Country Description Afghanistan
Afghanistan (Islamic Republic of Afghanistan) is a landlocked country situated at the hub of South Asia and Central Asia with area 652,864 sq. km. (249,935 sq. mi.). Kabul is the capital city of Afghanistan. Population size is approximately 28.6 million people (2016). Afghanistan shares its border in the south and east with Pakistan; to the west, it shares a border with Iran, and its northern border touches the Central Asian countries of Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan. In the far northeast, it shares a border with China. Traveling in Afghanistan can be appealing if you are an adventure seekers.
Natural Resources in Afghanistan
Natural resources make Afghanistan an abundance country, among of them some main resource are: natural gas, petroleum, coal, copper, chromite, talc, barites, iron ore, sulfur, lead, zinc, salt, precious and semiprecious stones like emeralds, rubies, and lapis lazuli.
Ethnic Diversity in Afghanistan
Human diversity is very common in Afghanistan, it is a land of diverse peoples for centuries. Constitution of Afghanistan officially recognizes 14 ethnic groups namely: Pashtun, Tajik, Turkmen, Nuristani, Hazara, Uzbek, Baluch, Pamiri, Arab, Gujar, Brahui, Qizilbash, Aimaq, and Pashai. Afghanistan’s official languages are Pashto and Dari. Constitution of Afghanistan’s specifies that all other languages are “official” in the areas in which they are spoken by a majority of the population.
Climate in Afghanistan
Four seasons are naturally seen in Afghanistan; spring, summer, autumn, and winter. Usually, a major part of the country has a dry continental climate with cold winters and hot summers.
Afghanistan lowlands, especially in the southern and eastern part of the country, in summer the temperature can rise to 50⁰C but stays around 20⁰C in the winter.
Mountainous areas of Afghanistan in winter temperatures may dip to -25⁰C. Whereas the higher mountain areas temperatures in winter may even be lower than that.
Snowfall experience is common in the mountain region in the winter and many communities are isolated from the outside world for up to 4 months. The extensive snow season is between October and April but varies depending on altitude.
In the lowlands rain falls mainly in the autumn and at the beginning of the year. The spring rains are of great importance to agriculture. Enough rain at the right time of year is a prerequisite for the rain-fed agriculture system (called Lalmi) that dominates northern Afghanistan.
Culture in Afghanistan
Huge variation in cultures and language is common characteristics in Afghanistan although the majority of the people lead similar lives; almost all Afghans follow Islamic traditions, eat similar food and celebrate the same holidays. Unique traditions of different regions in Afghanistan have their own identity, reflecting the mix of ethnicities and tribes in the nation.
Afghan culture incorporates arts, it plays a large part in daily life with the oldest oil painting in the world, dating back to the seventh century, being discovered in the Bamiyan region. Previously art was created almost by men but nowadays the situation changed and relaxed it has seen more women enrolling in arts programs at Kabul University.
Afghanistan is famous for its carpets and has been prominent in this industry for centuries. Made with traditional rugs have certain prints inspired by the diversity and culture of a particular area, making the rug unique to that part of Afghanistan. Afghan rugs are seen as some of the best in the world, because of their high level of craftsmanship and the amount of skill required during the manufacturing process.
Afghanistan has a wide range of terrain allowing for many different crops. The cuisine of Afghanisthan is largely based upon the nation’s chief crops: cereals like wheat, maize, barley, and rice. Accompanying these staples are dairy products (yogurt, shey), various nuts, and native vegetables, and fresh and dried fruits; Afghanistan is well known for its grapes. Culinary specialties of Afghanistan reflect its ethnic and geographic diversity and has similarities with neighboring Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, Iran, and Turkmenistan. Central Asia and the Middle East’s cuisine is close to Afghan cuisine.
Cities in Afghanistan
Diverse due to its history, Afghanistan is a historically blended country, at the crossroads of multiple peoples and cultures, from the Silk Road to the Soviet invasion. This landlocked country has some beautiful cities, full of historic monuments of cultural importance. From Jalalabad in the eastern part to Balkh in the northern part, here are Afghanistan’s most beautiful cities.
Kabul is the capital city of Afghanistan and the country’s largest city, Kabul has a enrich history, as it exists for more than 3,500 years. Some of the city’s attractive sites are the Afghan National Museum, the Abdul Rahman Mosque, and the historic park, Gardens of Babur. The Rahman Mosque is built with 14 domes and two minarets in the traditional Islamic architectural style.
Located in northern Afghanistan, Balkh considered one of the oldest cities in the world. It was named by the Arabs ‘The Mother of Cities.’ Balkh was heavily influenced by the Buddhist culture before the Arab invasion, which was crossroads between eastern Asia and the Middle East. The ancient ruins of the city include Buddhist constructions and fortifications evoking the old Asian culture. Some other interesting things are the ruins of the Green Mosque and the Nine Domes Mosque, an exquisitely ornamented place added on the World Monuments watch list as an endangered cultural site.