Islamabad has a lot to offer in terms of entertainment and recreation, like parks, monuments and museums. One can find something suitable to his/her age, tastes and inclination. However, I know a place that will excite and fascinate all of you, adults and children alike. It is the Pakistan Museum of Natural History, definitely a very exciting place for children. It is situated at Garden Avenue, Shakarparian, Islamabad.
This museum was established in 1976 and is housed in a large building having three floors and many galleries to display a very large collection of objects from millions of years old fossils to mummified animals and their skeletons. Even before you enter the building you find a skeleton of a huge Blue Whale found near Pasni in 1967.
The museum has three floors and many galleries to display a large number of skeletons, fossils, mummified animals, rocks etc. Wildlife, from now-extinct animals to present-day animals, is shown in their natural environment. Another section shows the threats to our environment due to human activities.
A curious display of hundreds of colourful butterflies and insects of all kinds also draws your attention. I shall not be surprised if at the first glance they remind you of some articles of jewellery on display.
I particularly liked the gallery which exhibits the natural environment of Pakistan and the threat it is facing due to human activity like deforestation, over-grazing, increasing population and depleting sources of water etc.
The section named Forests of Pakistan also focuses on the environment of Pakistan and its wildlife. Different kinds of animals are shown in their natural environment. Indeed very informative and entertaining.
Rock formations and their different forms are obviously a part of natural history that cannot be ignored at a museum dedicated to natural history. So a big collection of different types are there to see and study. But the collection that particularly draws the attention of visitors, especially ladies, is that of precious stones. I hope you too will find them fascinating.
A hall displaying a number of animal heads as trophies is also an interesting gallery. Trophies of animals like Bison, Urial, Hog Deer, Sika Deer, Bgaral, Marco Polo Sheep, Markhor, Black Buck, Arabian Oryx, Nilgiri Tahr, Fallow Deer, etc. are part of this interesting collection.
Besides dinosaurs stuffed bodies of other animals like, deer, bears, yak, fox, wild cat, leopard, birds, etc. are another big attraction at the museum. People, especially children love to take pictures with these more affable animals.
All kids love dinosaurs, many grown-ups too. So the fans of dinosaurs would be happy to find life-size models of dinosaurs. They even move and produce frightening sounds as well to the great delight of children.
Briefly speaking, a visit to this museum would be full of fun and learning. It is situated close to some other famous tourist attractions of the capital, like Heritage Museum, Pakistan Monument and Shakarparian. So next time you are visiting this area include the Museum of Natural History part of your plan.
January 18, 2022.