Plan your journey to visit to Bhutan to coincide with one of the vibrant religious festivals, known as ‘tshechu’. Tshechu’s are celebrated to honor Guru Rimpoche, the precious teacher. This Indian saint traveled all over the Himalayas spreading tantric Buddhism. Invariably, the tshechu is celebrated on the10th day of the month in the Bhutanese lunar calendar, this being an auspicious date. The most famous festivals are the Paro festival in Spring and the Thimphu festival in Autumn because these are also the peak tourist times. However, every region and every village holds its own tsechu at different times of the year. Many colourful festivals take place in Punakha, already warm in the early Spring, Wangdi in the Autumn and Trongsa in the middle of Winter.
The festivities consist mainly of masked dances, chanting, blessing or reading religious texts aloud and last two or three days. The repertory of masked dances and the gorgeous silk and brocade costumes are the same for all the ‘tsechu’ – only the settings are different. The events take place outside and inside the Dzongs. Thronging with locals, these occasions are a visual delight for all to experience. The climax of the festivals is the unfurling of a huge silk appliqué ‘thangka’ from the top of the building. This takes place in on the final day of the festival. The Punakha Dromchoe, which is celebrated either before or after the Tsechu, is performed to commemorate victory over the Tibetans when they invaded in the 17th century.
Ace the Himalaya offers following Fetival Tours.