People, Travel

Kerman Prepares for Desert Marathon

Kerman Prepares for Desert Marathon  Kerman Prepares for Desert Marathon

Adventure tourists from around the world will gather in Kerman Province’s Shahdad Desert to participate in the Iranian Silk Road Ultramarathon, scheduled for May 2-9.

The marathon is not a competition; it is an event that will help participants develop their team building skills as they will need to egg each other on, and may need to get more creative to cross the finish line, according to Paolo Barghini, an Italian marathon runner.

Barghini, who has won marathons in both the Arctic and Antarctic, decided to organize the so-called ultramarathon in Shahdad Desert, which is the world’s hottest spot, to help send a message to the world: Iran is peaceful and safe, ISNA reported.

The race is scheduled in two formats: the ‘Integral’ 250 km (6 stages – 35/45 km per day with a long section of 70 km), while the ‘Lite’ version consists of 150 km in six stages (20/30 km per day with a long section of 40 km).

It is an exceptional race in terms of athletics and landscape, as the desert has a vast terrain and rare geological formations.

“I’d say about 20% of the participants are professional runners. The rest are here to learn about the Iranian culture and maybe use the opportunity to gain self-knowledge,” Barghini said.

The marathon will also make history as it will be the first event of its kind since the 1979 Islamic Revolution where men and women compete alongside one another, according to

The event will provide an opportunity for Kerman to present its assets to the world as 100 participants from countries spanning four continents—Europe, Asia, Africa and South America—will attend the marathon.