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Published: October 9th 2015
The Persian proverb "Esfahan is half of the world" (which if Google translate has worked is what the title of this blog says in Farsi) is hyperbole but it is a spectacular place with a huge square, many mosques, palaces, bridges, and a fantastic bazaar. Where it definitely isn't half the world is in restaurants – perhaps the biggest challenge we faced during our days there was finding something local to eat, one night we even resorted to pizza and a Subway style sandwich ffs !!!
True to form the people were friendly, chatty and hospitable, inviting us for tea even when they weren't trying to sell us something or when we told them we weren't going to buy anything – despite Esfahani's being known for their selling skills and fondness for money. We did though part with some of our precious dollars (due to the US inspired sanctions Iran is not connected to the SWIFT banking system so neither credit cards nor ATMs work here) to buy some beautifully made and decorated trinket boxes. Happily, for me at least, our limited baggage space and lack of shipping address restricted the amount of stuff we could buy otherwise I might
have found myself washing dishes to earn our way out of the country.
Esfahan has replaced Shiraz as our favourite city and once the Iranian government make it easier and cheaper for me to get a visa it's a place we'll probably come back to some time in the future.
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