Historic City of Yazd

 Iran (Islamic Republic of)
N31 54 5 E54 22 9
Date of Inscription: 2017
Criteria: (iii)(v)
Property : 195.67 ha
Buffer zone: 665.93 ha
Ref: 1544
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The City of Yazd is located in the middle of the Iranian plateau, 270 km southeast of Isfahan, close to the Spice and Silk Roads. It bears living testimony to the use of limited resources for survival in the desert. Water is supplied to the city through a qanat system developed to draw underground water. The earthen architecture of Yazd has escaped the modernization that destroyed many traditional earthen towns, retaining its traditional districts, the qanat system, traditional houses, bazars, hammams, mosques, synagogues, Zoroastrian temples and the historic garden of Dolat-abad.

The City of Yazd is located in the deserts of Iran close to the Spice and Silk Roads. It is a living testimony to intelligent use of limited available resources in the desert for survival. Water is brought to the city by the qanat system. Each district of the city is built on a qanat and has a communal centre. Buildings are built of earth. The use of earth in buildings includes walls, and roofs by the construction of vaults and domes. Houses are built with courtyards below ground level, serving underground areas. Wind-catchers, courtyards, and thick earthen walls create a pleasant microclimate. Partially covered alleyways together with streets, public squares and courtyards contribute to a pleasant urban quality. The city escaped the modernization trends that destroyed many traditional earthen cities. It survives today with its traditional districts, the qanat system, traditional houses, bazars, hammams, water cisterns, mosques, synagogues, Zoroastrian temples and the historic garden of Dolat-abad. The city enjoys the peaceful coexistence of three religions: Islam, Judaism and Zoroastrianism.

Criterion (iii): The historic city of Yazd bears witness to an exceptionally elaborate construction system in earthen architecture and the adaptation of the ways of living to hostile environment for several millennia. Yazd is associated with the continuity of traditions that cover social organization. These include Waqf (endowment) benefitting public buildings, such as water cisterns, mosques, hammams, qanats, etc. as well as developed intangible and multi-cultural, commercial and handicrafts traditions, as one of the richest cities of the world entirely built of earthen material, a quality which contributes to the creation of an environment-friendly microclimate. It reflects diverse cultures related to various religions in the city including Islam, Judaism and Zoroastrianism, which are still living peacefully together and having a combination of buildings including houses, mosques, fire temples, synagogues, mausoleums, hammams, water cisterns, madrasehs, bazaars, etc. as it can be seen in their traditional crafts and festivities.

Criterion (v): Yazd is an outstanding example of a traditional human settlement which is representative of the interaction of man and nature in a desert environment that results from the optimal use and clever management of the limited resources that are available in such an arid setting by the qanat system and the use of earth in constructing buildings with sunken courtyards and underground spaces. Besides creating pleasant micro-climate, it uses minimum amounts of materials, which provides inspiration for new architecture facing the sustainability challenges today.

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Yazd is a desert city in central Iran and the capital of the Yazd province. It is an ancient city dating back to the Sassanian period (224-651 AD). It is nicknamed “the City of Windcatchers” in Persian, and in 2017, this city of 530,000 people (2016) was listed by UNESCO as a world heritage. Yazd is midway between Isfahan and Kerman, 689 km (427 miles) south east of Tehran. Yazd is well connected to the rest of the country by planes, trains and buses. Most sights are in the old town near the Friday Mosque. You can easily walk between them on foot and enjoy the rabbit warren of old passages and buildings as you do so. Get a good map from your hotel. See Masjid-e Jame (Friday Mosque), which runs off Imam St. Dating to the 14th century, it is well worth a visit. It is an example of finest Persian mosaics and excellent architecture [read more].

Meybod (Persian: Meybod‎) is a city in and capital of Meybod County, Yazd Province, Iran. At the 2006 census, its population was 58,295, in 15,703 families. Meybod is a major desert city in Yazd Province, Iran with a population of about 75,000 making it the second major city in Yazd. It is an ancient city that goes back to pre-Islamic arena and, hence, is the home to many ancient points of interests. The Historical City of Maybod is part of the Tentative List in order to qualify for inclusion in the World Heritage List. It was the capital of Iran during the Mozaffarid period. Mozaffari kingdom originated from Meybod where the first king was born. One of the oldest castles in Iran is Narin ghaleh in Meybod, which dates back from the Sasanid. Chaparkhaneh and Karvansaraye Abbasi are some other examples of the historical buildings from Safavid era. Many important major poets, Sufis, clergymen and politicians came from Meybod [read more].

Ardakan (also Romanized as Ārdaḵān) is a city in and the capital of Sepidan County, Fars Province, Iran. At the 2006 census, its population was 16,212, in 3,534 families [read more].