Thimphu Tsechu was initiated by the 4th Druk Desi (secular ruler of Bhutan), Gyalse Tenzin Rabgay in the 17th century. In the 1950s some changes were introduced in Thimphu Tshechu by the 3rd King of Bhutan, Jigme Dorji Wangchuck.
Tshechus are popular and colourful events where the entire community comes together to watch religious mask dances, receive blessings, and socialise. As well as the famous mask dances, tshechus also include colourful Bhutanese folk dances and other forms of entertainment.
Festival Date: 24th March – 26th March 2023
- Book now and save $100/Pax discount (*Offer valid only till 31Oct2022).
- Book in Groups of 4Pax get a special discount of additional $50/Pax on booking (*Total $150/Pax discount) – (*Offer valid only till 31Oct2022).
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Do contact VIJAY +6592700908(WHATSAPP) or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
EVENT START DATES:
- 19 – 25 March 2023
EVENT COST: (*SGTREK MEMBER GET $25/Pax Discount)
- 2-4Pax: SGD3325/Pax
- 5-8Pax: SGD2975/Pax
- 10Pax and Above: SGD2880/Pax
Book now and save $100/Pax discount (*Offer valid only till 31Oct2022).
Book in Groups of 4Pax get a special discount of additional $50/Pax on booking (*Total $150/Pax discount) – (*Offer valid only till 31Oct2022).
- KB 541 SINPBH 12:30 16:45
- KB 540 PBHSIN 08:05 16:10
SIN-PBH-SIN in economy
FLIGHT COST: SGD 1465/person inclusive of taxes and charges
*Airfare and taxes are subject to change without prior notice. Do check with us the prices during booking you tour with us.
Day 1: Arrive-Paro
Fly into Paro by DrukAir / Bhutan Airline After completing your immigration formalities, you will be received by our representative who will be your tour guide throughout your tour.
Then drive to hotel.
- National Museum, housed in the Ta Dzong (watchtower). Here an intriguing collection of artifacts provide a wonderful introduction to the rich culture and heritage of the Kingdom.
- Paro Dzong/ fortress that house district administrations office.
- In the evening stroll through the Paro town and visit local handicraft stores.
Overnight at Paro.
Day 2: A Day Hike to Taktsang Ghoempa (Tiger’s Nest Monastery)
After breakfast, hike up to Taktsang Monastery, also known as ‘Tiger’s Nest’. The walk up to the viewpoint will take about 1 – 1 ½ hrs depending on your fitness and from Viewpoint you will enjoy a spectacular view of the monastery clinging to the side of the cliff. Stop for refreshment at the Viewpoint Cafeteria. Then walk further up to the monastery which will take about 1 hour. It is said that in the 8th century Guru Rinpoche flew on the back of a tigress from eastern Bhutan to this place and meditated in a cave here for 3 months. The principal Lhakhang (monastery) of the present monastic complex dates from 1692. Taktsang was damaged severely by fire in 1998 but has now been fully restored to its former glory. After visiting the monastery, walk downhill back to the road on the way stop for lunch at the viewpoint cafeteria and then walk further downhill to the road point. Then drive to Drukgyel Dzong (fortress) that is situated on a ridge in the upper Paro valley which is 30-minute drive towards north from the Paro town. Drugyel Dzong also means “Fortress of Victorious Drukpas” which was built in 1649 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel. The Dzong had been served as an important base for defense in the region until 1951 when it was destroyed by fire. The ruins of the Dzong were continued to be protected as an important monument linking people of Bhutan with the great events that contributed to maintaining sovereignty of the country. Drukgyel Dzong was served solely for defensive purpose without administrative and religious functions, especially against external threats from the border.
The existing ruins of the Dzong are comparatively well preserved. One can without much difficulty understand or distinguish features of the complex. Although most of timber components of the Dzong such as roof truss, door and window frames, and floors and ceilings are almost totally absent, major portion of stone and rammed earth wall structures are still standing. They provide for visitors in understanding ideas and practices for defense in the olden times.The reconstruction of the fortress began in April, 2016 after the command of His Majesty the King, to celebrate the birth of His Royal Highness The Gyalsey, to commemorate the arrival of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in 1616 AD the birth year of Guru Rinpoche. The restoration work is estimated to be completed soon.
Farmhouse visits, Witness the real beauty of the Paro Valley by visiting the quaint farmhouses. All the Bhutanese farmhouses follow the same pattern and are decorative and traditional in style. They are built using mud and stone without the usage of any nail. A visit to these houses will be a different experience altogether and will offer you a glimpse into the lifestyle of a farmer.
Overnight at Paro.
Day 3: Paro – Punakha Approx 3 hrs 30 minutes’ drive
After breakfast we will drive to Punakha. On the way visit Tamchog Lhakhang Bridge
Located on the other side of the river of the Thimphu – Paro highway, one needs to cross an iron chain suspension bridge to get to the Lhakhang.
About 30-minute drive from Paro towards Thimphu city, Tamchog Lhakhang sits across the Paro River. The Lhakhang is approached by an iron chain suspension bridge. The Lhakhang and the bridge were constructed by a 13th century Tibetan saint Thangthong Gyalpo. The Buddhist saint was also a blacksmith and an architect. Of the many iron chain bridges built, there are only few lefts which are still used. Crossing this old bridge can be a thrilling experience for tourists. Some of the original iron chain links used to build this bridge can be found on display in the National Museum in Paro.
Further travel to Punakha through Dochula Pass 3140 m). In the clear spring sky, you can enjoy the panoramic view of the Himalayan Mountain ranges. Then pass by the beautiful 108 chortens built on the hill by Her Majesty Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck (Queen Mother of Bhutan) for the security and wellbeing of His Majesty, the King of Bhutan.
You will also visit Druk Wangyal Lhakhang (monastery) which was built by Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck (the Queen Mother of Bhutan) as a tribute to His Majesty the fourth King of Bhutan, Jigme Singye Wangchuck and armed forces after His Majesty led a successful operation against Indian militants who had occupied certain areas of Bhutan. The gallery of the Druk Wangyal Lhakhang has beautiful murals depicting some of the important events in the reigns of the Kings of Bhutan.
Then travel onto Punakha. Punakha has been inextricably linked to some of the most momentous events in the Bhutanese history and deserves its reputation as one of the most beautiful and significant regions at the heart of Bhutanese culture. Punakha had served as the capital of Bhutan from 1637 till 1907. The dzong is historically important and stands as the symbol for a unified Bhutan. On arrival check into hotel and later drive to fortress to witness festival. The Punakha Tshechu is one of the most popular Tshechus in the country. It is held right after the popular Punakha Drubchen. The unfurling of the thongdrol (a large tapestry) of Guru Rinpoche is the main attraction of the festival. It is believed that a mere sight of the thongdrol liberates an onlooker and cleanses him of his sins. Evening leisure time.
Overnight at Punakha
Day 4: Punakha Short Hike & Local sightseeing
After breakfast short hike and local sightseeing.
Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten Hike
A beautiful hike takes one to the regal Khamsum Yuelley Namgel Chorten, which was built to remove negative forces and promote peace, stability, and harmony in the changing world. The Chorten dominates the upper Punakha Valley with commanding views across the Mo Chhu and up towards the mountainous peaks of Gasa and beyond.
After lunch visit following place:
Drive towards limbukha village later walk across the suspension bridge (about 200m long) through fresh breeze and fascinating view of Dzong. Follow the farmhouses gradually climbing towards Dompala hills. The view of Dzong, Pho Chhu, Mo Chhu rivers and surrounding village is superb amidst chirpine forests. The climb is another two and a half hours to Limbukha. Limbukha farmers grow Bhutan’s famous red rice which is supposed to have medicinal values. This rice needs clean mountain spring so that the taste is good and nutritional value maintained. Limbukha is also known for its love of peace and tranquility. Legends says that during medieval wars the “limpus” or the people of Limbukha always volunteered as peace negotiators. This is also depicted during yearly festival called ‘Serda’ when the men are found carrying peace flags instead of swords and fireworks.
Overnight at Punakha.
Day 5: Punakha-Thimphu Approx 2 hrs 30 minutes’ drive.
After breakfast drive to Thimphu,On arrival at Thimphu check into your hotel and after refreshment visit the following:
- Kuensel Phodrang and visit tallest Buddha statue and enjoy the full view of Thimphu Valley below.
- Craft Bazaar -A one stop place to witness Bhutanese culture and buy Bhutan made art and craft product. The Bazaar in its 80 stalls covers all aspects of the traditional arts and crafts of Bhutan. At this Bazaar craftsmen and artisans from across the country display and sell their handicrafts. And visit other handicraft stores.
Takin Preserve, which houses the national animal the Takin that is only found in Bhutan. This is an extremely rare member of the goat family. Found in herds in the very high altitudes (13,125ft and over). They live on a diet of grass and bamboo. It can weigh as much as 550 pounds.
Overnight at Thimphu.
Day 06: Thimphu Festival & Local sightseeing
Today is a festival day so after breakfast we will leave to trashi chodzong to witness festival.
One of the biggest festivals in the country is the Thimphu Tshechu. This festival is held in the capital city for three days beginning on 10th day of the 8th month of lunar calendar. This Tshechu is witnessed by thousands of people many of which travel from neighboring Dzongkhags (districts) to attend the festivities. The actual Tshechu is preceded by days and nights of prayer and rituals to invoke the gods.
When it was initiated by the 4th Desi, Gyalse Tenzin Rabgay in 1867 the Tshechu consisted of only a few dances being performed strictly by monks. These were the Zhana chham and the Zhana Nga chham (Dances of the 21 Black Hats), Durdag (Dance of the Lords of the Cremation Ground), and the Tungam chham (Dance of the Terrifying Deities).
The Thimphu Tshechu underwent a change in the 1950s, when the third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, introduced numerous Boed chhams (mask dances performed by lay monks). These additions added colour and variation to the festival without compromising its spiritual significance. Mask dances like the Guru Tshengye (Eight Manifestations of Guru), Shaw Shachi (Dance of the Stags) are enjoyed because they are like stage-theater.
Equally important are the Atsaras, who are more than just mere clowns. The Atsaras are the dupthobs (acharyas), who provide protection. The dances and the jesting of the Atsaras are believed to entrance evil forces and prevent them from causing harm during Tshechus. Modern Atsaras also perform short skits to disseminate health and social awareness messages.
To farmers, the Tshechu is also seen as a break from farm life. It’s an occasion to celebrate, receive blessings and pray for health and happiness.
Latter after lunch we will visit following place:
Every Saturday and Sunday most of Thimphu’s scant population and many valley dwellers congregate on the banks of the river where weekend market is held. It is an interesting place to visit and provides opportunity to mingle with the local people.
National Sport of Bhutan (Archery)
One of the best places to witness a game of traditional and modern archery. Which is a national sport of Bhutan? If you want to take some good picture of archery match, then this is one of the best places to be.
Almost all the time there is a tournament being played
Overnight at Thimphu.
Day 07: Departure Approx 1 hr drive
After breakfast drive to Paro airport for the departure.
- Breakfast and dinner at respective hotels and lunch at local tourist standard restaurant
- Accommodation (Twin Bed / Double Bed sharing basis) in 3-star hotel
- All transportation within the country including airport transfers.
- Daily USD 200 per person / night Gov. Sustainable Development Fee
- Entrance fees for Museums and Monuments.
- English Speaking Local guide.
- Bhutan Visa fee
- International Flights
- Single room supplement charges SGD50 per room per night
- Insurance Premiums
- Payments for service provided on a personal basis
- Cost for any services not mentioned in the “Cost Include head”
- Cost incurred due to mishaps, strikes, political unrest etc.
- Personal expense in items such as laundry, soft drinks, Camera Charges, bottled water,
- Incidentals, Portage, Bellboy charges tips or any other services
3-star hotel we provide:
Thimphu: Hotel Migmar/ Hotel Lhayul or similar
Paro: Gawaling hotel / Paro Grand /Reema Resort or similar
Punakha: Drubchu resort/ Hotel Zhimkhang or similar
Note: The hotels are provided based on room availability during the time of tour confirmation.
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