About Iran Exploration
“You think of yourself as a citizen of the universe. You think you belong to this world of dust and matter.
Out of this dust, you have created a personal image, and have forgotten about the essence of your true origin” Jalaluddin Mevlana Rumi
Iran Exploration is an adventure and cultural tour operator based in Iran, which is works as Incoming Tour Department of Hamsafaran-e-Diar-e-Anahita* Tour & Travel Company, that is a fully licensed tour operator as if registered and work since 2005 under the official Iranian Government, Iran Touring & Tourism Organization (ITTO). Also, Iran Exploration started work and focused on incoming adventure & cultural tours since 2010 officially. Iran Exploration annually hosts hundreds of people from every country, and we’re proud that most of the passengers were satisfied with our services and they tend to introduce Iran Exploration to their friends and acquaintances.
* Anahita, was the goddess of water in ancient Persia, and this name comes from “Anahita temple” in Kermanshah, Iran. Anahita temple is the second largest stone monument in Iran, after Persepolis.
Iran Exploration Founders
Iran Exploration is a specialized tour operating company and was formed by founders who have had a varied mix of experiences. Also our company is leading by experts and observant managers that always support the new ideas and creative mind, in the field of ecotourism.
“If you want to make a permanent change, stop focusing on the size of your problems and start focusing on the size of you!” T. Harv.Eker
Why Travel with Iran Exploration?
No doubt about it, Iran is a pretty big place. The land of the ancient kingdoms and civilizations, mountain ranges and deserts, 4 seasons country, beautiful islands and beaches, rain forests and variety of rich cultures… Who can find better than this? Everything is gathered in unique land.
Except of abundant natural, cultural and historical attractions of Iran, there are many other reasons to choosing Iran Exploration. It’s your decision, but we have to tell you, some of our differences with other travel agencies.
As mentioned, in Iran Exploration, we are looking to introduce pristine and beautiful places in the natures of Iran, with combining them with visiting cultural and historical attractions. This combination will create a high various stages in our tours. So you will have a large variety to choose and find your favorite tours. This is same freedom of choice that we believe in.
Our group populations is maximum 8 travellers per tour, and can be typically a mix of solo travellers, friends travelling together, and couples, all of varying ages, backgrounds and nationalities. Let’s come prepared to make plenty of new best friends.
In small groups your trip is just yours. Want to linger at the market or grab a table at that cozy café? Consider it done. We give your trip structure and direction, but you decide what you want to do with it.
As small adventure travel group, we’ve always done things a little bit better. There’s no such thing to forgot, for us, because we believe our organization, guides and packages. So Instead of worrying about logistics, you can focus all your energy on having the enjoyment time in Iran.
“Small groups, big adventures and responsible travel”
Also for groups of all sizes, we can organize a special program of one of our pre-existing adventure or cultural tours, or tailor-make an itinerary to your destinations in all over Iran. We can customize the itinerary and activities just for you by giving us your trip wishes, interests or historical focus. As well as Small groups have less impact on local communities and environments.
Responsible travel is about the attitude you take and the choices you make when travelling, to respect and benefit local people, their cultures, economy and the environment. We’re big believers in sustainable tourism and use the essential principles of Eco tourism in all our operations, from selecting the campsites we stay at, to maintaining our transport fleet and camping equipment. For us, environmentally aware tourism is the only way to go and keep our planet green. Each of our guides is trained across all aspects of eco friendliness, from the selecting of campsites and management of waste to the upkeep of equipment.
“Small groups, big adventures and responsible travel”
Some of the responsible travel features embedded into Iran Exploration trips include:
- Using public transport (like metro) where possible
- Staying in smaller-scale locally owned accommodation where possible
- Buying locally produced food and drink, and purchasing souvenirs from local artisans
- Minimizing plastic waste where possible
- Careful management of limited energy and water resources
- Offering real life experiences which promote cross-cultural understanding
- Avoiding the exploitation of the vulnerable – including women, children, animals, plant and endangered species
Our guides are an enthusiastic and conversant a lot who on taking travellers through what they know and love about Iran natures and culture. Also all of our guides can speak English and some of them know other languages. They’ve all got comprehensive training like first aid, driving, fatigue management, environmental awareness, local history, geology and etc. We’re pretty proud of them.
More experience = better travel options
Our guides are your go-to point of contact, your guide, teacher and source of all travel wisdom. But it’s hard to really get their value if you haven’t done a tour with them before. Some of our guide benefits are:
- Point you toward the hidden highlights most tourists never see.
- Choose a best, easiest and safer route on nature.
- Get you from A to B, including handling all transports and tickets.
- Leading you to the best restaurants, coffee shops and stores.
- Share little local anecdotes and stories.
- Handle all hotel check-ins, restaurant bookings and technical details.
- Help you to organize extra meals, accommodation and activities.
- Suggest the best ways to fill your free time.
Introduce you to friendly local peoples you’d never get to meet.
Quite simply our tours are unbeatable. We offer unforgettable travel experiences at the competitive prices versus high quality services. We are totally not interested in a cheaper but less secure and qualitative alternatives.
How we can? By following a grassroots approach to travel, use local services, and professional guides, that keep operating costs reasonable versus quality.
Any age, wishes, budget, relationship status and everything else. It doesn’t matter where you’re from, what matter is, which kind of tours you choose. Our mission is to deliver the best travel experiences in Iran to anyone who’s up for them. So no matter if you favour a soft landing or a wild take-off, Iran Exploration is awaiting to you.
In fact, our passengers have a lot in common, love to travel the unique land, an adventure in exclusive natures, visit special ancient civilizations with respect to local communities, cultures and the environment.
Our tours are for all ages, from the 18 years old rock climber to the retired couple living out their second adolescence through world travel. Our tours attract travellers of all ages and our record to date is 74, but most travellers falling in the 20-40 age bracket.
Our tours are designed to different styles. We aren’t a traditional tour that you should choose the activities you want to do, rather you choose the style of accommodation you want. So you can manage your trip as your wishes.
I. Desire your trip
your description will serve as your request. We will check your request and by using our expert guide experiences, we’ll specialists in the type of travel you are looking for.
II. Receive our offers
we will send you our offers, which will include descriptions, pictures, rates and terms quickly.
Choose your favorite offer
Make your choice. Which quote offers, the best hotels, best itinerary, best terms and best price? Which factors are the most important to you? You decide!
Half of the fun of travel in Iran is the travelling itself because the grate Iran area is about 1.650.000 square kilometers. That’s why all Iran Exploration adventures come with all manner of transport modes, from the usual to the downright bizarre.
How you get around depends on your choice of Travel Style and Service Level. Usually we use private transport (buses, taxis, 4WD cars, etc) with high experience drivers, because it’s the most comfortable and safer, also using local transport can make a colorful way to go.
We select accommodations that reflect the character of the destination. Naturally, every trip requires different accommodations, so as our policy always we choose the best. This could mean staying in luxury hotels in big cities for some nights, a handpicked downtown hotel one night, a unique local homestay the next, camping under the stars the night after that, and traditional hotels for cultural tours.
Our adventure tours involve a great deal of activity and we appreciate the importance of good food so we usually serve tasty and healthy meals.
Each group has a professional outdoor (altitude) cooker with wide variety of delicious food (focus is on Persian cuisine). All the Meals during camping days are included and freshly prepared. Our cookers do not use packaged and canned food.
Also on days where meals aren’t included, our guides can recommend the best local restaurant and delicious foods to you.
In additional we have a special menu for Vegetarian client, and while conformation tours, we ask about your food habits.
One of the best advantages of Iran Exploration, over the competitors in Iran, is that we constantly and quickly respond to customer inquiries, calls and emails in our company. Even when we’re on tour, our staff in office will be answerable to your questions (unlike most other travel agencies in Iran).
Every Iran Exploration adventure and cultural tours begins with one of our travel staff or guide. When you contact us, you’ll get first-hand knowledge about your trip. Our staff tell you what to bring and how to prepare for your adventure. They also share their own passion for the destination and the activities you’ll be doing. You can trust our knowledge and attention to detail to make your trip the best you’ve ever taken.
We dare to say that any travel agencies in Iran can’t give travel information to the customer, as much as we can.
Frequently asked questions (FAQ's)
Travel is one of those things that naturally give rise to queries, concerns and doubts, so we’re here to put your mind at ease. Which trip is right for me? What do I do about visas? When’s the best time to go? And what to wear while there? And many other, is important questions. Lucky you’ve found your way here by Iran Exploration.
1- Choosing your trip
To determine what type of trip suits you best, each of our trips describe with a Physical Rating from level 1 to 10, to let you know how physically demanding it is. So each offer has some explanations about tour difficulty and recommendations for you.
The minimum age for solo travellers is 18, but for families, it’s depends on the type and location of the trip you’re thinking about doing. Certainly Teenagers can be, to accompany their parents under their support. Some of our adventure trips (like level 4 or less) suitable for the families that would like to travel with their children. Our cultural tour is possible for families too.
Make sure that every Iran Exploration tours has essential information, accessible on our offers, that gives you in-depth information about all aspects of your trip. Also you can ask any more questions from us.
This is the beauty of our style of tours, many of our travellers join because they are travelling solo and want to meet and share experiences with like-minded people.
According to Iran Exploration standard, each tour will run by minimum 4 and maximum 8 persons. In addition to, if you are a friendly group more than 8 persons, or you like to organize your program for less than 4 person, it’s possible, Iran Exploration staffs help you to make your own tailor made itinerary.
2- Before your trip
Each tour requires all the basics you would typically bring on any trip. Due to the nature of our tours, every trip is different, so be sure to check your “requirement list” that found at each offers. Of course it’s important that you always travel with your current passport, visas, travel insurance and etc.
Travel Insurance is compulsory for our trips and we do it as Iran Touring & Tourism Organization standard for each client. However we strongly recommend that you have a domestic travel insurance policy which covers personal liability, accidents, injured, death, loss of luggage, cancellation and personal effects.
How to apply for a visa and get it, is fully explained in each offers. In a nutshell it can be said visa process is include in our services. Don’t worry about getting Iranian Visa, it is generally comfortable by Iran Exploration (Visa fee is not included).
Your tour includes meal as indicated in our offers. Please make sure you advise us of any special dietary requirements or food allergies well prior to travelling and we will endeavor to do our best to cater to them.
Yes, in most cases we can arrange additional accommodation at our starting or ending tours. Please contact Iran Exploration staff for price information. Also note that extra accommodations must be booked least 30 days prior of departure.
Yes of course, one of our agencies service is booking international flight. But we recommend you to book your flight from your country. Unfortunately because of sanctions and difficulty of money transfers, booking a flight from Iran is a few expensive other countries. So you are able to look around for the best deals on offer, probably saving yourself a lot of money. Also you have far greater flexibility in deciding which airline you might prefer to book with, where you want to come from, or where you might want to stop off en-route. As well as these, many people join our tours when they are already in the country.
We strongly recommend bringing a backpack or duffel bag, as suitcases can be cumbersome and difficult to store in buses, under seats, etc. Keep in mind that you will normally have to carry your own luggage on and off buses and up and down hotel staircases. Suitcases with wheels may not work well on dirt or cobblestone roads.
Some trips have regular access to western toilets while others don’t. It just depends on the areas you’re traveling in. As a general rule, the more remote place the less likely you are to find western bathroom facilities.
3- On your trip
Check-in times can vary from hotel to hotel and region to region. Generally, they are between midday and 2pm. Normally if you do arrive earlier, you’ll be able to store your luggage with the hotel and head out to explore for a couple of hours. But, Iran Exploration has a resolve for your more comfort. As it, we always book a hotel for our groups one day sooner. It means if you arriving Iran at any time of the day (according to your Itinerary), you’ll transport to your room at hotel.
We can never guarantee your phone will work as desired, as many of our destinations are out of the way and you may have limited coverage (You can ask your phone provider before you leave about global roaming and the costs involved). Don’t worry for this, Iran Exploration has a resolve, free local SIM card with active internet is include in most of our tours, and you can use free internet (3G, 4G,H+ in big cities) by this SIM card, but for calling and sending messages, you should buy a credit.
In most of Iran hotels and restaurant, you can use free Wi-Fi internet, but in remote places, you will not be able to communicate as readily. Your leader will usually give you the heads up before you leave a place so you can send emails and messages.
Unfortunately, cause of sanctions and embargoes, international credit cards, master cards and etc, are not accepted in Iran, and ATM’s are not for International use.
Iran Exploration has resolve for this problem, we’ll gave you a purchasing a prepaid travel credit Card that you can charge with local currency. You can charge this card ones (50 E, 100 E, 200 Euro or more) by your first deposit while confirmation your trip. With this digital credit card you can easily pay everywhere and withdraw local currency from any ATM. Also with this digital payment service you can spend money without worrying about changing money wherever you are not to be concerned about your budget. You can only spend the amount of money you charge on your card. You can also recharge easily the credit of your SIM card.
You can exchange at the airport, there is official exchange, but better rate is available in the cities exchange.
It is Rial. But in daily trade, Iranian use a unit called Toman, which is the unit for 10 Rials. You can use mobile currency applications to knowing online the rate (each Toman is 10 Rials).
Most starting point hotels or local houses can store your excess luggage for you. However, often a nominal fee is charged for this service. Of course, this is only an advantage if your trip is circular (returning to the same starting point).
Yes, in some places in Iran, tipping is expected. At your welcome meeting, you can ask your leader about the local custom and advice on how much is recommended at restaurants or with local guides, porters and drivers.
The water is quite drinkable and safe. High standards and full chlorination are used for Iranian municipal water systems. But mineral water is accessible everywhere to buy.
Yes it is possible, but better to know that, taking photo or video from military area, police offices and etc, are forbidden. Also, due to the kindness of the Iranian people, most of them are not disagreeing with you to take their photo, but it is better to first get permission from them.