Prior to going to Tehran, I decided to leave the urban setting for a change and go to a small village more than one hour away from Kashan. This village is called Abyaneh and is considered to be one of the oldest continuously inhabited towns in Iran. It is so old that the natives there speak an ancient variant of Persian which differs from what the rest of the Iranians speak and they wear clothes that don’t look out of place in the year 1200, or even year 1 AD.
the village – it took me a while to find this spot, but it was worth it
There are actually several ways to get to Abyaneh from Kashan. The most convenient way is to rent a car with driver for a daytrip which typically costs $30 to $35 depending on your bargaining skills for a vehicle that seats up to 4. I chose another route which was to go there via motorbike. I got the idea after wandering around the main road in Kashan, which was filled with automotive shops. I asked my hotel to source one for me and voila, it was there the next day! So off we went, relying mostly on the Maps application in my iPhone (an indispensable app by the way!). It was mostly a straight ride of about an hour or more. The roads in Iran are especially good, the only thing one had to worry about are the cars which have no regard for speed so a good way to navigate it on motorbike is to take the side road. Throughout the whole trip, I only had to turn once – in a junction where I passed by the not-so-hush-hush nuclear facility (yet again!). Sweet. Soon enough, I was out of the desert and into the mountainous area. The vegetation changed from barren to seasonal colors of yellow and red which coincided with autumn. It reminded me a lot of New Zealand.