Iran, the land of Ayatollahs, economic sanctions, and the highest global rate of nose jobs! No country in the world is so wildly misunderstood (or misrepresented) in the international community, and after two months and thousands of kilometres it was a struggle to urge myself to cross the border into Turkmenistan. I’m one of those lucky sods who have been able to travel to over a quarter of the world’s countries, and I must say Iran just about tops them all; true there are many fascinating historical and cultural sights, but it’s the incredible people that I met along the way that have driven me to fall in love with Persia.
I arrived into Iran at the best time of year; the snow had (just about) gone, and by the time I tackled the mountains to reach Tabriz the Persian New Year was in full swing. During the ten day Iranian holiday families seem to spend their time going on roadtrips throughout the country; the result is elaborate lunch and dinner breaks on the roadside shared with any smelly cyclist who happens to pedal past!