Mashhad is a city in northeast Iran, centered on the Holy Shrine of Imam Reza and known as Iran’s spiritual capital. After Tehran, Mashhad is the second biggest city in Iran and receives more than two million pilgrims from abroad every year. Some of Mashhad’s souvenirs are:
- Rock candy
- Silver jewelry
Favorite Tourist Destinations of Mashhad
The Holy Shrine of Imam Reza and many historical and recreational attractions have made Mashhad one of the favorite tourist destinations in Iran. Here are some places to visit while you are in Mashhad:
- Imam Reza Shrine: One of the most glorious and holy buildings of Iran, and the pilgrimage destination for all Muslims. With golden domes and floodlit minarets, it is hard to miss. This complex contains the Goharshad Mosque, a museum, a library, four seminaries, and a cemetery. Imam Reza Shrine also contains seven courtyards (Sahn). From these courtyards, hallways lead to the inner areas of the mosque, called Bast (sanctuary). The Bast hallways lead to 21 internal halls surrounding the burial chamber.
- Goharshad Mosque: This mosque dates back to the 15th-century and is one of the most famous mosques in Iran. This mosque is located next to Imam Reza Holy Shrine. Goharshad mosque includes a courtyard, four porches, seven prayer halls and two minarets with the height of 40 meters.
- Water Waves Land: If you love water and a thrilling experience, this is the place to go. This complex includes a big pool, saunas, Jacuzzi, spa and an artificial wavy beach and many exciting instruments and there is a different hall for ladies. This complex will be fun for the whole family because it also has a kids’ area. Water Waves land is approximately 40 minutes from Imam Reza Shrine.
- Mellat Amusement Park: Containing the biggest carousel in the middle-east, and easily accessed via the subway. This park is one of the biggest and most popular parks in Iran and if you go there you’ll know why. Everyone can have a good time at this place and usually spend up to 3 hours there.
- Koohsangi Park: Koohsangi means stony mountain in Persian and after Mellat amusement park, Koohsangi park is the biggest park in Mashhad. This park also has a restaurant, a pool, and a handicrafts store. Koohsangi park is one the most beautiful parks in Iran. This park is named because there are two rocky mountains located south of Mashhad overlooking the city. This park is most famous for the amazing scenery and nice weather. If you are planning to travel to Mashhad it is highly recommended that you spend a magical evening here.
- Vakilabad Park: Vakilabad park is one of the old and very beautiful locations in Mashhad. The nice weather and the pleasant scenery has made this park a favorite destination for both tourists and townspeople. Also, the only zoo in Mashhad is in Vakilabad park.
- Professor Bazima Scientific Park: Professor Bazima scientific park is the first theme park opened in Iran. Walking in this park is like being in the middle of a scientific book, and learning about the birth of the universe, the cosmos, living creatures, and the human body. This place is an excellent choice if you want to mix fun and education.
- Gonbad Sabz (The green dome): Gonbad Sabz is named after its green dome and dates back to the Safavid period. This landmark is the tomb of scholar Momen Mashhadi and it is a very pretty sight in the middle of the city.
- Haft Hoz Tourism Zone: Haft Hoz (‘Seven Ponds’ in English) is among breathtaking natural attractions of Mashhad. It's located at the heart of a mountain about 9 kilometers from the city. This region contains seven natural ponds formed by erosion and will give you an amazing peace with the relaxing sounds of water streams.
- Chalidarreh Tourist Complex: This complex is approximately 30 minutes away from Mashhad and is one of the most important tourist zones of the city. Chalidarreh complex includes restaurants, pedal boats, telesiyej, telecabine, and bungee jumping.
- Shandiz: Many people visit here for the tall trees and wildflowers. Apart from the amazing sights, you should definitely visit the restaurants there for the famous Shashlik kabab.
- Kong Village: This historical village is about 30 kilometers away from Mashhad and dates back to before Islam. It is located on the hillside of Mount Binalud and it's unique in terms of architectural structure and beauty. Also, there are many fruit trees and herbal medicines in this village including cherry and sour cherry trees.
- Babaghodrat Caravanserai: Babaghodrat tourism complex dates back to the Qajar period and includes a traditional teahouse, restaurant, and a market.
- Tomb of Ferdowsi: Ferdowsi was a Persian poet and Shahnameh’s author. (Shahname means the book of kings in Persian.). Ferdowsi is the most influential figure in Persian literature. Ferdowsi’s tomb is located in Tus, which is approximately 50 minutes away from Mashhad. It was built in the early 1930s by the order of Reza Shah to honor Ferdowsi and his contributions.