Traveling Iran on a horse back?


by radius-of-the-persian-cat

Dear Folks, during the last days I was following too many IC blogs that made me very sad indeed. There were talks about cultural genocide, iranian holocaust, very agressive discussions about Mozzadegh and the Shah and the Tudeh and the British and the Russians and the Germans and the Arabs and about whom of those to blame more for the current tragedy in Iran. I felt my confidence regarding a bright future of a new, free Iran vanishing more and more, since a new Iran requires pioneer spirits, rather than people feeling comfortable in their role as a victim. Don"t take me wrong, I think every nation should be aware of its history, but I would prefer this in a less emotional and more academic style. The worst example of how one could show historical awareness is probably the annual ʿĀšūrāʾ, where the feeling of martyrdom among Shiits is revitalized again and again and has a significant influence on the social life and political structure, usually not for the best.

I should finish this prolog and come to my main issue. In contrast to these very hate-loaded political blogs I mentioned above, there were - thanks God - also a few that showed the nice and beautiful side of life, like the poems by Soosan Khanoom and the JJs adventure with the horse. In particular the horse story and the very vivid discussion that followed made me wondering: Is it possible to travel Iran on a horses back ? How are the immigration rules, assuming I want to enter the country from the north (Armenia or Azerbaidshan). I have friends there and could get a horse in either of the two countries. Although I have a nice mare here in Germany, the long transport to Iran would be too stressful for her.

Will there be sufficient food for the horse ? Will people respect horses in Iran, assuming I have to cross or even ride along a motor-way ? In Germany, my horse has to wear a number-plate and a liability insurrance, if I ride along public road (not kidding). How is this in Iran ?

In Europe, dogs fouling is prohibited in public area (you can get fined up to about 1000 euro if your dog is messing up the street), whereas horse feces are well tollerated (although much bigger) and random pedestrains even collect it to fertilize their rose gardens. How is this in Iran ? Will people hate my horse if it drops feces on the street ? (the recent blog petition about killing stray dogs in Teheran made me slightly pessimistic). Historical, the Parthian Empire was famous for its arts of horse riding in the whole southern and eastern hemisphere. Is there something of this heritage left ? Or is this just another issue for the fight between persians and arabs for historical and cultural hegemonie over the domestication of horses ? Did horses arrived together with the Partians from the inner-asian regions and came to Arabia later, where they started the famous breeding ? Or was it vice versa ? Seeing forward to hear some of your comments and advises.


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riding a horse through iran

by radius-of-the-persian-cat on

Dear Simitenbiri,

Thanks for reminding me of the climate problem (might get even worse if I wait for too long with the journey, considering global warming). But you are right, horses are not so keen riding in hot climate. But the route both from Turkey and from Armenia would lead through pretty steep mountains (armenian plain with a lot of 3.500 m peaks and deep abysses). Therefore I was considering Azerbaidshan. The route from Baku to Rashd would always go alonge the Caspian Sea. 

About the attitude of the local people towards horse, I hope that the recent post at IC // has nothing to do with a negative relation to living creatures, rather than unawareness of cultural values.


Dear پندارنیک,

I once tried a Arab breed, but they are way too wild for me. They are perfect for Horse Race, but easily get bored if there is not enough action. And they are also more susceptible to injuries, therefore not really appropriate for a long journey through the wild. 


Starting Point

by simitenbiri on

I would Turkey as a starting point. This allows you and your horses to climatize to the environment and your are using a well stablished entry route.  Mind you I have had no experience on this type of travel, but I have dreamed many time similar trips.


Riders you can get some clues from: 




Good ride



Of horses...

by پندارنیک on

For the kind of itinerary that you've drawn up, you have to ride on the best and the most reliable horse that you can get your white tush on.........which is an Arabian horse...........but, for some more than obvious reasons don't let the IC folks know it.......tell them the horse is from Israel, and therefore quite capable of trading his feces with the local folks for hay and water during your adventurous trip.........