Afghanistan: Explore Kabul, Herat, Bamiyan, Band-e Amir, Mazar-I-Sharif and Beyond

Afghanistan: Explore Kabul, Herat, Bamiyan, Band-e Amir, Mazar-I-Sharif and Beyond 1890 , 9 Days

Embark on an extraordinary expedition through the heart of Afghanistan, where a tapestry of rich history, breathtaking landscapes, and vibrant cultures await. From the moment you arrive in Kabul, the capital city, you'll be immersed in a journey that will take you to the ancient treasures of Herat, the mesmerizing valleys of Bamiyan, and the revered city of Mazar-I-Sharif. Uncover the secrets of the Kabul Museum, stand in awe of the magnificent Herat Citadel, witness the haunting remnants of the Buddhas of Bamiyan, and explore the natural wonders of Band-e Amir National Park. This is a travel experience that promises to ignite your senses and reveal the captivating essence of Afghanistan.


Day 1. Arrive Kabul
Arrive Kabul early morning. After a short rest in our hotel tour in the afternoon including Kabul Museum, Old Palace, Babur Shah’s Garden TV Towers Mountain offering a great view of Kabul City. Hotel in Kabul.

Day 2. Fly Kabul - Herat
Herat is Afghanistan’s third largest city. The city dates back to Avestan times and was traditionally known for its wine. Herat has a number of historic sites, including the Herat Citadel. During the Middle Ages Herat became one of the important cities of Khorasan, as it was known as the Pearl of Khorasan.
Today we will visit the Citadel (Qala Iktyaruddin), Ghorid and Timurid tiling, the Friday Mosque (Masjid-I-Jami) - one of the most stunning mosques in the world. There is an opportunity to see a famous 14th Century bronze cauldron, alleged to be Tamerlane’s sherbet bowl, in the courtyard.

Day 3. Herat
Today there will be a visit to the old town to explore the bazaar. The rest of the morning will be spent visiting the 15th century Musalla complex that includes the Minarets of Gohar Shad and her Mausoleum. Gohar Shad was the wife of Shah Rukh, son of Tamerlane.

Day 4. Fly Herat - Kabul. Drive to Charikar and Bamiyan
Morning flight to Kabul. From the airport we drive north across the Shomali Plains over the Shibar pass (3285m), the watershed of the Indus and Oxus River systems, and then down to Bamiyan (180 km)

Day 5. Bamiyan
Bamiyan is referred to by some as the "Shining Light" and "Valley of Gods". There are several tourist attractions near the city, including the Buddhas of Bamiyan, which were carved into cliffs on the north side of Bamiyan city in the 6th and 7th century CE, dating them to the Hephthalite rule. 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-Gholghola, 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 Gholghola in revenge.

Day 6. Bamiyan - Band-e Amir - Bamiyan
We will continue our trip from Bamiyan to Band-e Amir National Park. Afghanistan established its first national park on April 22, 2009, to promote and protect the natural beauty of a series of intensely blue lakes created by natural dams high in the Hindu Kush. Band-e-Amir is a chain of six lakes in the mountainous desert of central Afghanistan. The lakes formed from mineral-rich water that seeped out of faults and cracks in the rocky landscape. Their water varies in color from turquoise to deep blue-black from lake to lake. Back to Bamiyan for overnight.

Day 7. Bamiyan - Mazar-I-Sharif
We continue our journey and drive to Mazar-I-Sharif, 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 center of carpet production in Afghanistan but also one of the centers of the Central Asian carpet trade, and the most beautiful carpets from all over Central Asia can be found in the bazaars.

Day 8. 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

Day 9. Departure

Price Includes:
Accommodation in hotels and guest houses in rooms with private facilities including breakfast
airport transfers and all ground transportation
flight tickets Kabul-Herat vv.
local English speaking guide
LOI (letter of invitation)
entrance fees
tour Leader from Penguin Travel. (at min. 8 participants)

Not Included:
international flights
visa fee


Afghanistan: Explore Kabul, Herat, Bamiyan, Band-e Amir, Mazar-I-Sharif and Beyond (Rated 4.81 / 5 Based on 22 Reviews.)
1890 EUR
9 Days
Single Supplement
240 EUR
Guaranteed departure
1890 EUR
9 Days
Single Supplement
240 EUR
Open for booking

Currency fluctuations might cause correction of price at any time.

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