Yazd, The fantastic city of wind-catchers
Yazd, the second historical city in the world, is located in the exact geographical center of Iran. The city was built by the order of king Yazdgerd from the Sasani dynasty, around 400 AD and it was named after him. ”Yazd” also means “to pray” in Pahlavi language, the mother tongue of Zoroastrians. It’s interesting to know that during history, the rulers and people were considerably faithful to God, no matter the dominant religion, hence Yazd is also known as “the city of worship”.
The biggest union of Zoroastrians live in Yazd, because of the historian roots and backgrounds. Don’t miss the Tower of Silence, the traditional grave cell in the mountain and the significant heritage of Azar Behram (the fire temple) with a fire burning for 1500 years. It is interesting to know that the Sasani king started the fire himself and then it was moved several times for hundreds of kilometers to finally settle in Yazd fire temple.
During the reign of several dynasties, education was always very important to both royalties and the common folk, therefore there are so many education centers that brought the nickname “the city of education”. We strongly recommend visiting Khan Hawse (the school for divine science) and Alexander Prison which is a school, unlike the name.
Considering the hot environment and extreme evaporation in central parts of Iran along with several deserts around Yazd, the water and cool air were the main considerations of people in Yazd. The creative solution to these matters led to two of the most practical inventions of all time, Kariz or Qanat and wind catchers.
We recommend visiting Zarch, the longest Qanat in the world, and also Dowlat Abad garden for the largest wind catcher in the world. Also, do not miss the amazing Water Museum of Yazd, located in the historical house of Kolahdooz. The advantage of this museum over all other water museums is that a branch of Zarch Qanat is still flowing under the first floor of the house.
But the greatest experience in Yazd must be Amir Chakhmaq Complex without any doubt. Amir Chakhmagh was one of the most influential kings of Yazd. Don’t miss this national heritage and the symbol of Yazd city including old Bazaar, mosque, 2 water reservoirs, public bath, Main Square and Tekkieh (religious gathering center).
We also recommend visiting Markar Clock in the exact central point of Iran. the founder of the Markar clock, high school, and orphanage, was a Zoroastrian from India. The clock was built in honor of Ferdowsi, the great Iranian poem. It is still working after 80 years.
To further your enthusiasm, we must point out the exceptional sweets such as candy floss (a special type of cotton candy), Yazdi Baklava which has a mild sweetness compare to other types of baklavas, the heavenly Persian cake with cardamom, saffron, rose water and other aromatics with pistachio and of course, Qottab, the special sweet made from nuts and cinnamon, wrapped in a thin dough, fried and covered in powdered sugar. The sweets in Yazd is something you can never forget!