1 of 10 The ancient village of Maymand lies in Iran's south-eastern Kerman province. BBCPersian.com reader Mehdi Mortazavi Tabrizi sent pictures of his visit to this historic area.
2 of 10 There are around 350 homes carved into the rock in this 4,000-year-old village.
3 of 10 Around the village is a precipice or "taaq", which acts as a natural fort protecting the inhabitants. Hundreds of years ago archers guarding the village would be posted around its edges.
4 of 10 The homes provide valuable shelter to the region's nomads during the bitterly cold winters.
5 of 10 The village's precious water supply comes from small springs and underground canals using pipes.
6 of 10 Such distinctive water systems have led to the village being registered by Iran's Heritage Organisation.
7 of 10 Inside the homes a thick layer of soot can be seen on all ceilings and walls from the cooking fires lit by residents. The soot collects and stabilises the ceilings and also prevents damp and repels insects.
8 of 10 However, some experts studying the village also argue that the presence of such fireplaces suggests the inhabitants may be descendents of Zoroastrians - an ancient pre-Islamic sect which considered fire to be divine.
9 of 10 Several decades ago around 4,000 people lived in the village, now this number has dwindled to about 50 families.
10 of 10 But despite this, those who remain are still courteous to curious visitors, here a local woman is offering nuts to her guests.