When it comes to Tehran people mostly have a false picture of traffic and chaos. However, these are not the only things the capital of Iran presents. The bustling metropolis of Tehran has its own mesmerizing charm. Tehran is underrated as a destination for tourists but the city has a lot to show you. Here’s the list of only 10 top attractions in Tehran, all reflecting a huge part of the history and culture of Iran.
The Grand Bazaar
When you ask people where to visit while visiting Tehran, with no doubt you will hear the answer “The Grand Bazaar”. Situated in the heart of the city, you can see the 200 years old maze of bustling alleys. You can literally find everything in this must-see attraction in Tehran. From Pots and pans and spices to jewelry, nuts, and carpets. This commercial center is overflowing with a history that you can live in within every crowded corner of this bazaar.
There are several entrances to this 10km lane bazaar. However, the best one is the main entrance facing Sabzeh Meydan Square. The best time to visit this attraction is in the mornings to see the liveliness of people shopping and shopkeepers’ excitement to sell their goods. After spending hours wandering in this lively atmosphere covered bazaar, you can head to one of the most famous restaurants in Tehran, Moslem, located near the Grand Bazaar and invite yourself to an amazing lunch to take out the tiredness of walking in the Bazaar.
National Museum of Iran – An Exhibition of Iran’s History
The National Museum of Iran is filled with an impressive range of treasures and objects from the 30,000 years of human habitation in Iran. The museum features items coming from the heart of every history in Iran, from Stone Age tools to primitive art, from items of Persepolis to coins and pottery. The building itself has an interesting modern architecture with some signs from the Sassanid era. Designed in the early 20th century by Andre Godard, this institution is formed of two complexes, the Museum of Ancient Iran and the Museum of Islamic Archeology and Art of Iran.
The National Museum of Iran contains about 300000 museum objects, which makes it one of the few most prestigious museums of the world in regard to grand volume, diversity, and quality of its huge monuments. Known as the “Mother of Museums in Iran”, you’ll get to see colorful glazed tiles decorated with double-winged mythical creatures of Apadana Palace, the winged lion, and a famous trilingual inscription from the time of Darius I. However, the history of Persepolis is only a small part of the exhibits of this museum. After you are done traveling in history, invite yourself to a cup of Persian tea in the cafe located in the garden.
Milad Tower – How’s the View Up There?
The Milad Tower is one of the most iconic attractions in Tehran with an impressive 435 meters high (1,500 feet), making it the sixth tallest tower in the world. Go up high to its restaurant and enjoy the view of the metropolis after wandering in different floors of the tower.
Golestan Palace – UNESCO Site of Tehran
Just a few minutes away from the Grand Bazaar, you will find the magnificent Golestan Palace, the 19th-century Qajar royal residence. The palace complex consists of 17 structures in total, including reception halls, museums, throne rooms and royal quarters, and an enchanting garden too.
The complex was first home to the Safavid dynasty, but then the Qajar rulers constructed it the way it is right now. Although some parts of the palace date back to the residence of the Zand dynasty. Naser al-Din Shah was a traveler eager to visit Europe, and when he came back he had a lot of ideas to make this palace even more splendid than it was. Now you have the luck to see all those impressions on an awe-standing UNESCO world heritage site.
Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art
As you walk in the garden, surrounded by sculptures, you have to walk down a swirling walkway. It leads you to the nine major galleries, home of contemporary artists. The Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art has the most considerable collection of artworks in Iran. The building of this must-see museum, built-in 1977, is a phenomenal modernist structure and an ideal place for art lovers to meet. The museum’s impressive collection boasts works by Picasso, Van Gogh, Dali, Pollock, Monet, Munch, and Moore among many other familiar names. Unfortunately, they are not always on display but there are still lots of interesting art exhibitions and also events such as movie watching and performance art.
Treasury of National Jewels
You will probably think what is the point of visiting a museum full of jewels. However, this one is no ordinary museum as the name presents it is the Treasury of National Jewels. You get to see the national jewels of Iran such as the 200-year-old precious stone-encrusted throne (Takht-e Tavoos), the world’s largest pink diamond, a gem-studded 1869 globe, and also a glorious collection of jewels from all around the world. Words come short for writing the beauty they reflect. That is the reason why you should just visit the treasury of the Persian empire and see it with your bare eyes.
Tabiat Bridge – Not Just a Connection Between Two Parks
In the surroundings of the skyscrapers and tall buildings of Tehran, and in the middle of Taleghani Forest Park and Ab-o-Atash Park, you get to see a bridge. Not just a simple one but one that has turned to one of the top attractions in Tehran. Tabiat Bridge, literally meaning Nature Bridge, offers you a walk from one of the mentioned parks to the beautifully designed bridge for a nice afternoon walk.
While walking on the Tabiat Bridge you get to see a different view from Tehran, a wonderful one. You get to see the beautiful views of colored trees, people coming with their friends and families to escape from the chaos of the metropolis. In the end, you can enjoy a nice meal in the food court of this top attraction.
A Fresh Nightlife Attraction in Tehran – Darband
One of the well-known attractions in Tehran is Darband. Going uphill the busy streets of Tehran, put behind the traffic, pollution, and chaos to feel the calmness of a different nightlife in Darband. You can either take a hike and go up as far as you can or just relax in the first traditional terraced restaurant you see on the way for a sip of tea or a nice Persian meal. Take in the fresh air and enjoy the steep and winding roads.
Saadabad Complex: A Collection of Mansions and Palaces
Situated in the refreshing foothills of Mount Tochal and the must-see Darband in the Northern part of Tehran stands the historical and cultural palace of Saadabad. A great complex built by Qajar rulers and then completed by Pahlavi Shah. Among 18 palaces built in this complex, make sure to visit the Grand Palace. This palace was the residence of Reza Shah Pahlavi and Mohammad Reza Shah afterward. You will be amazed by the architecture and beauty of this palace.
Enjoy the magnificent garden, palaces, and museums representing the history of Iran. Don’t forget to take pictures since the garden of the Saadabad Complex is a suitable place for photography. This top Tehran attraction includes natural forests, Qantas, palaces, and museums. So if you are planning to see every part of this great place you have to visit more than just one day.
Mount Tochal: Top Attraction in Tehran for Snow Lovers
From the foothills of Mount Tochal, you can feel the fresh air, calling you for an adventure. Once you reach the top, the weather gets perfect for skiing. You will see friends and families playing on the slopes, laughing, and enjoying their time in the snows of this top attraction. You can hike or you can simply use a telecabin to get to the ski resort. Get your warm clothes and get ready for a whole different day of your trip in Tehran.