Lahore (; Punjabi: لہور ALA-LC: Lahor [ləhoːr]; Urdu: لاہور ALA-LC: Lāhor [lɑːhoːr]) is the capital city of the province of Punjab, the second largest metropolitan area in Pakistan and 16th most populous city in the world. It is an important historical centre in South Asia. With a rich history dating back over a millennium, Lahore is a main cultural centre of the Punjab region and Pakistan and is the largest Punjabi city in the world. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains an economic, political, transportation, entertainment, and educational hub of Pakistan.
Lahore successively served as the regional capital of the empires of the Hindu Shahi kingdom in the 11th century, the Ghaznavids in the 12th century, the Ghurid State in the 12th and 13th centuries and the Mughal Empire in the 16th century. From 1802 to 1849, Lahore served as the capital city of the Sikh Empire. In the mid-19th and early 20th century, Lahore was the capital of the Punjab region under the British Raj. The traditional capital of Punjab for a millennium, Lahore was the cultural centre of the northern Indian subcontinent which extends from the eastern banks of the Indus River to New Delhi. Mughal structures such as the Badshahi Mosque, the Lahore Fort, Shalimar Gardens, the mausolea of Jehangir and Nur Jahan, Chauburji Gate, and the walled city are some of the major tourist attractions in the city. Lahore is also home to many British colonial structures built in the Indo-Saracenic style, such as the Lahore High Court, the General Post Office, Lahore Museum, Lahore Railway Station, and many older universities and colleges including the University of the Punjab, Govt College and King Edward Medical University. The Lahore Zoo, thought to be the fourth oldest in the world, is also situated here.