The Achaemenid Empire lasted from 560-330 BC, and at its peak extended from the borders of Greece to Asia.

    Its most famous remaining monument is Persepolis, (one of the main reasons for my trip to Iran). It was a royal and religious city built by Darius and his son Xerxes in about 500BC and then destroyed by Alexander the Great in 330BC. You can watch a video of “Persepolis Recreated”, or see part of a 3D reconstruction here.

    At Naqsh-i Rustam, the rock walls have been carved with the colossal tombs of 4 Achaemenid rulers who died in the 4th century BC. There are also earlier Elamite carvings and subsequent Sasanian reliefs.

    Pasargadae was built by Cyrus in mid-6th century BC to take over from Ecbatana as the capital of the empire.


All photographs are copyright and must not be copied or used in any way without written permission.