Dragan Vuletin, a young psychologist from Croatia, travelled Iran with his fiancée Mirela in October 2014. He has travelled 15 countries up to now and travelling, reading and climbing are amongst his hobbies
“I’ve travelled to Thailand, Myanmar and Cambodia a couple of years ago, and I met a guy there who was half Iranian, half British. So we got talking, and he said what a beautiful country Iran is, and how people are kind and so on,” he explained about his motivation to travel Iran.
“So I started reading about Iran, and pretty soon I decided to make it my next stop,” he said. He added that his fiancée was skeptical at first, but she agreed very soon.
“When you watch the western media, you get the idea that Iran is the same thing as Iraq, Afghanistan and so on. Before the trip people were asking me if I was afraid to go there, and are it dangerous. When I asked why it would be dangerous, they said because of the terrorists.
“This is the image that the people in the western world have about Iran, and most of the Muslim countries. It’s sad. But I believe that more and more people are seeing the real face of Iran, and all of its beauty.
“I wanted to see ancient Persian culture, deserts, Persepolis, Ali Sadr cave, and I also wanted to meet Iranian people. I’ve asked a lot of people, and all of them said Iran people are among the friendliest they have ever had the pleasure of meeting,” he added.
Iran under Western eyes!
He said that he has read about Iranian culture before he travelled the country. However, women wearing hijab was somehow strange for him.
“I was really surprised by the quality of your roads, which are great, and by your buses, which were better than in most of the other countries I visited,” he added.
“Taxi drivers charging us 3 or 4 times more than a local person. But this is something that is common in many countries,” he said.
He also lamented the gap existed for museum’s entrance fee between Iranians and foreign visitors.
Iranian’s hospitability was breathtaking!
“Iranians are extremely friendly and helpful,” he said. In his opinion, Iranian’s hospitality was breathtaking!
“I’ve felt completely safe wherever I went. People invited us all the time to join them for a meal, and also offered to stay with them if we had no place to sleep. I doubt I will meet again someone as hospitable as Iranian people,” he added.
He said that he enjoys Persian cuisines during his sojourn in Iran especially kebab, which “meat is very tasty”.
He advised other tourists just “enjoy yourself and enjoy Iran and its people” by travelling to the country.
He said that Iranians, for the most part, were very nice and kind. “The country itself is beautiful. We visited Persepolis, Ali Sadr cave, Dasht-e Kavir, and Choqa Zanbil and all of those places were beautiful.
“Maybe the Persepolis and the desert were the most impressive, but all in all a very nice journey,” he said.
He called Persepolis, Ali Sadr, Dasht-e Kavir, Shiraz and Isfahan as must-see places of the country.
“But in reality, all of Iran was extremely beautiful, and it’s hard to single out the best when everything was so nice,” he said.
He described nature in Iran is very different from the nature in Croatia, or in Europe for that matter.
“Historical sites were maybe a bit more enjoyable because of their historical value. But don’t get me wrong, the modern architecture, especially in Isfahan and Shiraz, was also very nice,” he added.
“I don’t think that Iran is the best country in the world. But it is one of the most beautiful that I have ever visited. And its people are among the most kind that I have had the pleasure of meeting.