When summer approaches, the urge to move to somewhere cool is strongly felt. One place in Iran that can come as satisfaction is Kandovan in Tabriz, East Azerbaijan province. Kandovan in Farsi is the plural form of Kandoo or hive in English. The reason for such naming is that the houses in this region are built in the shape of hives. The temperature here is between 13 and 27 degrees centigrade in summer which is considered cool in Iran.
Located in a 60-kilometer distance from the southwest of Tabriz, Kandovan welcomes 300 thousand tourists annually. This village is 2200 meters above sea level. The wonders of this area have made it an unusual village and Iran. That is the reason why it is registered as a National Heritage Site. According to statistics, 177 local households live in this village. They do farming, handicrafts making, and animal husbandry to make a living.
This mountainous area has a lot of farming lands due to its cool climate. The silent narrow labyrinth of alleys and the balconies with so many colorful flowers in front of some of the houses are quite bizarre to an urban ear or eye.
Structure of Kandovan
But why the houses are in the shape of hives? Two reasons have been specified for this question. The lava of the volcano on the one hand and the human intervention of building houses out of the lava within years on the other have changed the appearance of the cone-shaped hill to what it is today.
As mentioned, the stone structures were made of soft volcanic ashes. Therefore, they were prone to environmental change caused by wind, snow, and rain. Through time, these changes made it possible for human beings to apply their share of changes. The houses do not contain urban building materials and are transformed into houses by carvings of rocks only. As the thickness of the walls is about 2 meters, these houses are warm in winter and cool in summer.
The houses are equipped with electricity and water sources. Hence, living is not as difficult as other villages in Iran. There are two mosques, a school, a park, souvenir shops, a buffet, and a restaurant.
History of Kandovan
No specific estimations have been made about the age of the village. Some say it is 6000 years old while others say its emergence dates back to 3000 years ago. However, it is said that the residence of the locals dates back to the 7th century in the Islamic calendar.
Importance of Kandovan
Regarding the similarities, Kandovan has three other counterparts in the world. Cappadocia Village in Turkey, Dakota in the United States, and Meymand Village in Kerman have the same nature and architecture. Therefore, it has huge impacts on the tourism industry of Iran.
What to Buy in Kandovan
Kandovan is quite well-reputed for its pure honey production. Is not the combination of honey with the hive-like houses just so interesting? Apricot, cherry, nuts, fruit rolls, Persian rugs, and hand-knitted goods are other products you can find here. Above all, the mineral water of Kandovan is perfectly curable to kidney illnesses.
When to Visit Kandovan
Whenever you plan your trip, you are welcomed in the village. However, we suggest summer for moving here as the weather is no longer freezing cold.
Where to Eat near Kandovan
Haj Ghorban Restaurant, Babaei Traditional Yard, and Bagh Fadak are the nearby restaurants to Kandovan where you can have a delicious meal before or after your explorations in the village.
Where to Stay near Kandovan
If you want to have a luxury stay, the 5-star Laleh Kandovan Hotel is our best offer. In the case of preferring a budget stay, the 3-star Toral Suites Rocky Hotel is your next choice.
How To Get To Kandovan
First, find the town of Oskoo in East Azerbaijan province. move southward in this town and pass Esfanjan town. Take the left way when you get to the end of the road to get to Kandovan.
If you cannot hire a car, you can take the buses in Oskoo and enjoy the roads until you get to Kandovan.
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