Narelle and I would like to invite you to follow our trip to the Middle East this March and April. We hope you enjoy the blogs we post as we travel around this beautiful part of the world.

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Matsulah - a hidden gem

The day started early with a walk around town as the sun came up. Narelle elected to stay in bed so I got to enjoy the brisk morning walk and beautiful views all to myself. Obviously the locals like their warm beds too as there was not a sole around.

We decided to seek out a mountain fortress about 60 minutes away that the locals had talked about. I don't speak Farsi and the taxi driver spoke zero english so after a lot of pointing, drawing on paper and a bribe of 20,000 toman or 200,000 Rial ($6) and a pot of tea we managed to convince the taxi driver to drive us there, wait a few hours for us to climb the mountain and then drive us home.


We climbed the 1500 odd steps up through the dense forest and this magnificent mountain top structure is what greeted us.

We were unable to find anyone who could tell us anymore about the castle and why it was its on the research list for when we get home.

A kebab and rice lunch was quickly followed by a sleep then it was time for dinner...tough life... and god knows how I am going to stay awake after lunch when I get back to work! Russell, Mons just warning you that 1 to 3pm is now my siesta time. I can be found sleeping in the sick bay.

Dinner was out of the oven flat bread from the baker and a local sheeps cheese. Very was followed up with an invitation from the tea shop to join them. We drunk a few pots, had freshly baked biscuits and eventually I went and got some beer (a 0% malt drink that sort of tastes like beer), I had had enough of tea!! A few of them created clouds of smoke as they puffed on their sheishas while Narelle and I made an effort to keep warm near their potbelly and to learn more about everyday life in a small Iranian village.

As in any small town you quickly get to know the people; We now get big Saloms (hellos) from the baker, green grocer, corner shop man, cake man, tea shop owner, the street sweeper, the entire family from the only restaurant (with an english menu) in the village and a little kid called Mahidie. If he sees us he follows us everywhere and keenly practises his English...pretty funny and he loves looking at photos of our journey. All across this sleepy village we are greeted warmly and referred to as the Australians. It appears they all know where we are staying and for how long...word gets around when someone strange is in town I suppose!

Matsulah was definitely worth taking the detour for and spending a few days here was a delight, one of the highlights of the entire trip.

Tomorrow evening we are off to Tabriz...I wonder what adventure this city will bring?



Anonymous said...

Sounds like a few enjoyable days. It is usually the unplanned events that surprise you.
Your warm welcome everywhere has surprised me a bit. It seems that there aren't any/many taliban influences. A pity the polies don't take the same approach.

ryan said...

I myself am planing a trip to Iran in January. This has definitely got my interest! Where you able to find any nor information about the ruins?

Kane and Narelle said...

Anonymous, wrong country for the Taliban.

Ryan, Iran is spectacular and i can't speak highly enough of its people. Don't think twice about we did, you will love it! Let me know if you are going to go and i will give you some contacts within Iran that will make your trip even better.


Ryan said...

That would be great! I'm heading to Iran around January 4. Just need to get my passport stamped in Australia when I return form Vietnam.

I have not been able to find any information online about the town or the ruins. I am very keen on seeing them myself.

Anonymous said...

I forgot to leave my contact address.