People, Travel

Village Home Becomes Tourist Hotspot

Village Home Becomes Tourist HotspotVillage Home Becomes Tourist Hotspot

It is one of the biggest attractions today. The humble home of a villager is turning into a hotspot for visitors from across the world. The abode of Abbas Barzegar has become a sanctuary for globe trotters who seek adventure in the wild and a bit of life with the nomads in the mountains and open fields. The tourist spot, now a resort, is located in the hamlet of Bazm, in the small town of Bavanat in Fars province.

As far as memory goes, it has not always been like this for Abbas and his fellow villagers. Bazm is a quiet village with few crops and fruits. Abbas himself eked out on his small income of one dollar a day by peddling on the streets. But everything was about to change with the arrival of two foreign visitors and their interpreter, says an article in

 Rustic Hospitality  

Abbas was riding his motorcycle through the streets of his village on a rainy evening when he encountered two German tourists wandering about with their guide. He invited them to his place and made them feel at home, serving them a traditional home-made meal and a side dish of drinks and pickles. They spent the night with the Barzegars, sleeping on mattresses and quilts sewn by the family matriarch. That night, Abbas noticed that one of the guests - a 20-year- old youth, looked dejected. On inquiry, the youth said tomorrow was his birthday and he was unhappy that he could not celebrate the occasion with his family and friends. Abbas’ children decided to surprise the guests. A home-made cake and a handful of balloons were enough to impress. The simple feast was filmed and the youth’s mother –who happened to be a journalist, made news of the event. Soon it became sensational. Before long, new visitors were on their way and Abbas had to add new accommodation.

 Nomadic Resort

Abbas is now on his way to create a full–fledged tourist resort for his rapidly growing visitors. He has closed a deal with Qashqai and Bakhtiari clan chiefs to set up 15,000 tents on their lands to accommodate the tourists, who can experience nomadic life in all its glory, scaling the mountains and picking medicinal herbs alongside the young nomadic men and women. They can traverse the fields with shepherds and share meals with them. A nocturnal sojourn in the mountains while listening to old men playing their pipes can be a treat should they feel sleepless. Breakfast includes freshly picked vegetables and honey fresh from the hive. From scenes of carpet weaving in the tents, listening to wondrous folkloric stories about genies and a myriad other activities is part of the package that Abbas Barzegar is preparing for his visitors.  There are 100 English-speaking local guides to make the experience as memorable as it can be.

 Financial Bonanza

Barzegar charges each of his guests $1000 a night for his ‘magical’ place. All his tents are fully booked until 2016. This has created jobs for 9,000 of his fellow villagers.

When asked about the secret of his success, Barzegar explains that honesty is his main trait. ‘’I treat my foreign guests like my own family. I am honest with them; I don’t do double deals. I sell handicrafts to foreigners at the same rate that I charge Iranians’’, he says.