Rawalpindi (help·info) (Urdu, Potwari, Punjabi: راولپنڈی,Rāwalpindī) is a city in the Pothohar region of Pakistan near Pakistan’s capital city of Islamabad, in the province of Punjab. Rawalpindi is the third largest city in Pakistan after Karachi and Lahore. In the 1950s, Rawalpindi was smaller than Hyderabad and Multan, but the city’s economy received a boost during the building of Islamabad (1959–1969), during which time Rawalpindi served as the national capital and its population increased from 180,000 at the time of independence to over 4.5 million in 2007. Rawalpindi is located in the northernmost part of the Punjab province, 275 km (171 mi) to the north-west of Lahore. It is the administrative seat of the Rawalpindi District. The total area of the city is approximately 154 square kilometres (59 sq mi). Rawalpindi is the military headquarters of the Pakistani Armed Forces.
Rawalpindi, locally known as Pindi, named after Raja Pindi, is a bustling city on the northernmost part of the Punjab province, strategically located between the NWFP and Pakistan Occupied Kashmir. Many tourists use the city as a stop before traveling towards the northern areas. Rawalpindi is also a prime destination for the expatriat community of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir. Numerous shopping bazaars, parks and a cosmopolitan population attract shoppers from all over Pakistan and abroad. The city is home to several industries and factories. Islamabad’s international airport, Benazir Bhutto International Airport, is actually located in Rawalpindi, and serves both cities.
Rawalpindi also maintains strong links with the Pahari-Potwari speaking people of neighbouring Pakistan Occupied Kashmir who have many businesses within the city and region.