Kabul – A Must-Visit City for its Unusual Sightseeing Spots
Nestled in the heart of Afghanistan, Kabul is not only the capital city but also the largest city of Afghanistan. In the past few years, the Afghan capital has emerged as an interesting tourist destination in the entire Middle East region. And globetrotters from every nook of the world are catching flights to Kabul to explore its intriguing history, experience its cultural diversity, and behold its sweeping landscapes. Kabul calls for an adventure-filled holiday for vacationers to have the time of their lives in an off-beat destination.
Dotted with architectural gems, the city speaks volumes about its notable past and its resilience in times of adversity. Babur Garden, Darul Aman Palace, and Minar-i-Istiqlal are the architectural marvels that take visitors back in time. When it comes to its cultural heritage, Kabul is nothing less than the melting pot of several ethnic groups, ideas, and influences. The lively streets are always full of vivid sights, fragrances, and sounds of local bazaars, which are your best bet to get your hands on Afghan handicrafts. Varying from dazzling jewellery to handwoven carpets and miniature paintings to intricate calligraphy, tourists can shop for as many souvenirs as they desire to commemorate their visit.
Tickling the fancy of the history buff in you, Kabul is home to a lot of museums where precious artefacts shed light on the country’s intriguing past. The National Museum of Afghanistan houses an astonishing array of ancient relics, such as Bactrian Gold found in the excavation of Tillya Tepe as well as the antiquities from the Silk Road. It is an ideal place to dig deeper into Afghanistan’s history.
Why people must visit Kabul?
The Afghan capital city has certainly more to it than what meets the eye. Beyond the history and culture, it boasts abundant nature where nature enthusiasts take delight in umpteen recreational pursuits. The mountains surrounding the city are the haven for those who are always on a quest for a tranquil place to spend some me-time. Serving as an incredible escape to jaw-dropping landscapes, like Panjshir Valley, Kabul makes travellers fall in love with it at first glance. Rivers with crystal-clear waters and emerald-green meadows are enough to catch the fancy of anyone. Furthermore, Band-e Amir, the first-ever national park of Afghanistan, features limestone cliffs and turquoise lakes and is the epitome of Afghanistan’s natural wonders.
As the city offers a variety of flavours and eclectic cuisines, food lovers have all the reasons to jump for joy. Succulent kebabs, aromatic rice dishes, traditional Afghan sweets, refreshing green tea – you name it, the city has got it and tantalises your taste buds like never before. Furthermore, the city is known for many things and one of them is its warm and resilient natives. Their friendliness and enthusiasm towards tourists are utterly unbeatable. Visitors are more than welcome in Kabul to have a taste of its locals’ daily lives, traditions, and culture. If you’ve been badly bitten by the travel bug and yearning to explore something novel in the Middle East region, then Kabul makes for your go-to destination.
Best places to visit in Kabul
Kabul City Centre
Having opened its doors in 2005, Kabul City Centre is the country’s first contemporary shopping mall. This nine-story indoor mall is located in Kabul’s downtown. Facilitated with escalators, see-through elevators, explosion resistant glass windows, the mall is equipped with everything to ensure the safety of visitors. The city centre comprises 100 stores, a food court and the Safi Landmark Hotel. It serves as a great spot to spend some quality time with family.
Also renowned as Bagh-e Babur and the Gardens of Babur, Babur Garden is a park with historical significance. It is where the Babur has been buried and thus, holds a special significance for Mughal rulers. It is one of the loveliest and greenest sights across the city. Sprawled over 11 hectares of land, the garden is the perfect place for unwinding, stretching a leg or picnicking.
Sitting pretty on the bank of the River Kabul, Kabul Zoo is a popular tourist honeypot for travellers and locals alike. There are around 280 animals, including 45 species of mammals and birds and 36 species of fish that call the zoo their home. However, two lions and the only pig in the country are the main residents of the zoo. The bronze statue of the lion, Marjan, greets the visitors upon their arrival. Sloth bears, black vultures, wolves, and macaques are the other inhabitants of the zoo.
A multi-purpose stadium, this revered Ghazi Stadium was built in 1923 during the rule of King Amanullah. Named after him, he was regarded as Hero (Ghazi) for winning the war against the British and achieving independence for his nation. The stadium has the capacity to accommodate 25,000 people. Football fans get their jollies by enjoying a football match on most of the Friday afternoons.
Sitting at the foothills of the mountain range of Koh-e Shir Darwaza, Bala Hissar is an ancient fortress guarding the southwest side of Kabul. Although the Citadel doesn’t allow any visitors, the old city walls serpentine out from the towers alongside the mountain ridges and are ideal for a long leisure stroll. Soak in some stunning vistas of the capital while you’re at it.
Kabul’s Leading International Airports
Kabul International Airport is the leading airport that is located about 5 kilometres from the heart of Kabul. Also known as Hamid Karzai International Airport, the airport serves as the hub for Ariana Afghan Airlines and Kam Air.