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Afghanistan Weather, climate and geography

Weather and climate

Best time to visit

Although occupying the same latitudes as South-Central USA, the mountainous nature of much of Afghanistan produces a far colder climate. Being landlocked, there are considerable differences in temperature between summer and winter, and day and night in lowland regions and in the valleys; the southern lowlands in particular have intensely hot summers and harsh winters. Spring and autumn are the most hospitable times to visit: April-June, and September-October.

Geography

Landlocked Afghanistan shares its borders with Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikstan to the north, China to the northeast, Pakistan to the east and south and Iran to the west. On the eastern tip of the Iranian plateau, central Afghanistan is made up of a tangled mass of mountain chains. The Hindu Kush is the highest range, rising to more than 7,500m (24,600ft). The Bamian Valley separates the Hindu Kush from Koh-i-Baba, the central mountain range and source of the Helmand River. To the north and southwest of these mountains, alluvial plains provide fertile agricultural soil. To the northeast is Kabul, the capital; the other major cities are Jalalabad, Kandahar, Mazar-i-Sharif and Herat.