Kargil region is a relatively under explored areas of Jammu and Kashmir. Situated on the Srinagar-Leh national highway is a pit stop for every rider heading towards Leh. With spectacular landscapes and Suru river flowing by, Kargil has a breath taking landscape. Being in close proximity to the Line of control, it still has scars of the Indo-Pak war of 1960. Most of the residents of Kargil were of Baluchi origin. Many of the locals had relatives on the other side of Line of Control in the Baluchistan region.
I stepped out for an early morning stroll around the old market region. Locals were all dressed up for their morning prayers and were heading towards the main mosque near the market. I interacted with some local kids who were studying in middle school. Later, I met a local resident, Gulam Haider. He invited me to his house. His house was right on the bank of river Suru and was a perfect place to enjoy early morning breakfast. I came to know that the river which originated in the Zanskar region is known for the fast rapids and had created havoc during rainy season. His one storied house had access to main street through a log bridge over a stream. It was a splendid view as I entered his house. The main hall was decorated and plenty of snacks were on the display. Sipping tea, I came to know that his elder brother, cousins and most of the relatives lived near Skardu region of Baluchistan in Pakistan and meeting them was a tough work for him. After having some snacks he accompanied me to the old market to show some old buildings of Kargil, few of them dating back nearly 150 years. Some houses had cracks caused by shelling during the war. As it was time for Namaz we bid good bye and I headed back to my hotel. We departed for Leh at around 9.15 am.
Sightseeing from Kargil :
- Line of control- 14 km
- Kargil monastery
- Zanskar region- Suru valley in Zanskar is a relatively unexplored region in Ladakh.
- Aryan village- These villages are the last remaining villages where pure Aryan descendents are thought to exist. They are on the Kargil-Batalik-Leh road (40 km detour from the main road). The villages are Dah, Hanu, Darchik and Garkon. Visiting these places requires a special Inner Line Permit from DC Office in Leh. On the form for Inner Line Permit the tourist has to specifically mention Batalik region. View from highway while leaving Kargil town