A day in Torghabeh, Mashhad
Since coming to Mashhad, there have been two places that local Mashhadi people would regularly rave about – Torghabeh and Shandiz. Both locations are renowned for their natural beauty and and mountain views.
The first place I went to was Torghabeh, and I made a mistake of going during sunset. Torghabeh is not a place you want to visit at night if you want to appreciate the natural scenery and walk through the landscapes. That said, Torghabeh does have an amazing selection of restaurants in the mountains. Decorated with fairy lights and heated private rooms for families, these restaurants are designed to provide comfort against the cold mountain weather, especially when the sun is down. So going for the purpose of eating out is definitely a night activity.
My second trip to Torghabeh was in the morning on a Friday. Torghabeh is located approximately one hour from the shrine of Imam Reza, and follows the direction of the train line all the way through. The train line of Mashhad stops at Vakilabad station, which if taken will cost you 500 riyal (about 20 cents) all the way, as opposed to taking a private car for an hour (which costed 80 toman in our case). Once you reach Vakilabad, there are taxis and buses available and ready to take tourists to Torghabeh.
Taking a taxi for an hour drive through the highway isn’t as boring as it sounds, because you cross by many interesting suburbs and landmarks (Eg. Park Mellat and Kouhestan park).
Buildings became scarce and mountains surrounded us as we arrived to the location.
What we first saw was a massive car park filled with hundreds of cars and a few stalls for tea and food.
A huge mountain blocked our view from whatever was happening on the other side but the ski lifts and trams indicated that everyone was heading to the other side of the car park
And for those who didn’t want to take a tram of ski lift, there were stairs to climb over to the other side.
After much deliberation, we chose to take a tram as it was safer to hold all our belongings and bags that way. The cost was 15 toman per person for tourists.
The tram dropped us right on the mountain top to a magnificent view of a lake with a water park on one side and a view of miles of multicolored mountains on the other side.
The walkways follow the mountains in a comfortable and accessible route and as the path continues, there are points that lead to mountain trails, and the rides down at the lake.
The path, through the mountain is designed like a fun fair with stalls selling corn on the cob, frozen and hot beverages and fairy floss. Game stalls offer big plush toys if you win and vendors lure tourists in with their charm and friendly conversations.