Iran has long been regarded as an international pariah state in some parts of the international community. However, its negative image in many countries disguises its history of tourism and rich cultural and natural heritage. Following the July 2015 nuclear deal and the reduction in sanctions, Iran is focusing on international tourism as a means to generate economic growth in addition to its substantial domestic tourism market. Given the significance of tourism in the Middle East and in international politics, as well as restrictions on international mobility, this volume brings together the first contemporary collection of research on tourism in Iran.

Written by experts based both within and outside of Iran, the chapters engage with a number of crucial issues including the importance of religion, the role of women in society, sustaining Iran’s cultural heritage, Iran’s image and the resistive economy to provide a benchmark assessment of tourism and its potential future in a troubled political environment. The book will undoubtedly be of interest not only to those readers who focus specifically on Iran but also those who seek a wider understanding of Iran’s role in the region and how tourism is utilised as part of national and regional economic development policies.

part I|1 pages


chapter 1|35 pages

Tourism in Iran: an introduction

BySeyfi Siamak, C. Michael Hall

chapter 2|17 pages

Domestic tourism in Iran: development, directions, and issues

BySeyfi Siamak, Nikjoo Adel, Sharifi-Tehrani Mohammad

chapter 3|12 pages

Sanctions, the 2015 agreement and Iran’s tourism industry

ByGhaderi Zahed, Soltani Sahar, Henderson Joan, Zareei Afsaneh

part II|1 pages

Pilgrimage and religious tourism

part III|1 pages

Heritage and tourism

chapter 7|14 pages

Cultural heritage management and heritage tourism development in Iran: opportunities and challenges for the future

ByCarbone Fabio, Malek Anahita, Lohrasbi Anahita

chapter 9|14 pages

The role of socio-cultural events in rebuilding Iran’s image

ByShabani Bardia, Tucker Hazel

chapter 10|17 pages

Food and tourism in Iran

BySayadabdi Amir, Hassibi Saman

part IV|1 pages

Emerging tourisms

chapter 11|16 pages

Tourism and the empowerment of women in Iran

ByM. Farahani Banafsheh, Dabbaghi Hamideh

chapter 12|14 pages

Participatory tourism development in Iran: implementing community-based tourism within a migrating nomadic tribe

ByBakhsheshi Fereshteh Fazel, Hassanli Najmeh

chapter 13|19 pages

Effects of perceived quality and trust on behavioural intentions: an empirical study of health tourists in Mashhad, Iran

ByHashemi Shiva, Tavangar Masoumeh, Marzuki Azizan, Shahvali Moji

chapter 14|17 pages

The future(s) of tourism in Iran

ByHall C. Michael, Seyfi Siamak