The administrative centre for four surrounding valleys, Kargil marks the easternmost extent of the Muslim incursion into Ladakh. Before Partition, Kargil was an important trading post for caravans travelling between Baltistan and Zanskar, but today it stands on the faultline between India and Pakistan. A famous battle was fought here during the 1999 Indo-Pakistan War and the town remains heavily fortified.
Most visitors only come here to break the journey between Srinagar and Leh, or change buses for the trip to Zanskar. If you do stop over, there are good views from the peaceful village of Goma (Upper) Kargil, a steep walk above the hospital. Local traders sell dried Kargil apricots in the bazaar (usually with the stones still inside). Be aware of anti-Indian and anti-Jewish sentiments in the valley.
Last updated: Feb 17, 2009
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