In the southeast of the country on the edge of the great Dasht-e Lut Desert, Kerman was historically an important crossroads dominating trade routes to Afghanistan and India. It retains a particularly fine mud-brick old town, at whose heart stands the Ganj Ali Khan complex, a collection of well preserved 17th century bazaars, caravanserais and splendid tiled mosques.

For a taste of old Persia, we recommend a stop at the Vakil Tea House, in the heart of the market area. Settle at one of the low tables to enjoy some traditional Baluchi food, accompanied by live music that would have been instantly recognizable to travellers in the Safavid era and is the perfect complement to the elegant, vaulted-arch ceilings.

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