Afghanistan is a mountainous land-locked country located in South-Central Asia. Afghanistan is divided into 34 provinces. The largest city and capital is Kabul.
Afghanistan is known for it’s mountainous terrain. The huge Hindu Kush mountains form a barrier between the Northern provinces and the rest of the country. This mountain range has also divided Afghanistan int three very different geographic regions known as: The Central Highlands, The Northern Plains, and the Southwestern Plateau. The altitude, climate, and soil conditions in Afghanistan varies greatly on where in the country you are.
THE CENTRAL HIGHLANDS
The central highlands, have an area of about 160,000 square miles. This region of Afghanistan, has deep, narrow valleys, as well as high mountains which have proven to be historically important to the defense of the country. One of the most famous routs to the Indian subcontinent, The Khyber Pass, is located in the mountain ranges of the central highlands. The climate in this part of Afghanistan is usually dry, with temperatures in the summer averaging around 80 degrees Fahrenheit, while the winters are very cold. The soil in this region ranges from desert-steppe, to meadow-steppe types.
THE SOUTHERN PLATEAU
This region of Afghanistan is made up of high plateaus and sandy deserts. The soil here is very infertile, except along the rivers in the southwest. This desolate region covers about 50,000 square miles, and is crossed by several large rivers including the Helmand. The average altitude of this area, is about 3,000 feet. Kandahar, which lies at an elevation of about 3,500 feet enjoys a dry, yet mild climate. Sand storms are not unusual in the deserts and arid plains of this region.
THE NORTHERN PLAINS
This region of Afghanistan, covers about 40,000 square miles of extremely fertile foothills and plains. The Amu river( formerly known as the Oxus) runs through the edge of the foothills. The average elevation is about 2,000 feet. A tremendous amount of the country’s agriculture thrives here. This region also possesses a vast amount of mineral deposits and natural gas.
Afghanistan’s provinces and their capitals