Comfortable walking shoes are not easy to find.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: You won't find Charmin toilet papers in Afghanistan. In Kabul you will find ladies napkins but will find it very difficult to find in the regions. Bring as many panties and pantyliners as they are not sold like in other countries.
Many medicines are sold even if they're over their expiry date. Bring tablets for stomachache, dissipation, headache, allergies and fever.
can be pretty cold in the winter and spring, so don't forget your sleeping bag.
ear plugs ueseful for serails.
no need water purifier: you find villages with tea every hour of walking.
you find an excellent 1977 "historical guide to afghanistan" by Dupree (american archeologist) in Kabul's chicken street (many bookshops in the area), priced 15 dollars, beat down to 8.
it's wise to have bought a detailed map outside the country (1:1000,000 at the least).
you can buy Dari phrase books in Kabul, or download the small one on http://www.crelearning.com/lang.htm
Luggage and bags:
If you're travelling on your own and on public transport, keep your bags to a minimum -- airline carry-on size and no more. This will of course make your life easier as it does everywhere else in the world but it also makes you stick out less. There's no better way to spot a foreigner than if they have a 70 liter pack on their back!
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: A sleeping bag is a must for fall winter and spring. In summer a clean sheet would be a good thing to take along given the dodgy places to stay in Afghanistan.
Miscellaneous: Men might want to consider getting an Shalwar-Khamiz, the traditional loose clothing found in most of Afghanistan and Pakistan. They're cheap, easy to clean and keep you cool in the heat. Best of all, they help you blend in a little!
Luggage and bags: Night time can be long and boring, so bring some books, you can buy or exchange some English books in Kabul. A torch (flashlight) can be very useful as power cut is just too frequent. Kabul has a very comprehensive stock of imported goods in Flower Street in Kabul, you can even buy a Dell Computer there! Hot drinking water is always available (free or cheap) in the restaurants but probably not in the cheap hotels, if you use hot water to make your tea or brush your teeth, you may want a small thermo flask. If you plan to stay in the communal hall in restaurants you may want a sleeping bag too, blanket is provided but just not enough.
Luggage and bags:
Afghanistan is a very dusty place, take some plastic bag to protect your backpack.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Afghanistan is covered with mountains; take some warm clothes.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: In the countryside you risk not to find mineral water. A water filter may be useful.
Miscellaneous: The LonelyPlanet Farsi English phrasebook will help considerably. A Dari phrasebook is downloadable for free from this site: http://www.bu.edu/familymed/distance/cre/index.htm
Luggage and bags:
The Sturdiest bag you can find... oh and be prepared to have it searched, but also remember the size depends on how you are travelling. If you go overland you will have no weight limit, however if you fly in with an aid agency or the UN you will only be allowed a maximum of 20kilos... not very much if you ask me!!
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Women!! Beware, you must comply with local regulations, which right now includes a large headscarf or chador (available to buy in Pakistan) and long sleeved dresses and baggy pants, or local pakistani shalwar kameeze.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: If you need it take it with you, you can stock up on most medical supplies in Pakistan before entering Afghanistan
Photo Equipment: Take it at your own risk! Right now the smaller the better and hide it somewhere on your person or at the bottom of a bag... photography of any kind is illegal in Afghanistan and at the very least they will confiscate your camera if they find it!
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: no beaches - landlocked and even if there were you would have to wear the same clothes and head covering as normal! Very little camping due to 20 years of war andland mines everywhere
Miscellaneous: A personal water filter is always a good idea, even if you are staying with friends or moving long term, you will need to ensure that your water is safe, I caught giardia twice while i was there and i was staying with a family.
Miscellaneous: First published in the late seventies, Nancy Hatch Dupree's "Historical Guide to Afghanistan" is still available in the bookstores of Chicken Street.
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