Ghazni

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The anciet city of Ghazni is Afghanistan's only remaining walled town. If there is going to be any tourism in Afghanistan's future, a big IF to be sure, it will include this town on the Ghazni River. A 45 metre high citadel built in the 13th century overlooks the town and near the adjacent village of Rowzeh-e Sultan are the ruins of ancient Ghazna, including two 43-metre towers and the tomb of Mahmud of Ghazna (971-1030), a Ghaznavid dynasty emir.

Ghazni is on the Kabul to Kandahar trade route and serves as a market for sheep, wool, camel hair cloth, corn, and fruit. The famed Afghan sheepskin coats are made in the city. Ghazni's early history is obscure; it has probably existed at least since the 7th century. Early in the 11th century, under Mahmud of Ghazna, the town became the capital of the vast empire of the Ghaznavids, Afghanistan's first Muslim dynasty. The dynasty lost much of its power later in the same century, and Ghazni was sacked in 1150-51 by the Ghurids. The town was fought over by various peoples before the Mongols secured it by 1221. They ruled the area until Tamerlane and arrived in the 14th century. His descendants ruled the town until 1504, when the Indian Moghuls took Ghazni and Kabul. In 1747, Ahmad Shah Durrani, made it part of his new Afghan kingdom.

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