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Among the Brokpa

The Brokpa people live on the border of India and Pakistan in a steep, hidden valley above the Indus River. They’ve been farming in this inhospitable climate at 9,000 feet in the lower himalayas for over 2,000 years. Considered by some to be descendants of Alexander the Great’s army and others to be directly related to the earliest Indo-European peoples, they are ethnically caucasian, religiously Buddhist, and their language is written in both Tibeto-Burman and Arabic script. Truly a fascinating cultural crossroads. But most impressive to me were the gardens — grape vines over a foot in diameter, golden apple orchards, stone villages set amid a sea of apricots and wildflowers in one of the driest climates on the planet.

Five of us from our August 2013 Ladakh yoga retreat visited the Brokpa in Dha Hanu Valley. All I could think about after we left was coming back. Look for this enchanting destination on future retreats from Tapta Marg.

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Indus River below Dha Hanu Valley
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Gardens high above the Indus
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Buddhist scriptures in a local Brokpa temple
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Monastery on the banks of the Indus
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Simply the best apricots ever
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Apple orchard, Dha Hanu Valley
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apricots drying on a rooftop, Dha Hanu Valley

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