The Gardens of Babur are a welcome oasis to the dusty, dirty streets of Kabul. Inside the steeped gates (where admission is 25x higher for foreigners than for Afghans, but still only 250 afghanis or ~$4.70) sits the final resting place of the first Mughal emperor Babur amidst a tranquil garden.
You seriously are stepping back in time when you step in the Babur Gardens. The site has served as a sanctuary from the city surrounding it since 1528 AD; almost 500 years. Over the last five centuries its appearance has been altered per the wishes of the current ruling regime, but for the last 80 years, with a pause during the Taliban rule, the gardens have served as a public park.
The grave of Zahir-ud-din Muhammad Babur, a conqueror from Central Asia descended from Genghis Kahn who became the first Mughal emperor:
White marble mosque built by Shahjahan in 1675 to mark his conquest of Balkh:
Outside this mosque the inscription reads, ” only this mosque of beauty, this temple of nobility, constructed for the prayer of saints and the epiphany of cherubs, was fit to stand in so venerable a sanctuary as this highway of archangels, this theatre of heaven, the light garden of the godforgiven angel king whose rest is in the garden of heaven, Zahiruddin Muhammad Babur the Conqueror.”
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Next up was a visit to the Kart-e Sakhi Mosque, a beautiful tiled structure that was bustling with pilgrims, children, and vendors. I did not venture inside the mosque, but was content to absorb the beauty of the outside.
Yes, this is a cemetery the child is playing in.
Read more of my Saudi Arabia + Afghanistan Trip Report–
Introduction: A Journey to Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan
How to Obtain a Saudi Arabian Transit Visa
New York JFK to Jeddah in Saudia Economy Class
Review: Park Hyatt Jeddah
Pictures from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Jeddah to Dubai in Saudia Economy Class
Dubai to Kabul on Ariana Afghan Airlines
Arrival in Afghanistan
The Panjshir Valley of Afghanistan
My Hotel, er Compound, in Kabul, Afghanistan
Kabul – TV Tower Hill and Darul Aman Palace
Kabul – National Museum of Afghanistan
Kabul – Gardens of Babur and Kart-e Sakhi Mosque
Kabul – The Green Zone and British Cemetery
Kabul International Airport and Departing Afghanistan
The Afghanistan Dilemma
Kabul to Dubai on flydubai
Dubai to New York via Jeddah in Saudia Economy Class