Global Exchange tour to Iran 2008

Global Exchange Tours Iran Several Times Each Year
Is the threat of war really the best response to Iran's nuclear program? Is the US media's portrayal of Iran accurate or influenced by US interests? How do Iranians feel about the US government, people and the current crisis?

Contrary to popular Western perception, the vast majority of Iranians are eager to rebuild relations with the United States and are extremely hospitable to Americans. In this time of increased political tension between the US and Iran, American travel to this misunderstood country helps establish the people-to-people ties that facilitate understanding and peace between the countries. Global Exchange invites you to visit Iran as a citizen diplomat to do what our governments cannot do, create people-to-people ties.

During this time of heightened US tension against Iran, and a backdrop of zero diplomacy for over 27 years, it has become even more important for Americans to educate themselves and others, and provide a counter balance to the Bush administration' s demonization of the country and people. Learn the complex facets of Iranian history, culture and the context of US-Iran relations. Hear from multiple perspectives about Iranian daily life, society, and the current crisis with the US. See that despite censorship and social repression, Iranians continue to advance and struggle towards change. The Citizens Diplomacy Reality Tour to Iran will give participants a chance to see inside this much-maligned nation and gain first-hand experience of the effects of the political policies of both the United States and Iran. Participants will have a chance to put a human face on this ongoing political dispute and help facilitate understanding and respect between people of different nations. Read a past participant' s article about her experience in Iran. Upon return, Global Exchange encourages every participant to become involved in our Cities for Peace campaign as a means to highlight your experience, humanize the Iranian people and perspective, and educate your community on the consequences of an attack on Iran. Program Highlights:

  • Visit the ancient ruins of Persepolis and the tomb of the world-renowned poet, Hafez, in Shiraz.
  • Visit the Towers of Silence in Yazd and learn about the ancient Zoroastrian religion and its contributions from Iran's ancient calligraphy to Iran's current culture.
  • Explore bustling bazaars and learn about the important role they play in Iranian commerce and culture.
  • Visit beautiful gardens and museums, including the famous Abbasee Museum in Tehran.
  • Stroll through Tehran's famous Sadabad Palace (summer residence of the Ghajar Dynasty Shah) and Golestan Palace.
  • Learn about Islam as practiced in Iran--visit beautiful mosques decorated with intricate and colorful mosaic designs.
  • Visit an Armenian church and learn how this Christian minority lives among the Shiite Muslim majority.
  • Visit teahouses tucked underneath Isfahan's Si-O-Se Bridge or at the Khan Hamum bathhouse in Yazd.
  • Through visiting cultural and historical sites, create the urgent people-to-people ties with Iranians necessary for building true international diplomacy and understanding.
  • Read a sample itinerary -- This is a tentative itinerary and is subject to change
  • Note: Due to the heightened tension between the US and Iran, as well as a tense political climate within Iran, Global Exchange's Citizen Diplomacy delegations must adhere to a strict tourist itinerary and additional restrictions for US Citizens. Because of the current circumstances, meetings with government officials, NGOs and some religious minorities are restricted - whether organized through Global Exchange or through personal contacts. Nonetheless, we feel that citizen diplomacy in countries with which the US maintains a stance of isolation, is the first step to breaking the walls and barriers that stand before engagement and communication.

Cost: 2650.00  Price Includes:

  • Accommodations in 3-4 star hotels
  • All program activities and entrance fees
  • Three meals per day
  • In-country transportation
  • Qualified trip leader
  • English-speaking guides
  • Assistance with acquiring visas
  • Reader on Iran
  • Tips, international airfare, visa fee, and personal expenses are not included.
  • *Price is based on double room accommodations; add $600 for single room.
  • *A limited number of partial scholarships are available for low-income applicants.

How to Register: complete an application. Global Exchange will make a decision on the final participant list. Please also be ready to submit a $200 non-refundable deposit, as well as a scan of the title page of your passport upon approval for the trip. Final Payment will be due 60 days prior to departure. All Health, Liability, Flight and Travel Affidavit forms will be due 30 days prior to departure. The trip will be as diverse as possible in terms of race, age and life experiences. We strongly urge people of color to apply. In some cases, a limited number of partial scholarships are available for low-income applicants. Make your reservation online now! Contact Sanaz with any questions about this trip, or call toll-free 1-800-497-1994 ext. 251.
Upcoming Tours:

April 24, 2009 - May 08, 2009
June 26, 2009 - July 10, 2009
September 25, 2009 - October 09, 2009

Submitted by AIFC on Fri, 04/25/2008 - 8:58am.