Afghanistan: hidden treasures from the National Museum, Kabul

Have fun exploring the exhibition Afghanistan: hidden treasures from the National Museum, Kabul and make some art of your own.

In 1988, these treasures from the National Museum in Kabul were hidden in vaults in the Central Bank at the presidential palace in Kabul. Only a few brave people, known as ‘key-holders’, knew where they were – they were the director and the curators. They risked their lives to keep the museum’s precious objects from being destroyed. After 15 years, the vaults were opened to reveal the treasures had survived.

Many of these treasures show influences from places like Greece, Rome, China and India. This is because Afghanistan lay at the heart of the Silk Road, the name given to ancient trade routes stretching from China to western Europe. It was along these routes that traders and travellers spread ideas, cultures, inventions and products.

Works in this children’s trail

About our children’s trails

Our children’s trails are available online or as free printed booklets/sheets at the Gallery. They are designed to engage young children aged 6-12 with selected objects and images in the Gallery and our exhibitions. They present looking and interpreting, drawing and writing activities for children to do in front of the art with extension ideas for activities away from the Gallery.

Many of these suggestions can be adapted for use at home or in the classroom, even if you can’t visit or the particular artworks are not on display.

View all children’s trails