North of the Shomali Plain in Afghanistan, the Panjshir Valley of the Panshjir River is surrounded by three sides of sheer Hindu Kush mountains. Its Khawak Pass controls the main road from Afghanistan to Tajikistan. It was the stronghold of the Northern Alliance, especially its military commander, Ahmed Shah Masood. Its people are primarily Tajik.
The river leaves the valley near the Bagram Airport.