DAY TWENTY FOUR… Bus ride to Isfahan

We took the metro to the bus station and caught the 9am bus which was running late. It’s a surprisingly long journey interspersed with chai stops at spanking new service stations. we arrived after a very long drive through mainly flat and totally empty, dry lands.  What would it be like cycling here, we wondered, so hot, no shade, no water and only a motorway to cycle along ?

We met our guide. She too is called Maryam, but is very different from our guide in Tehran. She arrives in a brown manteau, wanting to have worn black, but worried it might be too much for us. She is a very pretty young woman who has obviously done very well career wise. She seems pretty pro-chador, and definitely pro-manteau. However, like every Iranian, she is bitterly aware of the effects of sanctions on her day to day life. Costs rising as much as 300% for basic commodities like milk.

We must wait until 6pm before we go out to see some of Esfahan. We are taken to some amazing mosques and to see the huge central Naqsh-e Jahan Square. It is a very beautiful place.

Magical Naqsh-e Jahan Square by night

We manage to get some rice and aubergine from the hotel where we are staying which is traditional. They do not seem too pleased that we are veggie and long discussion before they agree on a rather meagre supper, but adequate.