Sunday, April 1, 2012

Cliché Map of Iran

This is a jokeful map of Iran, according to the first thing Iranians think of when they hear the name of a special place in Iran. The original picture was in Persian and said "Iran according to the belief of the people of Tehran" but I changed the title and expanded it from the people of Tehran's viewpoint to all Iranians, because I'm sure people of other cities think the same. I erased the Persian words on the map and replaced them with English so everyone can read them.

I'll explain each part for you:

Azeris: It refers to the provinces West Azerbaijan and East Azerbaijan in north west Iran. The residents of this part of Iran are Azeris. They speak Azeri but they know Persian as well. Common name for them is Turks but the more correct term is Azeri. Not to be mistaken with Turks in Turkey. Tabriz, in West Azerbaijan has really delicious food. The all restaurants I ate in this city never disappointed me. The other souvenirs are refreshments, carpet and leather. The leather bags and shoes I saw in an exhibition when I was there, made me realised why Tabriz leather is so famous.

Kurds and Lors: The two other Iranian ethnicities i.e. the Kurds and the Lors live in the West of Iran in two separate provinces called Kurdistan and Lorestan. The Kurds speak Kurdish language and The Lors speak Lori language. Like Azeris they know Persian language as well. Lorestan was invaded and settled by the Iranian Medes in the 2nd millennium BC. Lori language is very close to Persian. Kurdistan is one of the most mountainous regions in Iran and has a generally mild and quite pleasant climate throughout the spring and summer. Winters are long and can be very cold with heavy snowfalls.

Oil: Refers to the Southern provinces which have oil wells. Provinces like Bushehr and Khuzestan.
 Bushehr is one of the important ports in Persian Gulf which has an international airport, and highways connect the city to Ahvaz to the northwest and Shiraz to the northeast. A secondary coastal road links Bushehr to Bandar-e Abbas to the southeast. The old section of central Bushehr has many examples of traditional Persian Gulf architecture from the period 1870 to 1920.

Persian Gulf: Well there is a gulf and a sea in the south of Iran, but when Iranians think of southern waters mostly the first thing coming to their mind is Persian Gulf. The other sea in the east however is not Persian Gulf and it's called Omman Sea. And Iranians know it! Persian Gulf is renowned for its blue crystal water, and coral reefs. There's a beautiful island in there called Kish, and is a nice tourist attraction.

Danger: OK, this province is called Sistan and Baluchestan. The Baluch ethnicity live here. There have been some bombings and kidnapping over there unfortuantely, that's why people of other areas feel it's not a very safe area. Though it has its own beauty and history and culture. People over there have a tribal system, so each person belongs to a tribe and is known by his/her last name from which tribe they come. The area has borders with Pakistan, and the clothes of people over there fairly resembles the clothes of Pakistani people. The main product of Sistan is dates. The crafts include straw crafts, silk patterns, and pottery.
Imam Reza: The Khorasan province, the city of Mashad is the place fomous for the Imam Reza's Shrine, the eighth Imam for Shiite Muslims. Not only each years thousands of pilgrims from different cities in Iran come over there, but there are pilgrims from neighbouring countries as well. If you didn't know, the dome of this shrine has been made of gold. Khorasan is also the place where the famous Iranian poet Ferdowsi has been born. He contributed greatly to Persian language single-handedly with his book Shahname (Book of the Kings).

The North: The two provinces Gilan and Mazandaran near the Caspian Sea is simply called the North by Iranians, and are good places for holidays, especially the Mazandaran province which has the seaside. There are so many villas in this area, welcoming every Iranian new year holiday many travellers from all over Iran, especially the people of Tehran, because Tehran is very close to the North, by car it's about only 3-4 hours drive.

Iran (!!!): Tehran the metropolitan giant capital, is famous for life facilities, job opportunities, hospitals, recreation centres, shopping places, etc. So it's like the whole Iran is summarised in this mega city. Tehran's air is very polluted, and with about 12 million population you can say it's over crowded. Traffic can be a real murderer in this city. No matter what, at nights it is beautiful. Tehran's nights are actually famous. Neighbouring Alburz mountains, the people of Tehran enjoy going to darband there.

Clerics: Cleric in Persian is called Rowhani, and informally Akhoond. Clerics in Iran look like this. By oclerics on the map it means Qom province, famous for its seminary school called Hozeh Elmyie Qom (Hawza), for Islamic studies, especially Shiite studies, and educate young clerics. Those who complete their education in a very higher degree are called Ayatollah, a high rank among clerics. Qom is a highly religious city, and nearly all women wear chador. Qom is also famous for Hazrat Masoome's Shrine, she was Imam Reza's sister.

Desert: The two provinces Yazd and Kerman, have two of the greatest deserts of the world in themselves: Loot Desert and Markazi Desert, with great landscapes. These two provinces have beautiful oases, tasty pastries and very hospitable people (like people in other places).

Art, history, poetry: Refers to Isfahan and Shiraz, cities of famous Persian poems like Hafez and Sa'di, magnaimous archtechture and rich historical places.

This was a cliché map of Iran, but by now you know more about Iran by it.


Anonymous said...

I love this! By far the best explanation of the country.

Mercedé K said...


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