The Tsechu is a festival in honor of Padmasambava – “one who was born from a Lotus flower”, popularly known as “Guru Rinpoche”, the precious Teacher. This saint contributed enormously to the diffusion of Tantirc Buddhism in the Himalayan regions of Tibet , Nepal , Bhutan etc. around 800 A.D. The Tsechu is a religious festival and by attending it, it is believed one gains merits. It is also a yearly social gathering where the people gather to rejoice, dressed in finery. The Thimphu Tsechu was established by the 4th Temporal Ruler, Tenzing Rabgye (1638-1696) in 1670 on the 8th month of Bhutanese calendar to commemorate the birth of Guru Rinpoche. In order that Bhutan can rejoice in continued happiness, many learned lamas established the tradition of these dances. The deities of the Tantric teaching are invoked during these dances. Through their power and benediction, all misfortunes are annihilated, and peace and happiness reign.
Festival Tours in Bhutan offer Tourists a complete insight into the nation’s vibrant religion & Culture. The most popular events in the cultural itinerary are the Thimphu , Paro, Punakha, Wangdue and Bumthang Tshechus/Festival. Tsechus are weeklong festivals where the teachings of Padmasambhava are imparted to the deity through mask dances. The other attraction of Festival tours is to meet the rural Bhutanese in their quaint hamlets and see first hand their way of life. Here one gets the opportunity to intermingle with the average Bhutanese and to enjoy their hospitality.
Adventure Discovery Travel and Treks has an extensive choice of activities especially designed to enjoy tours, treks and cultural events. Information can be obtained from us as to which exacting festival, tour or trek will be of interest to you
Day 01: Arrive Paro Airport
During the journey, one will experience breath-taking view of Mount Everest, Kanchenjunga and other famous Himalayan peaks including the sacred Jumolhari and Mount Jichu Drake in Bhutan. On arrival at Paro International Airport, you will be received by your tour operator and take you to Thimphu which is 60 km from Paro Airport and about 2 hours drive. The drive to Thimphu takes you along the Paro Chu (Chu means water or river) down stream to the confluence with the Wang Chu, then turn upstream and travel along the Wang Chu to Thimphu. Overnight at hotel in Thimphu.
Day 02: In Thimphu
Visit the Memorial Chorten (a huge stupa) built in memory of the third King of Bhutan who ruled the Kingdom from 1952-1972. Visit the National Library where ancient manuscripts are preserved Visit the Wood Craft and Painting School where traditional arts and crafts are still kept alive. Visit the handicrafts Emporium where Bhutanese textiles and other arts and crafts are displayed and can be purchased. Visit Simtokha Dzong. This is one of the oldest fortresses in Bhutan. It was built by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in 1629 A.D. Overnight at hotel in Thimphu.
Day 03: Thimphu Tshechu
After an early breakfast attend the first day of the Tshechu, which is held in the courtyard of Tashichho Dzong. This is the main Secretariat Building, where the government ministries, the office of His Majesty the King, the Throne Room, the offices and living quarters of the monk body and its Chief Abbot are housed. Lunch at the hotel and watch Thimphu Tshechu. Evening stroll through Thimphu Town. Overnight at hotel in Thimphu.
Day 04 Thimphu Tshechu
Attend festival. Overnight at hotel in Thimphu.
Day 05: Thimphu Tshechu
Attend full day festival or you can go around in Thimphu for shopping. Overnight at hotel in Thimphu.
Day 06: In Thimphu
In the morning you can hike to Tango Monastery, which was built by the “Divine Madman” in the 15th century. It’s a center of study for monks, and it affords a great view of the Thimphu Valley . On the grounds of the monastery is a “sin-testing” tunnel–it is said that if you have sinned, you will get stuck in the tunnel, and if you are without sin, you will go through with ease! After lunch, you can hike to Cheri Monastery, which was built in 1620 and housed the first monk body. The Shabdrung’s father’s ashes are contained inside the monastery. Overnight hotel in Thimphu. Overnight at hotel in Thimphu.
Day 07: Thimphu to Punakha
After breakfast you will drive to Punakha, with a stop en route for tea at Dochu La (3,100 meters), where on a clear day you can get spectacular views of the Himalayas. After lunch you will drive to Punakha, the former capital of Bhutan , and visit Punakha Dzong, which is noteworthy both for being one of the most beautiful dzongs in Bhutan and also for having been built by the first Shabdrung in 1637. On the way stop at Metshina Village and take a 20-minute walk through the rice fields to Chimi Lakhang, which is a fertility temple, founded by Drukpa Kuenly who is popularly known as the “Devine Madman”. Overnight hotel in Punakha.
Day 08: Punakha to Paro
After breakfast drive to Paro. After lunch in Paro, visit the following places of interest: The National Museum (Ta-Dzong). This was actually the Watch Tower of the Paro Rinpung Dzong. It was converted to the National Museum in l968. Visit the Rinpung Dzong. This massive fortress is located on a hilltop above the Pachu (Paro River) in the Paro Valley. It houses the District Administration Office and the District Monk Body. It was built in 1645 AD. Overnight at hotel in Paro.
Day 09: In Paro Hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery
After breakfast, hike to Taktsang or the “tiger’s nest” monastery perched precariously on the cliff 900m above the floor of the Paro valley. It is the most famous monastery in Bhutan . It is said that Guru Rinpoche, the great Indian saint, have flown to the site of the monastery from eastern Bhutan, on the back of a tigress and meditated here for three months. Overnight at hotel in Paro.
Day 10: Paro Departure
Seen off by your tour guide or tour operator.
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