Golestan palace

In what was once the heart of Tehran is this monument to the glories and excesses of the Qajar rulers. the Golestan Palace complex is made up of several grand buildings set around a carefully manicured garden. Admission isn’t expensive but you must buy a separate ticket for each building. Although there was a Safavid-era citadel on this site, it was the Qajar ruler Nasser al-Din Shah (r 1848–96), impressed by what he’d seen of European palaces, who built it into the fine complex you see today. Originally it would have been much bigger, with inner and outer sections to encompass offices, ministries and private living quarters, but several surrounding buildings were pulled down under the Pahlavis.