Day 69: City of badgirs

Yazd Travel Blog

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A badgir, a windtower designed to catch the slightest breeze of wind and direct the cool air into the house
Thanks to the people I met here and/or travelled with: Michael (Australia)

No, not badgers, badgirs! Badgirs are windtowers or wind catchers, which stand on the roofs of the ancient buildings in Yazd. These can capture even the slightest breeze and via an ingenious system or air-flow and water the air is cooled and led into the rooms below. It works as an antique form of air-conditioning.
Actually, the modern Iranian air-conditioning (circulating moist air into a room) is directly derived from the ancient system. While it may not be as cold as conventional air-conditioning, it actually works really well in a dry climate.

After a not particularly comfortable bus ride (I'm not even going to describe the bus rides from now on, they were all bad in this country!) we arrived in Yazd.
wonderful scenery on the way to Yazd
Yazd was the one city where I had received a recommendation for a hotel to stay at. Which is quite a big deal when you consider that hotels in Iran generally aren't much to write home about. The Silk Road Hotel is the only genuine backpacker hostel in the entire country, so as far as Yazd was concerned I had not even bothered with couch surfing. This was the place I wanted to stay.

So it was only obvious that upon arrival we got told the hotel was full, despite our reservation. We would stay in another hotel, owned by the same people. Note the word would. We weren't given a choice or anything, no, we were simply told, very matter of factly, that we had to stay in the Orient Hotel across the road.
In any other situation I would have walked out. I mean, the least the guy could do was apologise for the inconvenience and try to fix the situation.
Silk Road Hotel
Actually, I wanted to walk out, but it was late, so we decided to stay one night at the Orient Hotel and see what we'd do afterwards. We negotiated a nice discount for the room at the Orient (even though this hotel is supposed to be more expensive than the Silk Road) and we arranged that we could use all the facilities of the Silk Road as well (Wi-Fi, breakfast buffet, common area, etc).

After we chucked our bags into the room we went for a stroll through the old centre of Yazd. Old Yazd is particularly handsome and completely made from sun-dried mud bricks. It is also considered one of the oldest cities in the world. The setting sun cast the buildings in a wonderful golden glow. A perfect place for a sunset stroll.

We had already noticed Yazd seems to have a higher concentration of tourists than most other Iranian cities.
The streets of Yazd
Or at least, because the area is so small (and almost everybody stays at the Silk Road) it seems like there are more tourists here. But not just foreigners, there are plenty of Iranian tourists here as well. We bumped into one family, with a typical obnoxious dad dragging his family along much against their will. As soon as he spotted us he demanded a photo to be taken and forced his family to pose for us.
Michael and I laughed about it. My own dad was never like this, but I know plenty of families who went on similar vacations. Michael recognised this from his childhood as well. The poor family. We wished them luck.

Apart from a popular travellers hangout, the Silk Road Hotel also has an excellent restaurant, offering several international dishes.
the streets of Yazd
While I generally prefer to stick to local food when travelling in a country, I must say that Iranian food tends to get boring after a while. Although they have many different dishes, they all somewhat taste the same.

So Michael and I happily ordered some less exotic dishes for once. Although, less exotic? My camel stew wasn't exactly what you'd call mainstream, neither was the banana-date shake that went with it!

The World Cup Football had started, and with a large international crowd we watched Australia get pummeled by Germany.

Yes, it was nice to be in a real hostel again. Even if we were sleeping across the road.

dukeBG says:
LOL, Ed, my thoughts exactly... :)))
Posted on: Jul 20, 2010
edsander says:
I was hoping for stories about 'badgirls'. ;-)
Posted on: Jul 19, 2010
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A badgir, a windtower designed to …
A badgir, a windtower designed to…
wonderful scenery on the way to Ya…
wonderful scenery on the way to Y…
Silk Road Hotel
Silk Road Hotel
The streets of Yazd
The streets of Yazd
the streets of Yazd
the streets of Yazd
Having a dry cake and an alcohol-f…
Having a dry cake and an alcohol-…
Lunch stop in the middle of nowhere
Lunch stop in the middle of nowhere
crossing the desert by bus to Yazd
crossing the desert by bus to Yazd
crossing the desert by bus
crossing the desert by bus
wonderful scenery on the way to Ya…
wonderful scenery on the way to Y…
wonderful scenery on the way to Ya…
wonderful scenery on the way to Y…
wonderful scenery on the way to Ya…
wonderful scenery on the way to Y…
wonderful scenery on the way to Ya…
wonderful scenery on the way to Y…
wonderful scenery on the way to Ya…
wonderful scenery on the way to Y…
The badgirs of Yazd
The badgirs of Yazd
little boy near our hotel - that m…
little boy near our hotel - that …
Family happily(?) posing for a pic…
Family happily(?) posing for a pi…
Alexanders prison, according to l…
Alexander's prison, according to …
shadowplay
shadowplay
Detail of Alexanders prison
Detail of Alexander's prison
the streets of Yazd
the streets of Yazd
some locals passing by
some locals passing by
local kid in Yazd
local kid in Yazd
Alexanders Prison and the Tomb of…
Alexander's Prison and the Tomb o…
Yazd Hostels review
Best (and only?) backpacker place in Iran
Most hotels in Iran aren't much to write home about. In fact, the Silk Road Hotel was the only place in Iran that was recommended to me by several dif… read entire review
Yazd Hotels & Accommodations review
Excellent hotel in a nice historic building
The Orient Hotel is run by the same people who run the backpackers favourite Silk Road Hotel and is located across the road. Whenever the Silk Road … read entire review
Yazd
photo by: macajam