Band e Ameer Bamyan, Hazarajat Afghanistan is the most visited place in Afghanistan, after the Buddhas of Bamyan.
Band-e Amir is a series of six deep blue lakes separated by natural dams made of travertine, a mineral deposit. The lakes are situated in the Hindu Kush Mountains of Central Afghanistan at approximately 3000 meters of elevation, west of the famous Buddhas of Bamiyan.
They were created by the carbon dioxide rich water oozing out of the faults and fractures to deposit calcium carbonate precipitate in the form of travertine walls that today store the water of these lakes. Band-e Amir is one of the few rare natural lakes in the world which are created by travertine systems. In 2009, Band-e Amir became Afghanistan’s first national park.
Band-e Amir is situated at approximately 75 kilometers to the north-west of the ancient city of Bamyan, close to the town of Yakawlang. Together with Bamiyan, they are the heart of Afghanistan’s tourism, attracting thousands of tourists every year and from every corner of the world. The six constituent lakes of Band-e Amir are:
- Band-e Gholaman (slaves)
- Band-e Qambar (Caliph Ali’s slave)
- Band-e Haibat (grandiose)
- Band-e Panir (cheese)
- Band-e Pudina (wild mint)
- Band-e Zulfiqar (the sword of Ali)
Band-e Haibat is the biggest and the deepest of the six, with an average depth of approximately 150 meters, as estimated by the Provincial Reconstruction Team diving team from New Zealand.
The white travertine dams created by fault lines, which are prevalent in the Band-e Amir Valley, form the barriers between the lakes.
Another comparable lake is Band-e Azhdahar (The Dragon), located a few kilometres southeast of the town of Bamyan, which has also been created as a result of carbon dioxide rich water oozing out of the faults underground and depositing calcium carbonate precipitate to form the travertine walls of Band-e Amir.
The Band-e Amir lakes are primarily a late spring and summertime tourism destination, as the high elevation central Hazarajat region of Afghanistan is extremely cold in winter, with temperatures reaching as low as -20C.
The world known 1975 film Dharmatma by Feroz Khan and Hema Malini was filmed in Band E Amir.
One of the Lakes at Band-e Amir Area
Another Lake at Band-e Amir Area
Band e Panir
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