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Bandar Abbas/Iran

Introducing Bandar Abbas

Though founded by and named for one of Persia’s greatest kings, Shah Abbas I, the bustling ‘Port of Abbas’ is short on both historical features and charisma these days. Strategically positioned overlooking the Strait of Hormoz and the entrance to the Persian Gulf, the city, known to most Iranians simply as ‘Bandar’, is the capital of Hormozgan province and home to Iran’s busiest port but doesn’t have much to offer the foreign visitor – we only include it as a transport hub for Qeshm and Hormoz.

Smuggling is big business here – everything from cars to carpets circumnavigates the customs inspectors in these parts. Needless to say, if you’re walking along the seafront at night and notice boxes being hurriedly unloaded from a dark-coloured speedboat, resist the temptation to offer to help with the haulage.