Chaukundi tombs, are attributed to Jokhio and Baloch tribes and were build between 15th and 18th centuries. It is situated 29 km east of Karachi near Landhi Town. The Chaukundi tombs are remarkable for the elaborate and exquisite carving; the style of architecture is not only typical to the region of Sindh but unique in the sense that it is no where else to be found in the Islamic world. These tombs are embellished besides geometrical hoard and motifs with figural representation such as mounted horsemen, hunting scene, arms, jewelery etc.
Pakistan is home to several natural and man made lakes and reservoirs.
The Karomber lake
is the only lake in the whole world that is situated at an
altitude of more than 14,000 ft above
sea level, and still having biologically
active bodies in it. The reason being that the water does
not come only by
melting of snow on the surrounding mountains, but there are many springs in
and around the lake which feed this.
The blooming flower represents Pakistan while the four petals of the monument represent the four provinces and the remaining three small petals (only two visible here) represent the northern areas, Kashmir and the country's tribal areas. The star (center) and crescent (along the inner walls of petals) represent the star and crescent on Pakistan's flag. The Monument has been designed to reflect the culture and civilization of the country and also depicts the story of the Pakistan Movement, dedicated to those who sacrificed themselves for future generations.
Biafo Hispar La
The interconnected Biafo and Hispar glaciers form the longest glacial system in the world outside the polar area and combined length is about 116 kilometres. It is also linking the Baltistan and Hunza Valley and cutting through the Karakuram Range. The climax of this trek (Hisper Pass) 5150m, at the conjunction of the Biafo (60 Km) and Hisper Glacier, offers incredible view of peaks and glacier valleys.
In the late 1920's Shivratan Mohatta, commissioned the architect Ahmed Hussein Agha to design a Rajput palace in Karachi. The palace was to be located in the prestigious locale of Clifton and serve as a summer home for the Mohatta family. Agha built a spectacular summer palace in the tradition of stone palaces in Rajasthan, using pink Jodhpur stone in combination with fine yellow local stone from Gizri. The amalgam gave the palace a distinctive presence in an elegant neighborhood characterized by British colonial architecture. The palace has an area of 18,500 sq. feet and its facade is trimmed with windows, stone brackets, spandrels, domes, balustrades with carved floral motifs and exquisite railings
The Faisalabad Clock Tower is one of the oldest monuments still standing in its original state from the period of the British Raj. It was built by the British, when they ruled much of the South eastern continent during the nineteenth century.
The construction of this clock tower was completed in 1906 under the supervision of Gulab Khan who belonged to the family who built Taj Mahal in Agra.
The locals refer to it as Hour House. It is located in the older part of the city. The clock is placed at the center of the eight markets that from a bird's-eye view look like the Union Jack flag of the United Kingdom.
Makli is considered to be largest necropolis in the world. Its a few kilometers from the town of thatta, and about 100 km from Pakistan's largest city Karachi. This is one of the most visually stunning archaelogical sites in Pakistan. Covering 15-1/2 sqaure kilometers, and said to contain over one million tombs. The tombs and mausoleums are seen as the most substantial remains of Sind's greatness between the 14th and 18th centuries, with many belonging to kings, queens, saints, governors, military commanders, philophers and poets. It is belived to be the burial grounds for over 125,000 sufi saints.
Masoom Shah's Minaret
The minaret of Syed Nizam-ud-Din Mir Muhammad Masum Shah is the most conspicuous structure of Sukkur town. Syed Masum Shah was the governor of Mughal Emperor Akbar who appointed him as the Nawab of Sukkur. The minaret was built in about 1607 A.D. the monument, built of red brick, is more or less conical in shape, slightly off the perpendicular and surmounted by a dome to which an internal stone staircase gives an access. It is about 26 metres in circumference and has 84 steps to the top. It is about 31 metres feet in height and can be seen from miles away. This minaret is believed to have been used as a watch tower.
Rohtas Fort is a garrison fort built by the great Afghan king Sher Shah Suri. This fort is about 4 km in circumference and the first example of the successful amalgamation of Pukhtun and Hindu architecture in the Indian Subcontinent.
Qila Rohtas is a garrison fort and could hold a force of up to 30,000 men. Due to its location, massive walls, trap gates and 3 Baolis (stepped wells) it could withstand a major siege although it was never besieged. Most of the fort was built with ashlar stones collected from its surrounding villages. Some part of the fort were built with bricks. The fort is irregular in shape and follows the contours of the hill it was constructed on. The fort is exactly 5.2 km in circumference. A 533 meter long wall divides the citadel (for the Chieftain) from other parts of the fort. The fortification has 68 bastions (towers) at irregular intervals. Out of the 3 Baolis, one of them is in the citadel and the rest are in the other parts of the fort. One of the Gates (Langar Khani) opens into the citadel and is a trap gate because it is in the direct line of fire of the bastions.
Sher Shah Suri named Qila Rohtas after the famous Rohtasgarh Fort in Shahabad district near Baharkunda, Bihar which he captured from the Raja of Rohtas Hari Krishan Rai in 1539.
The Dharmarajika is a large Buddhist stupa in the area of Taxila. It is thought that it was established by the Maurya emperor Ashoka in the 3rd century BCE around relics of the Buddha.
The Dharmarajika stupa, is a circular structure with a raised terrace around its base. A circle of small chapels surround the great stupa. Three distinctive types of masonry in the buildings around the main stupa suggest the contributions of different periods to the building activity. Several coins of the Indo-Greek king Zoilos II were found under the foundation of such a 1st century BCE stupa.
The land of Pakistan has varied eco-zones resulting in varied Fauna and Flora. The mountainous areas embracing the Himalayan, Karakorum and Hindukush Ranges are rich in fauna and flora, as compared to other parts of the country. These areas provide an excellent habitat for wildlife in the form of alpine grazing lands, sub-alpine scrub and temperate forests. These habitats support a variety of wild animals. The areas are difficult for human beings to access, hence, most wildlife is present in reasonable numbers though some are endangered for other reasons. Some of the main wildlife species are the snow leopard (National Predator of Pakistan), Markhor (National animal), the Peregrine Falcon or "Duck Hawk", (Falco peregrinus), (State military bird) the black bear and the brown bears, Marco Polo's sheep, a variety of cats, musk deer (over a limited area), goral, several species of flying squirrels, Chukar (National bird).
Pakistan's marine flora and fauna have not been studied properly. Hence, detailed information on these species is deficient. Along the shores, there are four species of marine turtles: the ridley, green, leather back and hawksbill turtle, which are of high economic importance. The Indus Dolphin is the National Marine mammal of Pakistan and the Indus Crocodile is Pakistan's National Reptile.
Shangrila Lake is a part of the Shangrila resort located at a drive of about 20 minutes from Skardu (nearly 2,500 m or 8,200 feet) town. It is a popular tourist destination, and has a unique restaurant that is built on the fuselage of an aircraft that had crashed nearby. Shangrila was established in 1983 with the opening of the first Resort Hotel in Skardu, Baltistan. It was named "heaven on earth" because of its spectacular beauty and breathtaking view and peaceful atmosphere. Shangrila Resort Hotel was founded by the late Brig.(Retd) Muhammad Aslam Khan, the first commander of the Northern Scouts who sneaked into the Northern areas in 1948 as the Indians did not exert control on this area immediately after Kashmir's accession to it.
Customised buses and trucks
Many trucks and buses in Pakistan are highly customised and decorated by their owners to the point of becoming moving art. Part transportation, part folk art, these vehicles are quite distinct in layout from other trucks around the world. Like roving art galleries they depict all themes of life through their adorned artwork. The interior and exterior of the trucks are often adorned with poetry.
This decoration also includes structural changes, paintings, calligraphy, ornamental decor and more. Mirror work on the front and back of vehicles and wooden carvings on the truck doors are commonly used. Usually, the driver/owner takes the truck to a coach workshop soon after its purchase for this decoration. The artist embellishes each truck according to the particular tastes of the driver. Although the decorative process is usually very expensive, it is still practiced throughout Pakistan.
Karachi is considered the major bedecking center for such trucks. There is also a unique decor style for nearly every city in Pakistan. The Balochistani and Peshawari trucks are heavily trimmed with wood. Rawalpindi and Islamabadi trucks have prominently featured plastic work. Camel bone ornamentation is commonly seen in trucks decorated by Sindh artists. Thus these trucks are also representative of different historical and cultural regions of Pakistan.
Badshahi Masjid, was built in 1673 by the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb in Lahore, Pakistan. It is one of the city's best known landmarks, and a major tourist attraction epitomising the beauty and grandeur of the Mughal era. It is capable of accommodating over 55,000 worshipers and is the second largest mosque in Pakistan, after the Faisal Mosque in Islamabad.
Badshahi Masjid is one of the locations where Qari' Abdul Basit recited the Qur'an. The Imam-e-Kaaba (Sheikh Abdur-Rahman Al-Sudais of Saudi Arabia) has also led prayers in this mosque in 2007.
Khewra Salt Mines is located in Khewra, about 160 kilometres from Islamabad. It is the second largest salt mine in the world. It attracts more than 40,000 visitors per year. There is an underground man-made salt rock mosque, lighthouse, post office and several other models for the interest of visitors.
Salt has been mined at Khewra since 320 BC, in an underground area of about 110 sq. km. Khewra salt mine has estimated total of 220 million tones of rock salt deposits. The current production from the mine is 325,000 tons salt per annum.
The mine-head buildings have 19 stories, with 11 below ground. Only 50% salt is extracted and 50% is left as pillers to keep the mountain. The salt-mine is 288 meters above sea level and extends around 730 meters inside the mountains from the mine-mouth. The cumulative length of all tunnels is more than 40 km.
There are seven thick salt seams with a cumulative thickness of about 150 meters. At places the rock salt is 99% pure. Salt is transparent, white, pink, reddish to beef-color red. There are beautiful alternate bands of red and white color salt.
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