A welcome retreat from Kashan’s otherwise desert-like dryness, Bagh-e Fin exemplifies the traditional Persian garden and exquisite architecture. Cypress trees line walking paths, and goldfish swim among the coins tossed in the pool by wish-making visitors. The bathhouse, located on the left side of the garden, is the site where Amir Kabir, a chancellor during the Qajar era, was murdered by an assassin. Despite the large crowds on holiday, it’s well worth visiting this epitome of royal Persian gardens.
Bagh-e Eram, a UNESCO-listed garden, is a popular site for tourists and locals alike. Pictures don’t do justice to the myriad of hues from trees and flowers, along with the vibrant mosaics of the three-story pavilion inscribed with the poems of Persian lyric poet Hafez. Water streaming down from the clear fountains adds the finishing touch. Joining the many art students sketching their surroundings, as soon as you step inside this garden, it’s easy to see why it’s called eram, Persian for paradise.
Lying in the remote eastern town of Tabas, Bagh-e Golshan is one of the most breathtaking gardens in Iran. The abundance of water in these parts seems inconceivable, given its location between two salt deserts, but it is sourced from the ancient qanat system that feeds the plentiful date palms, citrus and pomegranate trees, cypresses, roses, and cycads, to name a few. As for fauna, a few pelicans have taken residence in this desert oasis.
After a trek into Kerman’s barren Lut Desert, your eyes will surely be delighted at the inviting sight of Bagh-e Shazdeh, Prince’s Garden, a walled Eden of towering trees and cascading water. Walk up the stairs to the old residence where you can find a traditional restaurant and a spectacular view from the top of the garden. You might even want to stay until nightfall, when the bubbling fountains and entryways are beautifully illuminated.
One of Mashhad’s most treasured parks, Kooh Sangi has something for everyone. In the morning, park-goers come for an invigorating early-morning hike on the rocky mountain for which the park is named, a quick jog around the pool, or energizing group aerobics. The atmosphere turns more relaxing come sunset when visitors enjoy an ice cream and chat, picnic dinners with family, and perhaps some hubble bubble with friends.