Cultural Tour

Theme: Art

Activity organised by
approved guide

You will discover

  • Afghanistan
  • Balkh
  • Balkh
  • Bamyan
  • Band-e Amir
  • Bâmiyân
  • Hérat
  • Kabul
  • Mazâr-e Charîf
  • Yakawlang
From:
2299.83 €
per person

Book your place

  • Kabul, Afghanistan

  • 1

    Mazâr-e Charîf, Balkh, Afghanistan

  • 2

    Balkh, Afghanistan

  • 3

    Band-e Amir, Yakawlang, Bâmiyân, Afghanistan

  • 4

    Bamyan, Afghanistan

  • 5

    Hérat, Afghanistan

  • Kabul, Afghanistan

Schedule
Theme
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Schedule

Day
Arrive in

Day 01 A Morning arrival at Kabul Airport,

Transfer to Hotel, Short briefing. You will have time to have a tour of the city, where you will see the remains of Darulaman Palace, go on a visit to the Nationall museum, Babur's garden, grave and the OMAR landmine museum.

Day 02 Kabul - Mazar e Sharif – Balkh

The trip from Kabul to Mazar e Sharif will go through the Salang pass. A series of tunnels built by the Russians makes this an unusual way to cross the Hindu Kush. On the north side you will stop at the ruins of the Buddhist Samangan Monastery called Takht-e-Rustam a Persian legendary hero.

Day 03 Mazar -Balkh

You will spend full day visiting Mazar e Sharif, including visiting the ancient Silk Road city of Balkh, called Bactria by the Greeks. Bactria was the birthplace of Zoroaster, the founder of Zoroastrianism as well as Rumi who was a legendary Persian poet.  You will also have time to visit and photograph the tomb of Hazrat Ali in Mazar e Sharif in the afternoon.

Day 04-Mazar-Balkh- Options

-Horse Riding

-Meet ex-Mujahidin for lunch together hearing war story

-Showing Sama Rumi Dance at his Birth Place

Day 05 –Mazar-Kabul

On the way to Kabul you will visit the remains of the Tajqurghan Garden and old covered bazaar.

Days 06-07 fly to Bamyan

 The Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley show the artistic and religious changes, which from the 1st to the 13th centuries characterised ancient Bactria, integrating various cultural influences into the Gandharan school of Buddhist art.

Day 08 Band-e-Amir Excursion

We go on an outing to the enchanting Band-e- Amir Lakes.  These fabled lakes lie within in the arid Ochre Mountains of Koh-e-Baba Range. Legend says that the miraculous presence of these sparkling lakes in such a desolate place is because of the superhuman powers of the first Imam of the Shiites - Ali, who not only created the dams which made the lakes, but also slew the dragon of Bamiyan all in one day.

Day 09 Bamayn-Kabul -Herat

You will hop on a morning flight from Bamyan to Kabul and if time allows you will visit the Shrine of Hazrat Ali ( Zeyarat-e-Hazrat Ali)  After noon take flight to Heerat and on arrival transfer to Hotel Dinner and overnight

Day 10-11 Herat:

One of the oldest cities of Afghanistan and Central Asia, Heerat dates of the Achaemenian timesand could be one of the earliest settlements of Aryans on migration.

Day 12- Herat/Kabul

Full day tour of the city – we shall make short stops at some points and perhaps will take short Tonga ride (horse carriage) for a short distance which would be great to see the local way of life.  Also revisit the sunset over the tombs of the city. Later in the evening transfer to airport for Flight to Kabul.

Day 1
Arrive in

Day 01

 

A Morning arrival at Kabul Airport,

Transfer to Hotel, Short briefing.

 You will have time to have a tour of the city. This will include the remains of Darulaman Palace, a visit to the Nationall museum, Babur's garden, grave and the OMAR landmine museum.

 

 

Day 2
Arrive in

Day 02 Kabul - Mazar e Sharif – Balkh

The journey from Kabul to Mazar e Sharif will pass through the Salang pass. A series of tunnels built by the Russians make this an exciting way to cross the Hindu Kush. On the north side you will make a stop at the remains of the Buddhist Samangan Monastery called Takht-e-Rustam a Persian legendary hero.

 

 

Day 3
Arrive in

Day03 Mazar -Balkh

You will spend full day around Mazar e Sharif. Taking time to visit the ancient Silk Road city of Balkh, called Bactria to the Greeks. Bactria was the birthplace of Zoroaster, the founder of Zoroastrianism as well as Rumi the legendary Persian poet. Legacy of its Islamic and Buddhist past can be found in the stupas and oldest mosque Noh Gombat and around the city. You will also have further time to visit and photograph the tomb of Hazrat Ali in Mazar e Sharif in the afternoon.

 

 

Day 4
Arrive in

Day04-Mazar-Balkh- Options

 

-Horse Riding

-Meet ex- Mujahidin having lunch together telling war story

-Showing Sama Rumi Dance at his Birth Place

 

 

Day 5
Arrive in

Day05 –Mazar-Kabul

The journey from Mazar e Sharif to Kabul On the way you will make a stop at the remains of the Tajqurghan Garden and old covered bazaar again will pass through the Salang pass. A series of tunnels built by the Russians make this an exciting way to cross the Hindu Kush.

 

 

 

 

Day 6
Arrive in

Days6-7 fly to Bamyan

 The Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley represent the artistic and religious developments, which from the 1st to the 13th centuries characterised ancient Bactria, integrating various cultural influences into the Gandharan school of Buddhist art. The numerous Buddhist monastic ensembles and sanctuaries, as well as fortified structures from the Islamic period, testify to the interchange of Indian, Hellenistic, Roman, Sasanian and Islamic influences. Enclosed between the high mountains of the Hindu Kush in the central highlands of Afghanistan, the Bamiyan Valley opens out into a large basin bordered to the north by a long, high stretch of rocky cliffs. The Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley comprise a serial property consisting of eight separate sites within the Valley and its tributaries. Carved into the Bamiyan Cliffs are the two niches of the giant Buddha statues (55m and 38m high) destroyed by the Taliban in 2001, and numerous caves forming a large ensemble of Buddhist monasteries, chapels and sanctuaries along the foothills of the valley dating from the 3rd to the 5th century C.E. In several of the caves and niches, often linked by galleries, there are remains of wall paintings and seated Buddha figures. In the valleys of the Bamiyan's tributaries are further groups of caves including the Kakrak Valley Caves, some 3 km south-east of the Bamiyan Cliffs where among the more than one hundred caves dating from the 6th to 13th centuries are fragments of a 10m tall standing Buddha figure and a sanctuary with painted decorations from the Sasanian period. Along the Fuladi valley around 2 km southwest of the Bamiyan Cliffs are the caves of Qoul-i Akram and Qala-e- Ghami, also containing decorative features. Punctuating the centre of the valley basin to the south of the great cliff are the remains of the fortress of Shahr-i Ghulghulah. Dating from the 6th to 10th centuries AC, this marks the original settlement of Bamiyan as stopping place on the branch of the Silk Route, which linked China and India via ancient Bactria. Further to the east along the Bamiyan Valley are the remains of fortification walls and settlements, dating from the 6th to 8th centuries at Qallai Kaphari A and B and further east still (around 15 km east of the Bamiyan Cliffs) at Shahr-i Zuhak, where the earlier remains are overlaid by developments of the 10th to 13th centuries under the rule of the Islamic Ghaznavid and Ghorid dynasties.  

 

 

Day 7
Arrive in

Days6-7 fly to Bamyan

 The Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley represent the artistic and religious developments, which from the 1st to the 13th centuries characterised ancient Bactria, integrating various cultural influences into the Gandharan school of Buddhist art. The numerous Buddhist monastic ensembles and sanctuaries, as well as fortified structures from the Islamic period, testify to the interchange of Indian, Hellenistic, Roman, Sasanian and Islamic influences. Enclosed between the high mountains of the Hindu Kush in the central highlands of Afghanistan, the Bamiyan Valley opens out into a large basin bordered to the north by a long, high stretch of rocky cliffs. The Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley comprise a serial property consisting of eight separate sites within the Valley and its tributaries. Carved into the Bamiyan Cliffs are the two niches of the giant Buddha statues (55m and 38m high) destroyed by the Taliban in 2001, and numerous caves forming a large ensemble of Buddhist monasteries, chapels and sanctuaries along the foothills of the valley dating from the 3rd to the 5th century C.E. In several of the caves and niches, often linked by galleries, there are remains of wall paintings and seated Buddha figures. In the valleys of the Bamiyan's tributaries are further groups of caves including the Kakrak Valley Caves, some 3 km south-east of the Bamiyan Cliffs where among the more than one hundred caves dating from the 6th to 13th centuries are fragments of a 10m tall standing Buddha figure and a sanctuary with painted decorations from the Sasanian period. Along the Fuladi valley around 2 km southwest of the Bamiyan Cliffs are the caves of Qoul-i Akram and Qala-e- Ghami, also containing decorative features. Punctuating the centre of the valley basin to the south of the great cliff are the remains of the fortress of Shahr-i Ghulghulah. Dating from the 6th to 10th centuries AC, this marks the original settlement of Bamiyan as stopping place on the branch of the Silk Route, which linked China and India via ancient Bactria. Further to the east along the Bamiyan Valley are the remains of fortification walls and settlements, dating from the 6th to 8th centuries at Qallai Kaphari A and B and further east still (around 15 km east of the Bamiyan Cliffs) at Shahr-i Zuhak, where the earlier remains are overlaid by developments of the 10th to 13th centuries under the rule of the Islamic Ghaznavid and Ghorid dynasties.  

 

 

Day 8
Arrive in

Day 08 - Band-e-Amir Excursion

We take an excursion to the enchanting Band-e- Amir Lakes.  These fabled lakes lie deep in the arid Ochre Mountains of Koh-e-Baba Range. Legend has it that the miraculous presence of these glittering lakes in such a desolate land is attributed to the superhuman powers of the first Imam of the Shiites - Ali, who not only made the dams, which created the lakes, but also killed the dragon of Bamiyan all in one day.

 

 

Day 9
Arrive in

Day 09 Bamayn-Kabul -Herat

 

 

You will take morning flight from bamyan to Kabul and if time you will see Shrine of Hazrat Ali ( Zeyarat-e-Hazrat Ali)After noon  intime for flight to Heerat and on arrival transfer to Hotel Dinner and overnight

 

 

Day 10
Arrive in

Day 10-11 Herat:

One of the oldest cities of Afghanistan and Central Asia, Heerat dates back to Achaemenian times and is described asHaraiva. The town must have been even older and could be one of the earliest settlements of Aryans on migration. In the Zoroastrian Avesta it is mentioned as Aria a town lying on the banks of Harayu or the golden water is resent day HariRud or Hari river which passes about 5 kms from the town. After the fall ofAchaemenian Empire at the hands of Alexander the Great around 320 BC, his forces occupied the town in pursuit of fugitive Bessus who was responsible for maiming Dariusthe last Achaemenid. He took over the fortress and rebuilt it and expanded its walls. The city must have been of important status as has been mentioned in the inscriptions of Behistoon and its people shown on the Great Staircase along with other subject nations of the Achaemenian Empire. At the time of Alexander the Great capturing the town of Artacoana, the capital of Aria province the satrap of the town was Satibarzanes. Later the city was inherited by SeleucusNicator but then taken over by the Scythians and then subsequently by the Parthians. The Kushanas and then the town was destroyed by Hepthalites but came to prominence during the Sassanian rule from 225-652 AD, Hareva is mentioned in the Sassanian buildings of Kaaba-i-Zarthustra at NagsheRustam near TakhteRustam(Persepolis). The later Sassanian rulers were at constant war with Hepthalite rulers. Then with the arrival of Arabs around mid of 7th AD while they were consolidating their power in Khorassan were involved in dissipating the last rulers of the Sassanian dynasty, Heerat was being transformed into a Muslim stronghold in the later years to become the springboard for attacks on other Central Asian kingdoms which were then subjugated one by one and mass conversions were effected due hostile policies of the Arabs in the region. Then begins the period of successive Muslim ruling dynasties. The Umayyads and Abbasids were the last Arab group to be supplanted by local dynasties like Tahirids, Saffarids, Samanids, Ghaznavids, Seljukis, Khorezmians andGhorids till the beginning of 13th Century AD when we see the invasions of the Mongols under Genghiz Khan in 1225 AD and after the respite and settling of the Mongols we see rise of Ilkhanids who were converted to Shia Islam around 1258 AD continued to rule for a long time. There was another smaller dynasty of Kartids but the complete overhaul of Timurids specifically laid foundations of a strong Timurid Dynasty whose remnants still are the highlights of the town of Heerat. At the end of Timurid power in 16th Century it was wrested by the strongSaffavids in 1510 AD to last till the 18th Century AD. Afterwards begins the period of indigenous Afghan rulers. We must recognize that Timurid rule had significant impression on the town and most of the buildings were constructed during their rule

 

 

Day 11
Arrive in

Day 10-11 Herat:

One of the oldest cities of Afghanistan and Central Asia, Heerat dates back to Achaemenian times and is described asHaraiva. The town must have been even older and could be one of the earliest settlements of Aryans on migration. In the Zoroastrian Avesta it is mentioned as Aria a town lying on the banks of Harayu or the golden water is resent day HariRud or Hari river which passes about 5 kms from the town. After the fall ofAchaemenian Empire at the hands of Alexander the Great around 320 BC, his forces occupied the town in pursuit of fugitive Bessus who was responsible for maiming Dariusthe last Achaemenid. He took over the fortress and rebuilt it and expanded its walls. The city must have been of important status as has been mentioned in the inscriptions of Behistoon and its people shown on the Great Staircase along with other subject nations of the Achaemenian Empire. At the time of Alexander the Great capturing the town of Artacoana, the capital of Aria province the satrap of the town was Satibarzanes. Later the city was inherited by SeleucusNicator but then taken over by the Scythians and then subsequently by the Parthians. The Kushanas and then the town was destroyed by Hepthalites but came to prominence during the Sassanian rule from 225-652 AD, Hareva is mentioned in the Sassanian buildings of Kaaba-i-Zarthustra at NagsheRustam near TakhteRustam(Persepolis). The later Sassanian rulers were at constant war with Hepthalite rulers. Then with the arrival of Arabs around mid of 7th AD while they were consolidating their power in Khorassan were involved in dissipating the last rulers of the Sassanian dynasty, Heerat was being transformed into a Muslim stronghold in the later years to become the springboard for attacks on other Central Asian kingdoms which were then subjugated one by one and mass conversions were effected due hostile policies of the Arabs in the region. Then begins the period of successive Muslim ruling dynasties. The Umayyads and Abbasids were the last Arab group to be supplanted by local dynasties like Tahirids, Saffarids, Samanids, Ghaznavids, Seljukis, Khorezmians andGhorids till the beginning of 13th Century AD when we see the invasions of the Mongols under Genghiz Khan in 1225 AD and after the respite and settling of the Mongols we see rise of Ilkhanids who were converted to Shia Islam around 1258 AD continued to rule for a long time. There was another smaller dynasty of Kartids but the complete overhaul of Timurids specifically laid foundations of a strong Timurid Dynasty whose remnants still are the highlights of the town of Heerat. At the end of Timurid power in 16th Century it was wrested by the strongSaffavids in 1510 AD to last till the 18th Century AD. Afterwards begins the period of indigenous Afghan rulers. We must recognize that Timurid rule had significant impression on the town and most of the buildings were constructed during their rule

Day 12
Arrive in

Day 12- Herat/Kabul

Full day tour of the town – we shall make short stops at few points and perhaps will take short Tonga ride(horse carriage) for a short distance will be great to see the local way of life. Visit the main market with the covered bazaar, the tile makers and other parts of the street. We shall then proceed to Musalla Complex – once a mosque and the Gowhar Shad’s tomb. Later we shall go to the Citadel forphotos(if  the entrance to citadel is allowed we shall see the newly renovated parts and museum) visit the pottery makers shops Also revisit the sunset over the tombs of the city. Later in the evening transfer to airport for Flight to Kabul

Theme

  • Art

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Duration: 12 Days 7 Hours 30 Minutes
Language: English
Suitable for Children:
Maximum number of participants: 15

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