Afghanistan FAQ & Security Thread
Replies: 179 - Last Post: Dec 1, 2013 9:49 AM Last Post By: expat101
Apr 7, 2010 5:04 AM
15If you have the funds a guide/translator would give you a greater insight into what is happening around you and will steer you away from most types of trouble should anything arise.
The areas listed are safe enough (for Afghanistan). You can travel overland from Kabul to Mazar and from Kabul to Bamian (via Ghorband river). However it is best to fly into and out of Herat.
Apr 27, 2010 11:46 PM
16If you have the funds a guide/translator would give you a greater insight into what is happening around you and will steer you away from most types of trouble should anything arise.
Agree to this.
This is very safe trip.
Becouse a guide know better the Afghanistan area.
My friend from England oxford university appreciated the role local guide.But some time guide or translator are also expensive.
Jun 7, 2010 1:51 AM
17Hi friends. thanks for great info
1 i see nobody mentioning kandahar. I thought about going there in the not far future. Is the situation there so terrible?
2 What about border crossing from Quetta Pakistan, into Afghanistan?
3 I understood that it's absolutely not recommended to take pictures of Afghan women. is that right? and even if they put the Burqa?
Jun 7, 2010 3:08 AM
1. I don't have personal experience on Kandahar and i don't plan to any time soon. I wouldn't go there and i doubt anyone here will advise any different. And there are some people with a lot of Afghan experience who write on here.
2. Border is shut for foreigners and very dangerous. The US are going to have a v big military operation this summer and the border will see more refugees heading south, probably pissed off.
3. That is correct. Not only do you risk getting a beating but you are fulfilling the stereotype of foreigners not caring about Afghan traditions. This advice also relates to the ladies in the windows here in Amsterdam. :)
Have a great trip.
Jun 8, 2010 8:03 AM
Jun 10, 2010 11:56 PM
Jun 11, 2010 12:50 PM
21I would say that the US operations this summer in Kandahar probably won't impact the security situation in Quetta drastically. I imagine it will see a few more refugees but as far as problems for foreign travellers i would hazard a guess that there will not be any additional security risks.
If you head to Quetta i would suggest you do not hang around the streets after dark.
Jun 22, 2010 9:25 AM
Jul 9, 2010 7:12 AM
23A note on Sultan Ishkashim in Afghanistan, just across the Tajik border: I was told that all resident foreigners, including those involved in the tourism industry, were recently asked to leave Sultan Ishkashim after the discovery of missionary activity by a group of Americans there (hearsay, I don't know the details). Tourists are apparently still welcome, there is still at least one functioning guesthouse, and I would guess that it's still far safer than the rest of Afghanistan, but it may be a little tenser than usual.
Aug 1, 2010 10:05 PM
After an eclipse once it was no longer being used to supply the "Northern Alliance", Ishkashim is again becoming a popular entry/exit point for Afghanistan. I've spoken to a couple of people who've used it in the last few weeks. It's as safe as anywhere in Afghnistan can be said to be (which is not saying much). However, don't stop in Kunduz if you can avoid it, and keep a low profile when passing though.
I'd been hoping that some of the hot spots on my own route would clear up, but none have. On the contrary, they are growing and multiplying. Afghanistan is now just over three weeks away for me and although the central route from Bamiyan to Kabul is still feasible, I'm starting to think about flying over it.
Aug 27, 2010 1:57 AM
25I am at the moment in Herat, western Afghanistan. In Herat everything is very safe, even in the evening walking on the streets is fine. Crossing the border from Mashad was easy too. The border crossing is easy but extremely dusty, dont forget some passport pictures you will need at least 2 or you pay 3 euro and a scarf in front of your face.
In Herat there is a ATM at AIB near the money changers and I stayed at the Jam Hotel for around 15 dollars a night.
Now I am doubting how to get eastwards. I was planning heading to the central part of Afghanistan along Chest-a-Sharif and Chagcharan towards Bamyan. But as the locals are telling me the chance i will be killed is around 30% because of a criminal group along the road i am thinking of flying to Chagcharan. Does anyone lately, eg in the last month travelled this road?
Aug 28, 2010 7:01 AM
26@ #25, listen to the locals on that one. There is a hot spot around Dara-i-Takht (east of Herat and west of the Minaret of Jam). Fly over the hot spot, either to Chagcharan or to Bamiyan. To Chagcharan (flying Pamir) should cost you about AFN 3000.
(I am in Mazar ATM. Later in my trip I will be in Herat and I will face the same problem you do now, so I've researched it.)
BTW, does the ATM at AIB issue dollars, or just Afghanis? I understand that there is an ATM in Herat that will issue dollars. I'd like to replenish my supply and I haven't found one in Mazar yet.
Aug 28, 2010 3:34 PM
27to yakkalot and to wakhaneer:
I'm aiming to enter from Tajikistan (Ishkoshim, or smaller road 100km east from this town) to Wakhan and then try to go to Pakistan (Chitral) by my own car.....
1) Does one of you know about border-passing in this most northern area? Especially to Pakistan. I specially ask this because Yakkalot mentioned the closed Khyber-pass.
2) I suspect the clothing-advice is important just not to get any attention from anyone. But when I go driving by my Dutch car, I think the Toyota Landcruiser with nice Dutch Yellow number-plates could be a problem. It that a point, or is it just the case of removing these....
3) I suppose the hidden road-boms are less in this region????
Aug 28, 2010 10:58 PM
28It is not possible to enter northern Pakistan from Afghanistan by car or any other means. Not possible. The few border crossings are never open to foreigners and the regions near them are full of bandits, smugglers and/or Taliban.
The Khyber Pass will probably remain closed for many years. You could possibly continue to drive through Tajikistan to Kyrgyzstan and then through China down the KKH, but the Chinese do not allow independent travel from Tashkurgan to the border with Pakistan, so you may have a problem getting permission to use that route.
Therefore, the only route available to you is from Iran to Pakistan through the dangerous Baloch/Baluch region of both countries. Travellers who use the buses and trains through these areas receive police escorts. You may have to pay for protection to drive through these areas in your own car.
To get to Iran from Ishkashim requires you to drive all the way across Afghanistan to the west, towards Herat. You will drive through dangerous regions such as Kunduz to get there. It is not safe to drive south through Kabul and Kandahar to get to Iran.
Other posters can offer more precise information on Afghanistan.
Aug 30, 2010 6:47 AM
29Does anyone know where in Herat to buy tickets for Chagcheran and what day(s) the flights leave?
(0 star Hotel)
From US$25.83 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$100.20 per night
(3 star Hotel)
From US$93.81 per night