Portrayed mostly in the evening news as home to gun-toting Taliban, burka-clad women, and bombed-out villages, Afghanistan has a rich history and culture that is too often overlooked in the face of current events. This landlocked Islamic Republic has been tromped through by an array of conquerors and armies, including Alexander the Great, Genghis Khan, and the Mughals. It has also featured on many an adventurous overlander's travel itinerary.
In Afghanistan, you can barter at Kabul's markets, meet pilgrims at the shrine city Mazar-e-Sharif, follow the Silk Road to the famed Khyber Pass, and explore thousand-year-old architectural sites. The Matador community offers notes from US soldiers in Afghanistan, updates on the country's first skate park, and information on the without-borders organizations active in the region.
Do you have a story to share about Afghanistan, such as how you learned Dari, tips for traveling the Wakhan Corridor or border crossing guides? Check out Matador's contributor guidelines.