Shazdeh Garden

Shazdeh Garden

Shazdeh Garden

In visiting the southern Iranian province of Kerman, one needs to make sure they take in Mahan: home to the biggest and most beautiful Iranian garden. Shazdeh Mahan Garden meaning Prince Mahan’s Garden is a historical Persian garden located near (6 km away from) Mahan in Kerman province, Iran.

The Astonishing Shahzadeh Garden (Prince) in Mahan. In the center of Desert, in Kerman Province, Mahan City, right near the tombstone of Shah Nematollah Vali, there is an astonishingly beautiful garden which is known as Shazde Garden. The garden which is constructed like a miracle in the heart of desert to surprise its onlookers and under the shadow of its old trees and the soothing sound of stream flowing under the trees make the traveler think of a prince who spent most of his lifetime building this garden but remained unable of employing it for a long time.

A garden was built for Mohammad Hasan Khan Qajar Sardari Iravani ca. 1850 on this site, and was entirely remodeled and extended around 1870 by Abdolhamid Mirza Naserodolleh during the eleven years of his governorship in the Qajar dynasty.

The garden is 5.5 hectares[1] with a rectangular shape and a wall around it. It consists of an entrance structure and gate at the lower end and a two-floor residential structure at the upper end. The distance between these two is ornamented with water fountains that are engined by the natural incline of the land.

The portal of this Persian garden as a clear structure frames the interior space of the garden so that when you stand under its arch, you face a beautiful scenery which comprises of the garden, the main pavilion and its fountains. The interesting point about the fountains is that no electricity has been used for making the fountains work. The stream of water enters some crocks and then after reaching one of these crocks arrives at another of them which plays the role of elbows in today’s plumbing systems. The water then erupts out in the form of fountains and after passing the stone and mortar paved yard and then after passing the ponds which are beautifully placed upon each other reaches the main pavilion. The choice and arrangement of plants and trees in Shazde Mahan Garden with its towering trees play a significant role in the identity of Persian Gardens. This garden with its fruitful trees paints colorful and scenic views during the fruit bearing seasons. All in all, this garden shines like a priceless diamond in the center of desert.

The rectangular 5.5 hectare walled garden which features two beautiful mansions has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Shazdeh Mahan Garden: Where Desert Blooms into Paradise

Shazdeh Mahan Garden, an oasis of emerald brilliance nestled amidst the arid plains of Kerman province in Iran, isn’t merely a lush escape; it’s a breathtaking tapestry woven from man’s audacity and nature’s bounty. It’s a poem etched in water cascades, a serenade whispered by rustling leaves, and a testament to the enduring power of beauty to bloom even in the harshest of landscapes.

Mirage Made Manifest:

Stepping through the arched portal is like stepping into a dream. The arid plains melt away, replaced by a symphony of emerald leaves, vibrant blossoms, and the gurgling song of water. Palm trees stand like emerald sentinels, their fronds swaying in the desert breeze. Water, the very lifeblood of this oasis, dances through an intricate network of channels, cascading down stone steps and gushing from sculpted fountains. Each drop, glistening in the sunlight, seems to defy the parched reality that lies just beyond the garden walls.

A History Whispered in Water:

Shazdeh Mahan’s story whispers through the rustling leaves. Not unlike many Persian gardens, its roots lie in a desire to conquer the desert’s harshness. Built in the 19th century by the Qajar prince, Abdolhamid Mirza Naserodolleh, it was a testament to his love for water and his audacious vision to make the impossible bloom. Years of meticulous planning and labor transformed the barren slope into this verdant Eden, proving that even the arid heart of a desert can yield to the persistent whispers of life.

Beyond Ornamentation: A Symphony of Purpose:

Shazdeh Mahan isn’t just a feast for the eyes; it’s a masterpiece of engineering and environmental harmony. The cascading water, driven by the natural incline of the land, not only creates breathtaking visuals but also serves a vital purpose. It irrigates the lush flora, cools the air, and sustains the very existence of this fragile oasis. The two mansions, nestled amidst the greenery, were not just opulent retreats; they were designed to capture the cool air and maximize water efficiency, reflecting the deep understanding of sustainability that permeated Persian garden design.

A Sanctuary for the Soul:

Beyond its historical significance and engineering brilliance, Shazdeh Mahan’s true magic lies in its ability to soothe the soul. The gentle murmur of water, the dappled sunlight filtering through leaves, the intoxicating scent of jasmine and orange blossoms – all conspire to create a haven of tranquility. In the cool shade of a cypress tree, time seems to stand still, anxieties melt away, and one surrenders to the rhythm of nature’s lullaby.

A Legacy that Endures:

Today, Shazdeh Mahan stands as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, a testament to the enduring legacy of Persian garden design and the indomitable spirit of those who dared to make the desert bloom. It’s a reminder that even the harshest landscapes can be transformed by beauty, ingenuity, and a deep respect for the delicate balance between nature and humanity.

But Shazdeh Mahan is more than just a museum piece; it’s a living poem, a vibrant promise. It whispers of the possibility of hope and resilience, of how even in the driest corners of our world, beauty can take root and flourish. It’s an invitation to embrace the power of nature, to listen to the whispers of the desert, and to discover the oasis that lies within each of us.

This extended version delves deeper into the historical context, the engineering marvels, and the emotional resonance of Shazdeh Mahan Garden. It weaves together factual details, personal reflections, and evocative imagery to capture the essence of the garden not just as a UNESCO site, but as a living legacy, a sanctuary for the soul, and a symbol of hope that transcends the arid plains of Kerman.

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