One of the main attractions of the kingdom is its annual religious festivals, the tsechus celebrated to honor Guru Padmasambhava (more commonly referred to as "Guru Rinpoche"). All of Guru Rinpoche's great deeds are believed to have taken place on the 10th day of the month, which is the meaning of the word tsechu. Tsechus are celebrated for several days and are the occasion for dances that are clearly defined in religious content. The religious dances called "cham" can be grouped into three broad categories: dramas with a moral, dances for purification and protection from harmful spirits and dances that proclaim the victory of Buddhism and the glory of Guru Rinpoche. The dancers, either monks or laymen, wear spectacular costumes of bright silk or brocade, ornate hats and extraordinary masks.

Another highlight of the Tsechus are the Atsaras or clowns who are believed to represent Acharyas, religious masters of India. They confront the monks, toss out salacious jokes, and distract the crowd with their antics whenever the religious dances begin to grow tedious. They are the only people permitted to mock religion in a society where sacred matters are treated with the highest respect.

For the Bhutanese, attendance at religious festivals offers an opportunity to become immersed in the meaning of their religion and to gain much merit. The festivals are also occasions for seeing people, and for being seen, for social exchanges, and for flaunting success.





Nomad Festival


23rd February

Bhutan International Marathon 

(Annual event organized by bhutan olympic committee)

5th March

Punakha Drubchen

Punakha Dzong, Punakha

14th - 16th February

Punakha Tshechu

Punakha Dzong, Punakha

09-13 Jan,12

Shingkhar Metochodpa

Shingkhar Lhakhang, Ura, Bumthang

09 Jan,12


Punakhadzong, Punakha

17th -19th February


Tharpalinglhakhang, chhumi, bumthang

22nd February

Chhorten Kora

Chortenkora, Trashiyangtshe

22ndfebruary & 9thmarch


Gomkoralhakhang, Trashigang

17th -18th march


Talogonpo, punakha

16th -18th march


Gasadzong, Gasa

14th -17th march


Zhemgangdzong, zhemgang

16th -18th march


Rinpungdzong, Paro

19th – 23rd march

Rhododendron Festival

Lamperi botanical garden, Dochula, thimphu

18th -20thapril


Domkhar, chummi, bumthang

16th -18thapril


Uralhakhang, Bumthang

18th -23rdapril

Saktang festival

Saktangkhakhang, Trashigang

12th -16thjune


Nimalungdratshang, Chummi, bumthang

13th -15thjune


Drametse, mongar

12th -24thjune

Jambay Lhakhang Drub

Kurjeylhakhang, choekhor


Haa summer Festival

Town festival ground, haa



Meraklhakhang, Trashigang

2nd -3rd august

Masutake Mushroom festival

Ura, bumthang

22nd – 23rd august

Chha festival


15th -19th august

Tour of the dragon (bicycle race)

Bumthang to thimphu

3rd september


Tencholing army ground, Wangduephodrang

9th – 11thseptember


Tashichhodzong, Thimphu



Gangteygonpa, phobjikha, wanduephodrang

9th -11thoctober

Tamshingphala Chhoepa

Tamshinglhakhang, Choekhor, bumthang

11th -13thoctober


Tashichhodzong, Thimphu



Tangbilhakhang, choekor, Bumthang

14th -17thoctober


Prakarlhakhang, chummi, Bumthang

17th -18thoctober

Jomolhari mountain festival


7th -8thoctober


Chhukhadzong, chhukha

7th -9thnovember


Jakardzong, choekhor, bumthang

6th -10thnovember


Pemagatsheldzong, Pemagatshel

6th -10thnovember

Black necked crane Festival

Gangteygonpa, phobjikha, Wangduephodrang


Mongartshechu Festival

Mongardzong, mongar

6th -9thnovember


Trashigangdzong, trashigang

7th -11thnovember


Ngaalhakhang, choekhor, bumthang

14th -15thnovember

Jambaylhakhang Drup

Jambaylhakhang, choekhor, Bumthang

14th -17thnovember


Drametse, mongar

11th -14th december

Drukwangyel Tshechu

Dochula, thimphu

13th december


Trongsadzong, trongsa



Lhuentsedzong, Lhuentse

7th -11thdecember



19th -23rd december

NOTE: - Religious festival dates are tentative, please confirm with your tour operator prior Tentative Festival Dates for 2017 to booking your holiday.

Black Necked Cranes Festival:
The Blacked Necked Crane Festival is held anually on 11th November coinciding with the Birth Anniversary of His Majesty the Fourth King Jigme Singye Wangchuck ,at Gangtey, Phobjikha. The festival date has been fixed for 11th November so that the locals and students can participate in it too.


Festival Custom:
Festivals are religious events. The ground where they are held is purified and blessed by lamas, so when you are watching a festival you are, in essence, on the perimeter of an outdoor religious ground. The dancers, whether monks or laymen, are in a state of meditation. They transform themselves into the deities which they represent on the dance ground. They generate a spiritual power, which cleanses, purifies, enlightens and blesses the spectators.
With this in mind, it should be clear that obtrusive, disrespectful or discourteous behavior is out of place. Remember, too, that smoking is not permitted in public places in Bhutan. The dance ground is not a place to eat, drink, talk or laugh loudly at inappropriate times, flash cameras or intrude on the dance space. Common courtesy should rule one's action when photographing dances or onlookers.
Festivals are not pageants or entertainment events. They are not held as tourist attractions. They are genuine manifestations of religious traditions thousands of years old which outsiders are given the privilege of witnessing.
Festivals are held all the year round at temples, dzongs and monasteries throughout Bhutan. Attendance at one of these religious events provides an opportunity for the outsider to experience the extraordinary.

Travel Guide!!

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