After researching the issues for quite a long time I decided to apply for my visa in Trabzon in Turkey. Many travellers that I have met seem to think that applying for an Iranian visa is expensive and that it takes a lot of time and luck. While this might be true for most embassies it is definately not the case for Trabzon.
İran İslam Cumhuriyeti Trabzon Başkonsolosluğu
I'm German and of course visa issues are always a mater of one's nationality and of course with countries like Iran the situation might change any minute but aaanyways some people might find this information helpful and so this is how I got my visa in Trabzon:
On September 5th 2012 at 9:30 AM I went into the Iranian consulate in Trabzon. It was hot that day, but I still put on a long shirt and long pants, because I was applying for an Iranian visa after all. With me I had my passport (required), 3 passport-size photos (only 1 was required), international vaccination (not required), proof of insurance (not required either) and a good book in case I have to stand in line (which is unlikely, but you might have to wait until they finish their tea or whatever they do in their backroom). I told the woman working at the desk that I would like to apply for a visa and after she asked me about my nationality she immidiately asked me if I'm a cyclist. So either the news about Trabzon is spreading fast or she was able to smell that I didn't have a shower the day before …
Filling out the actual forms (1 double-sided paper) is straight forward and they don't mind if you're not too specific in your answers like:
"What is you address and telephone number in Iran?"
I don't have either so I left it blank. They asked me to put in the places I want to visit, so I wrote: "TEHERAN" and that seemed to work for them. The question "What countries have you been to?" didn't allow enough space to list them all so I just put in the quickest route from Germany to Turkey, forgetting that my passport is proof for the route that I actually took. Again: no problem.
After the paperwork she gave me a small paper with the name of a bank and a number on it and told me to pay 75 Euro. She told me to come back the next day at 4 PM with the proof that I got from the bank transfer. After hearing about some people who got their visa after just four hours I was a little disappointed, but still very happy about how easy the process was. No invitation letter, no proof of international insurance and no weeks of uncertainty. One day and 75 Euro is still ok, but to me it felt more like bad luck (or maybe I have to thank my bad smell for that), because they weren't actually busy at the consulate …
Hotels in Turkey are too expensive for my taste (cheapest option for Trabzon is around 10 Euro) and so I rode 15km towards Rize and camped for free on a beach. Sooo much better than any hotel.
The next day I returned to Trabzon and picked up my visa just as promissed.
I'M GOING TO IRAN!
Thanks to everyone who helped me get my visa and maybe someone out there finds this information useful (if you have more questions feel free to ask).
If you have any more questions, please feel free to contact me any time you wish (e.g. using the contact link from the navigation).