Pasargadae

Also known as: Pasargad

Pasargadae, which literally means the residence of the Persians, is seen as the first capital city of the Achaemenid Empire. The ancient city was founded by Cyrus the Great in the 6th century BC, is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

 

Tomb of a Great Man


The ancient site covers 1.6 square kilometers, featuring some of the earliest manifestations of Persian art and architecture. Although there is not much left from the palaces, there still remains a well-preserved lonely tomb in the middle of a huge plain.  The rectangular tomb is believed to hold the body of Cyrus the Great, an Achaemenid king who wrote down the first charter of human rights, freed all kinds of slaves and united all of Persia. One would usually imagine the great king of Persia’s remains to be safeguarded in an extravagate mausoleum, but Cyrus the Great’s humble tomb will keep you guessing as to why the founder of the Achaemenid Empire rests in a simple chamber.

 

Remains of Pasargadae


After invading Persia, Alexander the Great destroyed the ancient city. But fortunately, there are some remains from this beautiful city. Apart from Cyrus the Great’s tomb, sightseers will be able to observe the residential palace of Cyrus the Great, the audience hall and Eastern Palace.  And on top of that observers can also catch a glimpse of the picturesque landscape surrounding the ancient city while standing next to the Fortress of Toll-e Takht, located on top of a hill overlooking Pasargadae.

 

Festival Time


If you are lucky enough to visit the ancient site during the Persian New Year (Nowrouz), which is usually on the 21st of March, then you are able to witness a special time of the year where many Iranians gather near the tomb of Cyrus the Great, to pay homage to the king and celebrate their ancient heritage.

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