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Throughout the world there are those special places of breath-taking grandure and beauty, build as a monument to the strength, pride, glory, and victory of Gods, kings, and nations. These place offer us a place of peace and tranquility, an escape from the many and constant intrusion and pressures of the modern world, were we can contenplate our own mortality.

Persepolis - Iran: The ancient Persian name was Parsa, later under subsequent Greek influence became known as Persepolis, "The city of the Persians", its modern name is  Takht-e Jamshid, (Persian: Throne of Jamshid, a mythical King of Iran.), to Iranians it was the capital of the Achaemenid  kings of Iran (Persia). Persepolis is located about 50 kms northeast of Shiraz in the province of Fars in southwestern Iran. It was set on fire by Alexander upon his defeat of Darius III. Persepolis, the Greek name of one of the capitals of the ancient Achaemenid empire, : founded by the great king Darius (522-486 BCE).

Ward's LakeBam - Iran: The ruined city of Arg-e-Bam is made entirely of mud bricks, clay, straw and the trunks of palm trees. The city was originally founded during the Sassanian period (224-637 AD) and while some of the surviving structures date from before the 12th century, most of what remains was built during the Safavid period (1502-1722). During Safavid times, the city occupied six square kilometers, was surrounded by a rampart with 38 towers, and had between 9000 and 13,000 inhabitants. Bam prospered because of pilgrims visiting its Zoroastrian fire temple (dating to early Sassanian times) and as a commercial and trading center on the famous Silk Road.

UmiumTower of Silence, Yazd, Iran: Zoroastrianism is perhaps the world oldest continuing non-pantheistic religion. The founder of Zoroastrianism, Zarathustra, preached around 600 BCE a second monotheistic religious message that is recorded. Inside the Histor

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sohpetbneng peakShushtar Falls, Iran: Many of Shushtar's town houses are equipped with cellars that help keep houses cool in summer time. In ancient times was Shushtar famous for its dams and irrigation systems. Three of the dams date back to Sassanian times (3rd to 7th century CE), of which the largest was 550 metres long. The dam system fell apart through the 19th century. But even today, several waterwheels help run flour mills and produce electricity.


Ward's LakeTyre, Lebanon: Around 2000 BCE Tyre is founded on a small island and the neighbouring mainland, possibly by Phoenician merchants of Sidon. Tyre was for centuries the strongest and most important Phoenician city, exercising control over the others from 10th century BCE and onwards. But from 332 and on, a causeway connected the island to the mainland, making it a Penninsula.

UmiumThe Ziggurat, Ur, Iraq: Ur, an ancient city in mesopotamia., in what today is southern Iraq. Ur existed for a period of approximately 3,700 years. Today only ruins are left, and they lie in the desert landscape of al-Hajar. Ur had an important role as a religious cult centre, and the Sumerian Moon god Nanna and the Babylonian equivalent Sin were worshipped here. This cult was also the reason for erecting the impressive ziggurat. The first settlements date from 4000 BCE, by a people called Ubaidis.

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