Tea drinking is an integral part of Iranian hospitality. No social occasion passes by without it being offered and most business transactions also involve tea drinking as well. It's always served black, in small glasses, usually with sugar cubes or pastilles that are placed on the tongue and the tea drunk over them to sweeten it. Iranian tea is very mellow and smooth, with none of the tannins often associated with tea that is drunk without milk.
Whilst teahouses are really men's territory, it is generally accepted that women tourists may visit them - though you will feel more comfortable if you have a male companion with you and stick to those in the areas of town frequented by tourists.
The teahouse in the gardens of the Hafez mausoleum is a lovely courtyard with a cushioned niches around the walls and a large pool in the middle.
There's nothing like freshly-baked bread - bought the moment right after it was baked, out of a simply oven right on the side of the street. We found one of these magical places near Imam Hossein Square, turning into Azadi Boulevard, about 200 metres along it, on the right side of the boulevard.
For 1000 rials you can buy a huge leaf of Iranian bread - and if you bring along some sesame seeds like some locals do, you can have it with sesame, too. The baker will flat out the dought, shove it onto the "wall" of the oven and let it bake there. Just next to the oven there's a sort of iron grid, where you can lay your hot bread, to let it cool a bit and to search for possible little stones.
The place is very popular, so be patient... it may take up to 30 minutes to get your loaf of bread, but it's well worth the wait.
Hafez tomb is a unique place to understand the deep respect for this great poet Iranians have. Also to realize that this nation is highly educated and appreciates its literature despite it’s so old.
Apart from the crowds that just visit Hafez tomb, you can find others that are just sitting or scrolling around reading his poetry in groups or alone. It is said that this is particularly popular after sunset when even his verses are transformed into songs. It must be a magical moment which due to my limited time in Shiraz I didn’t have the chance to see.
From somewhere they came to us and they said "Hello" many many times and very smiled.
They chased us for a while by their bike.