With the help of the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Wildlife Conservation Society, and others, Afghanistan is in the process of creating its first national park, Band-e-Amir, a region of lakes and waterfalls among the mountains in Bamiyan province. The effort is not without challenges, including an extraordinarily remote location, leftover land mines, and local residents nervous about potential restrictions on fishing and grazing. But park advocates hope it will provide local employment, boost tourism, and protect the area’s natural resources. NPR’s coverage is here. ABC has a spectacular slide show.