This is detailed guide on my journey from Gothenburg, Sweden to Tehran, Iran with the route, how long it took and how much it cost.
Planning – Looking at options
According to Rome2Rio, the fastest way to get from Gothenburg to Tehran would be with only 3 different buses with the route;
- Gothenburg-Bucharest (42,5 hr)
- Bucharest-Istanbul (14 hr)
- Istanbul-Tehran (40 hr)
Without even counting the waiting time between the buses, it could take 100 hours/4 days. The price would land on somewhere around 200€ one way.
I have no intention of rushing through Europe to get to Iran as soon as possible. This is the perfect opportunity for me to travel to some European cities I haven’t visited before and visit friends who live there.
I quickly realised that the best way to travel by trains and buses would be through making up my journey as I go. To book the tickets at the stations when I want to leave or maybe one day before departure.
All transportation time and price
Gothenburg-Copenhagen: Bus • 4 hr 15 min • 18€
Copenhagen-Cologne: Bus • 13 hr • 36€
Cologne-Frankfurt: Fast train • 1 hr • 75€
Frankfurt-Frankfurt Airport: Train • 10 min • 5€
Frankfurt Airport-Innsbruck: Car sharing/BlaBlaCar • 5 hr • 36€
Innsbruck-Münich: Train • 1,5 hr • 43€
Munich-Sofia: Bus • 20 hr • 106€
Sofia-Athens: Bus • 12 hr • 46€
Athens-Lavrion: Bus • 1 hr • 10€
Lavrion-Athens: Bus • 2 hr • 5€
Athens-Thessaloniki: Train • 6hr • 25€
Thessaloniki-Istanbul: Bus • 10 hr • 45€
Istanbul-Tehran: Bus • 40 hr • 35€
Total time of transportation(ex. time spend in cities): 116 hours
Totalt price: 485€
Time wise it was very similar as I didn’t do any massive detours. Money wise it was a lot more expensive and I could’ve done it cheaper, especially in the case of spending 75€ on a 1 hour train ride in Germany. I chose to do this because I was meeting a friend in Frankfurt and didn’t want to lose a day with her because of the money saving.
What I didn’t include in the calculation:
Transportation within the cities and the one week of sailing in the Greek Cyclades. The sailing was a separate trip itself and wasn’t a transportation to anywhere as we came back to the same harbour we left.
Airplane vs. Travel by land
Money: A one-way plane ticket would’ve been around 300€ and traveling by land could’ve cost me around 200€ but ended up being 485€
Environmental impact: 0.59 ton CO2 vs. 0.26 ton CO2*
*This calculation is just a rough calculation made at Carbonfootprint.com and this calculation does not include the devastating altitude effect airplanes have regardless if it uses fossil fuel or biofuel.
Time: From 7,5 hr (incl. stopover in Istanbul airport) vs 3,5 weeks or 113 hours on buses and trains
But how do you compare 1 day of getting from A to B with 3,5 weeks of seeing new places, meeting old and new friend and making memories for life?