Author Archives: Halima Khan

Shalimar Gardens

By Ambreen Salman

Located in the heart of the district,east of Lahore,Shalimar Garden is surrounded by acres of manicured, superb gardens for your enjoyment and relaxation. Emperor Jehangir built this beautiful Garden for his beloved wife Nur Jehan,thus preserving his love forever and making way for future lovers.The word “Shalimar” means, the purest of human pleasures. It was completed between 1639 and 1641 in the reign of Emperor Shah Jehan.The gardens are an excellent place to escape the noise and the hussle bustle of the city .

This has every touch you can imagine to make your stay a romantic one. Renowned for beauty and magnificance you will be treated to unrivalled attentiveness to make your time extra special. Enjoy romantic strolls through our Farah Baksh meaning bestower of pleasure ,Faiz Baksh meaning bestower of goodness ,Hayat Baksh meaning bestower of life.
Relax in the colonnade around the lake and take in the country air and enjoy the cascades of fountains all around, more than 400 fountains cover this vast garden .Its triple-terraced gardens decorated with marble pavilions, ornamental pools, water falls and fountains, make it one of the world’s finest Persian gardens.

The garden is distributed in sections :

Sawan Bhadum pavilions
Naqar Khana and its buildings
Khwabgah or Sleeping chambers
Hammam or Royal bath
The Aiwan or Grand hall
Aramgah or Resting place
Khawabgah of Begum Sahib or Dream place of the emperor’s wife Baradaries or summer pavilions to enjoy the coolness created by the Gardens’ fountains
Diwan-e-Khas-o-Aam or Hall of special & ordinary audience with the emperor
Two gateways and minarets in the corners of the Gardens.


On my way back from university with my mother we made a coincidental stop at a Chinese restaurant that has just joined the many eating places Lahore boasts of. My mother is a loyal customer of the same Chinese restaurant for years, in fact decades. Making her accompany me to the nearest possible restaurant forced by hunger pangs was a Herculean task. Restaurant named ‘Yum’ and that too a Chinese restaurant, left my mother bewildered no less than me. ‘Kong’ seems like the official surname of the Chinese eating places punctuating different boulevards in Lahore. Think of any and you will be forced to agree! But once you have eaten at this cozy eatery right opposite the Ather Shahzad Studio, just around the corner to Generation, you will realize it breaks free of many stereotypes. Continue reading

Lahore for incentives

By Ambreen Salman

What better place to inspire your team than in one of the world’s most dreamed destinations and cosmopolitan cities? You will find stylish shopping, delicious cuisine, stunning natural beauty, dazzling beaches and the friendliest people on earth.
The incentive possibilities are endless. Choose from an impressive range of sophisticated venues that can accommodate groups from 100 to 5,000 and which suit every style and budget. Of course the most famous of Lahore’s landmarks are its gardens with their granduer full of romantic tales espeicially in moonlit nights- a unique venue for anyone. Shalimar garden is amongst the many lusious green gardens relaxing you after a hard days work and are a feast in themselves watching people play cricket, volleyball, golf with an elite sportsperson or the opportunity to watch the sun set over the city as you move far from the madding crowd. An outstanding range of touring options are available such as the beauty of the Old city gates covering the city from all sides and giving you a glimpse into history also hiding historical events in them silently looking over every passerby. Lahore is jam-packed with things to see and do. It generates a sense of excitement for first time and repeat visitors because of its raw energy and exuberance. Where else but in Lahore can you enjoy cocktails while cruising magnificent streets or dine with ghosts at thr foodstreets.Entertainment options include everything from Puppet festivals and marathons to great coffee shops and live shows.The roads are full of incredible array of restaurants and thousands of boutiques and stores where you can shop to your heart’s content, pick up the latest designer fashion or a unique handcrafted memento .

Lahore: Rant n Rave Concluded

By: Halima Khan

While there is no dearth of opportunities to kick off your boots and enjoy good food and have good fun, Lahore also offers the best shopping experience. So if you decide to keep your boots on and want to gear up for an unforgettable spree that’s exactly what this city has in store for you. International brands and local chains to retail outlets; Liberty, Anarkali, Shahlmee, there’s everything of every sort! Hafeez Center is the biggest computer market, and the prices you’ll find here can’t get better.

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Lahore: Rant n Rave Unrelenting

By: Halima Khan

While I rant to prove how passionately Lahori believe in preserving their taste buds it will be unfair of me to neglect the cultural activity and the entertainment this city is bursting with. But then of course no denying that it all does end up on food! The wedding season which seems to be in season all year round but reaches the climax around November and December and lasts till February? Wedding can be considered the most elaborate occasion on the family event calendar with ‘dholkis’ ‘mayo’ ‘mehndi’ etc spanning over months before the eventual day. Fun and frivolities mark the celebration all through. The preparations involve shopping and the dowry for the bride, which is a traditional gift of clothes, furniture etc to the newly weds. The exquisiteness of the lavish food is the real delight of this whole affair.

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Lahore: Rant n Rave Continued

By: Halima Khan

World’s largest existing historical mosque is also hosted by this city of old tales. Blend of white marble and red stone and beautifully engraved Quranic verses Badshahi Mosque stands tall as a symbol of Mughal religious zeal. The neighboring Lahore Fort was founded way back in the B.C era. However it got its present face by the infamous architects aka Mughals. The Sheesh Mahal (The Palace of Mirrors), Moti Masjid (Pearl Mosque), Diwan-e-Aam (Court for the Commons), Hathi Per (Elephant Steps are masterpieces in themselves and best preserved too. The Fort also has a museum covering the Mughal and Sikh periods.

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Lahore: Rant n Rave

By: Halima Khan

Sights and sounds. Distinctive! Setting one piece of land apart from one another; thus the world has it all a Lahore, a London, an Amsterdam too. What all these cities share is the keen-ness to preserve culture most predictably. But then this is where this masterpiece of a city, Lahore really stands out. Here we emphasize on preserving our taste buds; the real essence of survival. Or so they are considered here. So if live to eat is your business don’t miss out on why ‘Lahore Lahore hai!’ (Lahore is Lahore.)

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Lahore Second Hand Books

Photos by Amarjit Chandan

Lahore 1946

Indian boys playing atop an old military cannon built in 1761 which stands on the grounds of the Jubilee Museum & Technical Institute, Prince Albert Memorial Museum.
Location:Lahore, IndiaDate taken:1946

Man cooking food over a brazier in the bkgd. as men sit down at counter to partake of dishes covered by cheesecloth at food stall in market.
Location:Lahore, IndiaDate taken:1946

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Lahore, Pakistan

By Hummingbird5356



Home of thousands,

teeming bazaars,

shouts of merchants selling their wares,

bustle of people haggling

the age old practise,

no simple exchange of money and goods here.

Visitors from all over the world come

for learning, trade or just to see.

Quiet gardens,

where friends and family go to find peace

amidst the scented flowers.

Elegant houses of the well-to-do,

not so well off,

down to the hovels of the poor in their grinding poverty,

worse of all,

the homeless,

the beggars,

young and old alike,

children and grandparents.

Why is this?

In every land the same.

We come, we see,

a few pennies given to ease a conscience that cannot make much difference in a life.

But does our pain for the misery make a difference?

To us?

To them?


Everyone has one life,

we can only live it the way we see best.

Why are we here?

Why are they there?

Our life is a gift

from God.

We must live our life to the level he has placed us.

HE put us here.

Who are we to question?

Lahore is London, Calcutta, Munich, Paris.

Inside, people are no different,

whatever their origin.


where I, as a


also feel at home.

Bagh-e-Jinnah, formerly Lawrence Garden, Lahore, Pakistan

By Hummingbird5356

My favourite park in Pakistan

Bagh-e-Jinnah is the first park I visited when I went to Pakistan in 2005. I visited also many times when I went for my second visit in 2008.

I will first tell some of the history of the park. From 1864 to 1869 John Lawrence was the Viceroy of India and he built the garden as a botanical garden which was modelled on Kew Gardens in England. It was originally named Lawrence Garden after him and his statue used to stand there but it is now at Foyle and Londonderry College in Northern Ireland where he went to school.

It originally covered 176 acres but some land was given for the Lahore Zoo and some of the roads nearby which are also planted with trees. Nowadays, Bagh-e-Jinnah (Jinnah’s Garden) has a botanical garden, a mosque and a library which is housed in a large Victorian building which used to be for assembly rooms and theatrical performances in former years. It is now the Qaid-e-Azam Library named after Mohammed Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan.

The botanical garden has many hundreds of varieties of trees and shrubs, there are also almost all varieties of flowers to be found in Pakistan in the park. Among the trees are 30 kinds of palm trees. Bagh-e-Jinnah was the first place to grow Chrysanthemums and flower shows are held regularly in the park. Unfortunately, there was no flower show at the times that I visited Pakistan. Hopefully, on one of my future visits it will coincide with one of the Chrysanthemum shows.

This park has a playground for the children too and man made hillocks to climb. It is a pleasant and peaceful park, perfect for a stroll or a picnic. It is a popular place with families.

I wrote about Shalimar Garden and how peaceful that is but that was a private park, meant only for the use of the King and his family. Bagh-e-Jinnah was intended as a park for the public and to show off the flora and fauna of the country, and imported plants. For me, this gives it more value and anyone who visits cannot fail to be charmed.

Lahore Fort, Lahore, Pakistan

By Hummingbird5356

Lahore Fort also known as Shahi Qila (Royal Fort)

No one knows exactly when Lahore Fort was built but it was first mentioned around 1021 AD when Mahmud of Ghazna conquered it. Over the centuries Lahore was conquered many times. Lahore has also been an important city for a long time. The best time for Lahore was during the Mughal reign from 1525 to 1721. Jalal-ud-Din Muhammad Akbar (Akbar the Great) built the present structure as we know it today. Jahangir and Shah Jahan constructed palaces in the Fort and Emperor Auranzeb Alamgir built the Badshahi Mosque which is opposite the Alamgiri Gate of the Fort. This is the huge entrance which has two large pillars which resemble elephants feet.

I visited in November 2008 and at this time of the year the weather is very pleasant. As a result, hundreds of school children go on visits to museums and monuments. Not only schoolchildren but families too. During this time there was a Sikh gathering at the Gurdwara which is next to the Fort and Mosque and there were many Sikhs visiting too.

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Pakistan Fashion Week lights up Lahore

By Halima Khan

Saturday night Royal Palm kick started the much controversy stricken and the much awaited and the much talked about but Lahore’s very own and very first Fashion Week. Cooperate commercialism has been kind once again and the event is being publicized as Sunsilk fashion Week. The grandeur of Royal Palm and Golf Club does justice to the glitz and ripples Pakistan fashion industry definitely causes now. Colors splashed in ways many out of us never deemed a possibility. The world sat up and took notice, they were forced to. Executed with class and hints of demure talent was amply obvious even to the blind. Pakistan Fashion Design Council the organizers of the even managed to not go wrong with almost anything. 

Governor Salman Taseer and US Consulate Principal Officer Carmela Conroy played chief guest at the opening reception which was prelude to a four-day event and the galore of 32 designers. Lahore, Karachi, Islamabad came together as emerging and existing and the struggling and the established all came together to define Pakistan fashion in their own enlightened way. 

Eight ramp shows, eight designers, twenty creations each; no 24 hour day gets more lucky with style than this.

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