In order to witness a matchless ceremony of Shiites, that is, pilgrimage and invocation, those tourists who come to visit Tehran would surely go to see Shah-Abdol-Azim Shrine and Mosque which, due to its mirrorwork and brick-made interior decoration, is a single-standing manifestation of Islamic art. The tomb of Shah-Abdol-Azim Shrine is one of the most favorite pilgrimage and worshiping spots of Iranian - and especially Tehrani - Shiites. The commencement of the construction of this magnificent monument, which is located on the historically significant Silk Road, in Ray City, dates back to 9 AD. Shah-Abdol-Azim was one of the grandchildren of the second imam of Shiites who, over a thousand years ago and out of fear of the rulers of Madinah, a city located in today's Saudi Arabia, fled to Ray City and secretly lived there for a while.
Abdol-Azim was one of the grandsons of Imam Hussein (the Second imam of the Shiites). At the time of the reign of the Abbassids (750-1258 AD) who, following the intense restrictions and suppressions imposed upon the descendants of Imam Ali (the first imam of the Shiites) by the Caliphate order, was forced to secretly immigrate from Madinah to Ray City. Thanks to being located on Silk Road and its rich historicalness, Ray City was back then considered as one of the most significant cities of the region. After having arrived in there, he took shelter and started living in the place of one of the Shiites of that area. After a while, an increasing number of people became familiar with him and gathered around him for religious enlightenment. Eventually, after many a years of praying, virtuousness, and acts of goodness, he passed away in 9th century. The initial tomb was raised in the mid-9 century and was then gradually developed by the kings of Āl-i Buyeh Dynasty.
Shrines near Shah-Abdol-Azim
The tomb of another descendent, Imam'Zadeh Hamzeh, too, is located in the east side of Shah-Abdol-Azim Shrine and it is believed that it precedes Abdol-Azim's period. In the west side, however, the tomb of Imam'Zadeh Tahir, another descendent of the Alevis (the descendants of Imam Ali) is found and its construction is of the masterpieces of Qajarid Dynasty. It is of note that, for centuries, no one knew of the existence of such a gravestone and it was only discovered accidentally at the time of the renovation of the cemetery on the basis of the identification of the gravestone's engravings.
The Parrot Garden
In the western front of the Shrine, there is a famous graveyard which is commonly known as "The Parrot Garden." The reason of such naming is claimed to be that there had once been a beautiful garden in there and the pilgrims visiting Shah-Abdol-Azim Shrine would shortly rest in there. In this holy place are also buried such prominent political and historical figures as Nasser'al din Shah (the king of Qajar), Sattar'Khan (one of the leading Constitutional Revolution heroes), Ayat'allah Kashani (one of the clergies who played a significant role in the nationalization of Iran's oil industry) and the prominent literary figure, Badi'al Zaman Forouzanfar, along with tens of other important characters
Subway is the best means of transport to get to Ray City. From the subway station, you can take a bus or taxi to get to it. It is also a half an hour walk from there to the Shah-Abdol-Azim Shrine.
It is prohibited to sleep inside the Shah-Abdol-Azim Shrine or in its campuses around and within it and, in addition, professional photography is only allowed with an official permit. You are required to take off shoes before entering the Shrine. In case of losing properties, you can refer to the lost properties section. Children may easily get lost due to the identical design of the campuses. While visiting the ancient cemeteries, please be cautious not to damage them. While commuting in the crowded areas around the Shrine, please be attentive to the bike-riders.