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The town of Kargil is best remembered to the Kargil War when Indian military troops captured the Tiger Hill from infiltrators and emerged victorious in a long battle. It is situated at an elevation of 8,780 feet along the banks of the river Suru, also known as Indus.
The present day Kargil was once known as Purig. Gasho Thatha Khan also known as the Purig Sultan brought together all the warring small time princely states in the region and under his rule. This Purig later on became Kargil which is today the headquarters of the Kargil district of Ladakh.
The people of Kargil are of mixed Dard and Tibetan descent. Till the 14th and 15th centuries, the people of this region were followers of Tibetan Buddhism, but with the emergence of Muslim invaders then, many people were proselytized and converted to Islam. Today, a majority of the population belongs to the Shia Muslim community, while the minority communities belong to the Sunni Muslim and Tibetan categories.
The architecture of monuments and building reflect the impact of this conversion. The architectural styles are a combination of Tibetan and Iranian styles. The more recently constructed mosques exhibit a combination of Iranian and Arabic architectural styles.
Kargil serves as an excellent destination for adventure activities such as trekking, camping, mountaineering, river rafting etc. Some of the major tourist attractions in this region are the Nun and Kun peaks, the Mulbek, the Zanskar Valley etc. The local attractions include Pashmina Shawls, local carpets, dried apricots etc.
The nearest airport for reaching Kargil is situated at Leh. The nearest railway station is at Jammu, which is situated at a distance of 739 km from Leh. Roads connect Kargil to Srinagar and Leh and passengers will be required to register themselves at the Tourist Registration Centre in Drass.
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