I grew up in shiraz شیراز , a historical and beautiful city in center/south of Iran. Of course as a child, never realized the extent of all the wonderful things I was surrounded with. As an adult, I feel lucky and privileged to have grown up in shiraz شیراز.
Here are only some of the reasons why I feel this way:
Weather in Shiraz
Shiraz is considered the city of love, poetry, and flowers. One of the main reasons is its exceptionally pleasant weather. Although you experience the four seasons, it never gets too cold nor too hot, at least not enough to bother you. It seems as if the sun hit this city just the right amount to allow the human body keeping the perfect temperature! You witness a colorful autumn with the leaves falling, rain in winter; but it never gets cold enough for snow.
Flowers of Shiraz
The weather in Shiraz is not only perfect for the human body but is an excellent habitat for flowers. In the springtime Shiraz is a marvelous place to visit because of the gorgeous flowers blossoming all over the city.
It is a common expression in Shiraz, that you will be “drunken” (in Farsi mast مست) by the delicate smell of the flowers.
Particularly typical scents of Shiraz are: the orange blossoms (‘bahar e naranj’ بهار نارنج), and narcissus flowers (‘gol e narges’ گل نرگس), which donate the most amazing scents and perfumes.
People of Shiraz (شیرازی)
What are Shirazians famous for?
People in Shiraz have a special warmth about them and they are known for being kind hearted. They are also famous for being honest, friendly, and poetic.
Shiraz is also famous for the beautiful girls :). Many popular or folk love songs in Iran speak of beautiful “dokhtar Shiraz.i” دختر شیرازی (Shiraz.ian girl).
Aside from being poetic and kind, a person from Shiraz (Shiraz.i شیرازی) is also stereotyped as cool, relaxed, and with slow movements in the popular culture. This has obviously changed with the modern culture, internet, and the fast-paced growth of the city in the past years. However a calm and an easy-going worldview continues to be present in shiraz.
Poetry in Shiraz
Shiraz was home to two important Persian poets of the 13th and 14th century, Sàdi سعدی and Hafez حافظ. The tomb of both poets are located in shiraz, and surrounded by beautiful gardens and well designed architecture. This sites are visited by locals and tourists everyday as a relaxing and spiritual pastime.
Sa’di gives wise, moral, and social advice through his book of poems (Bustaan بوستان) and of mainly prose (Golestaan گلستان). Hafez’s poetry mainly speaks of ‘love’ and he wrote mostly in the genre of ghazal غزل. Please see our related article about Hafez and his poetry here. Many colorful poetry and flower festivals are held in these gardens as well.
Gardens in Shiraz باغهای شیراز
Aside from the historical and cultural attractions, Shiraz offers spectacular and ancient gardens spread around the city (garden is ‘baagh’ باغ in Farsi). Particularly in Spring time the profume of the flowers, draws you automatically to the lush of these beautiful gardens. The gardens usually are surrounding historic buildings that are delightful to visit.
Eram Garden باغ ارم “Baagh e Eram”
Perhaps the most well known garden in Shiraz is “Baagh e Eram” باغ ارم.
I remember as a child, our family visits to this beautiful, relaxing garden every Persian New Year during Spring time. Eram garden is a must-see during this time with the flower blossoms (shekufeh شکوفه ), which are absolutely stunning.
Cedar Trees in Eram Garden, What is “Sarv e naz” سرو ناز?
Eram Garden has some the tallest and most impressive cedar trees in the world.
In particular, there is one cedar tree known as ‘Sarv e Naz’ سرو ناز (The Gorgeous Cedar) where the legend says it to be the “oldest cedar tree in the world”.
It is an esoteric experience when you find yourself under this amazingly tall tree and with such an ancient history. If you are a child, of course this legend will stay in your mind forever.
Other beautiful gardens in Shiraz which I have strong memory from are: “Baagh e Delgosha” باغ دلگشا, “Baagh e Khalili” باغ خلیلی, “Naranjestaan” نارنجستان, and “Baagh e Shapoori” باغ شاهپوری, and Baagh e Jahan.namaa باغ جهان نما.
The combination of beautiful flowers and historical buildings normally accompanied with a big water pool (called hoz حوز) in these gardens is quite breathtaking.
Bazar Vakil in Shiraz بازار وکیل
No picture or video can capture the amazing feeling that embraces you when you enter this magnificent bazar (or baazaar, meaning traditional market).
The moment you step inside Bazar e Vakil بازار وکیل, you will be surrounded by a mixture of delicate sensations all coming to you at once.
The sensational architecture, the calm and quite atmosphere (despite of many people inside), the perfume and the beautiful colors are almost hypnotizing. This amazing perfume is a mixture from spices, and various artisanal works such as carpets, copper and silver jewlery, khatam artwork خاتم کاری, and much more.
“Saraye Moshir” سرای موشیر and the Bath House
While at Bazar e Vakil, you must visit also “Saraye Moshir” سرای موشیر, which is a beautiful courtyard located at the end of the bazar. There you will find the most precious antique stores, probably some of the best in the entire country.
While you are there, don’t miss visiting the traditional bath house located inside the Vakil bazar which is quite impressive. Also view Vakil Mosque, Vakil museum, and the side alleys that take you to traditional houses and restaurants located behind the bazar.
There are so many other important attractions in my beloved city, Shiraz which is impossible to cover them all here. I continue this discussion in a follow up article where I will talk about the history of Shiraz, the ancient architectures, mosques in shiraz, etc. So stay tuned!