Situated in the extreme north of India in Nubra Valley of Ladakh, Turtuk is also known as the last village of India. It is situated near the Pakistan border or POK which is 5 km away from the village. The village was the part of Pakistan until 1972 after which India captured this village from Pakistan. It’s the only village in India where one can experience the Baltic culture which is in POK.
There are some things which you should keep in mind while visiting this village.
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Don’t go without proper permits
As we all know, this village comes in one of the sensitive areas. Therefore, you have to apply for a permit to visit this village. You can get these permit in Leh from the tourism office. You must have your original ID to show the Army personnel whenever it is demanded.
Don’t click pictures without asking
The village has a Muslim population and is still conservative and cut off from the outside world. Villagers don’t like to get clicked especially the women and girls. Avoid taking pictures and if you want to, first take their permission.
Don’t enter the fields
Turtuk is famous for its best quality apricots. Every where in the village you will find apricot farms or fields. In August and September, many tourists pluck this fruit from the farm without asking anyone or the owner. Sometimes the locals get angry at such acts. But you can directly buy from them at a cheap price.
Ask before entering the houses
The people of Turtuk are not very friendly because of their culture. Entering in any ones house without permission is not recommended. You can take permission to enter, they will allow you. There are many homestays available for accommodation. You can book them, if you plan to stay overnight in the village
Don’t wash anything in streams
As we all know Ladakh is facing water crisis since the last 10 years. The only source they have is glacier water. In Turtuk, you will find a number of small and big streams passing through the village. These streams are important for the local’s daily work. They use the same water for farming and sometimes for cooking. Hence, don’t throw or wash anything in the streams.
Don’t touch anything in the museum
There are two museums in the village which show the culture of the village. There are many rare utensils and antiques placed in the museums which are preserved by the locals. Many people touch these to click photos. Please do not do that.
Don’t offer chocolates to children
We all know mountain kids look cute and beautiful. We all want to get clicked with them. Many travellers offer them chocolates and ice cream just to click pictures with them. But they are living in a remote area where there is no doctor or dentist. They are not used to all of these things and sometimes they get sick.
Respect the local culture
When you travel in this world, always respect the local culture. There are some dos and don’ts which you should keep in mind. Study the place and then go. Turtuk is a conservative village. You cannot drink or smoke in an open area or can’t do anything thing which hurts the local sentiment.
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