to Iran. We took a quick shower, change our clothes, we went for lunch in a local traditional restaurant in Shiraz called KateMas that serves only local Shirazi cuisine. About seven minutes drive from Aryo Barzan hotel, 15 minutes by foot. But we were so tired and wanted to save our energy for more exciting walks.
It was a bit heavy meal for us and worth our money. Our guide told us KateMas restaurant is highly recommended for tourist who are traveling on a budget but at the same time treating oneself with affordable decent food in Shiraz – the city has to offer coupled with the ambience of Iranian traditions. Satisfied, we went back to our hotel for a hot shower and for a quick nap until four pm.
Our local guide met us at 4:30pm at the hotel lobby then he took us for a ride his 4-seater sedan and started our pre-arranged city tour immediately. Afif Abad was the first in our list, next Eram Garden translated as paradise garden. On our way to Tomb of Hafez and Saadi first, we stopped at Quran Gate for a family photo op then, for a refreshment –a famous locally-made Faloode ice cream means a “frozen noodles” made of starch frozen with sugar and rosewater, served with lime juice and saffron ice cream. I love it. Yummy!
Our first-day Shiraz city tour ending was at Tomb of Hafez about 8pm, from there we head back to our hotel to recharge for long next fun day.
Day Two: Persepolis Palace
After breakfast, our guide drove us Persopolis palace, then we had stuffed chicken (morghe shekampor) for lunch it was recommended by our guide before heading towards Pasargadae. Then another drive to Naghshe Rusam (image of Rustam) with quick bahar narenje (Orange blossom extract water) refreshment at the entrance.
We were back to Shiraz city proper at 7pm, we then did a little shopping, some sweets and souvenir. We were back to our hotel at 8pm. We ended our Pars ancient tour with a walk to the Shapoori Mansion about seven minutes by foot from Aryo Barzan – of course it depends on your pace – how slow/fast your feet are. We enjoy hot chocolate with deliciously baked chocolate-cake there with a very welcoming atmosphere of beauty and the sound of its man-made fountain in the garden. Shapoori House is a good place for a night out – don’t leave shiraz without spending a night there. On our way back to hotel we did a little window shopping, the street was full of street vendors that starts from 9pm to midnight – every night. Finally we got into our room and start packing our things up nicely for the expected check-out next day, thereafter we indulge ourselves in a hot shower, went to bed – recharging for our last fun day in Shiraz.
Day Three: Shiraz Old District Tour
After breakfast, we checked out and let the hotel personnel to take care of our baggage at their safe storage. We started from Nasir – ol-Molk Mosque all the way to Vakil Mosque, Vakil Hammam, Khan-e Zenat Ol-molk, Narenjestan Ghavam, Bazar Vakil, Saray-e-Moshir, until lunch time. That was a half-day.
We were so time-conscious as we have child traveling with us. We decided to have our lunch on the same restaurant which is so convenient for us because of proximity to our hotel.
Aryo Barzan hotel is truly a standard, affordable four star hotel in Shiraz one can find, good location – close to restaurants and fast foods. Also, tourist attractions, museums, grocery store nearby Aryo Barzan hotel can be easily accessed by foot.
We still have time left to tour around the Arg-e Bam Citadel but I just took a photo while sitting in the car because I didn’t want to tire my boy so much.
We spent the remaining half-day in Aryo Barzan’s hotel lobby. My family ordered tea while charging our phones at the hotel lobby – waiting for our transfer to the Shiraz Railway station.
Our train departed from Shiraz at 7:30 pm. Arrived in Tehran at 8am the next morning.
Naufar Ganih is the Chairman of JazireSafar Tour and Travel Services Co., Ltd., based in Tehran, IRAN.