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Depth of the Lut Desert, Alfons Gabiel Trace

Depth of the Lut Desert, Alfons Gabiel Trace

The Optimum Geo-heritage adventure in Lut Desert, a place of no life

3 Days and 2 nights
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In the south-east of Iran, the vast land of erosion spreading over 320 kilometres is home to some of the spectacular epic landforms. It is the land of emptiness, Dasht-e Lut, the servant of Aeolian and sediment erosion that confers its body on colossal yardang ridges and extensive hamadas.

From the oasis villages at the edge of the bare land to the hidden sea in the heart of it straight to the unspoilt landscapes on the ground and up in the sky of Iran's first natural UNESCO World Heritage site, be our travel mate in this expedition and follow the route of Alfons Gabriel who imprinted his trace on the most magnificent sand see of Lut for the first time in 1937. This adventure in central Lut is beyond what you may expect, it is an extraordinarily savage experience executed only by desert expert guides and full escort.

What you experience
  • An expedition through 240 kilometres deep in the desert and its inaccessible ongoing geological wonders

  • Camp and Trek in depth of the non-touristic areas of the desert 

  • Get to know about flora and fauna adapted to the harsh conditions in the land of "no life"

  • Explore some of the highest sand dunes in the world which can be high as much as 475 metres 

  • Visit desert villages at the desert margin and some of the UNESCO world heritages like Persian qanat

  • Astronomy expedition and stargazing with the telescope in the crystal-clear night sky of the desert

Location & Paths
  • Meals: 2 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners, local meals prepared by the team, tea and snacks, last dinner is served in the palm grove with local food
  • Transportation: All transportation according to the itinerary, fully equipped 4x4 cars and escorts
  • Accommodation: 2 nights camping at the tent in the desert
  • Other services: English speaking local guide, English speaking astronomer guide, telescope and astronomical Photography equipment, sleeping bag, tent
  • Excluded: visa and travel insurance, international and domestic flights, Tips to guide (optional) and plan and services not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Hat or cap, headscarf
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Warm and comfortable Clothing
  • Shoes to walk in the sand
  • Extra socks
  • Small backpack
  • Personal items

The last frontier civil regions 

Looking up at the grandiosity of the 1000 years old Cedar twin trees, while getting caressed by the cool breeze in the village of Sirch, it is inevitable not to fall in love with the serenity this village has to offer. This gem attracts many tourists for its beautiful landscape. 

We reach Shahdad, a small town which is known for its sustainable underground water reservoirs or qanat. It is astonishing how the ancient civilizations have used these qanats during those times. 

Shafi Abad Caravanserai near Lut desert
The old desert village at the door of the desert, Hanie Rahmati | TasteIran

Towering guards of the desert, Kalouts

Raised from the sand and water and created by the wind and erosion, Kalouts are the natural phenomenon of the Lut desert. A vast landscape dedicated to these rocky towers and soft elevated sand dunes is incomparable to any other touristic spot in Iran. The huge yardangs can be seen from space. 

Young Lake at Lut desert
Rainfall in 2019 made a beautiful lake in the heart of the desert named young lake, Negin Sadeghi | TasteIran

The clear blue sky against the earthy Kalouts creates the perfect backdrop for photography. Be ready to see a globally-recognized iconic hot desert landscape to overtake the adrenaline rush. Become the spectator of different landforms including linear, star and funnel-shaped dunes, sand corridor and canyons and the sand vase forms called Nebka, up to 12 m or more which will catch you wide-eyed.

Step deep into the heat pole of the planet, Rig-e Yalan

At Dasht E Sar or central plain, there is an area between kalouts and Rig-e Yalan sand dunes containing an unsurpassed flat plain. The vast sand seas of Yalan showcase a collection of incredible dunes, some of which are as tall as 475meters high. The Yalan erg (Rig in Persian) is considered one of the hottest spots on earth, reaching 70 degrees Celsius. Step bare feet onto the gleaming sand and feel the life beneath your feet. Look up to the clear blue sky and enjoy the tranquillity and silence of the Lut desert offers day in day out. 

Lut desert, rig-e yalan sand sea
Masure the grandeur of sand dunes in Lut, Negin Sadeghi | TasteIran

Travel through 2500 meters of elevation difference

Experience the ultimate natural adventure through different levels in three days. Start your journey from Kerman on 1700 metres above sea level, continue toward the mountains' crack in 2700 metres above sea level where covers up with snow in the wintertime. Then drive down in the Lut's lowest depression, 300 meters above sea level where the heat and low humidity are believed to be unmatched in the world and a select point of Yalan it can reach to 100 meters which is the lowest spot of the whole Iran's plateau.

Lut desert wonders
Lut desert hosts some magnificent land formations and natural wonders, Amin Karimi | TasteIran

 Brief Itinerary 

Day 1: Start your venture from Kerman city at 8 in the morning. Visiting Sirch and Shahdad attractions, we head forward to the real desert. After meeting gigantic kalouts and going deeper to the land of epic end up on the first day in Dasht-e sar plain, set up our camping tents for an overnight staying under the starry sky of the desert around the fire. 

Day 2: Catch up the sunrise before having a delectable breakfast. Today belongs to the ranges of mountains formed purely out of sand and canyon called Snake's Tongue Struck on foot into 30 meters high. 

The day nears an end at one of the most integral navigation points in the Lut desert. Stargazing, having dinner by the fire and sleeping in tents in the middle of the lowest land above sea level, are unforgettable memories to cherish for many years to come. 

Day 3: Enjoy a farewell Persian organic omelette before trekking into Rig-E Yalan or sand seas. Spend the day exploring elevated sand dunes and walk bare feet on the desert sand. We are leaving for Shahdad with memories of these spectacular sand dunes and our epic journey to the land of natural wonders. 

No part of this content including texts, photos, and itinerary may be republished or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission and referring to TasteIran.