Nasir-ol-molk Mosque, which is also known as the Pink House, is one of the well-known tourist attractions in Shiraz. It is also one of the most distinctive mosques in Iran. Most of the popularity of this mosque is because of its colorful windows which make a great atmosphere, especially when the sun shines through them. It is a rare attraction that you should step in to see a different world in art and architecture. Even if you haven’t visited this place yet, you might have seen the charming and lovely pictures of it all around the internet which definitely make you eager to visit such a wonderful place.
A Brief History about Nasir-ol-molk Mosque
The Nasir-ol-molk Mosque was built almost 150 years ago during the Qajar era. Mirza Hasan Ali Nasir ol Molk was a Qajar ruler who ordered the construction of this mosque. That’s why this is called Nasir-ol-Molk Mosque. The construction began in 1876 and took 12 years to complete. Two of the best architects of that time designed this masterpiece. However, the picturesque windows and doors are handcrafted by a carpenter master whose name was Hajj Mirza Ayat 40 years later. The colorful windows make this mosque shine between other constructions and today it is one of the reasons most of the tourists come to visit this beautiful holy place. “Pink Mosque” is the other title for this mosque, that’s because of the pink color that has been used in the tiles and its interior design.
Nasir-ol-molk Mosque Architecture
From the outside, you might see a simple mosque. It has a wooden door and no other individual characteristics from outside. But the secret jewel is in the heart of the building. When you step in, you can see a courtyard which is so common in most of the traditional Iranian buildings. Even the walls of the courtyard have been covered with colorful tiles which are mostly blue and pink. You can’t see this kind of tiling art in any other places around the world, that’s why the Nasir-ol-molk Mosque is so unique between all other mosques.
Hallway and corridor
Another featured element of Iranian architecture is the existence of a hallway or corridor which can be seen in the Nasir-ol-molk Mosque architecture too. The secret of building a corridor, which doesn’t have much light, is when someone goes into a dark place and then discovers a bright courtyard, his/her eyes get used to the light smoothly. It also shows there is a light at the end of any darkness.
The courtyard has a rectangular shape and the building of the mosque is on its north. There is a pond at the center of this yard and the beautiful flowers around it make a great scene, especially in summer and spring. The tiling of all around the mosque consists of seven different colors, which have created an eye-catching look.
The Nasir-ol-molk Mosque has two Shabestan. “Shabestans” is referred to the roofed spaces in the mosques which have a parallel and same shape columns. This mosque has a Shabestan on the east and the one on the west. The west Shabestan is the masterpiece of this architecture which has colorful windows. Early in the morning, the sun shines through these colorful glasses and makes a rainbow inside the building is a mind-blowing scene that makes everyone want to stare at it and capture photos of this out of world moment.
Places nearby the Nasir-ol-molk Mosque
Nasir-ol-molk Mosque is located in Lotf Ali Khan Zand Street. This unique attraction in Shiraz is also so close to some other tourist attractions of the city such as the Zinat-ol-Molk House, which is just a few steps away from this mosque. It will take less than 5 minutes to walk to this attraction. The Shahchragh Holy Shrine is on the other side of this mosque and is reachable in 10 minutes by car. The Vakil Bath and Vakil Bazaar are also 1.2 km far from this place which can be reached by 15 minutes walking. There are many great hotels around the Nasir-ol-molk Mosque but the best hotel in Shiraz, which is the Zandiyeh Hotel, is just 10 minutes far from this attraction and is easily reachable by taxi.
How to get to the Nasir-ol-molk Mosque
No matter in which part of the city you’re staying, you can get to the Nasir-ol-molk Mosque by metro. It is easily accessible from the Valiasr Metro Station. From there you can take a taxi to this mosque which will take 5 minutes. The mosque is also easily reachable from Shahrdari Square. Therefore, you can get a bus to this square then take a taxi to the Nasir-ol-molk Mosque. It is either possible to walk from this square which might take 20 minutes.
Best Time to Visit Nasir-ol-Molk Mosque
You definitely should visit the pink mosque in Shiraz and see the colorful and beautiful scene in its west Shabestan. Hence, you should know when is the best time. The mosque is open from 7 am. Since the sun should shine through the windows to make the magical scene, the sooner you get there the better scene you can see. The best time is in the morning between 7 am to 10 am. If you want to take photographs, the best time might be mid-autumn till mid-winter. You can have the best light for your photography during this period. But don’t worry, whenever you visit this place you get stoned by its paradisiacal appearance.