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2019 is moving towards its end and honestly it has been another great year for the city of Islamabad. Not only that the city hosted hundreds and thousands of local and foreign tourists, but it also got featured in the Netflix’s most popular show of 2019, “Money Heist”. Here’s the list of top & undiscovered places to visit in Islamabad.

Islamabad – A Backpacker’s Dream

Islamabad is a backpacker’s dream. It offers everything; the breathtaking sceneries, the sophisticated infrastructure, exceptional law and order and most of all; the hippie urban-meets-countryside lifestyle.

Over the last couple of years and so, dozens of new tourist spots have been discovered in the city making it difficult for visitors to decide which places should they see first.

As 2020 is just ahead of us, we have decided to round up a list of top places to visit in Islamabad that have received the most love by the visitors.

Places to visit in Islamabad:

Buddhist Caves in Shah Allah Ditta

One of the interesting facts about Islamabad is that apparently it is a city established some 5 decades ago, it is actually one of the earliest known human settlements in Asia and it still boasts stone age settlements dating back more than 500,000 years!

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Located in the North of D-12 Islamabad are Buddhist caves that display the relics and the glory of the Buddhist era. These sites offer you a cluster of things to see and experience and there is also a lake nearby which makes it a perfect holiday spot. The Village is surrounded by glorious Margallah hills which further intensify the beauty of this area.

Faisal Mosque – A famous tourist attraction:

Faisal Mosque - places to visit in islamabad

Well that’s no brainer. The iconic mosque of the capital is the pride of the city and has always remained its most visited tourist attraction. The mosque was completed in 1986 and the construction was financed by Saudi King Faisal as a gift on his first visit to Islamabad. In respect to the king’s generosity, the mosque still bears his name.

The architecture is inspired by the ancient Bedouin Arabic lifestyle surrounded by four towering spires flanking at each corner. The mighty spacious prayer room is beautifully carved with mosaics of marble and triangular patterns of glass hanging from the tented ceiling. Adjacent to the main prayer hall is a small café and a restaurant. The mosque also features a lecture hall and a library full of rare and noteworthy books written by renowned Muslim Scholars.

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The mosque is located on Faisal Avenue right in the northern most part of the city. The mighty view of Margallah hills in the backdrop gives mosque a picturesque sight and a treat of the eyes. What makes this mosque unique is its grandeur and voguish appeal blended together is a nostalgic Arabic architecture.

Pakistan Monument – A symbol of unity:

Pakistan Monument

Pakistan Monument is another splendid architectural sight nestled in the Shakarparian Hills. The design is unique and is shaped like a petal-closed flower having four large petals and three small ones. Pakistan Monument is a symbol of racial and cultural harmony. The four converging petals represent Pakistan’s major provinces –Balochistan, KPK, Sindh and Punjab, whereas the shorter petals sandwiched between them represent Pakistan’s territories – specifically Azad Kashmir, Gilgit Baltistan, and government-controlled Tribal Areas.

From the terraces of the monument, you can have a bird-eye view of the whole city. The sunset at Pakistan Monument is breathtaking. There is also a museum that showcases the struggle of Pakistan in the form of a timeline. There is also a shop where you can get souvenirs and gifts.

Saidpur Village – Historic tourist place in Islamabad:

Saidpur_Village - Tourist place to visit in Islamabad

As an international tourist in Pakistan, you would definitely like to have a taste of Pakistan’s much-hyped rural lifestyle. The good news is that you don’t necessarily have to travel down to deep Punjab or Sindh as you can experience authentic village lifestyle in the neighborhood of the capital.

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Saidpur Village is a historic village with a masjid, Sikh gurdwara and a Hindu temple. They are hundreds of years old and have been carefully preserved by the locals with the collaboration of local government body CDA. These historical landmarks are an iconic representation of cultural harmony. The village also features a food street and the restaurants offer delicious and mouthwatering Pakistani Cuisines in a traditional environment.

Margallah Hills & Damn-e-Koh – The most beautiful places in Islamabad:

Margalla Hills - beautiful Places to visit in Islamabad

Backpackers tend to be adventurous by disposition and Islamabad is an ideal place for backpackers. The capital city offers a number of exciting trails and tracks for backpackers and trekking enthusiasts. There are 5 hiking trails in Islamabad but the most admired and favorite of the many is the Trail No 5. It is unarguably a beautiful trail that sucks you in completely with its bewilderedness and wildlife.

The trail begins from main Margallah road F-5/2 and following a series of streams and peaks it leads you all the way to Daman-koh, another picturesque sight offering a spectacular view of Margallah Hills. The Mountain has several terraces that also serve as Bar B Q points so if you want to treat yourself after the excursion, bring along some marinated meat and coal and enjoy Bar B Q at the most beautiful sight that you could imagine.

Pir Sohawa/Monal Restaurant:

Monal - Food places in Islamabad

Located 17Kilometers from mainland city, situated on top of Margalla Hills is a beautiful resort and a fine dining restaurant. The restaurant offers high quality desi and oriental cuisines. The food is great but what really make this restaurant special is the magnificent view that makes your dining experience memorable.

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Lok Virsa Museum:

Lok Virsa Museum Islamabad

Museums truly reflect the beauty, truth and depth of a culture. If you are in Islamabad, make a visit to Lok Virsa Museum. It will give a real insight into the past cultures of this region. The museum not only reflects the history but also highlights the present traditions prevalent in the Pakistani society.

Adjacent to museum is an event hall and many interesting events pertaining to culture, history and folk music are going on there; so if you are lucky enough, you might also get to see an exciting event.

Getting Around Islamabad:

Getting around Islamabad is easy. The city is located in North in the northeastern part of Pakistan. You can get there by bus and the city also has a world class newly built international airport. Within the city, you can use Metro to visit the places or you can use ride hailing applications if you like.

The People

The city was planned and developed in the late 60’s. Over the decades, it has thrived and flourished and is now home to almost 1 million people all coming from different parts of the country furnishing Islamabad with the right cultural mix.

So these were our top picks for the places to visit in Islamabad in 2020. Have we missed any do let us know in the comment section and if you liked the content; don’t forget to download Salam planet app so that you don’t miss our daily updates.

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Author Rana Kamran

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