People, Travel

Stars for Safavid Caravanserai

Stars for Safavid CaravanseraiStars for Safavid Caravanserai

Shah Abbasi Caravanserai located in Bisotun, Kermanshah Province, is to become a 4-star hotel, Cultural Heritage News Agency reported, quoting Khosro Mansubi head of Hotels Association.

Since the site is 30 km from Kermanshah City, a lodging facility for visitors has long been missing in the area.

The Safavid caravanserai has been restored by 90% so far. It is near the bas-relief and cuneiform inscription ordered by Darius the Great, when he rose to the throne of the Persian Empire in 521 BC.

Caravanserais were inns where traders and travelers stayed overnight while they conducted their trade during the day.

The building was commissioned by Safavid Shah Abbas I, and restored during Naseredin Shah Qajar’s reign by architect Haji Jafarkhan Isfahani.

The caravanserais were usually built about about 30 to 50 km apart. They provided board and lodging, as well as courtyards for animals and storage areas for goods.

The upper floor of Shah Abbasi Caravanserai has been missing because it was made from wood. The arch shaped cubicles provided storage space, above which were the rooms where the travelers stayed. The animals rested in the courtyard.

The caravanserai is 84 meters long and 74.5 meters wide, with 4 towers. The western towers are round; the eastern are octagonal. The entrance gate faces south.

Xenophon ascribes the institution of wayside stations or rest-stations to King Cyrus the Great, who, having found out the distance a horse could cover in a day, marked the roads into corresponding junctions depending on the terrain, and built stations consisting of stables and rooms.