The Cypress of Abarkuh in Yazd, Iran: One of the World’s Oldest Trees

The Cypress of Abarkuh in Yazd, Iran: One of the World’s Oldest Trees

One of the oldest living things in the world, the Cypress of Abarkuh in Iran, also known as Zoroastrian Sarv and Sarv-e Abarkuh, has been speculated by botanists to be at least 4,000 years old!

Over the past years, many researchers from Japan, Russia, China, and Iran have tried to determine the tree’s age. Speculations of it being up to 8,000 years old have been made, although the majority have said for the number to more likely be around 4,000 – 4,500.

No matter what exact date is, come along with goingIRAN to see and discover more about one of the world’s oldest living trees!

One of the Oldest Trees in the World (Cypress of Abarkuh)
One of the Oldest Trees in the World (Cypress of Abarkuh)

Abarkuh’s Cypress Rings a Bell in a Poem

Hamdallah Mustawfi,wrote about this ancient fountain of life in 1339 AD. He went to inscribe that, “…there stands a cedar which has great fame in world. Compared to its neighboring ones in Keshmir and Balkh, this one is bigger and taller…”

Dating back to about 2000 BC, there is a legend that Cypress of Abarkuh was planted by one of Noah’s sons! Believe it or not, this ancient being is actually that old!

Throughout the long history of Persia, the cedar tree has played a very important role in the design of Persian Gardens and many patterns and designs. Whether it be a stucco relief, painting or even textile a pattern, the evergreen cedar has been a very meaningful symbol to the Persian culture.

Even in Zoroastrianism, the cedar tree was of great value, due to its properties of staying green all year round and has often symbolically represented Zoroaster. Hence the name, Zoroastrian Sarv. Tree planting in Persia is also dated back to time of Zoroastrian influence, when tree were regarded as very sacred.

In the succeeding years, trees have also been a sacred symbol in Islam as well, highlighting a very integral part of ancient Iranian culture.

The Cypress of Abarkuh in Iran
The Cypress of Abarkuh in Iran

The Livelihood of Sarv-e Abarkuh

Of course no tree can go on living and breathing for so many millennia and not gain a massive stature. The Cypress of Abarkuh in Yazd, Iran has done just that.

Standing at a height of about 30 meters, it’s even higher than some 10 story buildings! Its enormous trunk is approximately 4.5 meters thick with massive branches with the thickness of 1.5 meters attached to it!

It is recognized by most sources to be the second or third oldest living non-clonal trees in the world! Despite not having the number one ranking, it is actually one of the healthiest of the remaining ancient trees.

How You Can Visit Cypress of Abarku

Abarkuh is a city in the Yazd Province. The Cypress of Abarkuh is located in the south western part of the desert city. The entrance fee to see this ancient tree of life is 100,000 IRR.

This is also a great spot to beat the heat and enjoy a nice cup of tea under the shade of the Abarkuh Cypress in the coffee shop next to it!

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