The city of first ones! This is how Tabriz is known by Iranians. Tabriz hosted the first printing house, university, municipality, cinema hall, and the first Iranian kindergarten for deaf children. In fact, the city was the residence of crown princes of Qajar (1789-1925) until 1925.

In fact, Tabriz is the cradle of modern movements as one of the western cities of Iran. Besides, Tabriz Historic Bazaar Complex, Azerbaijan Museum, Blue Mosque, Poets’ Mausoleum, Elgoli Park, and Shahriar House Museums are some of the landmarks of this city.

There are some signs of civilization dating back 2,500 years in Tabriz. During the Qajar dynasty (1789-1925), Tabriz was the residence of the crown princes. The Organization of Islamic ConferenceIn 2018 named Tabriz as the “City Of The Islamic World Tourism”.

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General Information

As the capital of Eastern Azerbaijan Province, Tabriz is the most populous city of the northwestern Iran. With its grand bazaar, it is also the economic hubs of the region.

There are different industries like automobile, machine tools, textiles, and petrochemicals active in this city. The city is also famous for hand-woven carpet. Dried nuts and chocolate are other products of Tabriz.

Read also: Tips for a Solo Traveler in Iran

How to get there

An alley in Tabriz

You can reach from Tehran to Tabriz by Zanjan-Tabriz Highway in seven hours. It is about 690 km. on the way to Tabriz, you can also visit the historic city of Qazvin.

There are also several flights from Tehran and other big cities like Shiraz, Rasht, Mashhad, Kish Island, Ahvaz, Isfahan and Bandar Abbas to Tabriz airport.

There are also flights from Istanbul and Baku to Tabriz city. You can reach Tabriz from Tehran in one hour by flight.

Train is another option for you to reach Tabriz. You can take a train from Tehran and Mashhad to Tabriz. From Tehran to Tabriz, it takes nine hours. The other famous stations are Zanjan, Qazvin, and Maragheh.

Read also: All Things You Should Know About Domestic Flights in Iran

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Tabriz attractions

Tabriz Historic Bazaar Complex

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Mozaffarieh, Tabriz Grand Bazaar

This amazing bazaar is one of the commercial centers on the Silk Road. In fact, it has interconnected brick structures with cover.

The bazaar is dated back to the 13th century as the capital of Iran during the Safavid era.

It is on the UNESCO world heritage list. So you can find anything in the bazaar from spices to groceries.

Besides, do not forget Mozaffarieh, the part of the bazaar dedicated to carpets.

Walking in the bazaar, the domed ceiling amazes you. Besides, you can see the traces of Iranian traditional architecture in all parts of this trading center.

Blue Mosque

Blue Mosque (credit: midaalife)

You can see the remains of the original patterns and original structure in the iwan of the mosque.

Actually, a massive earthquake struck the mosque in 1779. The mosque, which is called Goy Masjid in the Azeri language, is reconstructed during the recent 50 years.

In fact, the blue tiles cover every surface of the mosque. In addition, the covering of surfaces took 25 years.

This is the reason that the place is called the blue mosque.

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Azerbaijan Museum

Azerbaijan Museum

The museum, which is also known as the Iran Age museum, is one of the landmarks of the Tabriz city.  There you can visit artefact excavated from Hassanlu, a town dated back to 4000 years ago)!

On the ground floor, you can find relics including rhytons, goddess figurines dated back to the Iron Age until the Sassanid era (212-656 CE), and mesmerized by the history of Iran.

You can also visit coins dated back to the Achaemenid to Qajar era on the second floor.

There are sculptures made by Ahad Hosseini on the second floor. The sculptures made of plaster features the fate of mankind according to Hosseini’s belief in the 20th century.

Constitution House of Tabriz

Constitution House of Tabriz

Tabriz was the cradle of several modern movements in Iran. This traditional house was actually a gathering place for activists and leaders of the Constitutional Revolution, an event that happened in the early 1900s, which led to the establishment of a parliament in Iran during the Qajar era.

In fact, Haj Vali Memar Tabrizi constructed the house in two stories in 1868.

It was also the place that national renowned figures like Sattar Khan and Baqer Khan held meetings with other members of the movement.

On the first floor you can find an exhibition of sculptures of Iranian constitution activists and their weapons and personal belongings, as well as the printing machine they used for their night letters and papers.

Shahriar House Museum

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Shahriar House Museum

Mohammad Hossein Behjat Tabrizi (1906–88) is known as Shahriar. Actually, he is one of the famous contemporary poets of Iran and is a renowned Azeri poet in Iran.

In fact, his house is now a musuem and everyday life!

Also, his books, cane, notebooks, handwritten notes, and photo albums are on display at the house museum. Heydar Babaya Salam is his most famous poem in Azeri.

In fact, the poem recounts his childhood and named after a mountain named ‘Heydarbaba’, which overlooks his childhood village near Tabriz.

He was buried at the Poets’ Mausoleum in Tabriz, which houses to about 400 scholars and literary figures of the city since 800 years ago.

Things to do in Tabriz

Kandovan village

Kandovan Village

This historical rocky village is located 60 km southwestern Tabriz. In fact, the hive-like houses of the village are hand-carved. The origin of Kandovan dates back 6000 years ago. In some parts of the village, the thickness of the walls reaches two meters that promise moderate weather in summer and winter.

One of the most interesting facts about the village is that it has inhabitants. The village has a mosque, school, and restaurant.

Cappadocia in Turkey and Manitou Cliff Dwellings in Colorado are other examples of these cliff villages worldwide. Most constructions are in two floors and there are some in three or four floors. However, they are not connected from inside the constructions so you can see staircases between stories.

Eyn-Ali Mountain

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A view from Tabriz from Eyn-Ali mountain

Going to Eyn-Ali mountains provides you a chance to visit the beautiful city of Tabriz lying beneath your feet.

Eyn-Ali Cable, a gondola lift in Mount Eynali in northern Tabriz, brings you up to the peak of Eyn-Ali mountain.

The Eyn-Ali slope is one of the recreation centers of people in Tabriz.

You can see people make picnic in the place.

El Goli Park

El Goli Park

An artificial lake in the center of the park is the gem of Elgoli. An edifice, which is the reconstruction of a Qajar Palace, is located in the middle of the lake.

The construction of the park dates back to the Qajar era in 18th century. There are some sources that is said that it was built in 14th century.

The name of the place was originally Shah Gölü (Goli), which means royal pond.

After the Islamic Revolution of 1979, it names El Goli, which means people’s pond.

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Rainbow mountain

Traveling to Tabriz, do not forget to visit the rainbow mountains near this city! Located 25 kilometers from Tabriz, on Tabriz-Ahar road. It is called Aladaq, which is composed of two Azeri words ‘ala’ (colorful) and daq (mountain).

The formation of mountains dates back to 15 million years ago. You can enjoy a variety of colors including yellow, red and copper under sunshine in hot weather.

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 Best time to visit Tabriz

Tabriz city

Actually Tabriz is a mountainous city has mild summers and cold winters.

The average annual temperature is at a maximum of 18°C and in a minimum of 6°C in Tabriz.

From early June to October is the best time to visit the city. During summer, Tabriz city has a pleasant weather.

In autumn, you can enjoy the colorful trees and good weather until late October. Besides, autumn is not crowded as summer in Tabriz.

Read also: Best Time to Visit Iran: A Complete Guide

Lodgings of Tabriz

Kaya Laleh Park Hotel

Kaya Laleh Hotel

This five-star business hotel is a branch of Kaya Hotels and Resorts, a prominent hospitality business in Turkey. Kaya Laleh Park Hotel offers modern and carefully designed facilities.

The 17-floor accommodation has 220 rooms. They are all equipped with the latest available technologies.

They are deluxe rooms, connected family rooms, junior suites, executive suites, and an over-the-top royal suite, with a view of Eynali mountain and city.

Within a just 15-minute drive from Tarbiz International Airport, Laleh International Park Hotel is located beside a namesake shopping mall with an exclusive door for hotel guests.

Tabriz International Hotel

Tabriz International Hotel

It is a four-star midrange hotel founded in 1972 and was renovated in 2016.

It is one of the oldest hotels in Tabriz. The hotel remains popular among travelers due to its location and convenience.

There are 132 rooms on five floors consists of single, double, and triple rooms.

They have a safe box, air conditioning system, and WIFI.

Located on Imam Khomeini avenue, Tabriz International Hotel is just a walk away from University Metro Station. From this station, you can easily get to Tabriz Grand Bazaar, Saat Square and El Goli Park.

Kandovan Laleh Rocky Hotel

Kandovan Laleh Hotel

The five-star Laleh Kandovan International Hotel provides you an opportunity to stay in a historical tourist attraction with strange architecture in the heart of mountain.

It is the third rocky hotel in the world with beautiful and mountainous nature in Kandovan village.

Laleh Kandovan Hotel has 40 banks (natural stone chamber) equipped with a Jacuzzi and all modern amenities. Junior double room, Jacuzzi double room, Jacuzzi suite, royal suite, imperial suite are the hotel’s rooms.

At this hotel, you experience staying in a bedouin cave with modern amenities. Staying at this hotel is an unforgettable memory from a unique mountainous nature.

Local foods and souvenirs of Tabriz

Koofteh Tabrizi

Koofteh Tabrizi

Don’t leave Tabriz without tasting Koofteh! This delicious dish is a great meatball.

It is usually stuffed with walnuts, barberries, and sometimes eggs. Grounded meat and split peas. You can decorate it with a tomato sauce.

Tabrizi cheese is another thing that you should taste in the city.

It has a salty taste with a delicate texture. Don’t forget Tabriz’s sweets and desserts like Nogha, Ris, and Baklava during your stay at Tabriz.

Grape leave dolma

Grape leave dolma

This stuffed grape leave is one of the traditional cuisines of Tabriz.  Meat, rice, and split peas are the ingredients of this delicious dish.

The word dolma comes from the word dolmak in Turkish, which means ‘to fill’.

It is a Middle Eastern cuisine so there are other versions of this food in the Balkans, Middle East, and Central Asia. Iranians made this delicious food since the 17th century.

In addition, you can serve it with one of the most favorite Persian breads name Sangak.

Nogha

Nogha

Tabriz is the city of sweets. So if you have a sweet tooth, this is the city that you can enjoy a variety of tastes!

Nogha is one of the sweets that you can find in Tabriz. In fact, the original Iranian nougat (called nogha) is an exudate of an insect in wild tamarisk trees.

However today it is replaced with a mixture of bean egg whites and sugar.

The mixture is the same in gaz. Though the Nogha is spread between two layers of wafers in rectangular shapes.

Ris, special Baklava, Qorabieh, and saffron loz are other sweets of marvelous Tabriz city.

Read also: Best Iranian Drinks and Beverages that You Should Not Miss!

Souvenirs and handicrafts of Tabriz

City of carpet

Tabriz carpet

The World Craft Council (WCC) assigned Tabriz as the City for Carpet Weaving.

According to WCC, the carpet weaving schools of Azerbaijan are classified into three categories including rural weaving, urban weaving, and nomad weaving.

In fact, the weaving of Tabriz carpet is symmetric knots.

Double-weft tight weaving is also common in urban parts of Eastern Azerbaijan Province.

It is also the weaving scope of weavers in Tabriz.

Leather artefact

Leather work in Tabriz
Leather Workshop in Tabriz

In fact, the first leather factory was established in Tabriz in 1929.

Then other cities like Hamedan, Tehran, and Isfahan established other leather factories.

In fact, bags, shoes, belts, and clothing are the main products of leather in Iran.

Although the leather is used in the furniture and sports industry.  

Dried nuts of Tabriz

Dried nuts market in Tabriz
Dried nuts market in Tabriz

Tabriz is well-known for its dried nuts, known as ajil in Persian language. So nuts and dried fruits are the main souvenirs of Tabriz city.

You can find also several nuts stores with high-quality products.

In fact, roasted and salted nuts, Char Maghz (four seeds) including almond, hazelnuts, pistachio and cashew, sweet nuts, and raw nuts are different kinds of products.

Best restaurants and cafes

Berkeh Restaurant

Berkeh restaurant, Tabriz Iran
Berkeh restaurant, Tabriz Iran

You can find high quality food and kebabs at this restaurant.

There are also different kinds of cuisines like barbecue, Middle Eastern and Persian foods.

Besides, you can eat brunch, lunch and dinner at this restaurant. The Berkeh Restaurant has also a fantastic atmosphere to relax and refresh yourself.

Address: Ring road of Sardroud, Tabriz Iran, +98 41 3420 9516

Haj Ali Chelokababi

Haj Ali Chelokababi, Tabriz Iran
Haj Ali Chelokababi, Tabriz Iran

You can find local cuisine, Middle Eastern and Persian food at the Haj Ali Chelokababi. It is a great option when you want to visit Tabriz bazaar. It is actually an old restaurant in the heart of Tabriz Bazaar.

You can also try one of the best kebabs of the city at this restaurant.

The staff is very friendly and welcoming. So don’t forget to taste the soup. It has a simple menu but great delicious food.

Address: Tabriz Bazaar, Tabriz, +98 41 3330 7007

Pam Fillia Café

Pam Fillia Cafe, Tabriz Iran
Pam Fillia Cafe, Tabriz Iran

Traveling Tabriz, do not miss spending some time at Pam Fillia Café.

It is a cozy café with a reasonable price. Besides, taste coffee and shakes at this place, which is great.

In fact, it is a small café with a perfect service.

Address: Pasteur intersection, Shariati St., Tabriz, 04134788127

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