Landlocked and languishing at the crossroads of south and central Asia, Afghanistan has been carved up and altered by countless peoples. In the days of the ancients, Neolithic tribespeople arrived here from the Indus Valley. Then came the phalanxes of Alexander the Great, ranging over the greater phalanx of mountains that is the Hindu Kush to end the Persian dynasties of old. Then there were the Muslim Arabs of the Middle East, who met with the unstoppable forces of Genghis Khan. And then there were the Mughals, the Soviets, the British imperialists – the list goes on, and on.
Today, the fabric of this vast country in the depths of Asia is a palimpsest of its tumultuous past and awesome location: Cities like Mazar-e Sharif and Kandahar are filled with filigreed mosques and breathtaking madrasahs; ancient trading routes cross opium fields; the dusty desert gives way to snow-capped peaks and alpine glaciers. Of course, modern times have not been so kind, and today the war-torn territory of tribes and Taliban is pretty much out-of-bounds.
Lets explore the best places to visit in Afghanistan:
The revered home of the Mosque of the Sacred Cloak and a city steeped in history, Kandahar sits at the crossroads where southern Afghanistan meets the mountains of the country’s heartland.
The traditional seat of Pashtun power, it was the capital of the last Afghan empire during the years of Ahmad Shah Durrani.
Today, the place is filled with mosques, shrines, and mausoleums to luminaries from the national past, and folk come to see the curious inscriptions of the great Mughal invader Babur on the Chilzina View, located just on the edges of the city.