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Kish Island- The Pearl of the Persian Gulf

With every step you take on Kish you will come across a new attraction. The virgin nature, the beautiful shores and vegetation create a floating panorama of colors against the azure waters of the Persian Gulf. There are, however, certain attractions which tourists prefer to visit given their limited time. These include:

The Ancient Town of Harireh
For those who are interested in the history of Iran in general, and in the history of Iranian islands in the Persian Gulf in particular, a visit to the ancient town of Harireh is a must. Harireh is most probably the town which the renowned Iranian Poet, Sa’adi, has referred to in his book “The Rose Garden”. There are references in the works of Iranian and Arab historians to the location of the town on the island. They say that the town was situated in the middle of the northern part, precisely where the ruins are standing today. A tour of Harireh can give the visitor a chance at imagining the ancient times of Iran. Then a short stroll over to Derakh-e-Sabz (Green Tree) Park will provide a chance at relaxation in the tranquil atmosphere.

Archaeological Discoveries
For many visitors of Kish it is hard to believe that this island was once very prosperous and that it was one of the main commercial centers of its time. It was the hub of exchanges between China, Europe and northern Africa. Although the archaeological excavations carried out there have not been extensive, yet one can see signs of the past in each and every corner, reminiscent of the glory of the time.
As in many other areas of the country where water is scarce, the past inhabitants of Kish used a special type of water reservoir to collect rain water. These reservoirs were dug at the end of natural basins deep in the ground.
With the innovation of desalination technology traditional water reservoirs became obsolete. But, what remains of them is a sight to visit for tourists. The architecture of these structures is unique and very interesting.
To collect surface waters, two such reservoirs were built in the Portuguese Valley in 1992. The water collected is being used to irrigate the parks and green areas.
An ancient water reservoir is Payab. It has been restored and is now one of the attractions of the Island. Payab is over 2000 years old. Once it was renovated, the floor was carpeted with corals. A Tea House has also been provided to serve refreshment to visitors. In Farsi (Persian) , Payab means bottom of the sea.

Sunset by the Greek Ship
An attraction for the romantics is watching the sunset by the Greek Ship. Viewers can not help but be mesmerized by the rainbow that appears when the sun begins to go down. No tourist has bypassed the chance to witness this natural phenomenon. It is as if the sun here is different from the sun seen elsewhere.
It is said that many years ago, a Greek cargo ship approached Kish for unknown reasons. It ran aground and was unable to leave. The name of the ship was KULAF. It is a mountain of steel, behind which the sun hides and in the moon light it looks like a floating giant.
Old tales say that the absence of a lighthouse was the reason the ship ran aground. Apparently all attempts to float it again was fruitless and it failed. And now that there is nothing left of it but a huge steel structure, the tale seems to be true.
Near the ship, a rest area has been set up and refreshments are served there. Overall, it can provide an unforgettable experience for all. This spot seems to be a favorite of the young generation.

The Shores of Kish
The coral beaches of Kish sparkle in the sunlight. This is something which the sandy beaches of many resort areas around the world don’t offer. The sea water near the beach is crystal clear and one can see the bottom of the sea up to a far distance. This, of course, is due to the corals around the Island which purify the water.
Relative to its area, Kish has one of the longest beach stretches. Unlike the crowded beaches elsewhere, the beach here is a relaxing and a peaceful place.
The fish and other marine life in the coastal waters of Kish are very unique. Visitors lose track of time when watching these species which are easily visible. At the same time, the best quality edible fish is caught here.
The coastal waters of Kish are among the safest in the world. There are no sharks and swimming is totally safe. Tourists can use the beach and enjoy the sun and water all year round.

The Aquarium
Aquatic life in the Persian Gulf is diverse. The clear water along the beach gives tourists an easy view of the variety of fish species, some of which are very interesting. You can even take a ride in a glass-bottom boat and see the fish which swim a little further away from the shore.
The Kish aquarium is located within the Art Center displaying a variety of unique marine species of the Persian Gulf. If you don’t scuba dive, to get a first hand view of the natural habitat of the colorful fish, a visit to the aquarium will be the alternative. We recommend that all tourists, especially children and the youth, take time and visit the aquarium.

The Hoor Hut
The Hoor Hut, meaning ‘the Sun Hut’, is a complex within which re-utilization of out-dated sources of energy is demonstrated. Here, solar energy is utilized to desalinate the saline water wind-pumped from the depths of the earth.
A variety of solar appliances are on display there and visitors can even use them. The Hoor Hut is situated in the western part of the Island.

Mosques
The minarets of Khatamol-Anbia Mosque penetrate high into the sky. The Mosque overlooks the sea and the combination produces one of Kish’s magnificent religious buildings. It is located in the Saffain District and has its own library. The congregational Friday prayers are held in this mosque.
The Amir Al-Momenin Mosque is an ancient building. It was restored and renovated in 1991 by the Cultural Heritage Organization of Iran. This Mosque is situated in the Masheh District.
Another old and beautiful Mosque, recently renovated, is the Jameh Nour Mosque. The architecture is a synergy of Iranian and Islamic art. This Mosque too is located in the Saffain District.
In addition, there are three other existing Mosques and several more are under construction.

Imam Hassan (AS) Mosque- Kish Island
With an unparalleled design and selected architecture, a mosque named after Imam Hassan (AS) the second Imam of the Shi’a Muslims, that was designed by late Engineer, Mazlum Yazdi, is worth a visit. Situated in the best part of Sadaf Residential Town, the construction of the mosque, with the active participation of the Kish Engineering and Development Company, is on a lot of land about 4500 square meters. To appreciate its matchless structure and to attach greater importance to the Mosque, its surrounding area was later increased to 17000 square meters and it was decided to create a park in the annexed land.
Imam Hassan (AS) Mosque is built on two floors, the ground floor for a library, house keeping, gent’s halls and related facilities, and the first floor for women’s halls and related facilities.
Due to its unique design, some rooms were allocated for the professors and students of the College of Islamic Arts, which will closely follow the construction of the mosque.

Gardens and the Derakh-e Sabz Park
The topography of the Island of Kish is such that the surface water flows to a certain part in the north called the Portuguese Valley. Therefore, the area is naturally vegetated and one of the Island’s oldest Lour trees is there. Around this tree the Derakht-eSabz Park has been created.
The verdant green area, the buildings and wooden pavements and fences remind one of the Caspian Sea coast. But what attracts tourists to this spot is the size of this mythical tree.
The cloths tied to this tree give it a sacred aura and that is exactly what some people believe. No one knows how this belief was formed and who were the first people to tie the first knots around the branches. It is interesting to know that the native people don’t believe in the sacredness of this very old tree and say that most probably, visitors and the new residents of the Island are the ones who promoted this idea.
The Derakht-e Sabz Park is adjacent to this historical town of Harireh, providing a pleasant atmosphere for the visitors to Harireh to relax and rest.
Another attraction on Kish Island is Baghoo, a lush green village of the remote past, situated in the southwestern part of the Island. Today, only a few families live there. The area is known for its fertile soil.
There are a variety of indigenous trees in the area and it is accessible by way of the Persian Gulf Road.

Palm Groves
One indication of tropical and humid regions is the existence of palm-trees, which is one of main features of the southern parts of Iran.
History indicates that there were numerous large palm groves on the Island. But not many of them are left at present. However, KFZO has undertaken to revive them. Tolou-e Kish Palm Grove is an example of such an attempt in the eastern part of the Island, near Marjan Complex. The area of the grove is 15 hectares and the saplings were planted in 1991. Many of these palm-trees have come to fruition creating a pleasant sight.
Another palm grove is the Ghoroub-e Kish. It is situated nearby the Greek Ship. This grove has an area of 25 hectares and 3000 palm-trees were planted here in 1994.
One of the old and beautiful palm groves is situated in the Saffain District. It is called Bagh-e- Behesht and is an eye-catching sight at sun set.

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