Chiniot is one of the oldest historical towns of Punjab. on
the banks of river Chenab, the second largest river of Pakistan
also famous for the folk tales of Sohni-Mahiwal and Hir-Ranjha.
In ancient times, it was considered among the important cities
on the trade route form Khyber Pass to Delhi. Alexander the
Great had entered the subcontinent through the same route.
A local legend says that the town is named after Chandan,
daughter of a king who was accustomed to hunting in a man's attire.
One day she came to the banks of the Chenab and was so impressed
by the beauty of the spot that she ordered a town to be built
here, which was called CHANDANIOR in her honour. The town is
celebrated for its wood carving and masonry. The artisans
of Chiniot have been renowned for the excellence of their
work since the Mughal period. Masons from Chiniot were employed
in the building of Taj Mahal in Agra and Wazir Khan Mosque
in Lahore. The main architect of Golden Temple at Amritsar
was also from Chiniot, as were the craftsmen who built the
more recent Minar-i-Pakistan. The area was once famous for
boat-building, but no such industry is seen now-a-days. The
town is still known for arts and crafts specially door
carving, brass work, inlays and furniture.