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Sacred Rocks at Hunza
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member elyob
N 36° 18.745 E 074° 41.314
43S E 472042 N 4018645
Quick Description: This waymark is located near the village of Ganish, Hunza-Nagar District, Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan.
Location: Pakistan
Date Posted: 1/21/2013 6:55:47 PM
Waymark Code: WMG6W0
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Patudles
Views: 7

Long Description:
For centuries, travelers along this portion of the Silk Road - connecting China and Europe on what is now known as the Karakoram Highway (KKM) - have paused in the area of the Hunza River valley to add their own artistic contributions to surrounding outcroppings of rock. This spot continues to attract attention from those on a journey. The sacred carvings have become a regular stop for modern tourists traveling the same route.

Rock carvings of natural themes such as trees and animals (similar to rams) suggest the earliest (or most amateur) artistic tourists. Carvings on other rocks feature Buddhist themes. Buddhism has not been prevalent in the area since the 7th Century. In addition to petroglyph images here at Haldikish (Place of the Rams), many inscriptions are found. At least four different scripts on the rocks suggest visitors from a variety of times and cultures: Kharosthi, a script for speakers of Gandhari, used from the 3rd Century BC through the 3rd Century of the Christian Era; Gupta, a script for writing Sanskrit, used since about the year 400; Sogdian, an Iranian language used until the 9th Century; and Tibetan.

The Department of Archeology of the Government of Pakistan hopes to preserve and protect these rock carvings. Even so, visitors have free and easy access to the site. The carvings are located between the Karakoram Highway (Pakistan highway N-35) and the Hunza River. This site is across the river from the Altit Fort, an ancient fort dating back one thousand years. In the Tibetan language, Altit means “this side down.”

The waymark is a short journey of about 400 metres from the historical village of Ganish. Since the 1990s, architectural elements of Ganish and similar communities throughout Hunza and Baltistan have been wonderfully restored by the Agha Khan Trust for Culture.
Type of Pictograph: Petroglyph

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