"Erected in the 19th century on a flat piece of land, the Khaplu Fort lies near an earlier mud fort constructed on a hill. The palace is one of the most magnificent 19th century buildings in the Northern Areas. A rectangular Baltistan palace plan type, it is constructed of stone masonry, reinforced with timber members and rendered in lime plaster.
Richly embellished with three storeyed timber balconies, verandahs screened with intricate perforated timber jalis (screens), carved timber posts, fascias and fenestrations end up making a magnificent symphony of solids and voids, shadow and light. The lintels, jambs and frames of most doors and windows are richly embellished. Khaplu Fort is a rectangular plan type with an inner small courtyard and a lager garden. Its courtyard is surrounded by a series of double rows of rooms -- enough rooms to have accommodated the Raja's and his family's residential needs, as well as accommodating stores, kitchens, stables etc. Both the inner and outer courtyards are planned and embellished with Mughal garden elements including still water pools, flowing water channels, eye-catching fountains and spectacular baradaris. The most intriguing element of the fort is its half-octagonal timber entrance, which transforms into a balcony at the second floor and a guest room at the third floor."
The fort is being restored by the Historic Cities Programme.
Pakistan Project Brief. Lahore: Aga Khan Cultural Service - Pakistan, 2019.
As it enters its third decade of dedication to cultural development work in Pakistan, the mission of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC) has taken on renewed and heightened importance against the backdrop of the challenges that the country is facing, thereby emphasizing the importance of arts and culture in promoting understanding and collaboration among peoples inside and outside Pakistan, and thus, contribute to peace and security.
AKTC became active in Northern Pakistan in 1989, in response to concerns that the unique culture of the area was under threat due to developments that followed the completion of the Karakoram Highway in 1978. Increased accessibility to hitherto remote valleys of Gilgit-Baltistan, which were part of the old Central Asian Silk Route but which had remained inaccessible to vehicular traffic, coupled with the impact of tourism, introduced a rapid transformation of local customs and economic patterns, which called for new strategic development visions and adapted procedures capable of steering ongoing rapid change.
The Project Brief also details AKTC's involvement in the Walled City of Lahore including restoration work on Mughal heritage such as the Lahore Fort Picture Wall and Imperial Kitchens, the Shahi Hammam and Wazir Khan Mosque.