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The Late Fall Festivals of Bumthang

Scared celebrations in the kingdom’s spiritual heart  ~ 17 to 19 days
From late fall into winter’s cusp, the valleys of Bumthang resound with the clash of cymbals and deep horns indicating the return of the festival season. The well-attended Jambay Lhakhang Drup, the Thangbi Tshechu, Prakar Tshechu and the Ura Yakchoe, or yak festival, fill the air with splashes of color and the general orchestra of temple music as valley inhabitants turn out in the season’s best. Our attendance at one or more of these festivities honoring the saints and deities of Himalayan Buddhism offers a unique and privileged insight into the living culture of Bhutan.

Our Sacred Rhythms programs celebrate the religious festivals of the Bhutanese year. The color and pageantry of lush silks and brocades—and the dances and theater whose themes have remained unchanged since the 8th-century —are a vivid backdrop for a sacred time in a Bhutanese person’s life.

In spring, we attend Grand Paro Festival or the the Punakha Procession, known locally as the Serdra. Fall brings us to the Thimphu or Wangdue festivals. Closing the year with a splash of winter color is the Trongsa Tshechu. Join festive Bhutanese villagers at these fun-filled and exuberant celebrations of our enduring culture and myths.

bumthang_festival471x365 ITINERARY IN BRIEF
Day 1: Arrive at Paro, visit the National Museum.

Days 2 & 3: Transfer to Thimphu and explore the capital’s markets, museums and monuments.

Day 4: Transfer to Wangdue Valley, with stop at the 10,000-foot Dochula pass.

Days 5 & 6: Hike to Khamsum Temple and visit the “Hall of 100 Pillars”, transfer to Bumthang Valley.

Days 7 & 8: Walking tour of temples and monuments in Jakar valley, visit Chumey Weaving center.

Day 9: Hike to the “Burning Lake and Pemacholing Nunnery”.

Days 10 & 11: Attend performances at the festival.

Day 12: Transfer to Wangdue with a stop at Trongsa.

Day 13: Visit the Wangdue fortress and the temple of the “Divine Madman”.

Day 14: Transfer to Thimphu with free afternoon to wander downtown or relax at the hotel.

Day 15: Hike to Tango Buddhist college and transfer to Paro.

Day 16: Excursion to the newly opened valley of Haa.

Day 17: Visit the farm owned by the family of a senior Skykingdom guide featuring a traditional meal and tea service.

Day 18: Hike to Taktshang Tiger’s Nest Monastery.

Day 19: Return flight to Bangkok or another gateway city.