Tabriz, one of the historical cities of Iran, is a great tourism hub in the northwest of the country. It has always been considered as one of the most important centers of trade and commerce of West Asia during the past centuries. And it is all due to its privileged geographical and historical position and being a stop on the Silk Road. The beautiful nature, the extraordinary mountains of Tabriz, the city itself, and its surrounding areas are among the tourist destinations of Azerbaijan Province. You can see the rich cultural heritage of this city in the mosques, churches, and remarkable castles of this fascinating city. So join us to know about the top things you can do in Tabriz.
The Historical Beauties to Explore in Tabriz
1. Tabriz Grand Bazaar
Tabriz Bazaar, with a length of about one kilometer, is the largest indoor market in the world, which has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List since August 2010. This bazaar went up in flames and burnt into the ground in 1779 after an earthquake. But it did not take long for the master architects to renovate it. The current bazaar dates back to the late Zandi and Qajar eras.
What you see in this bazaar is an excellent combination of Islamic and Eastern architecture. You can see it in its beautifully-built arches and high domes. You can also marvel at the interconnected brick structures, the arrangement of shops, the perfectly designed brick-vaulted ceilings, and a large number of schools and mosques located next to the shops. This bazaar reaches Aliaqapo on the east, the Grand Mosque on the west, and parts of the Mehranrud River on the north.
*Address: Jomhuri Eslami Street
2. Kaboud Mosque or Blue Mosque
People knew this mosque with many different names such as the Guy Machid (in Turkish it is the same as Blue Mosque), Shah Jahan Mosque, and Mozaffariyeh Mosque. The Blue Mosque was originally part of a larger architectural complex, Mozaffariyeh. This complex consisted of a mosque, a monastery, a courtyard, a library, and other parts. However, now, of all these parts only the ruins of a mosque remain.
Kaboud Mosque has been severely damaged due to the earthquake in 1780. Its domes have collapsed. Although today there is nothing left of this building except the entrance and a few pedestals. However, this small remnant is a testament to the splendor and beauty of this mosque from the days they erected it in 1465, by the order of Jahan Shah (the King of Kara Koyunlu).
*Address: Imam Khomeini St., before Clock Square
3. Arg-e Alishah in Tabriz
700-year-old Alishah Citadel (Arg) is one of the tallest and oldest historical walls in the country and also one of the most important sights of Tabriz. According to the quotations and notes of historical tourists, who had seen the glory days of the citadel, Alishah Citadel was the only high-rise building in Tabriz that you could see even from afar. This unique complex was originally built as a huge mosque, which has been largely destroyed by the passage of time, as well as the city’s numerous earthquakes (about 40) and wars. Currently, the only surviving part of the building is a high wall.
Between the years 1318 and 1339 Alishah, the king of the time, ordered to build a large tomb in the courtyard of the Alisha Mosque. With the collapse of the roof during the construction and the death of the king, they stopped the construction at the time. This complex has had different uses in different periods. For example, during the Qajar dynasty, this mosque and its surroundings became a granary and a military ammunition depot. And therefore, they built a fence around it, and for this reason, from then on, they decided to call it Arg-e Alishah.
*Address: Tabriz, Imam Street, Shariati Crossroads, towards Saat (Clock) Square, next to Imam Mosque
4. Tabriz Jameh Mosque
Tabriz Grand Mosque, Juma Mosque, and Kabiri Grand Mosque all refer to the same mosque! This mosque is one of the oldest mansions in Tabriz. The building is inside the Grand Bazaar. In fact, the bazaar surrounds it. According to available historical documents, this beautiful and magnificent mosque dates back to the reign of the Seljuk kings (1037-1194). Unfortunately, due to the earthquake, it was damaged a lot.
Of course, sometime after the earthquake and coinciding with the beginning of the Qajar dynasty, Husseingholi Khan Danbali, one of the rulers of Tabriz, restored and rebuilt this ancient mosque. However, the tall arches and very large bricks in its structure, as well as the thick foundations of the mosque, clearly show the long history and very old age of this ancient Iranian mosque.
*Address: Tabriz, Shahid Motahari St., end of Tabriz Bazaar, the southern part of the courtyard of Talebieh School and between Hojjatoleslam Mosque and Mirza Ismail Khaleh Oghla Mosque
5. Shah Goli or El-Goli Park
El-Goli is one of the most important promenades of the city. It is in the southeast of Tabriz, seven kilometers from the city center. This park has become one of the symbols of the city. In fact, first, it was just an artificial lake belonging to the Aq Quyunlus time. And then, it expanded during the Safavid period (1501-1736). Before the Safavids came to power, this lake was the largest source of water storage for irrigating the eastern gardens of Tabriz. In winter, the water of the lake freezes and gives a different view of its surroundings. During this time, the fish that live there can not reach the upper part of the water. And as a result, their growth process becomes slower.
In the middle of this lake, there is a mansion, El Goli Palace. The palace is an octagonal two-floor building that is currently a restaurant. There is a path in the middle of El Goli lake that leads to the building. The depth of Shah Goli Lake is about 12 meters and it is possible to do boating. There are also numerous amusement parks, restaurants, fast food, and coffee shops inside the promenade.
*Address: Tabriz, South Bypass of Tabriz Freeway, El Goli Metro Station
6. Kandovan Rocky Village
Kandovan is one of the villages of East Azarbaijan province (60 km southwest of Tabriz), in the city of Osko. This rocky village dates back to seven thousand years ago. And it owes most of its fame to the houses that the ancestors of the locals have dug in the form of beehives in the heart of the rocks. It is interesting that still, over 117 families live within these rocky houses. The inhabitants engage in rural occupations such as agriculture, animal husbandry, and handicraft production. This village has been on Iran’s National Heritage List due to its special architecture and texture.
One of the awesome points about this natural miracle is that Kandovan village has been formed as a result of the volcanic activities of Sahand mountain and other volcanic mountains in the region. For thousands of years, these natural forces have created these unique structures in one of the freshest and nicest areas of the province.
7. Monastery of Saint Stepanos
There is a very large Armenian community in Tabriz and Azerbaijan, which is why there are several churches in the region. Some of these churches are located in Tabriz city. But just an hour and a half away, in Julfa, you will reach a very famous church. Monastery of Saint Stepanos, or St. Stephen’s Church, is the second most important Armenian church in Iran, after Saint Thaddeus Cathedral. This building is located in East Azarbaijan province, 17 km west of Jolfa City and 3 km away from the south bank of the Aras River. It is located in a place that they call “Ghezel Vank” (Red Monastery). It has been on Iran’s National Heritage List since 1972.
According to the architectural style of the building, the materials, and its detailed and beautiful decorations, the experts estimate that this building belongs to the tenth to the twelfth century. However, due to the earthquake, it went through serious damages. Fortunately, they had it repaired during the Safavid period.
It is amazing that the church and its surroundings are right in the heart of the mountains. Somewhere among the green nature of the border region of Julfa and the Republic of Azerbaijan.
8. Tabriz Hariree House
Hariree House is one of the sights of Tabriz that survives from the Qajar era. One of the members of the Hariree family built this house. This beautiful building is 2500 square meters. And if you add the surroundings it is about 4500 square meters. Many of its rooms have colorful windows and miniature paintings plus unique architecture. Hariree House in Tabriz has been on Iran’s National Heritage List since 1998 and is now open to the public.
*Address: Tabriz, Tarbiat St., Noor Hashemi Alley
9. Tabriz Catholic Church
The Catholic Church was built for the Catholic Christians of Iran in 1912. The Catholic Church has a brick facade and a bell on the balcony. This building is one of the religious sights of Tabriz for Christians and it is one of the greatest churches of Iran.
*Address: Tabriz, Shariati St., Miar Miar Alley
10. Constitution House of Tabriz
Undoubtedly, one of the most important and beautiful sights of Tabriz is the Constitutional House, which belongs to Haj Mehdi Koozekanani. He ordered to build this building, during the Qajar era, for the gathering of constitutional leaders and people. You can see the Qajar architecture all over the place. Today, the building is the Constitutional Museum. And there are the statue of many constitutional leaders and their special equipment in it. One of the most important objects in this museum is Sattar Khan‘s weapon.
*Address: Tabriz, West of Tabriz Grand Bazaar
11. Pineh Shalvar Historical Cemetery
The oldest cemetery around the city of Tabriz is the historical cemetery of Pineh Shalvar, which dates back to pre-Islamic times. This cemetery is at the foot of Sahand Mountain and is famous for its strange tombstones.
All tombstones are of granite, which there are lots of it in Sahand Mountain. The hard material of the granite stone is such that even after centuries, it does not suffer much erosion.
*Address: Tabriz, the Mashayekh village
12. Seyyed Jamal Shrine in Tabriz
One of the religious sights of Tabriz is Imamzadeh Jamal, which people know by the names of Imamzadeh Kohneh, Imamzadeh Musa, and Sahib Togh. This Imamzadeh is one of the sons of Imam Musa Kazem and his tomb is located under a beautiful tall dome. There are also several other tombs of famous and religious people under the same dome.
*Address: Tabriz, Palestine Street, Hajat Mosque
13. Soleymaniyeh Mosque in Tabriz
This mosque is the only remnant of the Chobanids that ruled Tabriz and its surrounding areas for 5 years in the 13th century. The ruler of the Chobanids named this mosque Sulaimaniyah, but the people of Tabriz were not interested in them that’s why they changed its name to Ostad And Shagerd Mosque, later on. Literally, Ostad means Master and Shagerd means student.
*Address: Tabriz, the intersection of Ferdowsi Street and Amin Street
Museums and Tombs in Tabriz
14. Azerbaijan Museum
Azerbaijan Museum is one of the most important museums in Iran. It is the second archeological museum in the country after the Iran National Museum. The museum is 2400 square meters and has three floors plus a theater on each floor, several office rooms, and a library.
There are historical and artistic works in the museum, belonging to the pre-Islamic and Islamic eras. At present, this museum has an important and valuable treasure containing twelve thousand pieces of antiques and art objects. 2300 pieces of them have been registered. Due to lack of space, a limited part of these works is on display in different parts of the museum.
On the ground floor of the Azerbaijan Museum, you can find historical artifacts from the prehistoric and pre-Islamic periods. Moreover, the 7,000-years-old pottery of Ismailabad Hill is one of the most ancient artifacts in this section. On the first floor, along with the relics of the ancient civilizations of Iran, there are objects left over from the civilization in the fourth century AH. You can figure out these Neishabouri objects by their white glaze with Islamic motifs and Kufic calligraphy.
*Address: Imam Street, next to Kaboud Mosque
15. Maqbarat-o-Shoara or The Mausoleum of Poets
Maqbarat-o-Shoara is one of the historic cemeteries of Tabriz in the Sorkhab neighborhood. More than 400 famous poets, mystics, and dignitaries of Iran have been buried here since 800 years ago. Hakim Asadi Tusi was the first one to find peace in this place and Ustad Shahriyar was the last. In fact, Tabriz, after becoming the center of the Atabakan government of Azerbaijan (1136-1225), became a refuge for poets who sought a peaceful and comfortable life away from war and conflict.
Maqbarat-o-Shoara of Tabriz is a combination of traditional and modern architecture. And welcomes one million domestic and foreign tourists every year during the Nowruz holidays.
*Address: Siqat al-Islam and Aref streets intersection, on the eastern side of the Seyyed Hamza Shrine.
16. Tabriz Qajar Museum
The museum building, in the Sheshgalan neighborhood, was Amir Nezam Grroosi’s house. Qajar Museum was officially launched in 2006. Amir Nezam Grroosi built his house during the reign of Nasser al-Din Shah. Its architecture is truly unique in its kind. So by visiting this museum, in addition to seeing historical objects, you can also see the beautiful structure of the house.
*Address: Tabriz, Sheshgalan Street, next to the Department of Industry and Mining
17. Tabriz Iron Age Museum
The Iron Age Museum in Tabriz is the first desert museum in Iran. This museum is, in fact, the site of archeological excavations in which several tombs and human skeletons related to the Iron Age were discovered in 1997. Finally, in 2006, they could prepare suitable conditions for the maintenance of this archeological site, which led to opening it as the Iron Age Museum of Tabriz.
*Address: Tabriz, Khaghani St., Roshnaei St., next to Kaboud Parking
18. Tabriz Pottery Museum
Tabriz Pottery House belongs to the Qajar period and the Sarraflar family. In this complex, in addition to a magnificent historical house, you can see the pottery works of the country’s prominent masters. And you will also learn about the steps of making pottery.
*Address: Tabriz, Shams Tabrizi St., Garou Station, Sarraflar Alley, No. 100
19. Tabriz Municipality Palace, Sa’at Tower
Tabriz Municipality Palace is a building constructed in 1939 on the site of the abandoned cemetery of Nobar Alley. This building was the main headquarters of Tabriz Municipality or the so-called Baladieh. It has very beautiful and special architecture. In 2007, on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the first municipality of Iran and Tabriz, this Municipality Palace was reopened as an urban museum. There is also a big clock (Sa’at) on this tower that’s why they call it Sa’at tower, as well.
*Address: Tabriz, Imam Khomeini St., Saat Square, Municipality Building
20. Tabriz Armenian Museum
One of the most famous sights of Tabriz belongs to the remnants of Azerbaijani Armenians. The Caliphate Council of Azerbaijan manages this place which is full of valuable artifacts. The inlaid chair, which was made for the Archbishop in Armenia in 1728, due to some circumstances was transferred to the Tabriz Holy Church. Now, this chair is in the Armenian Museum of Tabriz along with other valuable and historical objects.
*Address: Tabriz, Shariati crossroads, next to Chehelston Mall
21. Tabriz Natural History Museum
Natural History Museum of Tabriz is the most important and complete collection of natural works. This museum was established in 1993. It houses the taxidermy of animals, birds, grazers, and insects that live in the region of Azerbaijan and Iran. Next to the taxidermy statues, there are paintings and decorations that show the natural habitat of these animals.
*Address: Tabriz, Azadi St., East Azerbaijan General Department of Environment
Nature and Natural Beauties in Tabriz
22 . Aladaq lar Mountains or Rainbow Mountains of Tabriz
On the way from Zanjan to Tabriz, there are interesting mountain ranges in red, green, orange, and yellow created by Mother Nature. They call this outstanding piece of art the Aladaq Lar Mountains. Of course, they are different from the mountain range of the same name in Turkey. Probably millions of years of compaction and oxidation of minerals and sandstones have happened and turned these amazing mountains into a big cake with colorful layers.
Near the city of Bostanabad and about 60 km outside of Tabriz, a stunningly beautiful view of the Aladagh Lar Mountains begins that will amaze you. This is the best place to stop and set up a picnic rack. You feel like you have gone to another planet and you are walking on Mars.
Sometimes waterways flow between these mountains and the beautiful reflection of these mountains in the water creates one of the most amazing images of nature you’ve ever seen. The villages amid these mountains have given them a more beautiful look. and surprisingly, the houses of these villages are as colorful as the soil of these mountains.
You can visit the rainbow mountains all year round. Of course, you will encounter special effects at any time, because these mountains have a special color in the sun, in autumn and winter, in rain and snow. They will offer you a different wonderful image in any condition.
23. Sahand Mountain and Its Ski Resort
Sahand Mountain with a height of 3707 meters, is one of the highest mountains in Azerbaijan. Interestingly, it is one of the most important dormant volcanic mountains in Iran and one of the tourist attractions of Tabriz. The slopes of Sahand are covered with basil and tulips in warmer seasons and that’s why they call it the bride of the mountains of Iran. In the gorges of this mountain range, water-rich rivers flow. And they pour to the two main reservoirs of Azerbaijan, Lake Urmia, and the Ghezel Ozan valley.
Sahand ski resort is one of the sights of Tabriz in East Azarbaijan province. It is also the largest ski resort in the northwest of the country. The resort has facilities such as cable cabins, ski schools, snowplows, 12 lifts, hotels, and sports facilities along the way.
*Ski Resort Address: The southeast of Tabriz, 27 km away from the Tabriz-Tehran highway police station, about 20 minutes away from the city of Tabriz
24. Eskandar Waterfall in Tabriz
Eskandar Waterfall or Malek Kian Waterfall is one of the natural attractions and sights of Tabriz, which is suitable for rock climbing in spring and summer and ice climbing in autumn and winter. The height of this waterfall is 30 meters. And unfortunately, there are no amenities around it, but it is a good destination for nature lovers, especially professional rock climbers. In winter, be sure to go to Alexander’s waterfall with a professional leader, because snow and ice create dangerous conditions.
*Addresss: Tabriz-Ahar road, Taviqoon village
25. Gum Tappeh of Tabriz
Gum Tappeh or Qom Tappeh is the only desert in the region of Azerbaijan. By traveling to Qom Tappeh, you can have the same experiences of being in the central deserts of Iran. This area is about 6 square kilometers and consists of sand dunes. These sand dunes get hotter and hotter in the middle of the day under the scorching sun. There are also camels in the nearby village of this desert. Qom Tappeh is one of the unexpected natural attractions and sights of Tabriz.
*Address: Northwest of Tabriz, Sufi region
26. Tabriz Kental National Park
Kental National Park is close to the Armenian-Iranian border. It covers an area of about 7,000 hectares. This forest park is home to 350 species of animals and a variety of flora. To travel to this hot tourist spot, you will need professional leaders. Because there are wild animals such as bears and boars in the area. Kental National Park is mountainous and forested and is one of the most important and pristine natural attractions of Tabriz.
*Address: East Azerbaijan, Julfa
27. Arasbaran Forests of Tabriz
Arasbaran forest is known as the heart of Iran’s wildlife. You can find the vast forests of Arasbaran on the border of Iran and Armenia with fresh mountain air. Many nature lovers and tourists travel to these forests in the spring and summer and settle in camps or nomadic resorts. Make sure you visit the area with the help of professional leaders, as there is always the risk of facing wildlife or getting lost.
*Address: East Azerbaijan, Kalibar
28. Eynali Mountain and Tabriz Cable Car
Eynali Mountain or Eynali promenade is one of the highest peaks of the city and sights of Tabriz. It’s been several years, that they set up the cable cars on this mountain. From above, you can see the whole view of Tabriz. This area is great for climbing and watching the sunset. There is also an artificial lake called Daq Goli, which adds to the beauty of nature and the red mountains. “Goli” means lake in Turkish. In this tourist area, there is a tomb belonging to Aoun Ibn Ali. According to the local people, two of the sons of Imam Ali, Aoun, and Zayd are buried there. The locals went there for pilgrimage long before it became a tourist site.
*Address: Tabriz, Pasdaran Highway
Thank you for joining us on this trip to learn about the top things to do in Tabriz. I hope you liked it. If yes please let us know in the comments. And in case you wish for more information or you would like to book a tour with Tappersia you can reach us via the contact information below the same page.
Tabriz, East Azerbaijan Province, Iran
Tabriz, East Azerbaijan Province, Iran
Ardabil Province, Iran
Kandovan Rocky Village
Tabriz, East Azerbaijan Province, Iran
Meshkin Shahr, Ardabil Province, Iran