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Best Hiking Trails in Iran

Overview

Iran is a large Middle Eastern country, whose landscapes span from desert to forest to mountain.  Much of the country is mountainous, and includes the mighty Mt Damavand, rising behind the country’s capital of Tehran. There are many areas to hike in Iran, including in the Zagros and Talysh Mountains, around Tabriz, Golestan National Park, Tandoureh National Park, Alamut Valley, and treks in the desert areas.  The best months to hike in Iran vary depending on the region.  Read on for more information on where and when to go hiking in Iran. 

Capital: Tehran

When To Hike in Iran?

Year round: For many mountainous parts of the country, the spring and fall months are best.  But for very south and for high altitude mountains, other months are best. Filter in the map to see the best months for each region.
Varies
Varies: Cold; snowy
Climate: Range of climates – continental, Mediterranean, arid.  For the most part, April – Oct seems to be the warmest and driest time; in some areas, June – Aug is too hot; in other areas, April and May can be too rainy.  Best months are dependent on altitude as well, as there are many high mountains in Iran. 
For more information on weather: Iran Monthly Weather

Accessibility of Hiking

Medium – Hard: While there are well known areas to hike (ie. Mt Damavand) most places you would need a guide and there are not many resources available for good hiking trip planning. Many companies offering tours. 

Transportation required: Vehicle required to access most trails

Where to stay in Iran for hiking:

  • Tehran
  • Tabriz
  • Yazd
  • Kerman
  • Shiraz
  • Kandovan
  • Kaleybar

Top Places to Hike in Iran

The two most well-known areas for hiking are the Alborz Mountains which run from the northwestern part of Iran (from Azerbaijan) hugging the southern part of Caspian Sea to Turkmenistan in the east; and the Zagros Mountains, which run north to south on the western side, along border with Iraq. There are other smaller mountain ranges located throughout the country. Highest Mountain: Mt Damavand (5671 m), volcano in the Alborz mountains.

Filter out hiking places of Iran by month

Click on the red map pointers to see more info.

Around Shiraz

  • Feb – Apr; Oct – Nov
  • Bamou National Park
  • Other areas

Around Kerman

  • Mar – May; Oct – Nov
  • Mountains around Kerman include: Kūh-e Palvār, Kūh-e Bāgh-e Bālā,, Kūh-e Gerdū

Around Yazd

  • Nov – Apr
  • Mountains south of Yazd
  • Dar-e Anjir Wildlife Refuge to the north of it

Iranian Kurdistan

  • Apr – May; Sept – Oct
  • Urâmân Takht

Oshtoran Kuh

  • Apr – Oct (June – Sept for higher peaks)
  • Range in the Zagros Mountains

Alamut Valley

  • Apr – Oct
  • Castle of the Assassins

Alam-Kuh

  • June – Sept
  • Just one of the peaks in this area that can be hiked

Tandoureh National Park

  • Apr – Oct

Golestan National Park

  • Apr – Oct
  • Has limited access, must go with organized tour and can be expensive

Around Tehran

  • Apr – Oct
  • Mt Damavand – climbable from June to September
  • Mt Tochal
  • Khojir National Park
  • Lar National Park

Around Tabriz

  • Apr – Oct (higher altitudes are best June – August)
  • Mt Sahand
  • Around Kandovan (like Turkey’s Capodocchia) 
  • Around Kaleybar

Iran's Long Distance Trails

Iran's Walking & Hiking Resources

Iran Hiking Books: 

  • 100 Ecotourism Trails of Iran, by Parviz Shojaee Parsa, 2023, Nowsadeh Publications
  • Lonely Planet Iran, by Simon Richmond, Jean-Bernard Carillet, Mark Elliott, 2017, Lonely Planet Publications – good source for hiking guides 
  • Iran, by Marie Oleynik, 2020, Bradt Travel Guides

 

Iran Hiking Associations/Clubs:

 

Best Hiking Trails in Iran:

You can find more details on hiking these trails from trail maps/apps, websites, and tourist offices:

  • Mount Damavand
  • Mount Sahand
  • Mount Tochal
  • Alam-Kuh
  • Mount Sabalan
  • Zard Kuh
  • Kuh-e Palvar

Easy Hiking Trails in Iran:

  • Castle of the Assassins
  • Kavir-e Mesr

 

Iran Hiking Websites:

 

Iran Weather websites:

 

Iran Official Tourism Site:  

  • Iran Tourism and Touring Online: Iran  
  • Visit Iran: Visit Iran  

 

Iran Hiking Apps: 

Maps: 

What Else To Do

  • Religious architecture  
  • Ancient civilization 
  • Two large deserts: Dasht-e Kavir & Dasht-e Lut, where you can trek, sandboard, etc
  • Qeshm Island Geopark

Other Important Points

  • Learn some basic Farsi
  • Iran is a conservative Islamic country; observe their cultural norms while in the country 
  • Beware of altitude sickness
  • Dates on websites may reflect the Persian calendar