Top 10 Places to visit in Islamabad

Islamabad is the capital city of Pakistan and is administered by the Pakistani federal government as part of the Islamabad Capital Territory. It is the ninth-largest city in Pakistan. Built as a planned city in the 1960s, it replaced Rawalpindi as Pakistan’s capital. Islamabad is noted for its high standards of living, safety, and abundant greenery. The master plan for the city was designed by Greek architect Constantinos Apostolou Doxiadis. It is home to several landmarks, with the most notable one being the Faisal Mosque, the largest mosque in South Asia and the fifth-largest in the world. Other landmarks include the Pakistan National Monument and others. Islamabad is the second most beautiful capital city in the world.

1. Faisal Mosque

white and brown concrete building

The Faisal Mosque is the national mosque of Pakistan, located in the capital of Islamabad. It is the sixth-largest mosque in the world and the largest in South Asia, located on the foothills of Margalla Hills in Pakistan’s capital city of Islamabad. The mosque features a contemporary design consisting of eight sides of the concrete shell and is inspired by the design of a typical Bedouin tent. A major tourist attraction in Pakistan, the mosque is a contemporary and influential piece of Islamic architecture. Construction of the mosque began in 1976 after a $28 million grant from Saudi King Faisal, whose name the mosque bears. Faisal Mosque was the largest mosque in the world from 1986 until 1993 when it was overtaken by the mosques in Saudi Arabia. Faisal Mosque is now the sixth largest mosque in the world in terms of capacity.

2. Daman-e-Koh

Daman-e-Koh - Business Recorder

Daman-e-Koh is a viewing point and hilltop garden north of Islamabad and is located in the middle of the Margalla Hills. Its name is a conjunction of two Persian words, which together mean foothills. It is about 2400 ft from sea level and almost 500 ft from the city of Islamabad. It is a popular destination for the residents as well as visitors to the capital. Daman-e-Koh is a midpoint on the road to Pir Sohawa which is located at the top of Margalla Hills. There is a plan to construct a chair lift from Daman-e-Koh to Pir Sohawa. The government is also planning to re-construct this spot and give it a World-Class Look. The Southern spot is the main attraction as it provides a panoramic view of Islamabad. The visitors experience a unique view of Faisal Mosque, the Seventh Avenue (Islamabad), and Rawal Lake.

3. Pakistan Monument Museum

Pakistan Monument, Islamabad - Ittehad

The Pakistan Monument is a national monument and heritage museum located in the western Shakarparian Hills in Islamabad, Pakistan. The monument was constructed to symbolize the unity of the Pakistani people. It is dedicated to the people of Pakistan who sacrificed their “today” for a better “tomorrow”. Its elevation makes the monument visible from across the Islamabad-Rawalpindi metropolitan area and is a popular tourist destination. Covering a total area of 2.8 hectares (6.9 acres), the design of the monument is rooted in the rich Mughal architecture of the Subcontinent. Its petal-shaped structure is derived from the traditional muqarnas of Mughal architecture. Rather than symbolizing the four provinces (as is mistakenly observed), it represents the four different cultures of the people of Pakistan. The four large petals represent each of the four cultures, the Punjabi, the Balochi, the Sindhi, and the Pakhtun. The three smaller petals represent the minorities, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan. These petals also represent the unity of pakistan.

4. Saidpur Village

Saidpur is a village located in a ravine in Pakistan in the Margalla Hills, near the Daman-e-Koh overlook, in the Islamabad Capital Territory. It is a Mughal Era village hosting a wide spectrum of religious and cultural heritage and serves as a tourist spot for locals as well as foreigners. The village also has an animal market, which provides a source of income for its dwellers. Shops selling pottery items and handicrafts are also present there. A 2015 estimate puts the village’s population at between 12,000 and 15,000.

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5. Centaurus Mall

Islamabad's enormous new Shopping mall Centaurus Mall opens its doors - Islamabad Scene

The Centaurus is a mixed-use real estate development in the city of Islamabad, Pakistan. Designed by British architectural firm WS Atkins, it consists of a four-story shopping mall, a five-star hotel, two residential towers, and a corporate tower with three skyscrapers, containing corporate offices, residential apartments, and a hotel. The Centaurus Mall comprises 250 shops. The Centaurus Mall also includes entertainment in the form of a play area for children, known as “Fun City”, and a movie theatre known as “The Centaurus Cineplex”.  Both the play area and the cinema are located on the fourth floor of the mall. The food court is located on the fourth floor of the mall and comprises several local as well as international fast food chains. International coffee shops are also located throughout the mall.

6. Lok Virsa Museum

Lok Virsa Islamabad Museum - Pakistan Traveler

Heritage Museum, also known as Lok Virsa Museum is a museum administered and managed by Lok Virsa – National Institute of Folk & Traditional Heritage. It is a museum of history and culture in Islamabad, Pakistan, located on the Shakarparian Hills showcasing the living cultures of Pakistan. The museum opened in 1974 and became an autonomous institute in 2002 following the Lok Virsa Legal Status Ordinance, 2002. The museum consists of several buildings as well as an outdoor museum that can accommodate up to 3000 visitors.

7. Lake View Park

Lake View Park - Crayon

Lake View Park (also known as Rawal Lake View Point or Rawal Lake Promenade) is a wildlife park, amusement park, and adventure park located near Village Malpur Rawal Lake, on Murree Road in Islamabad, Capital Territory, Pakistan. It runs under the administration of the Capital Development Authority. This park also contains a bird aviary which is the largest in Pakistan. The park provides a beautiful view of Rawal Lake. The park provides a boating facility on Rawal Lake.

8. Shahdara Valley

Shahdara Valley in Islamabad: Location, Restaurants & More | Zameen Blog

Shahdara Valley is situated in the suburbs of Margalla Hills in Islamabad, Pakistan. It is located 7 km from Barakhao, 10 km away from Aiwan-e-Sadr, and 12 km from Serena Chowk. Shahdara Valley is one of the best tourist destinations in Islamabad. Shahdara Valley is famous for its lush green sceneries and flowing stream from Margalla hills. People from all over the county visit during summer. In summer weather keeps cool and fresh as compared to the city and its adjacent areas. the ambiance of the valley is noiseless, calm, and attractive. Local citizens visit every evening with their friends and family.

9. Giga Mall

The Giga Mall, is the largest mall in Islamabad. It was launched on 22 March 2016 and is wholly owned by Giga Group, constructed on a total area of 4 acres. Giga Group was founded by Haji Abdul Rahim Giga Pardesi (Tamgha-e-Imtiaz) in 1956 in the United Arab Emirates. His grand Son, Mr. Najeeb Amin Giga Pardesi is Giga Mall’s owner. Giga Mall Islamabad is an award-winning, iconic, premier shopping destination fulfilling all your explicit and customized indulgences. It offers an exceptional retail mix combined with world-class entertainment and leisure attractions. Visit Giga Mall Islamabad for a fun shopping trip with family or watch movies at Giga Mall Cinemax and explore over 200+ national and international brands. Since opening its doors in 2016, Giga Mall Islamabad has revolutionized the shopping experience of millions of visitors a year. A leader in entertainment, retail, and attractions, Giga Mall is one of the top tourist destinations across the country and is known around the world.

10. Shah Allah dita Caves

Shah Allah Ditta Caves, Islamabad, Pakistan - How 2 Have Fun

Shah Allah Ditta is a centuries-old village and a union council located at the foothills of the Margalla Hills in the Islamabad Capital Territory. The village is named after a Mughal period Dervish. The village is believed to be more than seven hundred years old and was used as route from Kabul to the Gandharan city of Taxila by Alexander the Great and Sher Shah Suri while Mughal rulers and other emperors often passed through while traveling from Afghanistan to the Hindustan. Shah Allah Ditta caves are located on the route leading towards Khanpur. These caves are next to the shrine and tomb of Shah Allah Ditta. The road next to the caves that lead to the main top of the mountain, Shah Allah Ditta road, is said to be built on the exact path followed by Pashtun emperor Sher Shah Suri during his visit.

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