In the heart of Iran’s desert, in Yazd, there is a famous garden. It is Dolat Abad garden and registered in the UNESCO’s world heritage list, among 9 other Persian gardens. An amazing atmosphere in the middle of desert will make every one curious that how it could be possible. Beside the architecture, it is also a masterpiece of gardening. In addition, here you will visit the tallest wind catcher in the world.
This garden dates back to 260 years ago, to Afshar era. In fact it was built by the local governor of Yazd, “Mohammad Taghi Khan Bafghi” known as “Khan-e Bozorg” or “The great Khan”. Actually at that time it was a garden out of the city. Later, during Zand era, it was a temporary settlement for the king, Karim Khan. During Qajar dynasty, the 19th century, it was a shelter for rebellions. Unfortunately, after Qajars, the beginning of the 20th century, Dolat Abad garden was abandoned till 50 years ago that causes ruining some parts.
As it mentioned, this garden is registered in the UNESCO’s world heritage list. Its plan is known as” central gardens, like “Qavam garden” or “Haft Tanan garden” in Shiraz, in this sketch the garden is in the middle. It is divided into two parts, “Andaruni” or the interior part and “Biruni” or the exterior part, however some parts are destroyed totally. Actually “Biruni” was the official or the public part and “Andaruni” was the settlement or the private section. The plan of these two parts are like two perpendicular squares which the bigger one is “Andaruni” and the smaller is “Biruni”.
The bigger square is “Andaruni”, the interior or private part. This part has a symmetrical plan. In the middle there is a large pool, 194m×12m, surrounded by trees in both sides and the entrance and porch on the other sides. In fact this style gives a better insight and helps seeing the mansion better. The most important part of Andaruni is the porch or “Hashti”. It is a two-story building to the south of this garden, including three alcoves, wind catcher room, porch and a marble pool that are decorated with stucco works, some friezes and stained glasses. Above “Hashti” there is a special wind catcher. It is the tallest adobe-made wind catcher in the world, 33.8 m. In fact, this octagonal cylinder is the cooling system and ventilator of “Hashti”, under the wind catcher there is pool which cools the air caught by the wind catcher. In addition, to the right there is another building with square wind catchers, called “Tanbi”. Also, in front of “Hashti” there is another mansion. It was the winter settlement, because overlooks south, and is the border of “Andaruni” and “Biruni”. Moreover, there are some other buildings such as; a harem, stables, kitchen, servants’ rooms, a watching tower and a cistern.
The smaller square, to the north, is the public or the exterior part, called “Biruni”. This part was used during ceremonies, festivals or some other public events. In this part, you will visit a mansion which is the main part of the garden, it is the border of public and private part. Except this part, “Tehrani”, mirror hall, two watching towers, “Divan Khaneh” or the official part and a cistern are other buildings in this area.
Dolat Abad garden is registered in the UNESCO’s world heritage list among Persian gardens. According to this style, gardens are divided into several sections, usually four parts, which there are some streets, streams of water and normally a mansion in it. So, water and irrigation is the principal factor of Persian gardens. To Irrigate the garden, they dug a Qanat from Mehriz, about 65 km far from Yazd, that unfortunately is dried now.