The A4T Guesthouse


Mobile: +93 0778 33 10 11 / 0700 24 75 21

After lengthy research I discover the Afghans for Tomorrow website, an educational organization, dedicated to provide education to Afghan children, but they also run a small guesthouse with five rooms for added income. I immediately realized that I had found my place. They are located in a quiet and peaceful Kabul neighborhood away from the noisy hustle and bustle of downtown Kabul. They will pick you up at the airport and also drop you off. A very nice breakfast and dinner is included, cooked and served up by their in-house cook, who will also cook lunch for you, on request, for a very reasonable amount. Coffee or tea are available around the clock. They also do laundry. My room was spacious and comfortable and although there was a shared bathroom, in this case it did not bother me at all, because it was kept spotlessly clean. For your convenience there is wifi, but also a computer on hand, for those who travel without. The guesthouse has lots of helpful individuals around, each with only one thing in mind, to make you feel safe and comfortable. They will arrange for tours and daytrips with their own associated guides and driver and will give you helpful advice for local travel. All in all, this was much better than I expected and were I to return to Afghanistan and Kabul, there would be no place I'd rather stay than at the A4T guesthouse.

Highly Recommended


When you arrive at the Kabul airport, don't even waste time waiting for someone from your hotel/guesthouse to come and pick you up. Can't happen because outside of military, government, and certain NGOs no Afghans are allowed in the terminal area, nor in the parking lot outside of the gate. You will have to go through three gates until you see a large number of Afghans waiting to find your driver with the card with your name on it. When departing, you will discover that taxis and others can only get you so close. They'll drop you outside by a security station where young boys with wheelbarrows will offer to take your luggage to the airport. They do that for about $1 or the Afghan equivalent. They can use the money, so let them help you and it will make the long walk much easier.

For local transportation they recommended a company that will get you safely and in comfort to your destination in new or nearly new vehicles, around town. It will cost you two dollars more per trip than the questionable and usually delapidated taxis charge, and you are guaranteed to arrive where you plan to go. This is the Afghan Logistics Company and can be reached here: 0733 39 14 62. They will come and pick you up at your location and take you back to the A4T. For example, were you to explore the Chicken Street area, a great meeting spot every driver knows is the M.Shaw Bookstore at the roundabout, just outside of the military barricade and about 50m from the entrance of Chicken St. On top of that, M. Shah's bookstore is packed with English language books and a great place to grab a book, if you need one.



The Mazar Hotel & Guesthouse


Mobile: 0700 56 18 99 / 0774 71 90 07


As I always say, you travel by the kindness of strangers. When I arrived at the Mazar-e-Sharif airport, I had no idea that it would be in tents and on dirt paths. No lobby and no phones or information. Luck had it that a lady from a German NGO had friends in high places. She knew some Kazakh embassy personnel that happened to be at the airport picking up one of their guys and they were more than happy to help me out. The driver had some idea of where the guesthouse I had only heard of, was, and dropped me off outside. It is a large establishment with a bunch of friendly young people working there. The manager speaks excellent English, and was very helpful with anything I might need. They give you water each day and a breakfast. While I did not see any women lodging there, I, for one felt quite comfortable there. Everything in the room worked. The room had a balcony, albeit behind glass. The large breakfast room was used almost daily for business luncheons. Military personnel guard the building and are also lodging in an attached building, making me feel pretty safe. They do laundry and there is a restaurant at street level and they do deliver to the room. A bread bakery and little convenience shop are across the street. The location is quite good. You are just about an easy 10 minute walk from the Shrine, and a sizable and intersting shopping area. There is also a branch of the Afghan International Bank just down the street, if, in the absence of ATMs, you find youself in need of cash. The guesthouse does arrange for tours/daytrips. Were I to return I would have no qualms at all staying here again.

Definitely Recommended


When you arrive at the Mazar-e-Sharif airport, call the driver, Zahman, a friend of the hotel manager and very nice family man. He will get you and take you to the hotel (or wherever you want to go). If you call when you arrive, since you have a fair walk to the gate of the airport and taxis are not permitted to come in, you might find the young boys with wheelbarrows, that will offer to take your luggage to the taxi areat. They do that for about $1 or the Afghan equivalent. They can use the money, so let them help you and it will make the long walk much easier.

Zahman, btw, will also take you on daytrips to the local sights for a reasonable amount. He does not speak much English, but for a daytrip the Mazar Guesthouse manager might provide a friend as interpreter. Other than that, this is a walking town and easy to negotiate. The airport, however, is a long way outside of town.

Zahman's Mobile: 0798 01 43 22 - you can call him anytime to take you wherever you might want to go.



The Hotel Nazary


Tel: +93 -(0)799 351899, +93-(0) 777 351899

+93 -(040)230845 , +93 (040) 230846

Probably the tallest hotel in town and from what I had read, worth the money to stay there. I share that sentiment. It is superbly located at a central intersection from which a short, five minute walk will take you to Old Town and the Friday Mosque and a slightly longer walk, to the other sights. They are all visible from the roof of the hotel. The center of Herat is definitely a place for walking. The hotel is professionally run and well guarded and surrounded by a security wall. But as always, it is the people that make or break a place, and here you are in the best of hands. They take the utmost care of you and will help you any way possible. They have maps and also two computers in the lobby and are ready to provide you with any information you might need to fully enjoy what Herat has to offer. The rooms are clean, spaceous, and fully equipped. There is a large and excellent restaurant on the lobby lobby where a delicious, included, breakfast buffet is set up every day. They also set up a dinner buffet for a fee. One can indeed find cheaper accommodations in Herat, but for a short stay, this is the place I will want to return to. For your peace of mind, they will pick you up at the airport and drop you off there as well.

Highly Recommended

Make sure that you call ahead, since this hotel is full, much of the time.



When you arrive at the Herat airport, walk away from the arrival area and go to the main-gate, that's where they driver from the Nazary Hotel will pick you up. Taxis and private vehicles are not permitted on the airport grounds. If you have a lot of luggage to carry, you might find the young boys with wheelbarrows, that will offer to take your luggage to the taxi area. They do that for about $1 or the Afghan equivalent. The same is true when you depart. They can use the money, so let them help you and it will make the long walk much easier.

Herat is is a walking town and easy to negotiate. The airport, however, is a long way outside of town. A tip for the hotel driver might not be out of order, that is, if they pick you up and drop you off for free. I seem to remember that they did.

One more thing, should you run out of cash and find yourself in need of an ATM that accepts all sorts of financial networks, there is one nearby. As you exit the hotel, turn right then immediately right at the first street corner. Down a very short distance you will see a supermarket on your side of the street. Inside there is an ATM from the Afghan International Bank where you can withdraw the needed cash, as well as shop for some things that you might need.










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