Ngari Prefecture (also: Ali Prefecture) (Tibetan: མངའ་རིས་ས་ཁུལ་, Wylie: mnga' ris sa khul; simplified Chinese: 阿里地区; traditional Chinese: 阿里地區; pinyin: Ālǐ Dìqū) is a prefecture of China's Tibet Autonomous Region. Its capital is Gar County. Its regional headquarters is in the town of Purang. The largest settlement is Ali. Ngari Prefecture includes part of the Aksai Chin area, a disputed region claimed by India but over which China exercises administrative control. The paved Xinjiang-Tibet Highway (新藏公路) passes through this area. There are well-known prehistoric petroglyphs near the far western town of Rutog.
The town of Ngari lies 4,500 meters above sea level in northwest Tibet, some 1,600 kilometers west of the autonomous region capital, Lhasa. The Ngari Gunsa Airport began operations on July 1, 2010, becoming the fourth civil airport on the "Roof of the World" (shortening the trip to Lhasa to one-and-a-half hours from three or four days by car). The other airports in Tibet are Gonggar Airport in Lhasa, Bamda Airport in Qamdo Prefecture and Nyingchi Airport.
Ngari was once the heart of the ancient Tibetan Guge Kingdom. Later Ngari, along with Ü and Tsang composed Ü-Tsang, one of the traditional provinces of Tibet, the others being Amdo and Kham.
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