THE ARDENT ENTHUSIAST

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An abridged version of this a post first appeared on Atlas Obscura             I first visited Herat in the summer of 1972, after taking four locals buses from Mashhad, Iran to the Afghan border at Islam Qala, and one more minibus into the city. I had just spent nearly two weeks traveling overland from Europe through the intense desert heat. The dry, earthy smell I always associated with Afghanistan – dried human… Read More

“The third stage, above the barracks, consisted of warehouses, bakeries, kitchens, and other residential rooms. The view from this stage is magnificent, but the way to it should only be attempted by the most ardent enthusiasts” Nancy Hatch Dupree [describing the climb to the top of Shar-i-Zohak, the ruins of a castle destroyed by Genghis Khan, at the entrance to the Bamiyan Valley] – An Historical Guide to Afghanistan  (1977) ************************************** August… Read More

The Minaret of Jam The Central Route through Afghanistan from Kabul to Herat was the Holy Grail of travel adventures. In 2006 I traveled with Paul Clammer when he was writing the Lonely Planet Guidebook to Afghanistan. One of my photographs of the Minaret of Jam appears in that book.