anyone has been to iran?


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daanis

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Oct 8, 2004
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Hello guys,

I am planning to go to Iran mid-December. Mostly likely alone.

Questions:
1. I know we, Singaporeans, don't need a visa (or a visa on arrival?). But how long are we able to stay without needing one?

2. Someone told me that we are allowed 5 rolls of films/slides. Is that true? Of course I am also bringing my DSLR.

I know some of CSs have been there. What is your experience?

Thanks in advance.
 

kahheng

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Jan 20, 2002
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#2
daanis said:
Hello guys,

I am planning to go to Iran mid-December. Mostly likely alone.

Questions:
1. I know we, Singaporeans, don't need a visa (or a visa on arrival?). But how long are we able to stay without needing one?

2. Someone told me that we are allowed 5 rolls of films/slides. Is that true? Of course I am also bringing my DSLR.

I know some of CSs have been there. What is your experience?

Thanks in advance.

Tehran was a memorable place. I stayed at the Hotel Laleh, just like Sean Penn. (it's a crappy hotel but already damn good by Iranian standards apparently) Funny, I was just showering with a funny smelling bar of soap from that hotel last week when I ran out of my usual soap. Brings back memories of having nothing to watch on TV in my room other than the BBC news channel.

Iranian food is very yummy - loads of very fresh greens. I even went to a Chinese restaurant there, which was rather forgettable. The cafes and fast food chains are very happening if you want to meet the younger set.

Secondhand camera shopping is a lot more interesting than most might think. Lots of vintage goodies all over the place. The supermarkets are quite fun too. Be sure to visit the local bazaars and markets. I went to the hyper busy bird market (er maybe not so recommended now for obvious reasons) and a few other secondhand goods markets, including that street that sells a lot of second cameras though i can't for the world of me, remember what it's called.

I was quite fortunate that I met a lot of Tehran based professional photographers and photojournalists when I was there. Even attended a photo exhibition and visited a photo school. All courtesy of a local Iranian acquaintance. I still have a lot of Iranian photography material and CDs.

One night, I attended a dance party. It's really eye opening what goes on in private. Of course this was with the upper-middle class crowd who basically can't give a rat's ass about the revolution. Had quite a bit of whiskey and pistachios on another night.

Not sure about the film restrictions. But you should look up the laws restricting photography. Basically: no govt buildings, military or police installations or personnel, no telephone or communication exchanges, and I think, no hospitals. Dealing with the cops there is not much fun (I was hauled away) since they don't usually speak English. But many Iranians, especially the educated crowd are genuinely nice people. They are more travelled than most people usually think. The Western media tends to give the world a rather distorted idea of Iran.

Bring enough cash - ironically USD is the most commonly accepted currency though I am sure Euros will do. ATMs do not hook up internationally. Suggest you change money at the hotel desk.

Pity I didn't make it to Esfehan (flights to and from were full when I was there), but you should if you'll be in Iran for awhile. The blue mosque looks incredible on tv.

Suggest you pick up the Lonely Planet guide to Iran. It's very very useful. Read up on the history of the country and you'll be impressed. You'll also understand why their relationship with the Americans is so unfriendly.

If you go to IKEA there, can you get me a toilet brush? Thanks!
 

daanis

New Member
Oct 8, 2004
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#3
thanks kahheng,

why were you hauled by the police? is it a cause to worry about? I hope they don't do the same to me. was it very serious?

the visa thing. we don't need one? that is what i read from our Ministry of Foreign Affairs website, if the trip is less than two weeks.

Why do you want me to get the toilet brush fromm Ikea in Iran? I can get for you from Alexandra Road, if you want.:)

Yes, i gather the food is good. Esfahan for sure I will go. my plan would be Tehran, Esfahan, Shiraz, and along the way.....
 

kahheng

Senior Member
Jan 20, 2002
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#4
daanis said:
Why do you want me to get the toilet brush fromm Ikea in Iran? I can get for you from Alexandra Road, if you want.:)
Where's the fun in getting one from Alexandra Rd?
 

daanis

New Member
Oct 8, 2004
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#5
i was joking of course. yes, getting one from tehran will be a novelty. its a topic for conversation....

so how long were you there? did you take lots of pictures?
 

kahheng

Senior Member
Jan 20, 2002
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#6
daanis said:
i was joking of course. yes, getting one from tehran will be a novelty. its a topic for conversation....
Not really
 

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