(Persia Digest) – The women of Varzaneh have earned their city the name the whitest town of Iran for wearing an unusual long white veil from head to toe. Apart from having easy access to cotton, this also helps them to counter the extreme summer heat of the desert. These are a couple of reasons why wearing a white ‘chador’ has become a tradition in this town.

Varzaneh is located at a distance of 110kms to the southwest of its nearest big city, Isfahan. It is also known as the beautiful desert city for its ancient monuments. The old bridge, the grand mosque, the Shah Abbasi robat or caravanserai, old wind catchers, numerous water cisterns, towers and columbaria, forts, water mills, and the Shah Zein al-Abedin Shrine are some of its ancient monuments and ruins attracting large numbers of tourists. But, there is one particular feature here which has given it the nickname white town and that is the white veil of its women. In this old place, women who have been carpet weavers by tradition leave the house wearing their white chadors. A number of narratives also accompany this old heritage; some believe that the warm, dry desert climate certainly calls for such an attire as the color absorbs less heat. Others believe the old Zoroastrian faith of ancient Persia in this area keeps the tradition going, as the followers of Zoroaster consider the color white to be holy. And last but not least, cotton is one of the main productions of Varzaneh and that is how the women in this area have been wearing white from old times.


Photos: ‘Alieh Sa’adatpur/Mehr News Agency

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