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Tourists visiting iran

European and Foreign Tourists’ Perspectives on Traveling to Iran

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What do people around the world think of Iran? It is a question concerning both Iranians and global travelers interested in visiting Iran. Historically, the general consensus held that Iran is a desert nation with a concentrated population that is also somewhat perilous. Thanks to the Development of social media and Iranians’ efforts to present a more accurate picture of their country abroad, this perception is becoming obsolete. Iranians have been successful in this matter and now the way tourists who have visited Iran describe this country is very interesting. They consider Iranian people to be highly welcoming and praise Iran for its rich history, impressive architecture, rare deserts, lush mountains, and serene islands and locations. However, it should be noted that the above-mentioned opinions do not represent the entire world. In the following, We will go over further opinions.

International Public Opinion on Iran

First, we want to have a look at the opinions of foreigners about Iran who have traveled to Iran for the first time. We used the webpage of Anadolu Agency in this instance. This is one of the Websites in tourism for Spanish speakers. We asked the opinion of a foreign couple who traveled to Iran.  You can see their answers below.

  1. Iranians are Arabs: Due to Iran’s geographical location, a considerable number of foreigners erroneously believe that Iranians are Arabs. “We are not Arabs, we are Iranians,” is the first thing an Iranian will say to you when you meet them. It is also worth noting that Iran is home to a variety of ethnic groups, including Turks, Kurds, Arabs, and Baloch. In fact, Iranians speak Persian.
  2. Iranians despise Westerners: You might be surprised to learn that Iranians are among the friendliest people you will ever meet when you visit their country. The Iranian people do anything to make sure that you have a wonderful time when you visit their country.
  3. Iran is not a safe country: For travelers, Iran is much safer than many other countries, including some in South America. The Iranian people are known for their warmth and hospitality; one of the signs of their hospitality is that they may ask the travelers whom they don’t know at all for tea or dinner or perhaps invite them to spend the night at their home. Yes, we were taught as kids not to talk to strangers, but you should totally disregard that advice in Iran—the people you meet there will be the highlight of your vacation.
  4. Iranians live in a tent in the desert: We have no idea when or how some people in the world came up with this idea. However, it is clear that this is not true. Just as in most countries across the globe, life in Iran is rather ordinary.

What is Iran Famous for in the World?

Most Iranians are curious about the initial thought that crosses the minds of people from other countries when they hear the word Iran. For instance, Samsung might be the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear the name South Korea or to give just a few more examples: Germany is known for its Benz cars, Brazil for its football and the World Cup, France for its Eiffel Tower, and Spain for its Real Madrid and Barcelona teams. However, it would be fascinating to know what percentage of the global population is familiar with Iran or which word comes to their mind when they think about this country. Based on our personal experience, the German we encountered said “Ali Daei,” a former German football player for Bayern Munich, when he heard the word Iran. Similarly, when we mentioned Iran to a French citizen, the first thing she thought of was the well-known Iranian director, “Asghar Farhadi.” It is worth mentioning that the government officials of the country play an important role in introducing Iran to the rest of the world in the most favorable light.

Asghar Farhadi
Famous Iranian director Asghar Farhadi

Americans’ Perceptions of Iran

In its own unique way, American perspectives on Iran can be fascinating. It is more challenging for people in this country to travel to Iran, given that interactions between Iran and America have become difficult since the 1979 revolution. Pew also did a survey in 1991 to analyze the world’s attitude towards Iran. Only 15% of Americans who participated in the survey voted positively. As time has passed and social media has evolved, these opinions have shifted in a favorable direction.

The Opinions of Europeans about Iran

According to the same “Pew survey” that we previously discussed, the people of Italy, France, and Germany voted with the fewest positive votes about Iran, while the people of Russia, Turkey, and Greece expressed the greatest optimism—36%, 30%, and 28%, respectively. Recently, a European tourist named Veronika, who came to Iran from the Czech Republic, made some interesting comments about her journey to Iran. Initially uninterested in Iran, she later said: “After talking with Iranians and how they treat foreigners, I came to the conclusion to travel to this country. I recommend that you make Iran your travel destination because it helped me arrive at some fascinating outcomes that were not possible before traveling to the country.”

Here are Veronica’s thoughts on her visit to Iran:

  1. Traveling to Iran is incredibly affordable.
  2. Iranians are proud of their Persian blood.
  3. Iranians adore outdoor events.
  4. Iranians have a deep passion for their families.
  5. The people of Iran put in a lot of effort to see their country through to prosperity.

Foreigners’ Comments about Iran on Social Media

Some of the comments posted by foreigners on social media can be found here. As previously stated, social media can be the ideal way to introduce Iran and Iranian culture to the world.

Mexican tourist's tweet about Iran

tweet about Iran

Spanish reporter: Iranians are not Arabs; rather, they are a part of Persian culture. Iran is one of the most significant and admirable locations on the planet, with one of the richest traditions in human history.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the perceptions of Iran and its people among international visitors and global citizens have seen a significant shift, largely due to the efforts of Iranians themselves and the role of social media in bridging cultural gaps. While outdated stereotypes and misconceptions about Iran being a desert nation filled with tents and perceived dangers persist, the narratives are changing. Travelers who venture into this storied land are met with the warmth, hospitality, and rich cultural tapestry that define Iran. From its stunning landscapes that range from serene deserts to lush mountains, to its impressive architecture and deep historical roots, Iran offers a travel experience that is not only affordable but deeply enriching. The stories shared by visitors like the foreign couple and Veronika from the Czech Republic highlight the welcoming nature of the Iranian people, their pride in Persian heritage, and their desire to showcase the true spirit of their country. The case of Iran illustrates the power of personal interactions and cultural exchange in overcoming prejudices and fostering a more nuanced understanding of the world. As perceptions continue to evolve, it’s clear that Iran has much to offer to those willing to explore its many facets, challenging old narratives and inviting a reevaluation of what we think we know about this ancient civilization.

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