SAARC : : Overview : : Cities : : Culture : : Places to Visit : : Heritage : : Information : : Kabul Express
SAARC Tourism Afghanistan Afghanistan Afghanistan
Afghanistan Afghanistan Afghanistan

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Afghanistan Heritage

Afghanistan's rich cultural heritage is the result of Greek, Persian, Central Asian, Islamic, Mongolian, Chinese, Indian, Russian and British influences on the country. Due to continuous wars and political instability heritage of Afghanistan also suffered. Here is concise information on heritage of Afghanistan.

Gandhara Art
Gandhara art is the ancient form of art in Afghanistan. Its an style of Buddhism visual art. The art developed basically in todays northwestern Pakistan and eastern Afghanistan between the 1st century BC and the 7th century AD. The art flourished mainly during the Kushan dynasty.Afghanistan Heritage The Kushans sponsored Buddhism together with other Iranian and Hindu faiths, and probably contributed to the flourishing of Gandhara art. The Gandharan craftsmen depicted events of Buddha's life into set scenes with the help of sculpture. Gandhara art combines Hellenistic or Graeco-Roman artistic techniques and modelling with Indian Buddhist iconography to create an Indian hybrid.

Great mosques of Herat and Mazar-e Sharif; the minaret of a mosque at Jam, Great Arch of Qal'eh-ye Bost; the Chel Zina, the Great Buddha of Bamian, the "Towers of Victory" in Ghazni, and the Bala Hissar fort in Kabul are some of the architectural gems of Afghanistan. From very ancient time Afghanistan is considered the land of rich architecture and art. Afghanistan hosts some of the most impressive Buddhist monuments of western Asia. Greek and Buddhist stupas, monasteries, arches, monuments, intricate Islamic minarets adorn the land of Afghanistan.

Due to long turbulent history of Afghanistan, many of the monuments and museums are destroyed but still the remains will tell you about the rich architecture of Afghanistan. Kabul museum is one of them. UNESCO has honored the Minaret of Jam and the Valley of Bamiyan by adding them to the World Heritage Sites.

Artefacts in museums of Afghanistan are the witnesses of long history of Afghanistan. Afghanistan has seen various phases of history. Thousands of year ago, the inhabitants of Afghanistan were Hindu. Then they accepted the teachings of Buddha and became Buddhists. Then came the period of great artistic evolution, culmination of which was Gandhara Art. 7th century saw the commencing of Islamic era. The way of life altered a lot under Islamic influence. All these phases of history get reflected in Afghanistan museums.

Music, Dance and Cinema
Folk songs, ballads and regional dances are the soul of Afghan's musical life. Kabul has long been regional, cultural, capital and musical hub of the country. Herat has also been closely related to Iranian music. Lyrics of Afghan music are chiefly in Persian and Pashto languages. Traditional music includes qawwalis, ghazals (songs) as well as various regional traditional music varies from region to region. Musical instruments popular in Afghanistan are Tanboor, Sarod, Shahnai, Sitar and Tabla. The Attan dance derived from Pashtun areas is the national dance of Afghanistan.

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