The Iranian Silk Road

The remains of multi-storey buildings in Zafaraniyya, in the now-derelict Ribat-i Do Dar (literally, ‘the fort with two doors’: 1070km from Isfahan) are shown here. The site measures 90m by 110m – so would have been large enough to need, and to be able to defend, two ‘doors’.

The Iranian Silk Road

This is the ‘golden’ Seljuk caravanserai of Zafaraniyya. Ferrier reports that this superb building was traditionally described as having 1700 rooms within its walls, also baths, a mosque, and handsome gardens. Despite all this, Shah Abbas is reported to have stayed in the localribat (fort).

The Iranian Silk Road

This satellite image of Zafaraniyya shows how the road has probably moved northwards in modern times: previously, the Seljuk caravanserai faced onto it. Down through the village is the proposed site of the Ribat-i Do Dar (1070km from Isfahan). [SA2.18]

The Iranian Silk Road

This caravanserai in Mazinan village (937km from Isfahan) is undated but is likely to have been constructed after the reign of Shah Abbas. Unusually, it has a hamam inside and is fronted by a very substantial abambar (covered water-tank) which even has two small badgirs(windcatchers) to cool the water reserve.