About 80 kms. west of Leh, Basgo was the capital of lower Ladakh before the kingdom was united at Leh. Until recently, this fascinating World Heritage Site was crumbling into dust, but UNESCO and the Basgo Welfare Committee have joined forces to restore the ancient citadel compound. Today, Basgo's Chamba Gompa is one of the highlights of the Indus Valley. The mural work inside has been pectacularly restored using traditional colours and techniques, images of Bodhisattvas and celestial beings even cover the ceiling. The main building contains a two-storey statue of Maitreya and there is a second gompa just downhill with another outsized Maitreya statue. The ruins of the citadel are scattered across the surrounding hill. Basgo has no place to eat or sleep but there are roadhouses for meals in nearby Nimmu, 2 kms. back towards Leh near the confluence of the green Indus and the murky brown Zanskar river. A road is slowly being built from here to Padum in Zanskar.