Taktsang MonastryEnglish Translation of the name:TIGER'S NEST
Location: 800M above Paro valley, western Bhutan
Taktsang is a Buddhist temple complex which clings to a cliff, 3120 meters above the sea level on the side of the upper Paro valley, Bhutan. Mountainous Paro valley is the heart of Bhutan; here the only international airport of the country is located. The Taktsang Palphug Monastery is one of the most famous touristic destinations of the country and the cultural icon of Bhutan. Visiting the Paro Taktsang Monastery will be an unforgettable experience due to its unique location and the views of surrounding majestic mountains and emerald green valleys.
The main peculiarity of the monastery is its isolated location. It is only accessible by mountainous paths. The remote location of the monastery makes it amazingly beautiful and unique, but also creates technical difficulties. However ponny can be arranged upon your demand.
Chhimi LhakhangEnglish Translation of the name:Temple of fertility
Location: 25 mins walk from road,Punakha:western Bhutan
Chimi Lhakhang stands on a round hillock and was built in 1499 by the 14th Drukpa, Ngawang Choegyel, after the site was blessed by the Divine Madman the maverick saint Drukpa Kuenley who built a chorten (which is a mound-like structure containing Buddhist relics) on the site. Thousands of people visit Chimi Lhakhang either to pray for children by those who are childless or to seek protection for children that they already have.
There are also anecdotes of tourists from the US and Europe who made the pilgrimage to Chimi Lhakhang and promptly got pregnant within a year after the visit. While Chimi Lhakhang is renowned for its fertility blessings, it also fulfils the other religious and spiritual needs of the Bhutanese.
Women who come to the monastery seeking blessings of children will get hit on the head by the presiding Lama with a 10-inch ivory, wood and bone phallus as well as the bow and arrow supposedly used by the Divine Madman, Drukpa Kuenley himself hundreds of years ago. To also get the name of the child to be born, women will pick random bamboo slips placed in the altar inscribed with names of boys and girls.
Tango MonastryEnglish Translation of the name:Horse Head Monastery
The Tango Monastery is a Buddhist monastery and only Buddhist University in Bhutan for Drukpa Kague Sect. it is located 14 kilometres (8.7 mi) to the north of the capital city of Thimphu in Bhutan, near Cheri Mountain. Founded in the 13th century and built in its present form by Tenzin Rabgye, the 4th Temporal Ruler in 1688. Many masters had meditated and visualized the self-emanated form of the wrathful Hayagriva, hence the name is given as Tango which means horse head.
MebartshoEnglish Translation of the name:Burning lake
According to the legend Terton Pema Lingpa(Treasure discoverer) jumped into the lake brought the treasures that Guru Rimpoche had hidden within the lake centuries earlier. However the people of Tang and the local ruler were cynical of his claims. In order to prove his claims, Pema Lingpa held a butter lamp in his hand as he jumped into the lake. After remaining under water for a long time he re-emerged holding a chest and a scroll of paper with the butter lamp held in his hand still burning bright. Thereafter, the lake came to be known as Mebartsho (the burning Lake).
The Burning Lake is located along the way to the Tang village over the feeder road under Bumthang valley. It takes approximately thirty minutes drive to the Mebar Tsho from Chamkhar town. Mebar Tsho is considered one of the most sacred sites in the region as it is related to the renowned religious treasure reveler (Terton) Terton Pema Lingpa. Pema Lingpa is considered an incarnated disciple of Padmasambhava who discovered treasure within the lake in late 15th century.
Today this small fresh water lake is a sacred pilgrimage site for the Bhutanese with bright multicolored prayer flags surrounding it and a small altar dedicated to Terton Pema Lingpa has also been set up. On auspicious days people offer butter lamps at the lake. Many tourist visit the site to observe spectacular beauty of this important historical and religious site. The local people believes that if one has a good karma, they can see some religious items in the lake.
Trashi ChoedzongEnglish Translation of the name:Fort of excellent religion
Built in 1641 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal,the fort is the capital of Bhutan and the summer residence of central monastic body. The capital was moved from Punakha to Thimphu, the present Dzong was rebuilt by the third king, Jigme Dorji Wangchuk, as the seat of Government following a different plan from the old one.Tashichoe Dzong has been the seat of Bhutan's government since 1968.
It presently houses the throne room and offices of the king, the cabinet secretariat and the ministries of home affairs and finance. Some other government departments are housed in buildings to the south of the Dzong, and others in new buildings in Thimphu. West of the dzong is a small tower of Ney Khang Lhakhang which houses a statue of Shakyamuni Buddha and protective deities.
Punakha DzongEnglish Translation of the name:Palace of Great Happiness
Punakha was the capital of Bhutan and the seat of government until 1955, when the capital was moved to Thimphu. It is about 72 km away from Thimphu and it takes about 3 hours by car from the capital Thimphu. Unlike Thimphu it is quite warm in winter and hot in summer. It is located at an elevation of 1,200 metres above sea level and rice is grown as the main crop along the river valleys of two main rivers of Bhutan, the Pho Chu(Male river) and Mo Chu(Female river). It is the country's most beautiful Dzong and the winter residence of Bhutan's Central Monastic Body led by HH the Je Khenpo.
The Dzong houses the most sacred relics of the Southern Drukpa Kagyu school including the Rangjung Kasarpani, and the sacred remains of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. In 1907, Punakha Dzong was the site of the coronation of Ugyen Wangchuck as the first King of Bhutan. Considering its sacredness, important events of the country such as Royal weddings and coronations are being held here first.