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    10 reasons why you should skip the Alps and ski in Iran - NEW YORK POST

    Iran - 10 reasons why you should skip the Alps and ski in Iran - NEW YORK POST

    Overview:

    10 reasons why you should skip the Alps and ski in Iran - NEW YORK POST
    By Chris Bunting
    Publish Date: July 30, 2015 | 2:17pm
     

    While you probably won’t spot Salman Rushdie waxing down his Burton Custom X board at the top of a run anytime soon, Iran’s Dizin ski resort — an under-two-hour drive north from Tehran, up in the Alborz mountains — could be the next Alps.

    Yes, this gorgeous, altitudinous part of the Middle East is the skiing world’s best-kept secret.

    The place hosts thousands of powder junkies annually — both locals and foreigners alike — starting around the middle of every fall, when the gorgeous high-elevation resort’s extraordinarily lengthy ski season kicks off.

    Just not Americans.

    Dizin’s bustling base camp after a day of skiing.

    Unsurprisingly, there aren’t too many North American companies arranging custom ski trips to Persia. Only one, in fact: Asheville, N.C.(!)-based Iran Luxury Travel, just a year old.

    “This particular trip is a bit of a novelty,” says ILT CEO Steve Kutay, a “Jewish, native New Yorker” who runs the company with his wife, Pat.

    The timing couldn’t be better — if lifting sanctions is the first step toward rekindling America and Iran’s love affair, a perfect second date is a weekend ski trip together, obviously.

    Kutay calls it the Skiing & Snowboarding Tour in Iran (four nights for two, with guide, car and breakfast, from $950 per person).

    Of course, there are definitely some caveats: That price doesn’t include the approximately $1,000 round-trip airfare; you’ll have to procure an Iranian visa (good luck with that if you’ve ever worked for the US State Department or possess an Israeli passport stamp), which means a little paperwork and contacting embassies; there are no ATMs and credit cards are a no-go, so bringing cash is a must; and the après-ski in the lodge will undoubtedly be a bust, as alcohol is (mostly) illegal.

    But, while you’re sitting there under that humid sun today, melting in a sweaty stew of your own juices and fantasizing about an exotic winter getaway, just remember Iran can even out-Alp the Alps.

    Here, 10 reasons why:

    Length matters

    Dizin’s ski season runs from late November until late May — nearly an NHL season’s worth of snow to enjoy. The reason? The base sits 9,000 feet above sea level (making it one of the 40 highest in the world, dwarfing many Alpine resorts) with lifts running as high at 12,000 feet. Where better to keep tabs on Iran’s uranium enrichment below, I ask you?

    They’re so flaky

    The resort faces north, so the powdery snow quality rivals that of Europe and the Rockies.

    Dizin’s 20 lifts and 15 pistes (most of which are empty during the week) run the gamut, from friendly green circles to A-hole double black diamonds. Overall, however, the place skews difficult, given the tremendous 3,000-foot vertical drop. For even crazier runs, head to the nearby Shemshak ski area, nine miles from Dizin.

    World star

    This is no off-the-radar resort. Dizin is recognized by the International Ski Federation and hosts its fair share of global competitions (don’t hold your breath for the Maccabiah Games).

    Shah-ty craftsmanship

    What the shah of Iran lacked in the ability to quash insurrection, he more than made up for in mad slalom skills. In fact, Dizin was created under his watch in 1969 (encouraged by German pals of his, natch), building it up with proper chairlifts, gondolas and the like.

    Do you even lift?

    Ticket prices run a humane $20-$25 per day, depending on the pass.

    Get on board

    Unlike a couple of Utah resorts we won’t mention, Dizin is 100 percent tolerant and accepting of snowboarders. Go figure.

    Three’s company

    While the three-star hotel you’ll inhabit at Dizin’s base is the definition of modest, it does the job comfortably and is ski-in, ski-out (the shah had himself a probably very un-three-star presidential suite).

    Go beyond

    Come to Iran for the snow sports, stay for the “Oh yeah, this was once the greatest empire in the world” stuff. Tack on additional tours of Tehran and beyond, UNESCO sites, mosques, bazaars, etc. You’ll maintain the same guide and driver; you’ll just cough up more rial for extended tours. Keep in mind, this is all infinitely customizable.

    It’s got action sports filmmaker Warren Miller’s seal of approval

     

    Abridged from : NEW YORK POST

                                 https://nypost.com/2015/07/30/10-reasons-why-jet-setters-should-skip-the-alps-and-ski-in-iran/


    About Us

    The word Persia gives the image of a magical and mysterious land of far away and long ago, of ancient monuments and beautiful works of art – carpets, tiles, fine ceramics and miniatures. It also reminds us of legendary and tragic love stories and epic poems about great wars. And Persia is indeed a world ancient and contemporary, a bridge between heaven and earth. We want to show you around. Discover things to do on your next trip to Iran and plan a trip of your lifetime. Yes, it is that easy! This website gives you the tools to plan your trip to Iran: detailed information on destinations; inspiring ideas on what to see and do in each city; where to stay; where to eat; travel guides and let’s say everything you need so you can dream up a trip to Iran.

    Patrimonito

    This workshop is designed according to the UNESCO World Heritage Education Programme in order to give young people a chance to voice their concerns and to become involved in the protection of our common cultural and natural heritage. It seeks to encourage and enable tomorrow’s decision-makers to participate in heritage conservation and to respond to the continuing threats facing our World Heritage. The idea of involving young people in World Heritage preservation and promotion came as a response to Article 27 of the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (World Heritage Convention). Furthermore, Patrimonito means 'small heritage' in Spanish and the character represents a young heritage guardian. Patrimonito has been widely adopted as the international mascot of the World Heritage Education Programme.
    Date: 29th December
    Number of trainees: 7
    Duration: 3 hours

    The workshop of "Patrimonito" was held on 29th of December. Participants arrived around 10:30 and they were welcomed by hot chocolate and Persian cup cakes. After a little introduction by trainers and trainees, the process started by making two groups and letting them choose a name for their group, each group was accompanied by a mentor then each group was given some images of world heritage sites in Iran and some descriptions, each group was asked to match images and descriptions, the mentor was guiding them throughout the activity. All trainees were participating actively and trying to remember their experiences about their travels to these places. When they were done with the activity, the mentors started giving the answers and a brief explanation about each site; mentors were using trainees’ ideas and experiences to complete their tasks.

    Shortly after that, the second part started which was a presentation done by two of mentors. The aim of this presentation was to define the value of these world heritage sites and duties of each person as a "Patrimonito", and what happens if there is no "Patrimonito" and nobody cares about our tangible or intangible heritage. In this part trainees started questioning and understanding the whole concept of being a "Patrimonito", they also added their own suggestions on how to protect our heritage and by the end of this part, they were completely aware about their role as a "Patrimonito".
    Now it was a best time to have a short break, during the break trainees were introduced to some of intangible heritages as they were served by traditional food and snacks and even they way of serving was according to traditions and everyone had this opportunity to discuss about intangible heritage while enjoying some traditional food and snacks.
    When the break was done, everyone was asked to choose a heritage either tangible or intangible and they had to introduce their chosen heritage to a tourist by making a postcard using what they have learnt. They were given all of necessary tools such as color papers, color pencils, glue, scissors, images of heritage and a mentor was with them in order to help them completing the task.

    When they were done, they handed out their postcards and with the mentors they sat together and spent a few minutes asking and answering about what they have learnt. Then they were told to say their vows for protecting their heritage and caring about it, the mentor said the vow and the trainees repeated after her and they officially became a "Patrimonito".

    The last but the best part was when they were given the certificates, and they were told that since they are aware of the value of the heritage and they know how to protect it, they are chosen as "Patrimonito" and they should continue their mission by introducing the value of heritage to others. They were granted certificates and labels and the workshop of "Patrimonito" was finished by taking some memorial photos.