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Book a flight to Peshawar to visit this intriguing city at the foot of the Khyber Pass. Having played an important role in trading for centuries, this frontier town has a distinct Afghan flavour despite its location in Pakistan. The atmospheric old city is filled with a labyrinth of bazaars, the air fragrant with spices.
Traders jostle for space at stalls selling everything from green tea to mobile phones. This buzzing, bustling city sees the frenetic pace of modern life collide with history and culture around every corner. You can fly to Peshawar with Qatar Airways, and quickly lose yourself in one of the most fascinating places on earth.
On your trip to Peshawar, it quickly becomes apparent that auto-rickshaw is the easiest and most popular way to get around. However, walking is without doubt the best way to see the Old City Centre. It's here you'll find Peshawar Museum, home to the world's largest collection of Gandharan art and Mohabbat Khan Mosque. Built in 1630 AD, it is one of the city's finest mosques and is well worth visiting.
One of Peshawar's most historic sights is Bala Hisar Fort. Rebuilt in 1834, today it is Frontier Corps Headquarters. You can enjoy great city views from the ramparts or wander around the small-but-interesting museum.
When the weather is sunny, a hiking tour of the mountains surrounding the city is a great way to see the countryside. You can lose yourself for hours in the peaceful contemplative surroundings of Ziarat Rahman Baba's tomb on the city's outskirts. This shrine to one of the masters of Pashto poetry dates back to the 17th century.
Take time to explore the city's bazaars when you travel to Peshawar. Qissa Khawani was once the city's most famous bazaar and today sells everything you could ever need. Smuggler's Bazaar is where you will find imported goods from Afghanistan.
Peshawar's cuisine can be fairly spicy for the uninitiated, so don't be afraid to express your preferences for spice-level when it comes to dining out. Local specialities include Chapli Kebab, a flat beef kebab, as well as Tikka and Karahi style dishes. Tikka involves barbecuing the meat or fish in a spicy marinade, whilst karahi brings together a collection of ingredients stir-fried with chilli and tomatoes. Fried fish, pakora and samosa are popular street food snacks, available from vendors across the city.
Look out for a particularly tempting sweet treat called Faluda. A rose syrup, basil and tapioca sweet drink, this refreshing beverage is often sold at bazaars in the summer months. Peshawar is also known for its Kawa, or green tea, which is usually served sweet.
You will find plenty of European cafés and restaurants as well as fast-food outlets in the city, with fine dining available at Peshawar's five-star hotels and other English-speaking establishments.
Bargaining is a must in Peshawar and you can haggle not only at the bazaars but in the shops too. As a general rule, offer half the asking price as a starting point. Travel to Peshawar and you'll find Afghani and Pakistani handicrafts and clothing fabric are popular choices. Bazar Shah Qabool Olia and Khyber Bazar are the best places to find handicrafts. For clothing fabric, try the area surrounding Shafi Market.
Dean's Trade Centre near Sadar Road is home to a range of shops and can often be less crowded than the frenetic bazaars. For high-quality fabric and ready-to-wear fashion, Sadar Road and Arbab Road are home to outlets and plazas offering bargains.
Flights to Peshawar with Qatar Airways arrive at Peshawar International Airport, Pakistan's fourth busiest airport.
Visa restrictions for entry into the country will depend on your country of origin, length of stay and whether your trip is for business or pleasure. So before you fly to Peshawar please check the visa and passport requirements.
Currency: Pakistani Rupee (PKR)
Voltage: 220 V 50 Hz
Plugs: Type C / D
Language: English / Urdu
International dialing code: +92