Located in the heart and historic core of Tehran, Golestan Palace ̶ ̶ literally means Rose Garden ̶ ̶ is the former royal Qajar complex in Iran’s capital city. Surrounded by an outer wall with gates and in the midst of a verdant, carefully manicured garden, Golestan Palace is the oldest and most important historic monument in Tehran.
Originally built during the Safavid dynasty in the 16th century, the site received its most characteristic features following extensions and additions in the 19th century, when the ruling Qajar family selected the palace as the royal residence and seat of power.
Registered by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, the palace exemplifies architectural and artistic achievements of the Qajar era including the introduction of European motifs and styles into Persian arts.
It was not only used as the governing base of the Qajar Kings but also functioned as a recreational and residential compound and a center of artistic production in the 19th century. As such, parts of the complex can be seen as the origins of the modern Iranian artistic movement.
The Golestan Palace constitutes a group of royal buildings including the Marble Throne Verandah, Karim Khani Nook, Brilliant Hall, Ivory Hall, Mirror Hall, Reception Hall, the Edifice of the Sun, Diamond Hall, Windtower Building, and White Palace, each with its own unique splendor within the mud walls of Tehran’s historic citadel, which enchant tourists.
Among these magnificent monuments, three ones are of paramount significance and are well worth a visit: the Marble Throne Verandah and the Reception Hall where during the Pahlavi era, the coronations of Reza Shah (1925-1941) and his son Mohammad Reza Pahlavi (1941-1979) were held along with the imposing Shams-Al Emarat (Edifice of the Sun) which was once the tallest building in Tehran offering a panoramic view of the city and famous for blending the European and Persian architectural traditions.
For those who value Iran’s rich history and historical monuments, visiting the Golestan palace is an ever-lasting experience resulting in one of the most enjoyable and memorable moments that should not be missed.