Two days in Iran, looking like a life time in a positive way

June 7, 2013

First of all we had to fly from Istanbul and even before that we had to negotiate with the Istanbul airport authorities not to be pushed back on a completely empty apron.

The Handling Agent Bilen did a good job and we obtained approval to make a turn. So therefore we did not have to use the mini-tow-bar I borrowed from Ruud. It was so well packed/hidden resp. burried under other cargo that it might have taken us half an hour to dig it and put it back in the same nice position.

The flight to Isfahan took us five hours. We came rather close to the Iraqi border, but we did not see any rocket being fired in the sky.

Within one hour from Isfahan we met sand in the air, similar to brown dust. We landed at runway 26 with a length of more than 4 km. Commander McCoy flew the approach entirely on VNAV whilst I as copilot followed the approach parallel on DU4 on the ILS.

In Isfahan we had to wait a considerable time for my Iranian friend Mehrdad Farhangmehr.

He was stopped by the police who finally showed more interest in his 1950 Mercedes than in his trespassing the speed

He was in company of his friend Beheshti who drove the Mercedes.

Arriving in Isfahan, soon called by us Esfahan, was like Alice in Wonderland. Nice atmosphere, nice people, nice climate, clean streets. A sort of French Mediterranean City. Hotel Abbasi we can recommend to all our friends.

Mehrdad invited us for dinner and for tea and ice creams afterwards.

The next day we made an early start to see as much as possible of Esfahan. We started with a temple.

Beheshti, Mehrdad and Harry

What amazed me in a positive was a painting of a battle, using horses. The horse riders amongst you may agree with me that the riders demonstrate having a really perfect sit, especially the position of their legs impressed me.

Again only positive impressions, but by that time we had decided already that this would not be our last visit.

As a farewell to Esfahan we drank a coffee in the same bar we visited already the previous night.

In order to start timely to go to the airport we had to press Mehrdad very much, but at the very last moment he escaped. Why, we found out later: to show someone in the hotel his 1950 Mercedes!

At the very very last moment really, Mehrdad told us that his friend Beheshti would also join us on board to Shiraz, but with full tanks departing from an airport at an altitude of 5.000′ with lots of luggage and reserve material in a temperature of 36 degrees Celcius, we had to say politely no since we would be outside the enveloppe [meaning in this case we would exceed our MTOW = maximum take off weight]. With only Mehrdad as passenger we were just within our maximum MTOW.

Mehrdad took it well, but decided instantly he would in such not fly with us either. So we said good bye and started preparing the a/c.

Instantly our handler on the ground ask us if he could replace Mehrdad as passenger, to which we said yes.

We must have used about half the runway to get airborne, so we felt our decision was once more justified.

The trip to Shiraz took us just over an hour. Close to the airport we believed to see a red sea, with a colour like wine so we thought of Shiraz wine. Later we l earned it was a dried out salt lake.

In Shiraz we were welcomed by Mehrdad’s friend Amir Setoudeh, who offered us lunch and after a small nap a visit to the Hafez museum

Harry, Amir and Urs

Last but not least we met Amir’s charming friend Samira. Urs took a shot of the city from their flat and already a pre-marriage photo.

Amir and Samira

Iran we will not forget soon. On the contrary we intend to go back there as soon as possible and we meantime recommend our friends and family to pay a visit to Iran themselves. Mehrdad maintains that Teheran is the best place to visit, but Amir sticks to Shiraz. We keep good feelings about Esfahan, but there is for me the connection with the inscription on the grave stone of my father.

Otto, it could be your place: no alcohol in the entire country.

Will be continued. Next flight to

Post by Harry Heijst | June 7, 2013 |


  1. wow Harry,wonderful photos.After your positive description of Iran,we might one day go to visit. looking forward to your next regards.Mariana.Hubert.

    by mariana | 08 Jun 2013 | 06:19
  2. No alcohol??????????????
    That must be paradise!!!!

    by michiel irish' stephenson | 08 Jun 2013 | 09:38
  3. Harry,

    Nice photo’s,also a place to be for me,no alcohol!

    Great! Love,Mieke

    by Mieke | 08 Jun 2013 | 19:30
  4. Harry , Urs. Very impresive flying and photos. Great to read and share your experiences. I see that you are well into Mother Russia. Safe flight further . Alex

    by Alex Bisi | 09 Jun 2013 | 10:30
  5. Wonderful photos, thank you :o)

    by Angela | 14 Jun 2013 | 22:27