Travel Blog about winter sports in Iran | Pyala Travel

Read here our travel experiences about our tour along different ski resorts in the Alborz Mountains of Iran

Skiing in Iran in the Alborz Mountains

A lot of selfies are made. From behind the window. The stationary planes. A grey sky. The worst snowstorm in three years. Women with short shawls on their heads, women in chador, men with suitcases, mullahs with korans in their hands. All of them are excitedly taking pictures. And they have the time, all flights from Mehrabad are cancelled. The worst snow in years, hence. I got up early in the morning for nothing to catch a flight to Ahvaz, here from Mehrabad, the airport for domestic flights in the centre of Tehran. The American flag is back on the ground, everyone has to get on it to enter the waiting rooms at the gate. The flag has just arrived. That was something from the past. The government's hatred of America, smearing the flag. Not for years. Since Trump, since his immigration law of last week, which mainly affects Iranians, the flag has returned. Three hours of waiting now, but it's getting a little lighter outside, who knows.

Here you can find the pictures of this tour.
Visiting Shemshak and Polur

Yesterday I also saw a lot of snow on my daytrip through the Alborz Mountains. Most travelers try to leave Tehran behind as soon as possible, one day for visiting the museums, the bazaar, the palaces and then off they go. A pity, because you are close to nature, the impressive mountains of the Alborz Mountains, where in spring and summer you can go hiking, around the iconic Mt. Damavand, or just the coolness at one of the teahouses along the rivers. Now, in the middle of winter, the inhabitants of Tehran are looking for snow, for skiing, or just for fun in the snow. There are several ski resorts within an hour's drive from Tehran, where you can ski all winter to April. Of course, the apres-ski is disappointing, but here you will find the trendy Tehran, in the bars and restaurants on the ski resorts. While it was snowing I drove to Shemshak yesterday, one of the most famous ski resorts with the most challenging slopes. After an hour's drive we are there. Unfortunately, because of the bad weather, the ski lift is closed. Luckily it clears up and I see the impressive snow-covered mountains and the long slopes. The road to the highest ski resort Dizin is closed, there is two meters of snow on the road.
We return and drive on to Polur. Polur is located at the foot of Mt. Damavand, with its 5671 meter the highest mountain in the Middle East. And above all a very beautiful mountain, this old volcano, similar in shape to Mt. Fuji. In spring and summer you can walk here so beautiful, in the grasslands overlooking the mountain. Lovers climb to the top in three days, a tough walk, but no complicated technical climb. But wouldn't it also be great to see this mountain completely covered in snow in the middle of winter? On to Polur so. On the way we drink in Abali dough (yoghurt) for which the town is famous. Everywhere dough is sold. On the edge a small ski slope that is open. There is no skiing, although you can rent the slats anywhere. We are often slid off the slopes, on an old-fashioned sledge and with tubes, which makes for a lot of fun for the Iranian families here. No view of Damavand from Polur, a beautiful trip through the snowy mountains, the sun is a bit through the snow showers, but Damavand does not show. We did eat some delicious trout, but that's it.

Tehran, a few days later. Now beautiful weather, the sun is shining, a blue sky, about seven degrees. Time to go back into the Alborz Mountains. Now we drive over the Chalus road to the ski resort of Dizin. The Chalus road is the nearest road from Tehran over the Alborz Mountains to the Caspian Sea. A beautiful trip through the mountains, but also a very busy road on weekends and holidays. Many from Tehran seek the coolness of the mountains, or go to the Caspian Sea. On this weekday it is fortunately quiet. The view of the snowy Alborz mountains is sometimes breathtaking, especially at the reservoir after the Amir Kabir dam. After an hour we take the exit to Dizin, through a completely white world we drive to the ski resort. Everywhere there are apartments or apartments are being built. Here comes the happy few of Tehran. Dizin makes a much more modern and certainly hipper impression than Shemshak, but the weather is of course cooperating. The slopes are beautiful, you can use a ski lift to 3400 meters altitude, which makes this one of the highest ski lifts and slopes in the world. There is a lot of skiing and snowboarding and halfway down the slopes there is a trendy coffee shop where the youth is sunbathing. Here you have no idea that you are in the Islamic Republic of Iran, just a hip ski resort, anywhere on the world. The reward for this is a beautiful view of Mt. Damavand on top of the piste, which stands high above all the other mountains.