Statue of Virgin Mary, Quito

The highest statue of Ecuador, at the hight of 41 meters, is the Virgin of Quito. The monument was open to public in 1976. It was sculptured by the well known Spanish architect Agustin de la Erran Matorra. This amazing monument is mounted on the hill of Panecillo.

Statue of Virgin Mary
Statue of Virgin Mary
The monument
The inside structure of the statue
The platform
The view from the platform
The view from the platform
The painting displayed in the entry hall

Zahedan – The city armed and safe

Zahedan was my resting place and above all the starting point in my adventure to the archeological site near the town of Zabol situated close to Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran border. After the unique experience I had in Mashhad, I was more than eager to explore even more of this Persian land. That was the archeological ground of The Burnt City. Firstly, let me tell you, when I set off for a journey to Zabol, Amin Hotel I stayed in was simply not having it, the idea that a Western guy is venturing into the politically disputed region. They told me to pack up and take all my stuff with me, in case I will not make it back. Besides, if the police forces arrive to the hotel, they cannot be bothered explaining my very existence, to put it simply. Anyway, on my last day to depart from Zahedan, the armed forces arrived at 5am at the hotel and escorted me to the Bus Terminal and made sure I purchased the correct ticket. Once I boarded the bus, they left the Terminal. I was now heading to Chabahar in the South of Iran.

All the photos are taken from the police car with two armed motorcycles escorting us along the way.

Close Encounters of Camel Kind

Behind this beautiful garden Dolat Abad, I found camel’s inn. A group of these lovely creatures was enjoying eating hay, occasionally giving us a suspicious look, or smile. It was really nice sunny day for exploring this lovely ancient city of Yazd.

Lunch in Dolat Abad Garden, Yazd

Dolat Abad Garden is a truly amazing place to admire and rest. It is one of the nine Iranian gardens registered in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list. The Garden boasts the tallest windward in the world (33m) that had been built in the centre of it, drawing the attention and interest from around the world. As its history goes, Mohammad Taghi Khan Bafghi, the Yazd ruler established this garden as a residence for Karim Khan Zand and Shahrokh Mirza some two hundred years ago. Dolat Abad Garden was built around 1750 and is a priceless reminiscence of Afsharid and Zand Dynasties.

Jameh Mosque of Yazd, Iran

James Mosque’s great feature is this square shape which makes it look like Kaaba – Great Mosque of Mecca. The decorations done by bricks, tiles and plaster make it one of the most wondering mosques in the world. Moreover, The lighting of Jameh Mosque is provided indirectly by reflecting to the white plasterworks of walls and the dome. Jameh Mosque of Yazd is located in the historical district of Yazd and was registered in Iran’s National Heritage in 1934. Wonderful place for history lovers.

Shipyard and boats of Qeshm

“While other yards on Qeshm have fallen into disuse or been converted into repair shops for older vessels or fiberglass lenj workshops, Guran’s small community of shipbuilders is sticking to tradition, continuing to build wooden lenjes by hand, plank by plank, using the same basic principles that have stood for centuries—all without the use of a blueprint.”

Qeshm Cemetery and Fortress

This part of Qeshm Island offers also this military complex dated back to Seljukian Era (3rd century). The castle consisted of four towers and and a rampart gate made of mortar on western side. The remains of Naderi castle and four observation towers are symbols of the historical importance of this port. A nearby cemetery adds to the mystery of this place.

Marvel at Chahkooh Canyon

Chahkooh Canyon is located in Qeshm district of Shahab, at the heart of the rocky and monolith southern part of Zagros mountain ranges. Formed as a result of a big fracture in a large anticline, leading to natural valleys of 100 meters depth and up to 20 meters height adorned with grooves, holes, cavities, sea-like features like shells, and appealing unusual geometrical shapes formed by water erosion and wind over time.

Namakdan Geosite, Qeshm Island

Time spent on Qeshm island centred around geological ‘explorations’. I began with a visit to the Salt Dome located on the south western part of the island. It hosts the longest salt cave of the world, Namakdan Cave, that is 6500m long. It is among the most important geosites here. The Salt Dome of Namakdan is a unique structure, including several outstanding erosional, structural and mineralogical sceneries.

Red Hills of Hormuz, Persian Gulf

One of the attractions on Hormuz is undoubtedly its colourful geological structure, precisely the red colour of the landscape and the water; the Red Beach. The soil has a high concentration of iron oxide. It gives the landscape a characteristic reddish hue and in places where the sand is redder, the waves in the sea become tinged with pink. This allowed to prosper in the industry of cosmetics, glass, dyeing, cosmetics and ceramics.
Together with my new local friends, we explored much of the island visiting geological marvels. Red beaches, volcanic hills and beautiful sunsets, and above all, nice and friendly locals. One of the pearls of visiting the Persian Gulf.