Several of our journeys have taken guests to Isfahan, Iran. Over three days in this historic city, guests and expedition staff have an opportunity explore ancient bridges, remarkable blue-tile mosques and bustling bazaars—just a few of the things for which Isfahan is renowned. They also have a unique opportunity to interact with local residents.
Eszter Foldvary has been to more than 120 countries over her 25 years as an expedition leader. One of her favorite moments in Iran happened when an elderly gentlemen dancing and singing in a park spontaneously invited the group to join them.
Later when the group Foldvary was leading went to Isfahan's main square, a little girl who was picnicking with her family offered up a beautifully arranged tray with cups of tea and a sugar bowl.
“These were the signs of the warmest welcome and the friendliness of the Iranian people,” Eszter said. “I have never experienced something like that from everybody in any other country.”
Mary Wakefield, a member of our advance staff team, spent almost a week in Isfahan making sure everything was in order for one of our groups. Her friends back home were concerned she was making such a lengthy trip to Iran, but changed their minds once she returned home and recounted her experience.
“I could see that a new sense of a country that is totally misunderstood started to emerge for them,” Mary said. “The people of Isfahan are gracious, friendly, fun loving and so welcoming.”