Highlight about Festival: Tshechu means festival (“tenth day”) is Bhutanese festivals held every year in various temples monasteries and dzongs across the country. The Tshechu is mainly a religious event celebrated on tenth day of a month of lunar calendar corresponding to the birth day of Guru Rinpoche (Guru Padmasambhava), known as second Buddha. The festival depends place to place and temple to temple, according to Bhutanses calendar. Tshechus are large social gatherings where people from various villages come together to witness the religious mask dances which are based on incidents from as long as 8th century from the life of Guru Padmasambhava. All people wear colorful dress and come with picnic lunch. There are lot of other entertainments. People come tor receive blessings from lamas.
Festival held in Tashichhodzong (Fortress of the Glorious Religion). In 1216 the lama Gyalwa Lhanangpa built Dohon (Blue Stone) Dzong on the hill above Thimphu Where Dechen Phodrang now stands. A few years later Lama Phajo Drugom Shigpo, who brought the Drukpa Kagyu line age to Bhutan, took over Dohon Dzong. In 1641 the Zhabdrung (The one who unified the country) acquired the dzong from the descendants of lama Phajo and renamed it as Tashi Chhoe Dzong. He then arranged to house both monks and civil officials in the same Dzong. Present it is a seat of the national government and the Central Monastic Body, including the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot of Bhutan).
Day 01: Arrive Paro (By Druk Air flight): (Paro Sightseeing)
Day 02: Paro (Sightseeing) – Thimphu (Sightseeing)
Day 03: himphu (Sightseeing)
Day 04: Thimphu
Day 05: Thimphu
Day 06: Thimphu to Paro. Departure
Day 01: Arrive Paro (By Druk Air flight): (Paro Sightseeing)
Your tour guide representive from our company will receive you at the airport with Tashi Khadar and drive you the short distance to the hotel. After Tea, drive to Ta Dzong (built in1656 and renovated in 1968), an ancient watchtower, which now houses the National Museum. This unusual round building is said to be in the shape of a conch shell. The centerpiece of this Museum is a complex four-sided carving depicting the history of Buddhism and its propagation. One side is Sakyamuni and the great teacher Atisha, representing the Sakya School. On the next is Geylup, a disciple of Dalai Lama. Another is Nyingma lineage, the head is Guru Padmasanva, and the final is Drukpa Kagyu with the figure of Vajra Dhara. Below the museum is the Paro Rimpung Dzong (literally meaning “Heap of Jewels”, built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the centre of civil and religious authority in this valley. Here you can see finest example of Bhutanese architecture. Enroute visit Kichu Lhakhang, built in 659 A.D by the Tibetan king Srongsen Gampo. This Monastery is one of the 108 monasteries built across the Himalayan region by the Tibetan King to subdue the Demoness that lay across the Himalayan region. The rest of the monasteries lie in other neighboring countries. In the evening drive to the ruins of the Drukgyal Dzong, built in 1647 by the Great Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, father and unifier of medieval Bhutan, the dzong was destroyed by accidental fire and left in ruins as an evocative reminder of the great victories it was built to commemorate. Explore the ramparts and on a clear day experience an unforgettable view of Mt. Jhomolhari (7,314 m). Dinner and overnight in Hotel at Paro.
Day 02. Paro (Sightseeing) – Thimphu (Sightseeing)
After early breakfast, Excursion to Taktsang Monastery. A very special day, with an excursion to view the spectacular Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) monastery – After breakfast a short drive takes us to Satsam Chorten, from there a 1 hr. walk till the viewpoint point of the monastery. The trail climbs through beautiful pine forest, many of the trees festooned with Spanish moss, and an occasional grove of fluttering prayer flags. We stop for a rest and light refreshments at the Taktsang Jakhang (cafeteria) and then walk a short distance until we see, clearly and seemingly within reach, Taktsang monastery. The primary Lhakhang was built around Guru Rimpoche’s meditation cave in the 1684by the Penlop of Paro Gyaltse Tenzin Rabgay, this incredible monastery clings to the edge of a sheer rock cliff that plunges 900 meters into the valley below. Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava, the tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan, flew here on the back of a flying tiger, Dorji Drolo, said to be his favourite consort.
After lunch drive to Thimphu and visit the National Memorial Chorten (1974) built in honour of our late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk, “The Father of Modern Bhutan”. Built in a typical Tibetan style, there are numerous religious paintings and the complex tantric statues reflecting both the peaceful and wrathful aspects of Buddhist deities. This Chorten is also a center of worship for the people living in Thimphu. Then visit to Dupthop Lhakhang one of the few surviving nunneries in Bhutan. Visit Changkha Monastery (This monastery was built in 15th century by the lama Phajo Drugom Zhipo) where the new born child of Thimphu valley are taken to receive 1st blessing from a High Lama. Drive to Mini Zoo where Takin, the national animal of Bhutan can be seen. This particular animal is found only in the Himalayan region and the head of this animal looks like that of a goat and body of a cow/yak and before sun set drive to Sangay gang view point (2685 meters) to have view of whole Thimphu valley and walk through hundreds of colourful prayer flags that dot the hill over looking the Thimphu valley. Dinner and Overnight in Hotel at Thimphu.
Day 03. Thimphu (Sightseeing)
After breakfast, drive to Tashichodzong and whole day witness the festival.
Evening visit the National Library, stocked with ancient Buddhist manuscripts, and the Painting School where traditional art is still kept alive through instructions in the art of painting Thangkas (sacred Buddhist religious scrolls).We can visit in different class rooms, where different students follows a comprehensive course that starts with drawing and progresses through painting, wood and slate curving, and statue making. Visit Traditional Medicine Institute where medicines are prepared according to ancient practices. Visit Handicraft Emporium for shopping Bhutanese Various Arts and Textiles.
In the evening, visit to the Tashichho Dzong Dinner and overnight in Hotel.
Day 04. Thimphu
After breakfast drive to Tahichhodzong and whole day witness festival. Dinner and overnight in Hotel
Day 05. Thimphu
After lunch visit we will hike to Tango Monastery. The trail Tango is a climb of 280 meters and it takes an hour to reach the monastery. Lama Gyalwa Lhanampa founded the monastery in 12th century. The present building was built in 15th century by the “Divine madman”. This is one of the best places for meditation. Evening drive to Buddha point to view whole Thimphu valley. Dinner and overnight in Hotel.
Day 06. Thimphu to Paro. Departure
Early breakfast, drive to Airport and farewell.