Kandahar ( gr Alexandria; Pashto: کندهار Kandahār, Dari: قندهار Qandahar ) has a population of around 368 100 (according to the calculation of 2012) to the capital Kabul, the second largest city of Afghanistan. Kandahar is located in the south of the country on the river Arghandab ( Dari ) or Argandau ( Pashto ). It is the administrative seat of the province of Kandahar.


The assumption that the name is derived from Kandahar Alexandria, according to the Encyclopædia Iranica is not tenable. The present name has been used for the Muslim period and appears for the first time as al - Qandahar in the works of the chronicler al - Baladhuri on. The Muslim conqueror ʿ Abbad bin Ziad named the city after himself in ʿ Abbādiya to, but this form quickly disappeared. Other names of the city were Dawlatābād ( during the Mongol rule ) and Ḥosaynābād ( in the 18th century). Inexplicably Kandahar is not mentioned in the 11th and 12th centuries. So do not mention the Ghaznavids who ruled over the region, the city.

Possible origins of the word are the ancient kingdom of Gandhara Kandahar or the name of an Indo- Greek city Gondophareia whose existence is not certain. Would also be possible to derive from the city Condigramma, mentioned by Pliny the Elder in his Naturalis Historia. Also, the area belonged to the Kandahar district Gandutava the ancient Persian province of Arachosia.


In the province live according to calculations for the year 2012 1.146.954 inhabitants; In comparison, there were still 567,000 1979 Kandahar is the second largest city of Afghanistan and an important trading center, mainly for agricultural products.


The Kandahar International Airport is about 16 km south-east (31 ° 30 ' 49 "N, 65 ° 51' 40 " O31.51363888888965.861055555556 ) on the road to Quetta. About the ring road it is connected to Kabul and Herat.


Kandahar has an arid, continental climate, which is characterized by low precipitation and high variation between summer and winter temperatures. The extremely dry summer starts mid-May and lasts until the end of September. It reaches its highest point in June, with average temperatures around 32 ° C. It is followed by a dry autumn between early October and late November with average temperatures between 9 ° C and 18 ° C.

Winter starts in December and has the highest annual rainfall in the form of rain. The temperatures submit between 5 ° C and 8 ° C, although lows can drop well below freezing. The winter ends in early March and is followed by a pleasant spring, which lasts until the end of April, bringing temperatures in the range of 15 ° C.


Kandahar was in the 4th century BC by Alexander near the ancient city Mundigak (founded about 3000 BC) founded the Great. Because of its strategic location in Central Asia, the city was frequent target of conquest: So by the Arabs in the 7th century by the Turkic Ghaznavids in the 10th century by the Mongols under Genghis Khan in the 12th century and in 1383 by Tamerlane. Babur took Kandahar one in the 16th century.

1708, the city fell to the Afghans under Mir Wais Hotak. From 1738 to 1747 Kandahar was under the control of Nadir Shah. Ahmad Shah Durrani, Emir of the Durrani Empire, the predecessor of the Afghan state, took the city in 1747 and made ​​it a year later the capital of his kingdom. The present city center was built by Ahmad Shah and is dominated by his mausoleum. 1780 Kabul became the new capital.

British troops occupied Kandahar during the First Anglo-Afghan War (1839-1842) and from 1879 to 1881. According to the Soviet withdrawal, the rulers changed more often. The end of 1994 the Taliban from Kandahar began the conquest of the South, the East and the center of Afghanistan.



  • Hamid Karzai, President of Afghanistan since 2004
  • Nashenas, Pashto singer
  • Ghulam Haider Hamidi, a former mayor