The mountain tombs of Naghsh-e Rostam

The ancient Royal tombs carved into the mountain side at Naghsh-e Rostam are not as well known as the abandoned city of Persepolis, a little over ten kilometres away, but they are very much as impressive, if not more so, because of their state of preservation.

A Palace in the Desert. Persepolis

In an arid desert area, thirty minutes from the southern Iranian city of Shiraz, lies the ruins of Persepolis, once one of the greatest cities on earth. Founded by King Darius I in 518 BC it was the capital of the Persian empire and inspired awe from those who visited it. The ancient Greek historian, Diodorus Siculus, described it as "...the richest city under the sun". And so it remained until Alexander the Great looted and burnt it down two hundred years later as revenge for the Persian sacking of Athens.

Where the streets play political games

In most cities, Embassies are the hosts to long lines of patient visa hunters in the day time, and cocktail parties at night. Usually ostentatious, always in the most expensive part of the city, and often, to be honest, boring. Not in Tehran. Embassies have been the focal point for protest, political games, occupation, death and destruction since 1829.