Mohenjo Daro or “Mound of the Dead Men” – the ancient Indus Civilization city (photo essay)

It was almost noon when we arrived at Mohenjo-daro, one of Pakistan’s most significant archaeological sites. It was one of the world’s earliest major cities of the ancient Indus Valley Civilization, contemporary with the civilizations of ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, Minoan Crete, and Norte Chico (2500 BCE).

Mohenjo-daro was abandoned in the 19th century BCE and remained unknown until the 1920s. Since then, significant excavations have been carried on at the Site. Mohenjo-daro was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1980. 

Only 10 % of the Site was excavated. About 80% of the visible remains are appropriately preserved. The guide said that the museum workers only fill holes or make minimal repairs for conservation purposes. He, too, stated that very few foreign tourists come here. On the one hand, I was delighted that we were almost alone in this unique place, but on the other, it made me a bit sad that other fellow travelers do not enjoy what we do.

The ancient citizens abandoned Mohenjo-daro during the sunset of the Indus culture. An interesting fact about the old city is the mysterious deaths of the people inhabiting it. Some people think that Mohenjo-daro is one of the first science fiction stories. Then the place remained hidden from human views until the 1920s. 

I was impressed with the bathrooms, the ponds, and the sewer. The city was clean and prosperous, visible from the downfalls. By comparison, today, about 70% of the people living in the ghettos in Pakistan do not have access to freshwater. The social problems are grave. 

How do civilizations alternate? Why are prosperity and wealth moving both upward in time and down? Mystery and mysticism have been surrounding the ancient city since ancient times – the occasion for the emergence of various hypotheses about its decline, including aliens as a probable cause. If aliens are involved, it is pretty clear that no one knows anything, however!


Tourists visiting the ruins of ancient Mohenjo Daro in Pakistan

Many researchers of ancient civilizations have tried to give answers, which I think are rather hypotheses. No one has the answers yet. So, I stopped thinking about the subject and concentrated on the beautiful scenery and the mystic atmosphere. The sense of eternity did not leave me all the time, as we walked around. I felt respected! Admiration for the ancient inhabitants of this city, their skills and achievements, their imagination, and last but not least, their purity!

A bronze statuette entitled “Dancing Girl” only 10.5 cm high and about 4,500 years old, was found in the area of Mohenjo-daro in 1926.

British archaeologist Mortimer Wheeler described the item as his favorite statuette: “She’s about fifteen years old I should think, not more, but she stands there with bangles up her arm and nothing else on. A girl perfectly, for the moment, perfectly confident of herself and the world. There’s nothing like her, I think, in the world.”

In the museum, we saw a lot of artifacts and remains found during the excavations at the archaeological complex. Designed by French architects, the museum has no internal lighting on purpose. The only illumination inside the halls is the natural light, which falls directly from above. I remembered the Museum in Dahomey, Benin (also a UNESCO site), where it was gloomy in the halls, and we could barely see the objects behind the glass windows.


Mohenjo-daro – Wikipedia 
Mohenjo Daro “Faceless” Indus Valley City Puzzles Archaeologists
The Grid and Modular Measures in The Town Planning of Mohenjodaro and Kathmandu Valley – A Study on Modular Measures in Block and Plot Divisions in the Planning of Mohenjodaro



The best way would be a guided tour. If you are already in Pakistan you can check out this 3 days excursion from Larkana, which includes Mohenjo Daro.

We usually have one or two small groups (max 7/8 participants) per year traveling to Pakistan, including to Mohenjo Daro. If you are interested in joining a group setting out from Europe, please drop a line. We will provide more information, like dates, a program and other details.


The nearest international airport to Mohenjo-daro Airport is Bhuj Airport (BHJ / VABJ). Distance from Bhuj Airport to Mohenjo Daro is 475.7 km.


Most probably you would need a visa for Pakistan. Pakistan’s Ministry of Interior introduced the Single-entry Tourist eVisa for citizens of 175 countries. This eVisa has a validity of 3 months and allows travellers to enter the country for tourist purposes and it enables them to stay in Pakistan for up to 30 days. You can check out the procedure here.

You can also use the VisaHQ world service. They will provide full assistance in applying and obtaining the needed visa. Check directly the requirements for the Pakistani visa here.

You also can check out the iVisa service here.



List of hotels in Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan

List of hotels in Karachi, the largest city in the country and one of the possible arriving points.

List of hotels in Lahore, another possible point of entrance in the country.

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Inside the ruins of ancient Mohenjo Daro in Pakistan