This 11 days tour takes you into the realm of the adventurer where the mountains of central Asia rise above arid Afghanistan plains. Afghanistan has long been one of the world’s least understood nations with political, religious and social upheaval causing many to give the country a wide berth.
Day 01: Arrive Kabul
On arrival in Kabul you will be taken from airport & transfer to hotel. We spend the afternoon resting or exploring some of the sites of this fascinating city. Since the recent war and the fall of the Taliban there has been substantial investment in this unique city but many of the old interesting areas including the Kabul Museum, Old Palace, Babur Shah’s Garden / Palace, Birds Market known as one of the oldest streets/ Markets in Kabul, Abdul Rahman Khan’s Mausoleum, King Zahar’s Shah’s, and His father Tombs, Omer Land Mind Museum, TV Towers Mountain where you can have a great view of Kabul City, the curiosity shops of Chicken Street and the ruined Bala Hasar fort remain, and many more.
Day 02: Kabul – Bamiyan
Fly to Bamyan by East Horizon flight at 900 am arrive Bamyan at 10:00 am chick in , in the Noor Band Qala Hotel, after noon, have an introduction tour of Bamyan Town and Bazaar, overnight in the Hotel.
Day 03: Bamiyan
The early risers may want to use this opportunity to take some photographs of the Hindu Kush, the remains of the Buddhas and the early morning activities of the inhabitants of Bamiyan. After breakfast we will visit the Buddhas; and if we are still able, explore the surrounding cliffs that are riddled with caves that contain carvings and frescos. Unfortunately the Taliban destroyed almost all of this. We then drive a short distance to the base of the Shahr-I-Golgola, which was destroyed by Genghis Khan in 1221. Genghis had destroyed Balkh and sent his teenage grandson with an army to capture Bamiyan. The people of Bamiyan resisted and Genghis’s grandson was killed. Genghis besieged and destroyed Golgola in revenge. If we do not explore the Shar-I-Zohak on the way to Bamiyan we hike up it, too. After lunch in the new Bazaar, we drive off to the Valley of the Dragon (Darya Ajdhahar). This massive rock formation is alleged to be the remains of a dragon that persecuted the villagers until Hazrat Ali, cousin and son-in-law of the Prophet Mohammed, killed it. The story is reminiscent of St George and the Dragon. In the late afternoon you will return to Bamiyan.
04: Bamiyan – Band-I-Amir – Bamiyan
You will have another early start before a 3-hour journey that takes us to the extraordinary chain of lakes at Band-I-Amir. They are astonishingly beautiful – the water varies in colour from turquoise to deep blue-black from lake to lake. Don’t assume that photographs of the lakes have had their colour touched up – they really are these colours, tinted by the mineral salts in the springs that feed the lakes. In the late afternoon we will return to Bamiyan.)
Day 05: Bamyan – Kabul
Today we retrace our road to Kabul via Ghurban Valley as, it is too much to drive from Bamyan to Mazar e Sharif therefore we will drive to Kabul stay overnight at hotel.
Day 06: Kabul – Mazar-I-Sharif
We continue our journey and drive to Mazar-I-Sharif, we will cross the Hindu Kush via the 3363m high Salang Tunnel. This tunnel was built by the Soviets from 1958 and opened in 1964. In 1979 they used it to transport their tanks over the Hindu Kush before the advance on Kabul. which means ‘Tomb of the Exalted’ and is believed to be the burial place of the prophet’s son-in-law Ali. The tomb is in a magnificent tiled building surrounded by flocks of white doves. If a grey one joins them, it is said, it will become white in a month. Mazar is not only a centre of carpet production in Afghanistan but also one of the centres of the Central Asian carpet trade, and the most beautiful carpets from all over Central Asia can be found in the bazaars.
Day 07: Mazar-I-Sharif
Today we will spend all day exploring this northern stronghold giving us have plenty of time to see the famous mosque and other sights nearby. Overnight at hotel.
Day 08: Mazar-I-Sharif – Balkh – Mazar-I-Sharif
We spend the morning exploring the nearby city of Balkh before returning to spend the late afternoon. Overnight at hotel.
Day 09: Mazar-I-Sharif – Kabul
We will leave early and drive south to cross the Hindu Kush via the 3363m high Salang Tunnel. This tunnel was built by the Soviets from 1958 and opened in 1964. In 1979 they used it to transport their tanks over the Hindu Kush before the advance on Kabul. A vital strategic prize in the civil war, the tunnel has now been repaired and allows an easy crossing back into Southern Afghanistan. We then drive part of the way across the Shomali plain to Charikar and back to Kabul. Overnight at hotel.
Day 10: Kabul – Panishir Valley – Kabul
This morning we will be up at first light drive back up into the Panjshir Valley, the legendary stronghold of Commander Amhed Shah Massoood. When Afghanistan was on the tourist trail, Panishir’s proximity to Kabul combined with its astonishing natural beauty made it most people’s first destination in the country. It was also conveniently accessed from Pakistan by journalists covering the Russian and Taliban wars when its geographical situation, and the brilliance of its mujihadeen commander, the great Ahmed Shah Massoud, made it unconquerable. Massoud defeated the Russians here fifteen times, and so comprehensively that they stopped trying to capture it. Most of the television footage of the war shown in the West was shot here. The river has a narrow and extremely fertile flood plain and is famous for its fruit. However the sides are steep mountains, which is why it is so defensible. In the spring, watered by the melting snow these mountainsides are dark green giving an impression of overwhelming fertility. We will visit Massoud’s grave and his headquarters at Astana returning to Kabul late afternoon overnight at hotel.
Day 11: Depart Kabul
Final departure transfer to airport for flight back to home.
|Kabul||01||Hotel Intercontinental Kabul|
|Bamyan||03||Bamyan Royal Hotel|
|Kabul||01||Hotel Intercontinental Kabul|
|Mazar e Sharif||03||Baran Hotel|
|Kabul||02||Hotel Intercontinental Kabul|
– Meeting and assistance by our representative.
– Welcome with fresh flower garlands.
– 10 Nights accommodation hotel
– Daily Breakfast, Lunch and Dinners.
– Local English-speaking guide
– All transfers, sightseeing, excursions as per the program by private vehicle.
– Entrance fees to monuments as per mentioned in the program.
– Transport, Parking, Gasoline & Toll ways.
– All present government taxes.
– International Airfare.
– Tips, gratuities, Portage, laundry, telephone calls, table drinks, camera/ video camera charges, or any other expenses of a personal nature.
– Visa fees, personal insurance.
– Any item not specified under cost includes.
– Accommodation in good hotels.
– Check-in / out time is 12 noon at most of the hotels.
– Extension to other places is also possible with a minimal extra cost.
– Additional nights are available at each place with minimal supplement.
– A visa is required and must be obtained prior to your departure from your Country.
– If quoted hotel is not available, we will provide one of a similar category and standard.
– Small deviations in the tour program are sometimes necessary, depending on weather, road conditions, flight schedules and room availability.
– In case the government changes presently applicable taxes, increase in airlines prices, fuel surcharge our rates will need to be adjusted accordingly.
– Sometimes, there is no relevance between the distance and time of travelling, as it depends upon the condition of the roads and congestion of the traffic.
– While every effort will be made to maintain the itinerary, in view of local strikes etc that are beyond our control all schedule and itineraries are subject to last moment changes.
– Clients must be fully insured, as the company cannot accept liability for loss or damage to client’s property, medical emergencies or any other loss suffered by them whilst on tour.
– In Case of issuing Domestic or International air tickets, SGV is not responsible for any refund if the flight is delayed or cancelled, as it is the responsibility of airline.