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Isfahan Architectural Treasures

‏415 2020-02-09

This year UNESCO named the city of Rio de Janeiro Brazil the global capital of architecture in 2020, If such an award existed 400 years ago, the city of Isfahan would undoubtedly become the architectural capital of the world. With architectural gems demonstrating Islamic, Christian and traditional Persian styles, Isfahan’s history and diversity will amaze travelers.


Naqsh-e Jahan Square

The most symbolic achievement of Isfahan architecture is the Naqsh-e Jahan Square, also known as Imam Square. Naqsh-e Jahan Square is one of the sights of Isfahan. This square expands almost nine hectares and is the second largest square in the world, only lesser to Tiananmen Square in China.

The Naqsh-e Jahan Square was built in the early 17th century by the Safavid dynasty, because at that time Esfahan was the capital of Iran. Now the Naqsh-e Jahan Square is full of marble stones, carved tiles, beautiful carpets and precious stones and crafts. The square has wonderful structures and buildings on all four sides, to the east, the Sheikh Lotfallah Mosque; to the west, the pavilion of Ali Qapu; to the north, the portico of Qeyssariyeh; and to the south, the Royal Mosque.

میدان نقش جهان


The related beautiful structures have been amazingly harmonized with Naqsh-e Jahan Square.

Grassy areas and fountains fill in the center of the square, with horse and carriages looping the perimeter. Outside the walls of the square, you will find more parks, various museums and the winding alleys of the bazaar.

We’ve heard many times that “Naqsh-e Jahan square in Isfahan (literally meaning Image of the world) is half of the world” but we never get to know what they mean unless we travel to Isfahan and walk inside this square.

Naqsh-e Jahan Square was built in the middle of the Persian Empire. In fact, the purpose of the structure was to embody the essence of the Persian Empire at the center of the square. Tourists will easily fill an entire day visiting the square and surrounding sites.

بازار نقش جهان

As evening comes, locals will flock into the square to picnic and soak up the surrounds. The best time to take photos is before 9am before people come for morning exercise.


عالی قاپو

Vank Cathedral

The Vank cathedral was established in 1606. This cathedral is both reminiscent of Iranian architecture and diversity of heavenly religions in Isfahan city. Another project of the Safavid dynasty is the Vank cathedral, built in the early 17th century for thousands of Armenians who had fled to Iran for asylum. Now Vank Cathedral is one of the sights of Isfahan. The construction of the cathedral took place over 50 years whilst the Armenians resettled, under the protection of the Shah. Like the Sheikh Lotfullah Mosque, the Vank cathedral has a prominent painting dome. Scenes of the Garden of Eden depicted in the dome of the vank Christian cathedral.

کلیسا وانک

Vank’s intricate gilded carvings, tiles, and frescos show other well-told Bible stories. Although not accessible to visitors, there are around 700 handwritten books onsite recording Armenian folklore and memoirs of the Safavid era. Vanak Cathedral is located in the Jolfa neighborhood, which is the Armenian Christian neighborhood of Isfahan. Other features of this neighborhood include cobblestone streets, boutiques and popular food.

 کلیسا وانک

Si o se pol bridge

سی و سه پل

There are five bridges on the riverbed of Zayandehrood in Isfahan, Sio Se pol bridges are one of the most famous and unique bridges of the Zayandehrood River. Translating to the “Bridge of 33 Arches” Si o Se Pol is in many ways, the epicenter of Esfahan. This beautiful bridge is one of the most famous bridges in the Middle East.This bridge is a masterpiece unique in its kind that built under the reign of Abbas I. The construction process was controlled by Shah’s chancellor, Allahverdi Khan Undiladze – that is where the second name of the bridge derives from. Si-o-Se Pol is the longest among Isfahan bridges and the largest construction on the water in Iran – its total length is 297 meters; width is 13,75 meters.

سی و سه پلSio se pol bridge also a place to hold ceremonies and watch people come together and have fun; although these ceremonies are not being held anymore. The most important of these can be mentioned as the feast of the Abpasha and the Armenian Epiphany known as Khajshoyan.


Monar Jonban

منارجنبان اصفهان

The monar jonaban is aged construction in the form of a monument and two minarets built on the anonymous mystic tomb of Amoo Abdullah Karladani in 716 Arabic calender (Hejri ghamari). Menar Jonban literally translates to “shaking minarets” and basically, shake is what it does.

This site is a small pavilion with two minarets measuring 7.5 meters in height. If one of the minarets is shaken (using the minimal force of a human hand), the other minaret will shake in unison.

 Some locals suppose the Sufi who is buried under the monument was a powerful magician who controls the minaret while others reason that the designer of the monument simply had a good understanding of structural dynamic concepts and vibration control. Menar Jonban just is one of Iran’s countless mysteries, waiting for travellers to discover.



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