Hidden Charms of Iran by Ayireej Rahiman

“If you look at the carvings on the wall,” he said proudly, “you won’t find a single sign of hatred. All these were built with love, where everyone was holding hands or had a hand resting on the other’s shoulder; where people brought silk, wool, cattle, horses and other gifts as tokens of friendship. There is not a single expression of violence here. That is our history.”

Ayreej Rahiman is the winner of National Geographic Traveller India’s first Travel Storytelling Contest. His story was selected from hundreds of entries received.