The sound of birds with a silent background and a boat that floats slowly
through the forests are the precious memory fragments you’ll take back home by
visiting the rare nature of Mangrove Forests of Qeshm, in the Persian Gulf,
south of Iran.
THE FEATURES OF MANGROVE TREES
Avicennia marinas or grey mangroves are tropical trees that grow in salt water
in hot and humid regions. These trees, that have green oval leaves and golden
flowers with pharmaceutical values, submerge at high tide. Mangroves are bulky
trees whose tips of branches reach and entangle with those from the neighboring
mangroves and crate a green leafy arcade; a ceiling on a narrow corridor which
you cannot walk through as it is filled with water. The only way to pass through
is by taking a boat. This explains why Qeshm Mangrove Forests are considered
rare natural phenomena; biosphere reserves grown in the Persian Gulf’s lagoons.
THE SIMULTANEOUS EXPERIENCE OF DIFFERENT NATURAL ECOSYSTEMS
But visiting Qeshm Mangrove Forests is not worthwhile just because of the
root-showing trees. This ecosystem is also interesting because of the natural
features of its lagoon called "Khurkhoran Lagoon". This lagoon hosts over fifty
species of birds like herons and marine animals like dolphins. Therefore,
traveling to Mangrove Forests of Qeshm aka Hara Jungles does not only offer an
exceptional chance of visiting the weird and rare mangrove forests, but also an
experience of bird watching along with the excitement of exploring a pristine
lagoon of diverse animal species.
HOW TO GO MANGROVE FORESTS OF QESHM?
These 6200-hecatre forests, forming a part of the 8500-hectare biosphere reserve
registered by UNESCO, are located in the south of Iran somewhere between Qeshm
Island and the coastal lands of Hormozgan Province.
There are two main options to get to Mangrove Forests of Qeshm. You can either
go there on land through the 15-km long road from Bandar Abbas City (The central
city of Hormozgan Province) or take a boat from Qeshm Island itself. Opting for
the second option it’ll be about twenty-five kilometers that although longer,
it’s very worthwhile. Visiting Qeshm Island i.e. a hill belonging to Zagros
Mountain Range in the middle of the water, along with with all its natural and
historical beauties is really amazing.
DIFFERENT LIFE OF LOCAL COMMUNITIES
Observing the local people's lifestyle, who are mostly engaged with fishing and
making boats can be very interesting for those tourists who are eager to see
something different from life in big cities. People of this region have their
own unique traditions and customs like chanting and singing local songs along
with playing special musical instruments typical in southern parts of Iran. One
of such instruments is called "Ney-Anban" which is a kind of bagpipe.
Mangrove Forests of Qeshm are in UNESCO’s waiting list to get registered as a
World Heritage Site.