Best things to do in Kabul
Find out more about those top places in Kabul
Afghanistan is currently on the list of unlikely tourist destination among travelers due to safety concerns, the nation has witnessed many conflicts and bloodshed in the past.
Somewhat on a road to recovery, the best place to visit in the country is its capital Kabul – Kabul is the largest city with over 5 million residents and the country’s economic and cultural center.
Not the most outstanding city you would visit but Kabul has some nice attractions such as the Gardens of Babur, Royal Durul Aman Palace and Shah-Do Shamshira Mosque.
The imperial Gardens of Babur are one of many historical parks developed by the Mogul Princes, but it is clearly the most significant – it contains the remains of the first Mughal Emperor Babur. According to Babur memoirs “the Baburnama”, the garden was developed around 1529 - wonderfully designed in a charbagh (four gardens) pattern covering over 11 hectares. The garden features a lovely pavilion built by Abdur Rahman Khan and a small marble mosque. Asides the tomb of Babur, the Garden of Babur is also the resting place of other notable members of the Babur family.
Also known as the Kabul museum, it was the most important museum in Central Asia before suffering from numerous cases of lootings, especially during the country’s 1992 civil war - when over 70 percent of the museums items were stolen. Used as a Mujahidin base, it suffered more damaged when rocket attacks struck its top floor. Fast forward to present day the museum is now dedicated to displaying Afghanistan rich heritage, some of its prized collection include sculptures of Afghan deities in its Nuristani galley. It also has a nice garden where visitors can relax.
Situated close to the National Museum of Afghanistan is the Durul Aman Palace, the structure is mainly currently in ruins with renovation plans ongoing. The palace which means “abode of peace” was built under the orders of King Amanullah Khan, with a neoclassical architectural style it was designed by French and German architect. Not much to see but worth the visit due to its historical significance.
Kabul being an Islamic city is filled with several mosques of different shapes and sizes, but the most popular of all is the Shah-Do Shamshira Mosque. Located on Andarabi Road, just off the Kabul River - the mosque is hard to miss with its bright yellow colored exterior. Built during the reign of Amanullah Khan, the mosque has a striking resemblance with Istanbul’s Ortakoy Mosque. Well revered by the citizens of Afghanistan, it is one of the most visited mosques in the country.
One of the most interesting places in the city – inaugurated in 1967, it was also one of the casualties of the country civil war, losing some of its shine. Currently, it has a wide range of animals including birds, mammals and fish. At the entrance of the zoo is a bronze statue of Marjan the country’s famous Lion that died in 2012, another thing that should catch your eye is “Afghanistan’s only pig” famed to be the only pig in the country due to Islamic beliefs.