Area: 97,000 sq kms out of which nearly 38,000 sq. kms are under Chinese Occupation since 1962.
Population: Approx. 2.40 lakh in the 2 districts of Leh & Kargil.
Languages:Ladakhi including Balti / Purgi, Shina or Dardic, Urdu / Hindi.
Altitude:Leh 3505 m, Kargil 2750 m.
Ladakh is a region in the state of Jammu and Kashmir in Northern India sandwiched between the Kuen Lun mountain range in the north and the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent. It is one of the most sparsely populated regions in India. Historically, the region included the Baltistan (Baltiyul) valleys, the Indus Valley, the remote Zanskar, Lahaul and Spiti to the south, Ngari including the Rudok region and Guge in the east, and Nubra valleys to the north over Khardung La in the Ladakh mountain range.
Contemporary Ladakh borders Tibet to the east, the Lahaul and Spiti to the south, the Vale of Kashmir, Jammu and Baltiyul regions to the west, and the Trans -Kuen Lun territory of East Turkistan in Central Asia on the other side of the Kuen Lun range in Kashmir to the north. Running southwest to northeast, the altyn Tagh converges with the Kuen Lun range in Kashmir which runs southeast to northwest forming a "V" shape which converges at Pulu. The geographical divide between Ladakh in the highlands of Kashmir and the Tibetan Plateau commences in the vicinity of Pulu and continues southwards along the intricate maze of ridges situate east of Rudok, wherein are situate Aling Kangri and Mavang Kangri and culminates in the vicinity of Mayum La
Ladakh is renowned for its remote mountain beauty and Buddhist culture. It is sometimes called "Little Tibet" as it has been strongly influenced by Tibetan culture. In the past Ladakh gained importance from its strategic location at the crossroads of important trade routes, but since the Chinese authorities closed the borders with Tibet and Central Asia in the 1960, international trade has dwindled. Since 1974 the Indian Government has encouraged tourism in Ladakh.