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It’s about the people, not the sights: Lessons learned in Rasht and the stunning 1000-year-old village of Masuleh

Posted by on November 19, 2012
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People told me not to bother seeing Rasht, the largest city in the Caspian Sea region. They said there weren’t many historical sights and beautiful landscapes within the city of Rasht. I was told to use the city as a staging point to visit Masuleh Village and the rest of the Caspian Sea region and nothing more. But what we sometimes forget is that travel isn’t always about sights. And for this reason, I’m so glad I ignored their warnings and spent some time in Rasht anyway. It was there that I made profound friendships and experienced unbelievable hospitality. So while I don’t have a lot to say about the city itself, this segment of the trip was a wonderful reminder that sometimes it’s all about the people we meet and the conversations we have and not the places we see. (Although, I should say Masuleh Village was a pretty amazing place as you’ll see below.)

Colonial building in Rasht’s city center

Made two super cool friends in Rasht. The guy offered to take me to Masuleh village (more info on that below) even though he’s been probably a thousand times.

Friends took me out one night to the Caspian Sea for some hookah and food. The guy in the green button-down is a writer, and gave me some of his and his friends’ books as a gift so I can practice reading in Farsi which is a bit slow-going at the moment.

Made another friend in the bazaar who spoke with me about life and told me something that I’ll never forget: “You’re not truly happy in life until you make someone else happy.”

The bazaar in Rasht is quite lively and fun to walk through. It’s also where I found an amazing deal on some great knock-off Adidas shoes.

Masuleh Village is a stunning, 1,000-year-old village in the mountains one hour outside of Rasht. No cars or motorbikes are allowed to enter the village or even able to due to the narrow streets, but what was even cooler is that the roof of one house forms the yard of the house above.



Enjoyed a hookah at a cafe overlooking the green mountains

Super tasty coal-fire baked bread

Guy barbequing some kebabs with a beautiful background

Assortment of really tangy dried fruit

“Kolooche,” a fluffy pastry with a sweet walnut paste filling

Last, but definitely not least, I spotted a cute baby in the village

 

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