Story of Yazd
BECOME A CITYZEN OF YAZD
The name is derived from Yazdegerd I, a Sassanid ruler of Persia. Because of its remote desert location and the difficulty of access, Yazd remained largely immune to large battles and the destruction and ravages of war. In 1272 it was visited by Marco Polo, who described Yazd in the following way: “It is a good and noble city, and has a great amount of trade. [...] At the end of those seven marches over the plain, you come to a fine kingdom which is called Kerman.” Because of generations of adaptations to its desert surroundings, Yazd has a unique Persian architecture and is colloquially known as the "City of Windcatchers".
Yazd briefly served as the capital of the Muzaffarid Dynasty in the fourteenth century, and was unsuccessfully besieged in 1350–1351. The Friday mosque, arguably the city's greatest architectural landmark, as well as other important buildings, date to this period. During the Qajar dynasty (18th century AD) it was ruled by the Bakhtiari Khans.
Under the rule of the Safavid (16th century), some migrated from Yazd and settled in an area that is today on the Iran-Afghanistan border. The settlement, which was named Yazdi, was located in what is now Farah City in the province of the same name in Afghanistan. Even today, people from this area speak with an accent very similar to that of the people of Yazd.
YAZD WATER MUSEUM
Yazd is famous for its qanats (underground aqueducts) and this museum, one of the best of its kind, is devoted to the brave men who built them. Located in a restored mansion with a visible qanat running underneath, the museum offers, through a series of photographs, exhibits and architectural drawings, a fascinating glimpse into the hidden world of waterways that have allowed life to flourish in the desert.
The museum, which charts the 2000 years that Iran's unique irrigation system has been in operation, describes the drilling of mother wells (which can reach a depth of 300m, such as the qanat near Mashhad) and the use of water distribution clocks.
The charming city of Yazd is famous for its typical desert architecture, and among the most distinguished features are by all means the badgirs, or wind catchers, as they are romantically reworded in English. In the quest for the tallest badgir, or for a green oasis in the middle of the desert, you find yourself in Dolat Abad Garden, a luscious estate very likely with a glamorous past, all to be explored after stepping over its entrance of sand-hued walls and towers.
The city of Yazd holds many other architectural treasures, and luxurious goods in the streets’ markets- a beautiful and vivid oasis in the desert, filled with culture and life.