To Losted Kingdoms
To Losted Kingdoms
The 4th city of the country is the economic center of northern Afghanistan, some 60 km south of the Uzbek city Termez. It is known for its magnificent blue mosque and the tomb of Mohammed's cousin, and it is in his honor that the city is called "the tomb of the saint". The city is very old, but Balkh, the neighboring city, already existed in the Bronze Age.
Some of the historical sites in Mazar-i-Sharif include:
Blue Mosque: Also known as the Shrine of Hazrat Ali, this is the most famous historical site in Mazar-i-Sharif. It is a beautiful blue-tiled mosque that is considered to be one of the holiest shrines in Afghanistan.
Balkh ruins: The ancient city of Balkh is located just 24 km outside Mazar-i-Sharif and is considered to be one of the oldest cities in the world. The ruins of the city include the remains of ancient palaces, temples, and fortifications.
Hazrat-i-Baba Shrine: This is a Sufi shrine located on a hill just outside of Mazar-i-Sharif. It is a popular destination for pilgrims and visitors alike, offering beautiful views of the surrounding area.
Takht-i-Rustam: This is an ancient fortress located just south of Mazar-i-Sharif. It was built by Alexander the Great and is said to have been the site of his coronation as the King of Asia.
Qala-e-Murghab: This is a 19th-century fort located in the heart of Mazar-i-Sharif. It was built by the ruler of the city at the time to protect against invading forces.
The city is also home to numerous museums, bazaars, and other cultural attractions that offer a glimpse into the region's rich history and traditions.
Herat is a city located in western Afghanistan, near the border with Iran. It is the third-largest city in Afghanistan and the capital of Herat province. It is known for its rich history and cultural heritage, and is often referred to as the "heart of Afghanistan" due to its central location in the country.
The Old City of Herat has a long history of rebuilding and restoration, having been destroyed twice by the Mongols and rebuilt as the capital of the Timurid Empire in the 15th century. The city's position along the Silk Road between Europe and Asia made it a desirable target for conquerors and occupants, leaving behind a blend of architectural styles and cultural influences. The Old City is a traditional Islamic urban center, and features notable landmarks such as the Qala Ikhtyaruddin citadel and the Masjid Jame Friday mosque, known for its bright blue minarets. Although the original defensive earthen walls surrounding the town have disappeared, the layout and much of the historic fabric remained intact until 1978.
Today, Herat is a bustling city with a population of around 400,000 people. It is an important center of industry and commerce in Afghanistan, and is home to a number of universities and research institutions. The city has a diverse population, with ethnic groups such as Tajiks, Uzbeks, Pashtuns, Hazaras and Balochs. The city has a rich culture with many traditional bazaars, museums, and festivals. The city is also known for its traditional crafts, particularly its textiles and ceramics.
The Jami Masjid, Friday mosque, also known as the Great Mosque of Herat, is a significant historical and architectural landmark located in the Old City of Herat, Afghanistan. It is one of the oldest and largest mosques in the region and is considered a masterpiece of Islamic architecture. The mosque was built in the 12th century and has undergone several renovations and restorations over the centuries. It is well-known for its bright blue minarets, which are adorned with intricate tile work, and its large central dome which sits above the prayer hall.
The mosque is also known for its historical significance as it served as a center for religious and cultural activities during the Timurid dynasty. It has also been used as a center for education, including the study of Islamic law and theology. The mosque is still in use today and is open to visitors.
The Friday mosque is one of the most iconic landmarks of Herat, its blue Minarets are one of the most recognizable architectural features in the city, and it is a must-see destination for anyone visiting Herat. It is an important example of Islamic architecture and showcases the rich history and cultural heritage of the city.
The mosque Rawza Sakhi Shah-e-Mardan, also known as the Rawza-e-Sakhi Shrine, is a historical mosque located in the city of Kabul, Afghanistan. It is named after Sakhi Shah-e-Mardan, who is believed to have been a companion of the Prophet Muhammad. The mosque is said to have been built in the 18th century, and it is known for its intricate tilework and calligraphy. The mosque is a popular pilgrimage site for Shia Muslims, and it is also considered a significant architectural and historical landmark in Kabul. Some stories say that it's a place for miracles and blessings.
Bamyan is a city located in the central highlands of Afghanistan, in the Hazarajat region. The city is situated in a valley at an altitude of 2,500 meters and is surrounded by towering cliffs and snow-capped mountains. It is the capital of Bamyan province and is known for its history, culture, and natural beauty.
Bamyan is an ancient city, with evidence of human habitation dating back to the 4th century BC. It was an important city along the Silk Road and was a center of Buddhism from the 2nd century BC to the 7th century AD. The city is also known for the destruction of the two monumental statues of Buddha carved into the cliff face, which were dynamited by the Taliban in 2001.
The city is also a UNESCO World Heritage site and home to many other historical and cultural landmarks, such as the Bamyan Buddhas, the Citadel of Bamyan, and the Shahr-e Gholghola (City of Screams). Bamyan is also known for its natural beauty and is a popular destination for trekkers, hikers, and nature enthusiasts. The province offers a unique blend of history, culture and natural beauty.
The Registan Desert is an extremely arid region and plateau located between the provinces of Helmand and Kandahar in southwestern Afghanistan. It is a 15-30 m sandy desert with areas of open rock and clay. It is sparsely populated by Pashtun and Baloch nomads. The desert is gradually encroaching on the surrounding agricultural areas.
The desert is in the eastern part of the Iranian plateau in southern Afghanistan. It is bounded by the Helmand River to the north and west, the Chagaev Mountains in the south and the Quetta-Pishinskim Plateau to the east. It covers an area of approximately 50,000 km², over 300 km long and up to 200 km wide. The plain is at an altitude of 2000 m in the east and drops to 600 m in the west. The climate is subtropical, continental and dry (with rainfall of up to 100 mm per year).
A severe drought in 1998 displaced some 100,000 nomadic people from the Registan desert region, most of whom moved to temporary settlements between the Arghandab and Helmand and Registan rivers.
The Kabul international airport (KBL) was built by engineers from the Soviet Union in 1960 when Afghanistan was trying to catch up with other developed countries in all areas, including tourism. The government planned to attract travelers from the US, India, and Europe through transit flights. However, their plans were disrupted in 1979 when the civil war broke out in Afghanistan, and the airport was used by President Najibullah and the Soviet Union until the withdrawal of Soviet troops from the country.
In 1992, the airport came under the control of the Mujahideen and was managed by them for several years until the Taliban took over.
After the terrorist attacks in the US on September 11, 2001, NATO forces entered Afghanistan. A month later, the Kabul airport was destroyed along with the planes on the platform by the US Armed Forces.
In 2006, the Afghan government adopted a project to restore and develop the international Kabul airport, with the help of Japan. The plan included building a new modern terminal costing $35 million and increasing the passenger traffic to 100,000 by 2011.
The new international terminal was opened on November 6, 2008, in the presence of Afghan President Hamid Karzai. The existing terminal was renovated and used for domestic flights, and a new radar system was installed in February 2010. The airport is planned to be brought up to all international standards by the end of the year.
In 2023, Kabul International Airport will serve several national and international destinations. Ariana and Kam Air are still the airlines with the largest number of destinations.
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