PHOTOS: Searching for Afghanistan's Third Giant Buddha

PHOTOS: Searching for Afghanistan's Third Giant Buddha
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The Silk Road traversed central Afghanistan and brought cultural, artistic, and religious influences to the region from ancient Greece, China, Persia, and India. More recently constructed mud fortresses, like the one pictured here, also dot the Bamiyan landscape.

Nearby is Afghanistan's Band-i-Amir national park, the country's first. Could Afghan tourism flourish someday? "While the political climate is discouraging now, the results of my excavations are already promising for when tourism will restart," Tarzi said in spring 2009.
—Photograph courtesy Zemaryalai Tarzi
 
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