Karvansara-i Izadkhvast
Izadkhast, Iran
The caravanserai of Izadkhvast (or Yazd-i Khvast) sits along the medieval route from Isfahan to Shiraz in the river valley below the fortified citadel of Izadkhvast. The caravanserai is on the east bank of the river, built against the sheer escarpment rising dramatically from the river valley to the adjacent plateau. An inscription above the entrance portal dates the structure to the reign of a Safavid Sultan 'Abbas (presumably 'Abbas I, r. 1587-1629/996-1038 AH), which corresponds to European travelers' accounts that suggest the caravanserai was built before 1628/1037-8 AH but after 1621/1030-1 AH.1 An accompanying tower built on the plateau above the caravanserai dates to the Qajar period.

The building is a nearly square structure (63 x 61 m) made of baked brick and rubble surrounding a square courtyard (36 x 35 m) with four iwans. An entrance portal rising two stories projects from the building's western exterior facade. It consists of a shallow porch-iwan surmounted by a pointed arch and flanked by two blind arches. This leads onto a corridor of three bays giving onto the central courtyard. On the south side of the entrance portal, a half-round tower divides the facade into two equal sections, and a three-quarters-round tower marks the southern end of the wall. The northern facade of the building has the addition of a row of shallow arcades adjoining the wall, possibly for loading animals.

The courtyard's four iwans are covered by pointed arches and open onto the center of each courtyard facade, the iwan on the west facade being the interior mouth of the aforementioned entrance portal. On either side of all four iwans, four smaller arches open onto the courtyard. Three of these arches are shallow porches with doors leading onto square chambers, and the fourth is a passage leading onto corridors that run behind these groups of rooms, serving as stables for animals.


1. Smith, "Three Monuments."


Kiyānī, Muḥammad Yūsuf. Fihrist-i Kārvānsarāhā-yi Īrān, 95. Tehran: Sāzmān-i Millī-i Ḥafāẓat-i Āsār-i Bāstānī-i Īrān, 1983.

Kleiss, Wolfram. Karawanenbauten in Iran. Vol. 4, 54-5. Berlin: Dietrich Reimer, 1999.

Siroux, Maxime. Caravansérails d’Iran et petites constructions routières, 65-9. Cairo: Impremerie de l’Institut Français d’Archéologie Orientale, 1949.

Smith, M. B. "Three Monuments at Yazd-i Khwast." Ars Islamica 7 (1940): 104-6.

IranShahrPedia: Encyclopedia of Iranian Architectural History entry: http://iranshahrpedia.com/view/16361. Archived site (August 1, 2019): http://archive.is/lxu90
Registration number in Fihrist-i Asar-i Milli-i Iran: 1112. Registered 07/07/1354 (Solar Hijri)

:منابع فارسى

كياني, محمد يوسف. فهرست كاروانسراهاى ايران. تهران: سازمان ملى حفاظت آثار باستانى ايران, 1983. ص 95
: دانشنامۀ تاریخ معماری و شهرسازی ایران‌شهر

شمارهٔ ثبت در فهرست آثار ملى ايران:۱۱۱۲ . تاريخ ثبت:  ۱۳۵۴/۰۷/۰۷
Izadkhast, Iran
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Associated Names
ca. 1620s/1030s AH
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Variant Names
كروانسراى ايزدخواست
Karvansara-yi Izadkhvast
Alternate transliteration
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