In the current issue of Better Photography, Richard I'Anson talks all about Iran as one of his favourite destinations, and while we might not be travelling in the immediate future, isn't it great to do some planning!
Writes Richard, "If the only things you’ve heard about Iran are from the western news media, you may be surprised to know that I rate it as one of the most remarkable, friendliest and photogenic destinations in the world. And I am yet to meet anyone who has visited Iran who doesn’t agree. There is a massive disconnect between the international politics we are exposed to through western media and what it is actually like to visit the country as a tourist.
"The friendliness and hospitality of the Iranian people is beyond compare. I was repeatedly welcomed to the country and it was made clear I was a valued guest, offered tea, food and invited to dinner on numerous occasions. In fact, it was an invitation that remained standing when I explained I had a group of twelve others with me!
"The issue of safety becomes a non-issue as soon as you arrive and your taxi driver welcomes you to Iran. Ironically, one of the only times you may feel in danger is when the same taxi driver sets about getting you to your hotel in the speediest way possible, disregarding other vehicles, road signs and lanes.
"For many, this positive view is the first of many surprises regarding Iran as a destination. I have only visited twice, leading photography tours in 2016 and 2017. The first trip was to central Iran visiting many of the highlights of Persia’s past glories, including Shiraz, Esfahan, ancient Persepolis, Kashan and Yazd.
"The second trip took me to the north and west of the country, taking in lesser known and more rural places including the Castles of the Assassins in the Alborz Mountains, the stepped village of Masuleh and the troglodytes of Kandovan, before travelling overland to Armenia and Georgia. However, these trips provided an exciting and diverse range of subject matter."
Subscribe to Better Photography and you can read all about his favourite places in Iran, to satisfy both the traveller and photographer. Visit www.betterphotographyeducation.com.