News & Upcoming Events

  • Shingkhar Rabney, Ura, Bumthang, 20th October, 24th October
  • Jakar Tshechu, Jakar Dzong, Choekhor, Bumthang, 22nd October, 25th October
  • Jambay Lhakhang Drup, Jambay Lhakhang, Choekhor, Bumthang, 29th October, 1st November
  • Sumdrang Kangsol, Sumdrang Lhakhang, Ura, Bumthang, 11th November, 13th November
  • Crane Festival, Gangtey Gonpa, Phobjikha, Wangduephodrang, 11th November
  • Mongar Tshechu, Mongar Dzong, Mongar, 20th November, 23rd November
  • Trashigang Tshechu, Trashigang Dzong, Trashigang, 21st November, 24th November
  • Tang Namkha Rabney, Tang Namkha, Lhakhang, Tang, Bumthang, 21st November, 23rd November
  • Jambay Lakhang Singye Cham, Jambay Lhakhang, Choekhor, Bumthang, 28th November
  • Chojam Rabney, Chojamrab Lhakhang, Tang, Bumthang, 27th November, 29th November
  • Nalakhar Tshechu, Ngaa Lhakhang, Choekhor, Bumthang, 28th November, 30th November
  • Pemagatshel Tshechu, Pemagatshel Dzong, Pemagatshel, 20th November, 23rd November
  • Trongsa Tshechu, Trongsa Dzong, Trongsa, 21st December, 23rd December
  • Lhuentse Tshechu, Lhuentse Dzong, Lhuentse, 21st December, 23rd December
  • Shingkhar Metochodpa, Shingkhar Lhakhang,Ura, Bumthang, 28th December
  • Nabji Lhakhang Drup, Nabji Lhakhang, Nabji, Trongsa, 28th December, 01st Jan 2013
  • Punakha Drubchhen, Punakha Dzong, Punakha, 15th February, 19th February
  • Punakha Tshechu, Punakha Dzong, Punakha, 20th February, 22nd February
  • Chhorten Kora, Tharpaling Lhakhang, Chummi, Bumthang, 25th February, 11th March
  • Gomphukora, Gom Kora Lhakhang, Trashigang, 20th March, 22nd March
  • Paro Tshechu, Rinpung Dzong, Paro, 23rd March, 27th March
  • Chhukha Tshechu, Chhukha Dzong, Chhukha, 25th March, 27th March
  • Ura Yakchoe, Ura Lhakhang, Bumthang, 21st April, 25th April
  • Nimalung Tshechu, Nimalung Dratshang, Chummi, Bumthang, 16th June, 18th June
  • Nimalung Tshechu, Kurjey Lhakhang, Choekhor, Bumthang, 18th June
  • Thimphu Drubchen, Tashi Chhodzong, Thimphu, 09th September, 13th September
  • Wangdue Tshechu, Wangdi Dzong, Wangduephodrang, 12th September, 14th September
  • Tamshing Phala Chhoepa, Tamshing Lhakhang, Choekhor, Bumthang, 13th September, 15th September
  • Thimphu Tshechu, Tashi Chhodzong, Thimphu, 14th September, 16th September
  • ThangbiI Mani, Tangbi Lhakhang, Choekor, Bumthang, 18th September, 20th September
  • Jambay Lhakhang Drup, Jambay Lhakhang, Choekhor, Bumthang, 18th October, 22nd October
  • Takin Festival, Damji, GASA, 21st October, 23st February
  • Crane Festival, Gangtey Gonpa, Phobjikha, Wangduephodrang, 11th November
  • Mongar Tshechu, Mongar Dzong, Mongar, 09th November, 12th November
  • Pemagatshel Tshechu, Pemagatshel Dzong, Pemagatshel, 09th November, 12th November
  • Trashigang Tshechu, Trashigang Dzong, Trashigang, 10th November, 13th November
  • Nalakhar Tshechu, Ngaa Lhakhang, Choekhor, Bumthang, 17th November, 19th November
  • Trongsa Tshechu, Trongsa Dzong, Trongsa, 09th January 14, 11th January 14
  • Lhuentse Tshechu, Lhuentse Dzong, Lhuentse, 09th January 14, 11th January 14
  • Takin Festival, Damji, Gasa, 21st February, 23rd February
  • Nomad Festival, Nagsephel, Bumthang, 23rd February, 25th February
  • Tharpaling Thongdrol, Tharpaling lhakhang,Chummi, bumthang, 25th February
  • Talo Tshechu, Talo gonpa, Punakha, 20th March, 22nd March
  • Zhemgang Tshechu, Zhemgang dzong,Zhemgang, 20th March, 23rd March
  • Domkhar Tshechu, Domkhar, chummi, Bumthang, 20th April, 22nd April
  • Rhododendron Festival, Lamperi Botanical Garden,Dochula, Thimphu, 11th May, 13th May
  • Kurjey Tshechu, Kurjey lhakhang, choekhor,Bumthang, 18th June
  • Haa Summer Festival, Town festival ground,Haa, 6th July, 8th July
  • Masutaki mushroomFestival, Ura,Bumthang, 17th August, 19th August
  • Tour of the dragon (bicycle race), Bumthang to Thimphu, 7th September
  • Gangtey Tshechu, Gangtey gonpa, phobjikha,Wangduephodrang, 13th September, 15th September
  • Gasa Tshechu, Gasa Dzong, Gasa, 14th September, 16th September
  • Jakar Tshechu, Jakar Dzong, Choekhor, Bumthang, 12th October, 15th October
  • Prakhar Duchhoed, Prakar Lhakhang, Chummi, Bumthang, 19th October, 21st October
  • Black necked crane Festival, Gangtey Gonpa, Phobjikha, Wangduephodrang, 11th November
  • Jambay lakhang Singye cham, Jambay lhakhang, choekhor, Bumthang, 17th November
  • Druk wangyel Tshechu, Dochula, Thimphu, 13th December
  • Nabji Lhakhang Drup, Nabji Lhakhang, Nabji, Trongsa, 15th January, 19th January 2014

People Society and Religion

The Bhutanese Society:

The Bhutanese society is an open one, free of class, caste or gender discrimination. The Bhutanese are a fun-loving people; dancing, singing, playing archery, stone pitching, partying, social gatherings etc. are common things that one observes. Visiting friends and relatives at any hour of the day without any advance notice or appointment clearly depicts the casual openness of the Bhutanese society.

 

Driglam Namzha, the traditional etiquette determines the general behavior and conduct. The Driglam Namzha dictates that the members of the society conduct themselves in a most modest and courteous manner, extending due curtsies to one’s superiors, those of the monastic order and the elderly. For instance, wearing a scarf when visiting a Dzong, letting the elders and the monks serve themselves first, offering felicitation scarves when someone gets a promotion, greeting the elders or senior officials before they wish you, etc. are some simple manners that synchronizes and defines the Bhutanese society.

 

In the Bhutanese society, the head is considered sacred and legs impure. So it is wrong to touch anyone’s head or stretch your feet in public. Normally, greetings are limited to saying Kuzuzangpo amongst equals. For seniors and elders, the Bhutanese bow their head a bit and say Kuzuzangpo-la. But of late, the western mannerism of shaking hands has caught on with people in the urban areas.

 

Religion:

Bhutan is the only country in the world where Mahayana Buddhism is observed as the state religion. Most Bhutanese are followers of Mahayana Buddhism and around two-thirds to three-quarters of the populace practice Drukpa Kagyupa or Nyingmapa Buddhism. Other religions are Hinduism which is mostly followed by some of the southern dwellers. Of late Christianity is emerging and gaining footing as well. Hinduism is practiced by one-quarter while Christians and non-religious group comprise less than 1 percent of the population.

 

Until the advent of Guru Rimpoche, a great saint who ensured the flourishing of Buddhism in Bhutan, the people practiced the shamanic religion of Mon Choed and Boen Choed, the evidence of which can be witnessed to this day in some of the practices of people in the rural pockets of Bhutan. One has to wait until the 7th century to find the earliest texts referring to the development of Buddhism in Bhutan. They relate the construction of Kyichu lhakhang in Paro and Jampa Lhakhang in Bumthang by the Tibetain King Songsten Gyembo who made some efforts to spread Buddhism. But it was only with the arrival of Guru Rinpoche who had been invited to cure an ailing King sometime in 747 that Buddhism really began to spread.

 

People:

The Bhutanese population is made up of a multi-ethnic and multi-lingual society. The extreme north east is home to the Brokpas, the semi-nomads of the villages of Merak and Sakteng. To the extreme north are the semi-nomadic Layaps who speak the Layapkha. The Doyas are another tribal community and are settled mostly in southern Bhutan. They are considered the aboriginal inhabitants of western and central Bhutan, who over the years settled in the present areas of Dorokha. They have a dialect of their own and dress in their own unique style.

 

To the east are the Tshanglas, popularly known as Sharchops or the easterners who speak Tshanglakha. The Kurtoeps  of Lhuntse are the other section of people in the east.

 

In the central pockets of Bhutan are the Bumthaps who speak Bumthapkha, Mangdeps who speak Mangdepkha and Khengpas who speak Khengkha.

 

In Western Bhutan are the Ngalops who speak Ngalopkha which is the polished version of Dzongkha – the national language of Bhutan.

 

And finally, down south are the Lhotshampas or the southerners who speak Lhotshamkha – the language of Nepal.