Tour itinerary can be seen below.
Arrival into Kabul and after meeting our guide at the hotel we’ll head to Kabul National Museum. Its collection had earlier been one of the most important in Central Asia, with over 100,000 items dating back several millennia. From the start of the civil war in 1992, the museum has unfortunately been looted numerous times, resulting in a loss of 70% of the 100,000 objects on display.
Afterwards we’ll head west to the holy Shia mosque, Sakhi Shrine. This beautiful turquoise tiled mosque is believed to be the resting place of Hazrati Ali, the cousin of Prophet Muhammed.
We’ll end the day by visiting a local bazaar, where we’ll have plenty of opportunities to buy souvenirs.
Today we will travel to Panjshir and visit the Tomb of Ahmad Shah Masood. Panjshir means "Five Lions" and refers to five Wali (protector) brothers who lived in the valley. Local legend has it that the five brothers built a dam for Sultan Mahmud of Ghaznawi in the early 11th century. More recently it was the site of the Panjshir offensives, fought between the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan and the Soviets against the Mujahidin from 1980 to 1985. The valley again witnessed renewed fighting during the civil war in Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001, which was between the Taliban and the Northern Alliance, who were then under command by the national hero, Ahmad Shah Masood.
We’ll have a relaxing lunch at the river bank before heading back to Kabul.
We take a morning flight to Mazar-e-Sharif and visit the famous Blue Mosque built by Sultan Sanjar Seljuq in 1425. The mosque is believed to be the resting place of Ali the cousin of Prophet Mohammad. We then visit the gate of Charkent; a 12th century gate built in order to stop Ghengis Khan from entering the valley of Charkent. Later this ancient gate stopped the Red Army from entering the valley and in 1998 the Taliban were stuck at this gate. In the afternoon we will attend a Buzkhashi game.
Today we will visit Takht-i-Rustam (throne of Rustam); named after a king in Persian mythology. It is a hilltop settlement and a well known archaeological site. We’ll also visit the adjacent Buddhist caves and hilltop stupas north of the Hindu Kush passes. At this location caves were hewn out of the rock and inhabited by Buddhists. The Buddhist stupa here is in the form of a mound. It represents the earliest link to the evolution of Buddhist architecture in Afghanistan. Later in the afternoon we fly back to Kabul.
Transfer to the airport for our flight back home through Istanbul.