By Ezzatullah Mehrdad-The unexplored beautiful land of Afghanistan waits for fascinated adventurers and tourists. From amazing northern landscape of Pamir to survived historical sites of the first regional civilizations in the region are unseen to most foreigners.
Afghanistan beyond headlines of International media outlets can be far different. Survived historical sites of Arianna Civilization, diverse and rich culture of Afghanistan, unforgettable hospitality of people along with their yummy foods, and natural wonders of the country can thrill tourists to walk into Afghanistan.
Each province and part of wonderful Afghanistan has glossy historical sites. Afghanistan is the birthplace of Arianna Civilization to Bakhtar Civilization. As a result, historical sites survived during centuries of battles. From south to North, and west to east, nobody can visit Afghanistan without going to the historical sites.
Northern historical and beautiful sites locate in the city of Mazar-e-Sharif. Glossy Mosque—so called Blue Mosque—of Mazar has fair reputation. The colored mosque attracts many tourists in record numbers.
In the central mountains of Afghanistan, Bamyan, the ruined Budha statuses take tourists back to the rich period of the country when people used to worship Budha for a long time before reaching Islam. The ruined old towns around the statues speak more how people used to live, telling of braveness and courage of people to build up cities.
Doubtless rich history of Afghanistan indicates civilized past life of Afghans, but what about present life style of Afghans?
Strength of Afghans’ life style is in its diversity. Afghanistan is mixed of more than 10 ethnic groups and each has a unique culture. Beside of Dari and Pashtu as official languages, Afghans speak in more than 30 local languages, including Arabic which is spoken only in a village in Northern Province of Kunduz.
Various cultures have been practiced since centuries ago in different parts of the country. In the middle of North-east Mountains, Nuristan Province—Residents of the province claim they are survivors of Alexandra the great’s soldiers when he attacked the region in 330 B.C.—with its unique life style shows beauty. Women are farmers instead of men who are asleep in homes, waiting for winters to come so they would go to hunt for dinner and lunch tables. In the south, women are confined to home and men are the sole breadwinners.
No part of the country has reputation for their hospitality as much as east and south has. People warmly welcome visitors to their houses and provide them with the best available foods.
Rich tradition of cooking colors everyone’s journey to Afghanistan. Traditional bread of Afghans is tasty. Bulani and Ashak are other pure Afghani foods that make you eat your figures. Qabli Pulao, the most popular dish, Kababs, Qorma, Mantu, Shorma, Rice dishes, Fruits and nuts, Dairy products and many other foods clad dinner and lunch tables of Afghans.
Unexplored nature of Afghanistan adds amazement to travel of tourists. From Pamir landscape, in the north, to the sunset over Helmand River, in the south, natural spectacular beauty stuns tourists.
Pamir, literately roof of the world, administers a different prospect to see the country. Standing in the Pamir, a tourist has landscape of white extensive mountain of Pamir which divides the country into east and west. In the east, Panjsher valley has untouched forest and greenery hills. Far from the valley, border to Pakistan, in the Spin Ghar (White) mountain’s hillsides, incessant forests make everyone believe Afghanistan has unique beauty.
In the west, hillsides of Pamir Snow capped Mountain, in the middle of rocks, Lake Band-Amir gives another meaning to Afghanistan. Band-Amir, sometime shrine for conservative people, welcomes thousands of domestic and regional tourists. In the recent years, more Afghans, from the east to the west, from the south to the north, travel to the Lake and refresh in the summer holidays, including ordinary people, students, and even key politicians like Dr. Abdullah.
Unforgettable sunset over deserts and lush valleys in the south makes everyone to fall in love with Kandahar and Helmand. In early morning, lust for sunrise wakes up each tourist. In the sunshine, when the Helmand River’s movements thrill residents to swim, no tourist stay back to not swim.
All in all, Afghanistan is a terrified country in the headlines, but beyond headlines of International media outlets Afghanistan is wonder and beauty land. Historical sites, rich culture, traditional foods, and natural beauty make the country a unique destination for tourists. It provides a good chance for Afghans to have good income through tourism industry. Therefore, the Afghan government should not let the industry of tourism remains in the shadow and must promote industry of tourism by rebuilding historical sites and provide security for tourists so they travel safely.