Jan 6, 2021, 12:49 PM
Journalist ID: 1843
News Code: 84176086
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Gonabad historical, traditional baths, potential tourism attractions

Gonabad, Khorasan-e Razavi, IRNA – Long history of ancient baths in the world, including Iran date back to thousands of years back and for instance, there are the Achaemenid baths of 2,500 years ago in ancient Persia.

There were private baths for the elites and also public baths for the people during the Achaemenid Empire era, the most spectacular one was the Persepolis Palace complex baths and especially the ones in the palace of Darius and in the Parthian palace of Assyrians, all of which were discovered during the short course of the past few decades.  

Classifying the Iranian ancient baths to the pre, and post Sassanid’s eras has been in the focus of attention of the majority of the archeologist.

The luxurious and high class baths were constructed especially for the elites of the society and the statesmen, but after the Iranians accepted Islam, in which special emphasis is made on cleanliness, education and prayers, not only a large number of beautiful public baths, but also lots of magnificent schools and mosques were constructed allover Iran.

Gonabad city in Iran’s northeastern Khorasan-e Razavi province, keeping in mind its rich heritage of ancient monuments that date back to 2,500 years ago, including the pre and post Islamic monuments from the Ashkanid, Achaemenid, Sassanid, Saljuqi, Kharazm-Shah era, Safavid, and Qajar era landscapes are unique.

But the only structure registered in Khorasan-e Razavi UNESCO Word Heritage List thus far is the Qanat (a gently sloping underground channel to transport water from an aquifer or water well to the surface for irrigation and drinking, acting as an underground aqueduct) of Gonabad city, which is also the most ancient one.

Gonabad city itself, has a history dating back to over 2,500 years ago, with 250 ancient monuments, 148 of which are nationally registered, 60 of that are thousands of years old of which 15 monuments need emergency reconstruction. Among those monuments there are the historical Gonabad baths that are of high archeological significance.

There have been a large number of historical baths of the different historical eras in various city districts and even villages of Gonabad, many of them have been destroyed in the course of time, and only 30 of them have remained intact, which date back to the Safavid and Qajar eras.

A cultural and tourism affairs activist of Gonabad told IRNA: The ancient baths have great potential for health tourism attraction and boosting the region’s economy.

“In an ancient bath, by the side of the spaces allocated to washing and the booths for getting unclad, there are also lobbies for the clients’ chats in which the people used to get engaged in talks on issues of public interest after taking their bath,” said Sadeq Izadi.

He said that in some ancient baths of Gonabad, like two of them in Nooqab district of this city there are also spaces for traditional exercises.

An archeology expert and university professor in Gonabad, too, told IRNA that the city’s ancient monuments, and particularly its baths can contribute to the development of the region and its economy, especially in Gonabad’s rural areas that can boost health tourism and can be used for hydrotherapy after proper reconstruction of those beautiful structures.

Dr. Abolqassem Shafiei said that the historical monuments of Gonabad need to be introduced to public as brands, which will help them get famous both nationally and internationally.

“Historical monuments comprise a part of the tangible cultural and tourism heritage of each region, and by taking proper care of them, they can also play their roles in tourist attraction and boosting economy,” concluded the professor.

Gonabad city with its 90k population is located at a 287 distance to the south of the provincial capital city, Holy Mashhad.

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