Kish (کیش), a semi-tropical resort island, 19 km off the mainland in the Persian Gulf, is a popular escape from the cold winters for well-to-do Iranians but as yet is really catch on with foreign visitors.
Planned during the days of the last Shah as a getaway for prosperous Persians and international jet setters, Kish had a casino (now the Shayan International Hotel) and its airport was built large enough to receive Concorde.
After the 1979 Revolution, Kish became a duty free shopping area to encourage continued tourism. Foreign nationals do not require a visa to visit Kish for a stay of up to 14 days. Foreign visitors are fingerprinted and have their passports stamped at the airport.
The island maintains a more socially relaxed atmosphere than the mainland though alcohol is forbidden and women must wear the headscarf.