Driving across the Gilân province was quite an experience of ever changing colours and landscapes I throughly observed from inside the bus, as we conquered every metre of mountainous, green forested and pasture-like piece of land under the strong mist from a certain moment onwards, at the mercy of our extremelly skilled and cautious driver (because one does have to be really skillful). The unexpected would soon be revealed as we approached the Âstara region and came across numerous rice paddies that stretched for kilometres on end ... as if we had suddenly made it to a completely different country.
The weather seemed to also have also changed, at least from the one we had been used to until then ... it was more like the humid subtropical climate I had experienced in some African countries. I did feel that particularly during the night at the Âstara lodging when sleeping with a thin bed sheet was not an option and a blanket was required.
It had been a hard journey, which I nevertheless didn't dislike despite the fact that we only had three stops on the way to Âstara ... but we had made it and we were really looking forward to exploring this region as from the following day.