I used to think as a child that Isfahan, my birthplace in Iran, was half of the world and the rest of the world was nothing but seas and mountains. There is an old expression in Farsi that calls Isfahan half of the world (Isfahan nesfe Jahan). I know now the reason for calling Isfahan half of the world was remains of numerous historical places that were once built by invasive cultures there. If a person takes a tour of the city would realize the reason for that expression as he/she can spot many old architectures resembling different cultures and their people that once lived there. There are many historical sites that would take a tourist a week or more to see most of them.
Persians, Arabs, Mongols, and Turks who ruled the city in different periods built all of those historical sites and created that cultural diversity which gives the city a unique look and makes people wonder about how life could have been there many years ago. Isfahan is famous for its domes similar to the ones in Florence, amazing river that divides the city in half, and of course its amazing food selection. There are many bridges built over the river dating back to one thousand years ago, some are only for pedestrians and some to help flow the city’s traffic across. There are also plenty of restaurants and café on those bridges that makes the city even more exceptional.
Isfahan is located in a valley. It has similar dry weather, occasional draught, and is surrounded by large mountains with one exception that the city is mostly green with tall trees. One contributing factor that keeps the city green most of the time is Zayandeh Rood, the river that divides the town in half and rejuvenates the city as it follows through. It has been ten years since I left that city and I know much has changed in Isfahan; I still remember the bridges, cafés and their delicious pastries. I remember the huge parks spread by the river, and how much I enjoyed playing with my childhood friends there. I guess life has a twist in it and it changes its course before you know it.