Who’d have guessed that gardens could exist in the middle of arid desert areas? This seemingly challenging task turned out to be rather feasible in well-known Persian Gardens. You might be wondering why someone would want to go to Persian Gardens on a trip to another country, specifically Iran. What makes these gardens so unique? What distinguishes these gardens from other gardens?
In 2011, a total of nine gardens were inscribed as part of The Persian Garden’s serial nomination. Let’s take a closer look at what makes these gardens special, and move on to the list of top 4 Persian Gardens.
The best of all Persian architects designed the Persian garden to represent Eden and the four Zoroastrian elements of sky, earth, water, and earth. Buildings, pavilions, walls, and sophisticated irrigation systems can be seen in these gardens, which date back to the 6th century BC.
You will notice the freshness of the air, the cool temperature under the shade, the caring touch of the green, and the pleasant and soft sound of water as soon as you cross the gate and pass the garden walls. It’s no surprise that Persian Garden is associated with paradise. Soon, you will better understand what makes each Persian Garden so unique and significant.
The phrase pairidaza originates from the Avesta, the Zoroastrian people’s holy book, meaning “garden.” The same word has become the words paradise in English, paradies in German, and paradis in French as it has migrated across place and time.
In fact, this name is linked to both the Garden of Eden and Firdaus, the highest level of paradise in the Muslim religion. Both are gardens irrigated by four rivers or a single river divided into four. You will find similar structures in most of the renowned Persian gardens, like Eram and Chahar Bagh.
ERAM GARDEN (Bagh-e ERAM) is one of Iran’s most famous and beautiful Persian gardens. It’s on the northern bank of the Khoshk River in Shiraz. It’s worth noting that the Persian word ‘Eram’ is a Persianized version of the Arabic word ‘Iram.’ In Islam’s holy scripture, the Qur’an, this word means heaven. It’s easy to see why Eram inspires such a description, given its lovely grounds, luxuriant plant life, and beautiful visual attractions.
Similar to other Persian Gardens, architects created Eram Garden in four portions with perfect geometrically proportioned measurements. Although no one knows for sure when the gardens were constructed, historical evidence suggests that they were built during the Seljuk Dynasty. So, probably under the reign of Ahmad Sanjar, one of the Seljuk Dynasty’s most famous monarchs.
Authorities did this to provide irrigation and other essential circumstances, such as shade zones for specific plants. There is now a broad range of plants in the Garden. Roses, tulips, pups, and fruit trees like pomegranate, quince, apple, and pear, as well as evergreen trees and pines, are just a few.
The tallest cypress in Shiraz, known as Sarv-e-Naz, is perhaps the most impressive of them all. All of these factors combine to make Eram Gardens a popular tourist destination, particularly during the spring.
The Shazdeh Garden” or “Shahzadeh Garden” is 4 kilometers away from Mahan, Kerman city. Shazdeh Mahan Garden is a lush oasis among the arid Lut and Kavir deserts on the way to Bam. So, it’s essentially 35 kilometers southeast of Kerman. This Iranian garden is on the list of Iran’s national monuments. Shazdeh Persian garden is one of the Persian Gardens on the UNESCO World Heritage Site List.
Shazdeh Garden is particularly remarkable because it is in the desert, where all that exists are barren plains. On the other hand, the garden’s entrance invites visitors to the earthly paradise. When entering Shazdeh Garden, one can observe the lakes that run the length of the garden. The trees also provide shade for the pathway.
The garden’s flowers fill the air with their scent during spring and late summer. This makes this garden one of the top summer destinations in Iran. Eventually, the façade of an antique pavilion rises from behind the fountains, and the stairs take the tourists toward the pavilion. Shazdeh Garden’s elements reflect the Iranians’ complex art, culture, and way of life. These elements include an excellent plan, the pavilion’s architecture, and the pavilion’s interior design and decorations.
Inside the pool in front of the pavilion, there are five fountains with water that can reach a height of 8 meters. The house facade at the garden’s entry resembles a linear construction with two stories. Best of all, the upper floor has accommodations for living and catering.
Fin Garden, or “Bagh-e Fin” in Persian, is a must-see for anybody visiting Kashan. Kashan city is one of Iran’s top and most beautiful cities. Fin Garden is one of nine Persian gardens in Iran that is a part of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Trees and plants surround this garden as far as the eye can see. The verdant abundance of tall trees that line the walks has enhanced the lush garden’s splendor.
The garden was designed with symmetry in mind, but the addition of sidewalks and structures to the Fin Garden complex disrupted this symmetry over time. Despite its lush appearance, desert terrain with little water surround the garden. Yes, that’s right, just like Shazdeh Mahan’s garden!
Historians believe the Fin Garden over a thousand years old. Shah Ismael I, the monarch of the Safavid empire, ordered the creation of Fin Garden for his crowning ceremony. To everyone’s surprise and anguish, an earthquake in 1561 destroyed the entire garden.
Kings of Qajar reign erected structures such as the Hammam (royal bath), Shah Neshin, and the Kashan National Gallery were in Fin Garden. The Bagh-e Fin National Museum features a fantastic collection of calligraphy and ceramic arts. All of these make Fin a must-see for both nature lovers and cultural attraction fans.
Dowlat Abad Garden (Bagh-e Dowlat-Abad) is in the center of Yazd’s arid city. It perfectly demonstrates the city’s diverse architectural possibilities. During the reign of the Zand, gardens were mainly inspired by the Safavid architectural style. Dowlat-Abad garden uses traditional Persian garden ideas. These include a symmetrical pattern of fountain pools, cedar and pine trees, and a complex irrigation system.
In the past, the area was surrounded by fruit gardens and farmland. However, the world’s tallest mudbrick wind tower (badgir), which stands at 34 meters, is the reason for its fame nowadays. This UNESCO World Heritage Site has two public and private gardens that encompass 40000 meters.
Behesht Aeen (where it feels like paradise) was the family’s winter residence, situated in front of the sun. This structure stands in front of the entrance and separates Andaruni from Biruni. Andaruni is the house’s private quarters using traditional Persian residential design. Biruni includes parts that are not private. Cherry and pomegranate trees border this beautiful venue on both sides.
Clearly, water is one of the most prominent features of Persian gardens. This shows itself in Dowlat Abad Garden more than any other Persian garden. The water flow system in this garden includes hidden and apparent water channels, pools, and ponds. The marble pond is the first thing you’ll see when you walk into the entryway palace. It then carries on to a pool in the mansion’s center, followed by three more rectangle-shaped ponds in three alcoves.