Tour attractions in Pakistan
The Moenjodaro excavations date back to the civilization of the Indus Valley, which flourished 5,000 years ago. Situated some 675 Km north of Karachi, it is easily accessible by air, road and rail. Moenjodaro excelled in practically every conceivable facet of town planning. From the articles discovered here it is believed that the Iron Age had not yet dawned on the Indus Valley civilization. The vessels discovered are of lead, silver, copper or bronze, whereas the weapons are made only of bronze. The museum displays interesting relics found during excavation, such as engraved seals, utensils, ornaments, weapons, sculpture, and pottery
Harappa is the site of an ancient and important settlement of the prehistoric Indus Valley civilization (3rd to 2nd millennium B.C.) and stands witness to the 5000-year-old cultural continuity of civilization in Pakistan. An interesting and well maintained museum at the Harappa site houses artifacts found in the area. Harappa is located about 200 Km from Lahore and about 30 km from Sahiwal.
The Old Fort of Multan is an eloquent example of the proud history of this city. Among the attractions inside the fort are the elaborately decorated memorial of Sheikh Bahad-ud-din Zakriya, Shah Shams Tabriz and Shah Rukn-e-Alam. Damdama, the highest point in the fort, provides a bird’s-eye panoramic view of the city, which has survived the destructions of invaders since Alexander the Great in the 4th century B.C.
The Derawar Fort is located in Cholistan Desert. Derawar Fort is an impressive 8th century structure built by a Hindu ruler named Raja Dahir. This excursion provides plenty of opportunities to meet the friendly local people who are of Aryan descent. The sojourn also includes a visit to Uch Sharif, where there are hundreds of Muslim shrines including the tomb of Bibi Jawindi, a place of pilgrimage for many Sahiwala.
Taxila was once the seat of oriental culture situated only 32 km from Rawalpindi; Taxila is famous for the rare specimens of stucco from the Gandhara period excavated from Sirkap and various Buddhist Stupas and Monasteries. Taxila is first mentioned as a territory of the Great Achaemenian Empire of Persia in the 6th century B.C. in inscriptions of Darius the Great at Behistun. It was invaded by Alexander the Great to assert his claim over the lost provinces of the Achaemenian Empire, and then ruled by Mauryas such as Ashoka the Great, Bactrian Greeks, Scythians, Parthians and the Kushan Kings. The museum here houses various objects and sculptures dating from the 4th century B.C. to the 5th century A.D.
Sher Shah Suri, the celebrated Afghan King who ruled over India, built the massive and impressive Rohtas Fort in 1540 A.D. The strength and width of this fort can be imagined from the fact that it could easily accommodate 12,000 men of Sher Shah’s army who were once stationed here to defend his domain against the Ghakkar tribes living in the vicinities of the Salt Range. But the most impressive buildings are of the Sikh Period; through in ruins they still reflect the grandeur, which the Sikhs enjoyed for a short period. Approach to Rohtas Fort marks a detour of the salt range, the abode of fierce tribes of Ghakkers and Janjuas.
Birir (Kalash Valley)
About 34 Km southwest of Chitral is the narrow valley of Birir, where the Kalash community is gathered together. The main village of Guru is perched on a hillside as if stuck to the steep slope. An interesting site included in the tour is the dance hall, which during the winter is used for religious performances. Also included is a visit to a Kalash home - a unique experience.
At the foot of Naltar Peak lies this photogenic valley at an altitude of 3,048m. Naltar is a popular trekking point. Its semi-nomadic people earn their living by growing potatoes and rearing cattle. A thick forest of cypress and cedar trees adds a sparkle of colour amongst the rocky peaks, especially when viewed from above.
A short jeep ride from Naran brings us to enchanting Saif-ul-Muluk Lake. This lovely lake lies at a height of over 3,000m above sea level and is guarded by a ring of forbidding peaks. The melting snows and glaciers of the mountains feed the lake through a myriad of torrents and streams.
At the extreme northern end of the Kaghan Valley about 50 km from Naran on the Naran-Babusar road is Lalusar Lake, surrounded by clusters of wild flowers in a carpet of blue and gold. This is the source of the Kunhar River, which winds through the length of the valley. Lake Lalusar offers a splendid opportunity for fishing in dark blue waters surrounded by high mountains. The serene beauty and peace, which permeates the Kaghan Valley, makes this an ideal spot for relaxation and reflection.
Thatta and Makli Hills
Situated 100 Kms east of Karachi, Thatta is an ancient town with an interesting history dating back to the time of the Macedonian, Alexander the Great, who used the port to rest his weary troops. The present Thatta was founded in the 15th century. Some outstanding architecture left from the Mughal period remains in the religious and historical monuments. Makli Hill is a large necropolis of mausoleums, made up of stone tombs with geometric and floral carvings, which retain their indigenous beauty of the coloured brick enamel and glazed tile used in their construction. The great Mosque of Emperor Shah Jehan, built in the mid 17th century A.D., has 99 domes with incredible acoustic quality.