Yazd, the Capital of Wind Catchers
The city of Yazd, the capital of Yazd province, is known as the City of Wind Catchers or wind towers. It is located in the heart of desert. This city, with a population of 1,138,533 (based on 2017 Census), is recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO since 2017. Its name is derived from Yazdgerd I, a Sassanid ruler. It is also considered as the center of Zoroastrians, although the majority people are Muslims.
In 1272, the city was visited by Marco Polo. He described Yazd in his book as a good and notable city having a great amount of trade. He also expressed the silk tissue (i.e. Yasdi) woven there, as a rich commodity which merchants carry into many quarters to dispose of.
Yazd has a lot to visit. Among the tourist attractions the following can be mentioned:
Dowlat Abad Garden
This garden was built in the Zand era in 1160 AH by Great Khan. To irrigate the garden, he dug an underground aqueduct. It is a Persian architecture jewel, annually attracts thousands of visitors. It has a tall wind catcher one can see from hundreds of meters away.
Amir Chakhmaq Complex
At the centre of the historical district of Yazd, one can visit a beautiful complex built in Timurid era. A big square is in the north of the Friday Mosque.
This mosque belongs to the Muzaffarid and the Timurid eras. Its construction dates back to 728 AH. It took about 100 years to complete. Its beautiful dome room, platforms, iwans, chambers and prayer niches, a grand one decorated with elegant mosaic tiles, are worth visiting. It also has a pair of minarets which are the highest in Iran.
Zoroastrian Fire Temple
The building is known as Bahram, or Vahram, was erected in the reign of Pahlavi I in 1934. it is the only temple housing Atash Bahram in Iran involving the gathering of different types of fire gathered from 16 different sources.
Seyyed Rukneddin’s Mausoleum
It is a small part of Seyyed Rukneddin’s Seminary built in the eight century AH. Although the Seminary is destroyed, the Mausoleum has survived. It has a dome room, a courtyard, and an iwan.
Coin Museum of Yazd
Located in Fahadan district, Arabzadeh’s house is an old building. Today, t is used as coin museum. This unique treasury and collection, containing five thousand coins, has been gathered during 50 years by Master Hussein Heidarzadeh, from the Achaemenid to the present periods.
The Crypts or Tower of Silence, are the name of Zoroastrians’ burial places near Yazd. as documents showed, the towers were first used in the early 9th century. The Zoroastrians put the dead body on a mount to be exposed to carrion birds to avoid the dead body contact with earth or fire, the sacred elements.
Sabats or shades are sunshades built over alleys which is the characteristic of desert architecture. This kind of architecture cause more air movement and make the temperature less hot to make walking tolerable. In winter, it is warmer.
This beautiful city has various handicrafts. Potteries, ceramics, cashmere weaving, lkat weaving, engraving, Zilo, silk cloth, velvet weaving, bed sheet weaving, etc. are among the Yazd famous handicrafts.
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