Backpacking in Afghanistan: Touring Takht e-Rostam Buddhist Monastery in Samangan

“Bullets for your brain today, but we’ll forget it all again.” – Nicky Wire. Afghanistan continued to inspire and we headed out past the town of Tashkurgan to the province of Samangan. It was here that I got to tour some quite simply epic ruins of an ancient Buddhist Monastery known as Takht e-Rostam. The Read more about Backpacking in Afghanistan: Touring Takht e-Rostam Buddhist Monastery in Samangan[…]

Sleeping Near the Afghanistan Border: My Night at Sorxan Atlantic Hotel, Termiz, Uzbekistan

“Before you take my heart; reconsider.” – Texas. On route to Afghanistan from Uzbekistan, I had a night and half day to “kill” in the city of Termiz. Billed as a backpacker’s classic, this joint arguably looks out of place in Uzbekistan. I could easily have jigsaw puzzled this place into El Salvador, Honduras or Read more about Sleeping Near the Afghanistan Border: My Night at Sorxan Atlantic Hotel, Termiz, Uzbekistan[…]

Backpacking in Afghanistan: Visiting Hazrat Ali’s Tomb and Blue Mosque in Masar e Sharif

“It’s all too beautiful” – Small Faces. When you are backpacking in Afghanistan, be sure to visit the country’s holiest shrine and arguably the coolest looking Islamic complex in Central Asia. This one is a stunner. Despite my previous visits to the Middle East’s largest Mosque in Adana, Turkey and my trip to the world’s Read more about Backpacking in Afghanistan: Visiting Hazrat Ali’s Tomb and Blue Mosque in Masar e Sharif[…]

The Day I...Lobbed the Goalkeeper From 30 Yards in Afghanistan

The Day I…Lobbed the Goalkeeper From 30 Yards in Afghanistan

“Out comes the goalkeeper [Rinat Dasaev no less]. Nat too sure this time. And it’s a goal! Terry Moore taking the credit for that” – Northern Irish commentator (1988) commenting on the night Glentoran were 1-0 up and just a goal away from taking the mighty Spartak Moscow to extra time in Belfast City. My Read more about The Day I…Lobbed the Goalkeeper From 30 Yards in Afghanistan[…]

Backpacking in Afghanistan: My Homestay Experience in Masar e Sharif

Backpacking in Afghanistan: My Homestay Experience in Masar e Sharif

While backpacking in Afghanistan, I was delighted to be offered the chance of a homestay with a local family in the city of Masar e Sharif. In the years I’ve been travelling, I’ve had homestays in places like Israel, Iran, Uruguay, Nagorno Karabakh, Hungary, Tunisia and Transnistria. However Afghanistan was a whole new experience. The Read more about Backpacking in Afghanistan: My Homestay Experience in Masar e Sharif[…]

Friday’s Featured Food: Pilov in Horam Restaurant Haibak, Samangan, Afghanistan

Friday’s Featured Food: Pilov in Horam Restaurant Haibak, Samangan, Afghanistan

On my tour of Afghanistan, I had quite a few authentic local culinary experiences, in my homestay, at my hotel, in Haibak and in Masar e Sharif. I’ve already written about trying Mantoo in Masar e Sharif and the smoking Shisha on a Saturday night out with the lads. In Central Asia, Plov becomes part Read more about Friday’s Featured Food: Pilov in Horam Restaurant Haibak, Samangan, Afghanistan[…]

Backpacking in Afghanistan: My Hotel Stay in Masar e Sharif

This is probably the first hotel review I ever do where I won’t mention the actual name of the hotel. There are security reasons for this of course and I was there on tour with a cool company and they sorted out my accommodation. I didn’t go online and book any hotels or hostels. In Read more about Backpacking in Afghanistan: My Hotel Stay in Masar e Sharif[…]

Watching Buzkashi in Masar e Sharif Afghanistan

Watching Buzkashi in Masar e Sharif: Afghanistan’s National Sport

If you’re ever backpacking in Afghanistan, make sure to get a trip to a local stadium to watch the national sport – Buzkashi! It’s the iconical backpacking in Afghanistan experience, and I had to get a visit to a Buzkashi game sorted during my time in the country! This was such an exciting experience! After crossing Read more about Watching Buzkashi in Masar e Sharif: Afghanistan’s National Sport[…]