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RICK STEVESEUROPE: Iran: Tehran And Side Trips

Airs Saturday, August 2, 2014 at 4 p.m. on KPBS TV

Above: Rick Steves makes new friends in Iran. Welcoming travelers is a traditional Muslim value, and being American makes you the most popular kid in the village.

America's favorite travel guide transports viewers to Europe's cities, villages and countryside. In the fifth season of RICK STEVES' EUROPE, Rick bikes the back lanes of Copenhagen, waltzes through Vienna, slurps escargot in Burgundy, ventures to the desolate side of a Greek isle for the perfect sunset, and strives to appreciate famously stinky cheese of Olomouc in the Czech Republic. He also wanders through Salvador Dali's home, communes with Viking ghosts on Denmark’s "ship-in-a-bottle" isle, scampers through Delphi’s dramatic ruins, witnesses Barcelonan children learning to speak Catalan and ventures through a World War II-era fortress buried deep in the Swiss Alps.

Rick's Iran Travel Journal

In the spring of 2008, my TV crew and I traveled to Iran to film a travel special which appeared on public television stations. We produced the show to understand and humanize Iran. I've written this to share my personal experiences, lessons learned, and opinions that were shaped by my trip. And it's your chance to wander with me behind-the-scenes in this rich, perplexing society. I hope you enjoy this journal, and the program.

"Iran: Tehran And Side Trips" - As he's done with previous programs on Israel, Egypt, and Eastern Turkey, Rick Steves takes us beyond Europe to a place that's rich with history...and mystery. In this episode, Rick explores Tehran, the Islamic Republic of Iran's bustling capital city. University students give us a look at modern values in a theocratic society where religious and anti-American billboards are commonplace. After a visit to Khomeini's tomb, we take a trip into the countryside to get a taste of village life. Rick enjoys a warm welcome from everyday Iranians.

Rick's Travel Philosophy:

Travel is freedom...one of the last great sources of legal adventure. Travel is intensified living, with maximum thrills per minute. It's recess, and we need it. Experiencing the real Europe requires catching it by surprise, going casual...Through the Back Door.

Rick Steves is on Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, and you can follow @RickSteves on Twitter.

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Iran: Tehran And Side Trips

Above: As he's done with previous programs on Israel, Egypt, and Eastern Turkey, Rick takes us beyond Europe to a place that's rich with history...and mystery. In this first of two half-hour shows on Iran, Rick dodges traffic in Tehran, enjoys the tranquility of a nearby village, and encounters both anti-American propaganda and a warm welcome from everyday Iranians.

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Iran: Historic Capitals

Above: Iran's rich history goes back millennia, to the days when Persepolis was home to the "king of kings." In this episode, we explore three historic capitals of Iran: Persepolis, with its splendid monuments; Shiraz, with the tombs of Iran's most beloved poets; and Isfahan, with its extraordinary mosques and endearing people.

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Rick Steves' Iran Lecture: Landing In Tehran

Above: In the first part of Rick's Iran lecture, we learn what inspired Rick to make "Rick Steves' Iran" and about his experience landing in Tehran. For more information on Rick Steves' Europe Through the Back Door, visit www.ricksteves.com.

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Rick Steves' Iran Lecture: Iranian Hospitality

Above: In the final segment, we join Rick as he celebrates his birthday in an Iranian family's home. For more information on Rick Steves' Europe Through the Back Door, visit www.ricksteves.com.

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Rick Steves' Iran Lecture: The Revolution

Above: Rick Steves explores the Islamic Revolution and its place in today's Iran. For more information on "Rick Steves' Europe Through the Back Door," visit www.ricksteves.com.

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