Sassanid Archaeological Landscape
This recently-added site to the UNESCO world heritage sites, known as Sassanid Archaeological landscape, includes eight archaeological sites situated in three geographical areas in the southeast of Fars Province including Firuzabad, Bishapur and Sarvestan. All of them historically, trace back to the Sassanid era’s earliest and latest palaces, city plans and fortified structures.
Among these sites is the capital built by the founder of the dynasty, Ardashir Papakan in Firuzabad, about 111 Km from Shiraz. The city retained its glory and distinctive position during Sassanid period. Ardashir palace, Ghaleh Dokhtar, Milo Minaret, Ardashir’s victory Bas-relief as well as a caravanserai are the components of monumental remnants in Firuzabad.
A city and architectural structures of Ardeshir successor, Shapur I, is the second on this route of Sassanid archaeological landscape. It is located 23 Km from Shiraz. The latest Sassanid city before Islamic era. Its origin traces back to 1800 years ago. The city was built under command of Shapur I, inspired by Roman-Greek architecture, after Sassanid victorious battle against Ancient Rome. We can recognize roman style design and architecture in the city. In short, 4 gates were the entrance to the city and 2 main north-south and east-west streets divided the city into 4. About 50 to 80 thousand people used to live inside the city surrounded by 10-meter walls. Royal arg (castle) and common people residential area were two parts of the city.
The last but not the least on this long road of Sassanid history, Sassanid archaeological landscape, is an isolated and remote palace, standing awake during all these years to be up once again. Away from hustle and bustle of modern life, Sarvestan palace has been witnessing the rise and fall of empires silently. 85 Km from Shiraz a majestic Sarvestan palace shows up. They built the palace ik,,n times of Bahram V, also known as Bahram Gor reign. It used to be one of the most glorious Sassanid palaces, smaller than the Ardeshir palace in Bishapur but more complicated and prototype of its kind. The palace as well as its belongings, occupied an area of about 30 acres in their heyday.
Where to stay?
All 3 attractions are accessible from Shiraz. In a three-day trip to Shiraz you can visit them all in a relaxed pace. Don’t rush since the stories take time to sink.