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Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Today’s Rawalpindi

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Munaza Kazmi

Dining is part and parcel of the travel experience, with many people now drawn towards destinations based on their food culture and cuisine.

Pakistan, where food is the culture. Pakistanis are passionate about their cuisine, which is full of flavor and bursting with color. And they love to eat and love to discover. So today I set up to have another experience; to discover something new to my eyes also tasty to eat.

The sun was blazing when I was travelling on the road of Rawalpindi, with horns of rikshaws, and motorcycles in the background.

Rawalpindi, the 4th largest city of Pakistan, was the capital of Pakistan from 1959 to 1969. The city lies on the Potwar Plateau 9 miles southwest of Islamabad, the national capital.

The city enjoys a rich history and culture. Rawalpindi meaning “Village of Rawals” occupies the site of an old village inhabited by the Rawals, a group of yogis. While moving you can find several heritage ruins, that I wonder why not given consideration for the preservation. The city is moving fast while ignoring some of the incomparable architectural ruin. Certain ruins are identified with the ancient city Gajipur, or Gajnipur, the capital of the Bhatti tribe before the Common Era. Destroyed during the Mongol invasion dating back to 14th century CE, the town was restored by the Gakhar chief Jhanda Khan, who gave it its present name. However, it grew rapidly in importance when Milka Singh, a Sikh adventurer, occupied it in 1765 and invited settlers from the Jehlum and Shahpur areas to settle there. It was annexed by the British in 1849.

In ancient times the locality formed part of Ghandhara and was included in the Achaemenid Persian empire. However, if you are feeling a little more excited about I would suggest you gear up a little more and visit the marvelous ruins located near Shahderi, northwest of Rawalpindi and Mankial, south of Rawalpindi, where a Buddhist stupa site dating back to 3rd century BCE would end up a memory for life.

Beside the history and architect Rawalpindi is an important administrative, commercial, and industrial center. Its industries include locomotive works, gasworks, an oil refinery, sawmills, an iron foundry, a brewery, and cotton, hosiery, and textile mills; it also produces shoes, leather goods, pottery, newsprint, and tents.

Also, there comes a big, really big bazar which sells from a toffy to maybe a Mercedes…The market is famous for handicraft, traditional clothing, beautiful and colorful jewelry designs sand yes, the food.

After a tiring journey I arrived at Pearl-Continental hotel. A huge white building, where you can have all the modern-day luxuries with taste and smell of good food. The reason of being ravenous, I headed straight to Marco Polo Restaurant which offers exciting food all day, a spacious beautiful setting with the view of deep blue swing pool, that’s what you would really love to.

Well after satisfying the hunger, a brief tour into the hotel is worthy indeed, a green lawn with flowery alleys, on top the view of peacocks dancing around make the setting utterly royal.

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