Celebrating Sizdah Be-dar in Tehran: A Guide to Embracing Nature
Sizdah Be-dar in Tehran
Sizdah Be-dar, also known as Nature’s Day, is an annual event celebrated on the 13th day of Farvardin, the first month of the Iranian calendar. The occasion marks the end of the Nowruz (Persian New Year) festivities and is an opportunity for Iranians to spend time outdoors, connect with nature, and wish for good fortune. In this article, we’ll explore the various customs and activities associated with Sizdah Be-dar in Tehran, as well as provide some suggestions for where to celebrate this unique and joyful event.
Sizdah Be-dar: Background and Customs
Sizdah Be-dar has its roots in ancient Iranian traditions dating back over 3000 years. As the number 13 is considered unlucky in Iranian culture, people believe that by spending the day outdoors, they can escape the potential misfortune associated with this number. Moreover, by embracing nature on this day, Iranians hope to attain good fortune and prosperity for the upcoming year.
One of the most prominent customs during Sizdah Be-dar is the practice which involves disposing of the sprouted seeds (sabzeh) that were grown on the Haft-Seen table during Nowruz. The sabzeh symbolizes growth and renewal, and by returning it to nature, Iranians believe they are ensuring a year of good luck and abundance. Many people also tie knots in the sabzeh’s grass blades while making a wish, further reinforcing the symbolism of good fortune.
Where to Celebrate Sizdah Be-dar in Tehran
Jamshidieh Park (Stone Garden)
Jamshidieh Park, also known as Stone Garden, is a beautiful park situated in the Niavaran district of Tehran. With its stunning rock formations, cascading waterfalls, and lush greenery, it serves as the perfect location to celebrate Sizdah Be-dar with family and friends. Visitors can enjoy picnicking, playing games, and exploring the park’s many walking trails. To reach Jamshidieh Park, you can take the Tehran Metro to Tajrish Station and then catch a taxi or a local bus.
Mellat Park, one of Tehran’s largest and most popular parks, is another excellent option for celebrating Sizdah Be-dar. The park offers numerous recreational facilities, including playgrounds, sports courts, and a beautiful lake. Additionally, the park hosts various events and performances during Sizdah Be-dar, making it an exciting and vibrant place to be. Mellat Park is conveniently located in central Tehran and can be accessed by Tehran Metro’s Line 1, exiting at the “Mellat Park” station.
Darakeh and Darband
For those looking for a more adventurous Sizdah Be-dar experience, the mountainous regions of Darakeh and Darband offer breathtaking natural beauty and numerous hiking trails. Both areas are located in the northern part of Tehran and provide a refreshing escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. Here, you can enjoy traditional Iranian cuisine in the many teahouses and restaurants that dot the mountainsides while taking in the spectacular views. To reach Darakeh or Darband, you can take a taxi or use public transportation from Tajrish Square.
Laleh Park is another popular destination for Sizdah Be-dar celebrations in Tehran. Located in the city center, the park features lush green spaces, playgrounds, and a charming lake. During Sizdah Be-dar, the park becomes a hub of activity, with families gathering to picnic, play games, and enjoy the festive atmosphere. Laleh Park is easily accessible by Tehran Metro’s Line 1, with the nearest station being “Haghani.”
Chitgar Lake and Park
Chitgar Lake and Park, situated in the western part of Tehran, is an ideal location for nature lovers looking to celebrate Sizdah Be-dar. The park surrounds a massive artificial lake and offers various recreational activities such as boating, cycling, and walking trails. With its serene atmosphere and picturesque surroundings, Chitgar Lake and Park provide a perfect setting for a relaxing and enjoyable Sizdah Be-dar experience. To get to Chitgar Lake and Park, you can take the Tehran Metro Line 5 to the “Eram-e Sabz” station and then use local buses or taxis.
Tips for Enjoying Sizdah Be-dar in Tehran
- Prepare a picnic: Sizdah Be-dar is all about enjoying the outdoors and feasting with friends and family. Pack a picnic with a variety of Persian dishes and snacks, such as kababs, kuku sabzi, ash-e reshteh, and lettuce and syrup.
- Bring games and entertainment: Traditional games like backgammon and cards are popular during Sizdah Be-dar, as well as sports activities like soccer and volleyball. Bring some games to enjoy with your family and friends while soaking up the festive atmosphere.
- Dress comfortably and be prepared for the weather: As Sizdah Be-dar is an outdoor event, make sure to wear comfortable clothing and footwear suitable for walking and exploring. Also, be prepared for unpredictable weather by bringing sunscreen, hats, and rain gear, if necessary.
- Be mindful of the environment: When disposing of your sabzeh and litter, make sure to do so responsibly and with respect for the environment. Keep the beautiful parks and natural spaces clean for everyone to enjoy.
Sizdah Be-dar is a unique and cherished Iranian tradition that allows people to come together and celebrate the beauty of nature while seeking good fortune for the year ahead. By taking part in Sizdah Be-dar festivities in Tehran’s many parks and natural spaces, you’ll have the opportunity to experience this special day and create lasting memories with friends and family.