Things To Do In Bhutan
Get surprised in the land of mystery and magic
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Adventure Activities Bhutan
Bhutan has more surprises hidden within its high east Himalayan Mountains than you can ever explore. But if one is there, they should try their best to try out all the typical as well as unusual things to do in Bhutan. The country has a lot to offer – hiking trails, old monasteries, sacred shrines, places to shop till you drop.
Here are the different things to do in Bhutan. Make sure there is enough time kept in the itinerary for these activities – it is better not to haste through them or miss them altogether.
1. Visiting the numerous dzongs of Bhutan
In Bhutan, dzongs are very important establishments throughout the country. They are fortress-monastery complexes with educational, spiritual and administrative centers, all in one. There are many such dzongs spread across Bhutan and visiting as many of them as the time and situation allow are one of the top things to do in Bhutan. Although the country practices freedom of religion, more than 75% of the communities follow some school of Buddhism. Among the different dzongs, Punakha, also known as the Palace of Great Happiness, is one of the most beautiful. Trongsa Dzong, the ancient seat of the Wangchuck dynasty, whose descendants are now the constitutional rulers of Bhutan, is a colossal and intricately beautiful dzong to visit.
2. Go for trekking
The winding paths within the high Himalayas have in store the best adventure activities in Bhutan. Amidst the snow-covered peaks, the exciting Bhutan trekking trails range from easier hikes through light woods and green fields to uphill climbs and dense forests. The Jomolhari trek is one of the best things to do in Bhutan. The trail follows an ancient trade route through the Jigme Dorji National Park to a view of the majestic Jomolhari peak right near the Tibetan border. The best thing about Bhutan is its diversity in the trekking landscape. The Bumthang Cultural Trek avoids the danger of steep paths and takes you through monasteries and shrines rich in Bhutanese heritage. For the wild at heart, the Snowman trek route is perfect – it is a small but notorious expedition through the remote Lunana district.
3. Watch or learn archery
Archery is Bhutan’s national sport, and needless to say, are very passionate about it. Every village has a field and a target for archery. Matches are often held between neighboring villages. While mostly men participate in their vibrantly colorful robes, women stand along the side to cheer and support their teams. Catching Bhutanese village people in their version of Sunday gully match is one of the most fun things to do in Bhutan.
4. Enjoy traditional festivals
Bhutan celebrates some very colorful and lively festivals. Tshechu is an important one celebrated in all the monasteries and dzongs, acknowledged on the tenth day of any Tibetan lunar month. Paro Tshechu is held every spring – it is the best thing to do in Bhutan in February or March. There are dancing, singing and various energetic performances with traditional music. If you want to witness one of these events, make sure there is one to be held during your time there.
5. Shop till you drop
The Bhutan shopping scene is vibrant and eclectic. From hand-woven textiles of Wangdue Phodrang to Himalayan Dzi beads, from Buddhist paintings, sculptures and thangkas to handcrafted wooden, bamboo and paper pulp products – Bhutan offers everything for the shopaholic in you. Once you get shopping for souvenirs in a market, it is hard to come out empty-handed from there.
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