sind:

Bhukkur Island:

Of the three islands on the river Indus, between the twin towns, Bhukkur is the largest, covering an area of 240,000 sq. meters. The island has two forts. One's an old ruin at the water's edge from where the condemned were cast into the river and the other at the northern end that is the main fort, currently, used by the army. Frequent mention has been made of Bhukkur in the history of Sindh, emphasizing its strategic location, as command of the island was crucial for further military intrusions into upper Sindh. The island can be reached by car either from Sukkur or Rohri, via motor able bridges.

 

Gorakh

Gorakh, described by some as nature's best preserved rock garden, is a high peak (157 m) in the Kirthar range of mountains about 100 km from Dadu. Plans to develop it as the first hill station of Sindh, have been on the anvil and, as a first step, an all weather road is under construction. On way to the top, there are clumps of almonds, pistachios and wild olives as well as aromatic herbs and weeds. The view from the top affords magnificent vistas of the surrounding hills. The peak has a spring in Gaji Bunjo, about a kilometer away from the summit. Gorakh is cool during the day and cold at night. A trip to Gorakh is captivating for trekkers and the local district administration can make arrangements for such tourists in advance.

 

Hyderabad, once the capital of Sindh and now the third largest city of Pakistan, is one of the oldest cities of South Asia. Its history dates back to pre-Islamic times, when Ganjo Takan (Barren Hill), a nearby hill-tract, was used as a place of worship. The city traces its early history to Neroon, a Hindu ruler of the area from whom the city derived its previous name, "Neroon Kot" (Fort of Neroon). The next important phase of its history began when the Indus changed its course from Khudabad, the then capital of Sindh, to its present position. As a result, the Kalhora rulers (1700-1782) decided to shift the capital to the present location, then a small settlement on the left bank of the Indus. The construction of a fort was then also undertaken which dominated the skyline of old city, but of which little is intact.

The monuments of Kalhora and Talpur rulers and the Bazaars of the city are worth visiting. Stretching from Hyderabad Fort to the Market Tower is Shahi Bazaar, where well-stocked shops are housed on both sides of a winding street and alongside a maze of tiny lanes that run off it. Good buys are calico, embroidery bracelets, glass bangles, lacquered wood furniture, handloom cloth, "sousi" and "ajrak", "rilli", block printed colourful "chadars" (shawls), shoes and glazed tiles. Hyderabad is connected with the main cities of the country by road, rail and air.

 

 

Kirthar National Park:

Kirthar National Park (Dadu District) is a game reserve for wildlife. It is one of the four parks in Pakistan, which are included in the United Nation's list of national parks. The 3,000 sq. km park is northeast of Karachi, and is four hours drive from the city. It is the habitat of rare species that include Sindh Ibex, Chinkara, Gazelles, Leopards, wild sheep and other animals. The best period to visit is from October to February. However, it turns lush green in August during the monsoons. The Sindh Wildlife Management Board has its office on Stratchen Road Karachi, from where booking can be made for the rest house in the Park area.

 

Manchar Lake:

Located west of Sehawan Sharif, Manchar is said to be the largest natural lake in Asia, covering an area of 253 sq. km and maximum 5 meters deep. It is best visited in winter when temperature is comparatively moderate and migratory birds flock to its vast expanse of water and marshlands. The fisher folk living here belong to the aboriginal Mohanna tribe (locally known as Mirbhars meaning Sealords) and are believed to be descendents of the Scythian Meds of Moenjodaro. They live as "boat-people" in their traditional high-powered wooden boats. The lake can be reached by road from Sehwan Sharif.

 

Mirpurkhas:

Mirpurkhas is the South eastern city of Pakistan and Sindh Province. Its fertile and very popular for it mangoes. The city is built on or may be just beside an old Buddhist metropolis of 4th century AD. There are ruminants of the Stupa near the city known as "Kahoo o Daro", but slowly it is being turned into a flat land with the growth of population around it.

Mirpurkhas is only 70 Kilometers from Hyderabad and has a quaint little bazaar that sells traditional garments and modern crockery etc.
The city also has a Satellite town which is considered a posh area. The city is considerably clean and has many places to hang around like Parks museum Tea shops and a very famous Fruit research Institute & Farm. Most people speak Sindhi but there is a substantial number of Urdu Speaking New Shindhi or the immigrants from India, who came in 1947. There are about 60% Muslims and 40% Hindus in the city & Surroundings.

Hotels:
There no high standard or even tourist standard hotels in the city but there are 2 small hotels in the main bazaar and numerous Musafir khanas where one can rent a cot (Bed).

Full Day Tour Of Mirpurkhas & Umerkot:
This is little hop in the Thar Desert. You drive early in the morning to Mirpurkhas via a very green & fertile land. At Mirpurkhas you visit the Locomotive Shed where Old steam engines are repaired and used for Mirpurkhas - Chor Service. We then drive via small villages to Umerkot (80 Kms. ) At Umerkot you will visit the famous Umerkot fort the Museum and a typical Desert bazaar You will see several different faces and typical colorful dresses of men & women in the bazaar. Lunch at a local restaurant. Late Afternoon return to Hyderabad.

 

Moenjodaro:

On the west bank of the Indus, 580 km Karachi, lies Moenjodaro (Mound of the Dead), an archaeological site which has been rated amongst the most spectacular of the world's ancient cities. Considered one of the earliest and most developed of urban civilizations, Moenjodaro flourished from the third to the middle of the second millennium B.C.
When it vanished leaving only traces of its culture. Moenjodaro alongwith Harappa (in the Punjab), some 1280 km away – formed part of the Indus valley civilization and its is now generally believed that these were the cities, referred to in the Rigveda that were destroyed by the Aryan invaders.

The urban planning at Moenjodaro was pragmatic and at a high level. Its main thoroughfares were some 91 m wide and were crossed by straight streets that formed blocks 364 m in length and 182/273 m in width. The city's mud-brick walls and baked brick houses were designed to ensure the safety of its occupants so that in times of earthquakes the structures collapse outwards. It had an elaborate covered drainage system, soak pits for disposal bins, a state granary, a large and imposing building that could have been a palace and a citadel mound with solid burnt-brick towers on its margin. Judging from the remains, the Great Hall was probably the most striking of its structures, comprising an open quadrangle with verandahs of four sides' galleries and rooms at the back, a number of halls, and a large bathing pool perhaps used for religious or ceremonial bathing. Close to the archaeological site is the Moenjodaro Museum that houses finds from the excavations. These include, amongst other things, engraved seals, ornaments, utensils, pottery weapons, figurines and toys.

Visitors wishing to stay overnight can put up at the archaeological department's rest house or the newly built PTDC Motel, which also has a restaurant. Room charges are very reasonable. Nearby Sukkur and Moenjodaro, can be reached by air, rail and road from Karachi.

 


Ranikot Fort

Evidently, the largest fort in the world, Rani Kot is an enigma because of unavailability of its record in history and its conceivable purpose in the wilderness of the forts' massive 10 meter high walls of dressed sandstone are 29 km around. Seen from a distance, portions of its ramparts resemble the Great Wall of China, as they dip and turn to the contours of the hills. The terrain inside the Fort is partly cultivated and green with vegetation, being watered by nearby Rani River that runs through the fort and a perennial spring within it. Water from both sources has formed pools, teeming with fish. Close to the Fort, fossils of a petrified forest can be found. The fort lies roughly 90 km north of Hyderabad. The route is through Kotri and the town of Sann, from where the remaining 21 km distance is a sandy track across rugged scrubland, best covered by jeep or on camelback, Camels can be hired from Sann.

 

Rohri

This old town is on the other side of the Indus apposite Sukkur. The ancient city of Aror is few kilometers to the east. Its ruins lay on the edges of a low limestone range. Of its historic past, not much remains. Places to visit at Rohri are the shrine of War Mubarak (1545) built by Mir Muhammad Kalhora. A gold and jewel encrusted casket enshrines the hair of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H). It is displayed to the faithful for general viewing annually on the 2nd of March. On the outskirts of Rohri, is the SATYOON-JO-ASTAN, the tomb of the Seven Virgin Sisters. One legend has it, that the sisters in securing their chastity, were swallowed up by the earth in a minor earthquake. Close to the War Mubarak, is the Jamia (Akbari) Mosque *1584), built by an officer of Emperor Akbar. Having been frequently damaged and undergone repeated repairs, little of the original wall-tiles remain.


 

Sukkur

This is one of the most important towns in upper Sindh. More than 2,000 years ago, the town was at Aror, nine km east of the present site. It was relocated in 962 A.D. when owning to an earthquake; the Indus diverted its course to its present channel. By 13th century, the twin cities of Sukkur and Rohri were busting river ports that reached their zenith in 17th century.

Worth visiting here is the Minaret of Masum Shah. Mir Muhammad Masum built this lighthouse shaped brick minaret, a local soldiers appointed Nawab of Sukkur by the Mughal Emperor, Akbar the Great. The tower is slightly tilted and is 25.5 m in height and 25.5 m in circumference (at its base) with an equivalent number of steps leading up to its top. Masum Shah, along with other family members, is buried in the pavilion near the minaret. Nearby is the Faiz Mahai, an octagonal brick dome structure with arched windows and stone-carved balconies. Another tomb of interest is that of Shah Khair-ur-Din Jilani, a saint and religious scholar.

Thatta:

98-km to East of Karachi, on the National Highway, lays the ancient town of Thatta, once called the EI Darodo of the East. This busy river port of yore – before the Indus moved off to the East is now famous for some of the most picturesque and interesting specimen of Muslim architecture. Although the vestiges of past glories are of comparatively recent origin, dating back to 16th and 17th centuries, the history of Thatta goes back some two thousand years.

The palaces and pleasure houses have become one with dust but many of the tombs, mausoleums and mosques remain, some of them in a fairly good state of preservation. Prominent among the town's present day brick and adobe structures are the wind catchers that top them – a cooling device that serves well during the long blistering summers. Amidst Thatta's narrow alleys and lanes, are quaint bazaars that offer hand blocked and hand dyed fabrics, embroidery work and bead necklaces.
Shah Jehani Mosque:

Shah Jehani mosque situated on Thatta's outskirts, is representative of Muslim architecture. It was built in 1647 A.D. by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jehan, and is said to have the most elaborated display of blue and white tile work in the sub-continent. Its 93 domes, designed for its acoustical carry the voice of the Imam to all parts of the mosque.
Keenjhar Lake:

This beautiful man-made lake is a combination of two natural lakes called Sunheri and Keenjhar. The place has been developed into a resort with boating and fishing facilities. Accommodation is available at the lakeside motel. It is two hours drive and 115 km away from Karachi.

 

Umerkot----Fact Sheet

How to Get There?
The nearest you can get to Umerkot by air is from Hyderabad. PIA has a few weekly flights to Hyderabad from Karachi. Better that you drop in Karachi and get a bus and reach Umerkot. There are excellent buses that ply on this route. And if you want to enjoy more then get to Mirpurkhas from Karachi. Then take a train (an old British engine of 19th century) that runs every Monday morning and takes so many hours to reach that you will feel the heat. Check the exact timings from Mirpurkhas railway station.
What to See?
The Fort of Umerkot is its prime attraction. And, there is a long history attached to it.
Other sites:
1) Syed Mazar (Tomb of a Muslim saint) outside Umerkot
2) Shiv Mandir (Hindu temple) near Syed Mazar
3) Akbar's Quba
4) Thar bazaar
5) There are four other Temples inside the city.
6) Momal Rana
When to Visit?
The best time is the time of rain. Usually, they appear sometime between June and August. Everyone is happy and there are tourists around. And there are lots of snakes out from their long hibernation. So, be careful.
What to eat?
1) Krishan's Sweet (drink milk from here as well)
2) Ask for the best samosa wala
3) Try daal and vegetables from any hotel along Main bazaar of Umerkot.
How to Travel Around?
There are many taxis to take you around. Being a small town, you don't need one. But, you will need a rickshaw to take you to Momal Rana. And, finally the specialty of Thar is there to see and sit: Keckras. The old army jeeps turned into buses and everything else.
Where to Stay?
There is one hotel in Umerkot by the name of Karoonjhar Hotel.

Places Of Interest:

Wazir Mansion:
Foremost among Karachi's historic buildings, is the birthplace of Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah. The house is a balconied, three-storied structure on Newneham Road, located in Kharadar, one of the oldest residential areas of the city. The house has been declared a protected national monument.

Quaid-E-Azam's Mausoleum:
This white marble Mausoleum with its curved Moorish Arches and copper grills rests on an elevated 54 Sq. meters platform. The cool inner sanctum reflected the green of a four tiered crystal chandelier gifted by the Peoples Republic of China. The memorial slab framed with silver railings draws people from far and wide who come to pay their respects to the father of the Nation and to watch the impressive change of guard ceremony that takes place everyday. Today, the Quaid-e-Azam's Mausoleum is a prominent and impressive landmark of Karachi. Nearby are the graves of the "Quaid-e-Millat", Liaquat Ali Khan, the first Prime Minister of Pakistan and the Qauid's sister Mohtarma Fatima Jinnah.

Liaquat Hall/Bagh-E-Jinnah:
Liaquat Hall is surrounded by the Bagh-e-Jinnah (Jinnah Garden). Originally called Frere Hall, it was once used as Town Hall where, during colonial days, concerts and social events were held regularly. This two storey Venetian Gothic building now houses the Liaquat Municipal Library on the ground floor and an art galley on the first floor. Named after one of Pakistan's renowned artists, Sadquain, the gallery displays a permanent collection of the artist's work. Sadquain spent last year of his life, painting a huge mural on the ceiling of the gallery bur, sadly, did not live to complete it.

National Museum Of Pakistan/Burns Garden:
This museum, on Dr. Ziauddin Ahmed Road, contains an important collection of items relating to Pakistan's ancient heritage. Well-arranged galleries display Indus Civilization artifacts, Gandhara sculptures, Islamic art, miniature paintings, ancient coins and manuscripts documenting Pakistan's political history. There is also an interesting ethnological gallery. The construction work was completed in 1960's.

Empress Market:
Built by the British to commemorate the silver Jubilee of Queen Victoria's reign, this historic market is designed in the domestic Gothic style. From its center rises a tall clock tower. The market contains shops that sell meat, fish, poultry, vegetables and other groceries. The foundation stone was laid by Sir James Fergusson, Governor of Bombay on 10-11-1884. The market was inaugurated by Mr. Prichard, the then Commissioner of Sindh on 21-3-1889.

Masjid-E-Tooba:
Situated in the Defence Housing Authority, Masjid-e-Tooba is a modern architectural marvel. It is said to be the largest single dome mosque. The dome covers central prayer hall with a capacity to accommodate congregation of 5,000 people. The mosque's single minaret stands 70 meters high.

Mereweather Tower:
Positioned as the landmark of Karachi's main business center, Mereweather Tower is another historical monument of Karachi. It stands 35 meters high and carries a four- faced clock. The Tower construction work was completed and opened for the public by Sir Evans James in 1892. The Tower was constructed in the memory of Sir William L. Mereweather who was the Commissioner of the Sindh.

Sindh High Court:
Built in the Renaissance style, this magnificent sandstone building is a combination of local and Roman styles of architecture. It is embellished with cupolas, balconies and tall Roman style columns.

Clifton Beach And Funland:
Close to the popular seaside of the city, is Clifton Beach, where Karachiites flock to on weekends and holidays. Scattered along the shore are numerous stalls selling handicrafts made from seashells. Clifton has an amusement park with a bowling alley, and an aquarium.