"Pakistan's Little India" Umarkot by Mozumbus
Umarkot Travel Guide: 0 reviews and 3 photos
A Peek in the Thar Desert: Two Days in Umerkot
Umerkot is famous due to its folklore "Umar Marvi" which is one of the seven legendary romantic tales of great sufi poet Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai.
However, the city has a lot more to offer to an inquisitive traveler ranging from colourful culture to rich heritage.
Umerkot is the Eastern entrance to the Thar desert, which is also called the Great Indian Desert, and therefore the city is also known as the Gateway to Tharparkar.
The landscape changes dramatically, when one drives out towards East, from lush green agricultural land to the unending desert. That brings Umerkot a unique proposition, the colourful culture peculiar to Thari people.
Umerkot Fort is the major landmark of the city rebuilt in the 18th century by Soomros. Most of the fort has been transformed into a huge pile of rubble unfortunately, however, the impressive entrance, the huge front wall, the high watchtower, and a colonial structure inside are still intact to tell the story of good old days. Inside, a small time museum showcases coins and hand written books of the Mughul era.
Akbar, the most famous Mughul Emperor, was also born in Umerkot, when his father Humayun had been hiding from his rival Sher Shah Suri. The birth monument has been recently rebuilt after it collapsed during Army control.
Due to its proximity to India, the city has strategic importance for Pakistan Army which has got heavy presence in the nearby city, Chorr Cantt.
Hindus form a significant part of Umerkot's population, a phenomenon alien to other Pakistan cities. This also defines city's socical lanscape; free roaming cows, Hindu temples, pagan decorated shops, and magic spells!
Cottonseed and red chilis are the major crops of the surrounding land while wild peacocks can easily be spotted off the urban locality.
The refresher drink "Thadal" is the highlight of city's otherwise limited cuisine.
My long due two day trip (November 2011) was beyond expectation not only because it was my first in the South West of the country but also because there is a lot to explore.
For trip details and picture please visit: A Peek in the Thar Desert: Two Days in Umerkot
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