Maranjab Desert

Also known as: Kavir-e Maranjab, Maranjab Desert in Aran Va Bidgol

Maranjab desert is one of the most popular desert destination in Iran visited by many travelers for an excursion from Tehran and Isfahan or for camping. It offers a complete desert experience with high sand dunes, salt lakes, a historical caravanserai, amazing night sky, and activities such as walking on sand, sitting by the fire, and safari tours.
Maranjab desert is in northeast of Kashan and surrounded by two salt lakes (Salt Lake in the east, and Hoz-e Soltan in the west), Kavir National Park in the east, and Band-e Rig desert in the south. This desert is just 300 km from Tehran which can take 4 hours by car, so it is a great destination for a daily tour from Tehran. You have also the opportunity to visit Kashan and its attractions on your way to Maranjab.




Maranjab desert hosts various attractions making it an interesting destination for travelers with different tastes. The main road to Maranjab is via Aran Va Bidgol, 5 km north of Kashan. The first attraction would be Chah Konjeh playa on the east side of the road. You can find some dense green spots within Chah Konjeh too. The level of water is high in these plains.
35 km ahead, there is a triangular Salt Lake, dry almost all year round. The depth of salt differs from 5 to 54 meters. After rainfall, there would be beautiful salt polygon patterns. Walking over these polygons is an experience not to be missed at all. There is a mysterious hill in this lake called Jazireh Sargardan or Wandered Island, seemed to be shifting because of mirage effect.
Maranjab Caravanserai is a cultural highlight believed to be built upon the order of Shah Abbas the Great (1588-1629) after the invasion of Uzbeks, as a military base for 500 soldiers to prevent any similar invasions in the future. These armed men secured the famous commercial route of Silk Road, connecting China to Europe. This caravanserai is an ideal place for staying overnight, watching the night sky, or simply having a break in the middle of desert.
The last possible destination for tours is Rig Boland desert with high sandy dunes, only accessible by 4W vehicles. You can have a panoramic view of the Salt Lake and nearby sand dunes from above one of these hills.




Other Attractions

There are a number of attractions around the road from Aran Va Bidgol to Maranjab Desert. There are lots of watermelon farms in the beginning of the path as big hallows between sandy dunes. These watermelon farms use the high level of water beneath the ground and are so sweet and popular in the region. 




Notes and Tips

•    Never go to desert alone, and always inform others about your trip to desert;
•    Use a 4W drive or go with tours and other people;
•    It is advisable to go with more than one car;
•    Having sufficient food and water supply is necessary (twice your actual need);
•    If lost, do not waste your energy going around in vain. Instead, try to survive and communicate with others for help


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