The deserts of Iran are known worldwide and have for a long time been one of the tourism destinations of Iran. The calmness of the desert and the never-ending sceneries spread in front of the eyes of the guests, on one hand, and the unexpected wonders such as vegetation and animal species, on the other have, resulted in the desert to be always visited by the adventurers.
One of the beautiful destinations in the eastern region of Iran is Hemmatabad Desert, a vast and breathtaking area in South Khorasan Province that is considered as one of the most special deserts of Iran in terms of rich ecosystem. Until recent years, it was known only by local people. But today much attention has been given to this area and now it is a potential tourist site of South Khorasan. This desert is known as Hemmatabad because there is a village in its south that bears the same name. Hemmatabad village is located one hundred and fifty kilometers of Qaen County and sixty-five kilometers of Rizkuh in South Khorasan, close to the Afghanistan border and Petregan Playa, one of the famous playas of Iran. It has been mentioned in ancient travel notes. In addition, this area belonged to the ancient land of Ghahestan, which adds to its importance as a historical site.
A kind of bird named Pleske's ground jay is an endemic species of Iran and from all the places in the world they can only be found in Hemmatabad. Other birds like bustards, partridges, see-see partridges and mammals like sand cats, ruppell’s foxes, hyenas, wolves and rabbits are some of the other animals that can be sought.
The visiting time of Hemmatabad desert starts in the second half of autumn and lasts until the first half of spring. But March and April are considered its ideal time, when the spring actually begins in this desert and lasts until May. The autumn is more suitable for those who rather cold weather.
One of the attractions of Hemmatabad desert is the grand-dam of Hajiabad. Due to its large sluice, it provides the possibility of entertaining in its margins. The lake behind the dam attracts migrating birds and provide a good opportunity for ornithologists during autumns and winter. There is also the beautiful desert of Esfedan that is home of a diverse species of animals and plants. The wonder is that in the neighborhood of Hemmatabad desert, there are Shaskuh, Zirkuh and Ahangaran mountains, where ecotourists and athletes can enjoy climbing, rock climbing, and caving. Safari and desert tours, visiting big flocks of camels, camel riding, local souvenirs and products such as saffron and barberry are some other tourism activities that can be chosen from. Visiting Tajnud village with its waterfall and river, ten kilometers far from Hemmatabad and also the tomb of Bozorgmehr, ancient castle of Qaen, and Qaem Jama Masjid complete the joyful experience of a travel to Hemmatabad desert.