Resources

Lonely Planet (www.lonelyplanet.com/iran) Destination information, hotel bookings, traveller forum and more.

Iran Tourism & Touring Online (www.itto.org) As close as Iran comes to a tourism website with some informative links.

Easypersian (www.easypersian.com) Learn some Farsi.

Iran Chamber Society (www.iranchamber.com) Good for high-level coverage of the arts.

Tehran Times (www.tehrantimes.com) Iran's English-language news site and newspaper.

See You In Iran (www.facebook.com/SeeYouinIran/) Worth signing up to this FB group posting all kinds of useful stuff for Iran travellers.

Top Tips

  • Start planning your trip (including visa application process) well in advance of your visit.
  • Don't be too ambitious – Iran is a big place, and trying to see everything can lead to frustration.
  • Avoid travelling roads at night – traffic is dangerous at the best of times but can be deadly after dark.
  • Learn some Farsi before you go – a sure way to make local friends.
  • Take some small gifts from home to repay the many small acts of kindness and hospitality you're likely to receive while in Iran.
  • Take the time greet people you meet – greetings are important to Iranians and launching into conversation without a greeting is considered rude.

What to Take

  • Farsi phrasebook
  • Some pictures of your family to better communicate with your new Iranian friends
  • Sturdy walking shoes
  • Warm clothes in winter
  • Hat, sunglasses and sunscreen
  • Water bottle
  • Electrical adapter (European, two round-pin type)
  • Small gifts from home for new friends

What to Wear

Few questions occupy the minds of first-time female visitors to Iran quite like the question of what to wear. Like all females aged nine and older, women travellers will need to wear hejab while in Iran. That means covering hair, arms and legs and wearing clothes that disguise your body shape when in public. Bring something long and loose from home and, if you want to look less like a tourist, shop for a manteau (an overcoat that covers your bottom, at least) once you arrive. Ditto for scarves, which will require constant attention lest you expose too much hair. As for men, the main dress restrictions are that you shouldn’t wear shorts, or singlets that show your shoulders.

Pre-Departure Checklist

  • Make sure your passport is valid for at least six months past your arrival date.
  • Arrange for appropriate travel insurance.
  • Check government travel warnings and make sure you're not travelling to any areas that will void your insurance.
  • Check if you can use your mobile/cell phone.