Photo Essay: Tajikistan Landscapes Through the Lens of Muslim Harji
A map of Tajikistan with surrounding countries. Among the places Muslim Harji visited with his wife, Nevin, during his adventurous and heart warming trip to Tajikistan were Dushanbe, Tajikistan’s capital, and the autonomous region of Gorno-Badakhshan which is inhabited by Ismailis in very large numbers. Image: United Nations, with Dushanbe and Badakhshan highlighted by Simergphotos.
Editor’s note: Muslim Harji’s series on Central Asia continues with these picturesque photos of Tajikistan’s landscapes captured through his lens. Muslim’s previous pieces in the series can be seen by clicking on the following links:
- Dushanbe’s Ismaili Centre Through the Lens of Muslim Harji
- Prayer Houses of Badakhshan, Tajikistan, Through the Lens of Muslim Harji
- An Anthology of the Silk Road Through the Lens of Muslim Harji and Smithsonian’s Folklife Festival
- An Ismaili Wedding in the Pamirs Through My Lens by Muslim Harji
- The Ismailis of Badakhshan Through My Lens by Muslim Harji
Together with the earlier pieces, this new piece shows the harmony between man and nature in one of the remotest regions on this planet.
THE LANDSCAPES OF TAJIKISTAN
Muslim Harji, left, breaking bread with the brothers and sisters in Raushan Valley. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
BY MUSLIM HARJI
Our visit to the Pamir Mountains of Tajikistan introduced us to some the most spectacular scenery we’ve taken in on our journey thus far. Other mountainous areas, hyped in guidebooks and on travel websites, have only paled in comparison. The Pamir region not only stands out for the severity and beauty of its landscape, but it shines most of all for the colorful, hospitable and fascinating Pamiri people who live there. Please see my earlier posts on the region.
Pamir Mountain range through the cockpit of the plane. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
Narrow and winding roads from Khorogh to Raushan in Gorno Badakhshan. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~Sunset in Langar. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
Treacherous road leading in to Khorogh. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
His Highness the Aga Khan. Photo: The Ismaili
The Qur’an refers very often to nature as a reflection of Allah’s power of creation, and it says, look at the mountains, the rivers, the trees, the flowers, as evidence of Allah’s love for the people whom He has created. Today, I look at the environment and I say to you, I believe Allah is smiling upon you, and may His smile always be upon you. Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, Badakhshan, May 27, 1995.
Inscribed permanently on a mountain outside of Khorogh is this welcome and congratulatory message for Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, on the occasion of the 49th Ismaili Imam’s Golden Jubilee celebrated from July 11, 2007 until December 13, 2008. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~A close up of the welcome message. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
Looking out of the stage….the 1995 venue where Mawlana Hazar Imam gave a mulaqat to the Langar jamat in the Wakhan Corridor of Badakhshan. The mountains in the background are in Afghanistan. Badhakshan is a common region to both Tajikistan and Afghanistan. The two countries are separated by the Panj River. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~On flight from Khorogh to Dushanbe, this landscape photo is captured through the cabin window. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~A young Ismaili herder tending to village cattle after school, near the village of Langar. Photo: Muslim Harji.
~~~Enroute…from Khorogh to Raushan. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~Traffic jam in the Valley. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~Nevin Harji, right, meeting Canadian cyclists while trekking the Wakhan Valley. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~Facing Afghanistan. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~Incredible beauty, where eagles fly over the mountains. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~Ismaili schoolgirls on lunch break amidst a fantastic setting near Kalai Khum in the Wakhan Corridor of Badakhshan. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~Panj Daria…River dividing Tajikistan and Afghanistan. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~Sunset in Namadgut , a small village north of Iskashim, on the Tajik Side. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~Panj Daria…Landscape between Iskashim and Langar. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
~~~The most beautiful landscape is seeing the happy faces of these lovely children. They were photographed in Namadghut in Badakhshan. Photo: Muslim Harji. Copyright.
Date posted: Friday, January 8, 2016.
Photos: Copyright © Muslim Harji. 2016.
Muslim Harji has set up webpages of his numerous journeys around the world. Some of them are:
- Silk Roads at https://harji.exposure.co/silk-road-through-my-lens
- Colours of India at https://harji.exposure.co/colors-of-india
For Muslim Harji’s profile and links to his other photo essays on this blog, please click Contributors.
Thanks for sharing about Pamir in Tajikistan. I spent 2 years in Khorog, the capital city of Gorno-Badakhshan autonomous region of Tajikistan in connection with my contract assignment with Aga Khan Health Service Tajikistan. I should like to say that we have the same beautiful people & landscape iin Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral in Pakistan,
Thank you for your feedback. May I recommend a beautiful post by Ali Karim on Hunza. Please click https://simergphotos.com/2017/02/13/silk-road-travelogue-by-ali-karim-6-in-hunzas-capital-karimabad-named-after-prince-karim-aga-khan/.
Thanks for recommending this beautiful post, lovely pictures of Hunza valley, please also share Chitral pictures if you have,
Muslim and Nevin Harji make a couple who are full of life and adventure. To hear and watch their experiences in the wonders and wilderness of Central Asia is an opportunity of a lifetime. Now they need to create a comprehensive massive book putting in words and pictures their collection which must be treasured for generations to come. Best wishes in their ongoing journeys.
Mehdi Shallwani and family
Nice pictures; appreciated.
Beautiful pictures ..thanks for sharing your story…Amazing 🙂
We really love these photos!
Ya Ali Madad.
Incredible beauty, incredible pictures, incredible photographer!!! Great work goguji.
Shiraz & Yasina.
I have been following your various trips and breathtaking pictures around the world and you are doing a great job by sharing your experiences. Muslim and Nevin, keep it up and best wishes
Very nice pictures. We thank you for sharing these wonderful pictures.
Thank you Muslim for taking us into this beautiful landscapes; the sunset in Namadgut is breath taking. Amazing photos.
First of all hats off to Muslim Harji who is very courageous at his age, and is travelling like our late dai Pir Sabjali. It is so wonderful that he is taking us to various places where it is very difficult to travel. The noticeable item is when Hazar Imam commented in Badakhshan in 1995 “nature as a reflection of Allah’s power of creation…I believe Allah is smiling upon you, and may His smile always be upon you.”
I pray for Muslim Harji’s good health and long life, Amen.
Rajabali Gulamali Nanji
Amazing photos and landscapes. Thanks for sharing; highly appreciated.