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Festivals


In addition to the standard Buddhist festivals, there are yearly festivals celebrated with great fanfare in each district. The most renowned of these are the Tsechu (10th day) festivals, commemorating Padmasambhava, locally referred to as 'Guru Rimpoche' this eighth century master, introduced the Nyingma school of Buddhism in Bhutan. Most festivals lasts from three to five days - one of which, usually, falls on the 10th day of the lunar calendar.

Guru

The regional Dzong and remote village communities hold their distinct annual Tsechu festival, providing the local populace with a wonderful occasion to dress up, gather together, and enjoy, in a convivial light-hearted atmosphere. It is also an occasion to renew their faith and receive blessings by watching the sacred dances, or receiving 'empowerment' from a lama or Buddhist monk.

The dances, each aspect of which has a symbolic meaning, are performed by trained monks and laymen wearing ornate costumes, and, in some cases, impressive masks. At Paro, Wangdu, Mongar and Tashigang, among other places, a large 'thanka' scroll known as a Tongdrol is exhihited for a few hours, at day break of the final day of the festival, enabling the people to obtain its blessing, since such scrolls confer liberation by the mere sight of it.

TENTATIVE FESTIVAL DATES FOR 2012, 2013 & 2014 - Updated (Provided by Association of Bhutanese Tour Operators)

SN FESTIVAL PLACE 2013 2014
1 TAKIN FESTIVAL Damji, GASA 21st - 23rd February  
2 NOMAD FESTIVAL Nagsephel, BUMTHANG 23rd - 25th February  
3 PUNAKHA DRUBCHEN Punakha Dzong, PUNAKHA 15th - 19th February 6th - 10th March
4 PUNAKHA TSHECHU Punakha Dzong, PUNAKHA 20th - 22nd February 11th - 13th March
5 THARPALING THONGDROL Tharpaling Lhakhang, Chummi, BUMTHANG 25th February  
6 BULLI MANI (CHUMMI) Buli Lhakhang, Chummi, BUMTHANG    
7 CHHORTEN KORA Chorten Kora, TRASHIYANGTSHE 25th February & 11th March 16th March & 30th March
8 GADEN CHODPA (URA) Gaden Lhakhang, Ura, BUMTHANG    
9 GOMPHUKORA Gom Kora Lhakhang,TRASHIGANG   7th - 9th April
10 TALO TSHECHU Talo Gonpa,PUNAKHA 20th - 22nd March  
11 ZHEMGANG TSHECHU Zhemgang Dzong, ZHEMGANG 20th - 23rd March  
12 PARO TSHECHU Rinpung Dzong, PARO 23rd - 27th March 11th - 15th April
13 CHHUKHA TSHECHU Chhukha Dzong, CHHUKHA 25th - 27th March 13th - 15th April
14 DOMKHAR TSHECHU Domkhar, Chummi, BUMTHANG 20th - 22nd April  
15 RHODODENDRON FESTIVAL Lamperi Botanical Garde, Dochula, THIMPHU 11th - 13th May  
16 URA YAKCHOE Ura Lhakhang, BUMTHANG 21st - 25th April 10th - 14th May
17 PADSEL-LING KUCHOD Padsel-ling Gonpa, Choekhor, BUMTHANG    
18 TAKIN FESTIVAL Tsharijathang, Laya (JDNP) GASA    
19 NIMALUNG TSHECHU Nimalung Dratshang, Chummi, BUMTHANG 16th - 18th June 5th - 7th June
20 KURJEY TSHECHU Kurjey Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG 18th June 7th June
21 HAA SUMMER FESTIVAL Town Festival Ground, HAA 6th - 8th July  
22 MASUTAKI MUSHROOM FESTIVAL Ura, BUMTHANG 17th - 19th August  
23 TOUR OF THE DRAGON (BICYCLE RACE) Bumthang to Thimphu 7th September 6th September
24 THIMPHU DRUBCHEN Tashi Chhodzong, THIMPHU 9th - 13th September 28th Sept. - 2nd October
25 WANGDUE TSHECHU Tencholing Army Ground, WANGDUEPHODRANG 12th - 14th September 1st - 3rd October
26 GANGTEY TSHECHU Gangtey Gonpa, Phobjikha, WANGDUEPHODRANG 13th - 15th September  
27 TAMSHING PHALA CHHOEPA Tamshing Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG 13th - 15th September 2nd - 4th October
28 THIMPHU TSHECHU Tashi Chhodzong, THIMPHU 14th - 16th September 3rd - 5th October
29 GASA TSHECHU Gasa Dzong, GASA 14th - 16th September 3rd - 5th October
30 THANGBI MANI Tangbi Lhakhang, Choekor, BUMTHANG 18th - 20th September 7th - 9th October
31 SHINGKHAR RABNEY URA, BUMTHANG    
32 JAKAR TSHECHU Jakar Dzong, Choekhor, BUMTHANG 12th - 15th October  
33 JAMBAY LHAKHANG DRUP Jambay Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG 18th - 22nd October 6th - 10th November
34 PRAKHAR DUCHHOED Prakar Lhakhang, Chummi, BUMTHANG 19th - 21st October 7th - 9th November
35 BLACK NECKED CRANE FESTIVAL Gangtey Gonpa, Phobjikha, WANGDUEPHODRANG 11th November 11th November
36 SUMDRANG KANGSOL Sumdrang Lhakhang, Ura, BUMTHANG    
37 CRANE FESTIVAL Gangtey Gonpa, Phobjikha, WANGDUEPHODRANG    
38 MONGAR TSHECHU Mongar Dzong, MONGAR 9th - 12th November 28th Nov. - 1st December
39 TRASHIGANG TSHECHU Trashigang Dzong, TRASHIGANG 10th - 13th November 29th Nov. - 2nd December
40 TANG NAMKHA RABNEY Tang Namkha, Lhakhang, TANG, BUMTHANG    
41 JAMBAY LAKHANG SINGYE CHAM Jambay Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG 17th November  
42 CHOJAM RABNEY Chojamrab Lhakhang, TANG, BUMTHANG    
43 NALAKHAR TSHECHU Ngaa Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG 17th - 19th November 6th - 8th December
44 PEMAGATSHEL TSHECHU Pemagatshel Dzong, PEMAGATSHEL 9th - 12th November  
45 DRUK WANGYEL TSHECHU Dochula, Thimphu 13th December 13th December
46 TRONGSA TSHECHU Trongsa Dzong, TRONGSA 9th - 11th January 2014 30th Dec. - 1st January 2015
47 LHUENTSE TSHECHU Lhuentse Dzong, LHUENTSE 9th - 11th January 2014 30th Dec. - 1st January 2015
48 SHINGKHAR METOCHODPA Shingkhar Lhakhang,Ura, BUMTHANG    
49 NABJI LHAKHANG DRUP Nabji Lhakhang, Nabji, TRONGSA 15th - 19th January 2014  

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