Midway between Tehran and Isfahan lies Kashan. One of the UNESCO World Heritage sites, the Fin Garden highlights traditional Persian landscape design with fountains, channels and reflecting pools. These design principles trace back to the 6th Century and Cyrus the Great.
Local tourists love to visit these parks. On a particularly busy “weekend” Friday, the sites were crowded but the feeling was festive. Persians are courteous and never pushy, so it always seems like you are part of the public experience, not against it. Each person, including you, is entertainment material.
We stopped for lunch at a restaurant where large divans or platforms shaped like a huge sofa surrounded by a low back/barricade offered guests an alternative to traditional tables. The design defined a semi-private space, where groups or families could sit cross legged, enjoy the food, but not miss out on the activity outside their spaces.
The nearby town housed merchants who became wealthy from the textiles, carpets and tile produced in the area. Door knockers on a pair of entry doors differentiated men from women arriving by the sound of the knock. That was a pretty ingenious communication device!
The local bath house was an important community space and lavish design details encouraged members to use the club’s facilities!
I couldn’t help but to continue a few of my forays into people pictures. I was starting to get really comfortable doing this, again because the faces of the individuals are so engaging and CALM. Young girls may be a bit giddy, but overall everyone whose pictures I took were inviting, elegant and never intimidated or negative.
Below, here’s a video of the adorable little girl shown above:
(This post was created on April 20, 2018)
2 thoughts on “Kool in Kashan”
Beautiful gardens. Colorful tiles everywhere in structures. Love the many colors and water! Divan interesting way of dining as alternative to traditional tables & chairs. Again handsome friendly people, & they looked calm.
Kashan is famous for its tilework and manufacturing. Here’s the excerpt from Wikipedia summarizing he word “divan”: In Arabic, the term was first used for the army registers, then generalized to any register, and by metonymy applied to specific government departments. The sense of the word evolved to “custom house” and “council chamber,” then to “long, cushioned seat,” such as are found along the walls in Middle-Eastern council chambers. The latter is the sense that entered European languages as divan (furniture). You can also google it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Divan
This area was also renown for its water system and bringing water from the mountains to the plateau. Many channels, pools and fountains were created to preserve and access water.
Glad you enjoyed this post!