Understand

Yazd is a city in central Iran and the capital of the Yazd province. It is an ancient city dating back to the Sassanian Period (224-651 AD). Yazd is located midway between Isfahan and Kerman, 689 km (427 miles) southeast of Tehran. Yazd is well connected to the rest of the country by planes, trains and buses.

The city of Yazd is unique among Iranian desert cities which although much changed by reconstruction during the 1340s—1960s, but still pre- sents the features of a traditional Iranian city in the Islamic period. In the 1960s, there were still some indications of traditional crafts having survived throughout the ages, commerce, and remarkable skill of craftsmen and the hierarchy of guild organizations.

Investigations show that up to one century ago there were six Zoroastrian quarters in the city of Yazd. The city was famous for having the largest Zoroastrian population. Today these quarters Still survive. Zoroastrian occupations were mainly farming, and they owned cultivated fields. The remains of these areas still exist and constitute the majority of wastelands within their quarters. Altogether, except economic relations, the Zoroastrian community was a closed community, as is evident in the physical structure Of the city.

See

Masjid-e Jame (Friday Mosque), dating back to the fourteenth century, is well worth a visit. It is an example of finest Persian mosaics and excellent architecture. Its minarets are the highest in the country. Admire it at night when it is lit up.

Atashkadeh is the Zoroastrian fire temple. The fire on the inside has supposedly been burning since 470 AD. Entrance is 10.000 rials, visiting hours 8.00-11.30 and 16.30-19.00.

Yazd Tower of silence (Zoroastrian’s Dakhmeh) – the name tower is misleading as they consist of huge circular walls on top of two hills, within those the dead were left to be picked clean by the vultures. This is done in accordance with Zoroastrian belief.

However, the towers are not in use anymore and open to the public. A quiet, serene place. The modern Zoroastrian cemetery is just there as well. Entrance free. To get there using public transport, you can take the bus going south on Imam Khomeini from the bus stop across the street of Amir Chakhmaq Complex. Get down on the last stop end of the line and then from there ask people for another bus going to “Dakhme”, might need to wait a bit and be sure that the people will tell the bus driver to drop you on the correct bus stop, bus tickets should be 1.000 rial each. Once you are off the bus, its a corner of a 4-way intersection and you go right, you will see the towers, its a 10-minute walk.