Bhutan is rich in cultural diversity and this richness is further enhanced by the wide variety of elaborate and colorful religious festivals that are celebrated throughout the country. Every village is known for their unique festival though the most widely known is the annual Tshechu, meaning a religious festival. One of the main attractions in the Kingdom is its annual religious festivals, known as TSHECHUS, which is considered auspicious. Tshechus are usually occasions to mark important events in the life of the second Buddha, the Indian/Pakistani Tantric master known as Guru Rinpoche or the Precious Gem. Various mask dances are performed together with songs and dances for three days. The Tshechus are celebrated for three to five days and the mask dances are performed by monks and lay-people. Tshechu is a very colorful event where villagers and the general populace dressed in their finest clothes and jewellery, congregate at their local temples and monasteries were these festivals take place, socialize and make merry.
These religious celebrations are lively, high-spirited affairs during which people share meals of red rice, spicy pork, Ema Datshi and Momos (dumplings) whilst drinking the heady traditional rice wine known as Ara. These occasions provide the villagers with a respite from the hard labor of their day to day lives and gives the community an opportunity to catch up with family and friends. More importantly, people go to tshechus, as it being a religious festival, to gain merits. Two of the most popular Tshechus are held in Paro in the spring and Thimphu in the autumn, but there are various others all the year around at Dzongs, temples and monasteries throughout Bhutan. Staged at different places at different times of the year, the festivals provide an opportunity for visitors to experience the extraordinary.
9 Day Thimphu TSHECHU Tour Package
Day 1: Arrive at Paro.
To the hotel in Paro town. Visit Paro town and drive towards Paro Rinpung Dzong and onward to the National Museum.
Overnight at Paro.
Day 2: Paro to Thimphu
Drive to view Simtokha Dzong, return to Thimphu town. In the afternoon, drive to Radio tower offering splendid views of Thimphu town and Tashichho Dzong and on the way back down to the town visit Takin Takim, the national animal of Bhutan. Overnight at Thimphu.
Day 3: Thimphu
In the morning drive to Budhha point offering splendid views of Thimphu town and Tashichho Dzong, and a twin of snow clad mountain peaks towards the north of Thimphu town (on a clear sky day). In the afternoon, visit the National Memorial Chorten, the National Library, the School of Painting or the Folk Heritage Museum. Leisurely evening. Overnight at Thimphu.
Day 4: Thimphu
To Tashichho Dzong in the morning and be a part of the Thimphu festival celebration. The festival is held in the courtyard of the Tashichho Dzong. The office of His Majesty the King, the throne room, the living quarters of the monk body and its Chief Abbot and a couple of ministries are housed in this Secretariat premise.
Day 5: Thimphu to Punakha
Drive to Punakha, the old capital of Bhutan through Dochu La, mountain pass at 3050m (10,000ft). Stop over at Dochu La pass for a hot drink and enjoy spectacular panoramic views of the Himalayan Mountain range. Continue driving towards Punakha and stop over for a short excursion to Chimi Lhakhang (Temple of Fertility) which was built in the 15th century by the ‘Divine Madman’ (Lama Drukpa Kuenley). In the late afternoon visit Punakha Dzong, located in beween Phochu and Mochu rivers. Leisurely evening. Overnight stay at Punakha.
Day 6: Punakha to Phobjikha
Drive to Phobjikha valley and enjoy the views of the breathtakingly beautiful and remote valley, which is the winter roosting ground of the migratory Black Necked Crane, one of the endangered bird species; and the black mountain range. Visit Gangtey Gompa, one of Bhutan’s oldest monasteries. Overnight at Phobjikha.
Day 7: Phobjikha to Paro
Return to Paro through Wangduphodrang and stop over for refreshment. Leisurely evening. Overnight at Paro
Day 8 Paro
A day excursion to the ‘Tiger’s Nest’, the sacred Taktshang monastery, 900 metres from the base. Lunch at the Taktshang cafeteria while enjoying a spectacular view of the monastery. Overnight at Paro.
Early morning to the airport for onward destination.
13 day Recuperation Tour in Kyth pai Druk Yul
Day 1: Paro
Arrive at Paro. Transfer to the hotel. Leisurely walk around Paro town in the Evening. Overnight stay at Paro.
Day 2: Paro
Excursion to Taktshang Monastery (Tiger’s Nest) and sights seeing. Overnight at the Hotel.
Day 3: Paro – Thimphu
Morning drive to Thimphu. Afternoon sightseeing of the Thimphu valley. Leisurely walk around the Paro town in the Evening. Overnight stay at Thimphu.
Day 4: Thimphu
Thimphu valley sightseeing. Overnight at Thimphu.
Day 5: Thimphu – Punakha
Drive to Punakha through Dochula pass (3100m), from where you can enjoy a panoramic view of the northern Himalayan range on clear days. Visit Punakha Dzong and take a short hike to Chorten Ningpo which is linked to Drukpa Kuenley, better known as the “divine madman”. Stay overnight at Punakha.
Day 6: Punakha
In the morning visit Punakha Dzong and moderate hike through paddy fields to Kham sum Yuelay Namgyal Chorten. Explore Nobgang village in the afternoon. Leisurely walk in the evening and overnight stay at Punakaha.
Day 7: Punakha – Phobjikha
In the morning drive towards Gangtey in Phobjikha valley, the winter roosting ground of Black Necked Crane, one of the endangered bird species. Drive to Trongsa and en-route, stop over to view Chendebji Chorten. Visit Ta-Dzong.
Overnight stay at Punakha.
Day 8: Phobjikha – Bumthang
Drive to Bumthang. En-route visit the woollen textile store at Chumey valley. Overnight at Bumthang.
Day 9: Bumthang
Sightseeing of Bumthang valley and excursion to Tang valley. Overnight at Bumthang.
Day 10: Bumthang – Mongar
Drive to Mongar through ‘Thrumshingla Pass‘– Bhutan’s highest mountain pass at an elevation of 3750m (12,400ft). Visit Mongar Dzong and onward to Mongar town. Overnight at Mongar.
Day 12: Tashigang
Day’s exploration of Tashigang in the morning and afternoon at leisure. Overnight at Tashigang.
Day 13: Tashigang – Samdrup Jongkhar
Drive to Samdrup Jongkhar, and en-route visit Zangdopelri Temple at Kanglung. Farewell dinner and overnight at Samdrup Jongkhar.
Day 14: Samdrup Jongkhar – Gauhati
Onwards to Gauhati (India) for departure to onward destination(s). Legpai Drukyul staff will help you complete airport check in formalities.
4 day Breather Tour in the Land of the Thunder Dragon
Day 1: Paro Airport to Thimphu, the capital city of Bhutan.
In the evening stop for tea in a local restaurant and have free time to walk around Thimphu town. Overnight stay at hotel in Thimphu. Altitude: 2400m
Day 2: Thimphu Sightseeing
Visit National Library, Arts and crafts school, National Institute of Traditional Medicine, National Memorial Chorten (stupa) that is both a memorial to the Late King (“the father of modern Bhutan”) and a monument to world peace, Tashichhodzong, Folk Heritage, National Textile Museums and Handicrafts Emporium. Overnight at stay at hotel in Thimphu
Day 3: Paro sightseeing
Drive to Paro and hike toTiger’s Nest temple. After lunch hike back till the road and drive back to the hotel. Visit the national museum and the fortress of Paro. Overnight stay at hotel in Paro. Altitude: 2200m
Early morning flight from the Paro International Airport to onward destination