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Colourful Festivals In Bhutan

The religious festival, which means “tenth day” held annually in various temples, monasteries and dzongs throughout the country. This colorful religious event celebrated on the tenth day of a month of the lunar calendar corresponding to the birth anniversary of Guru Rinpoche and other permanent religious leader. The festivals in the Land of the Thunder Dragon are rich and happy expressions of its ancient Buddhist culture. Festival are grand events where entire communities come together to witness religious mask dances, receive blessings and socialize. It is believed that every Bhutanese people must attend a festival and witness the mask dances at least once to in order to receive blessings and wash away their sins. Every mask dance performed during the Tshechu has a special meaning and story behind it and many are based on stories and incidents as long as the eight century. The local Bhutanese people come to witness the religious festival, dress in their finest cloths and most resplendent jewelry of coral and turquoise. They pack picnic lunches in their traditional bamboo baskets and stay all day at the festival, which are usually held in the dzong and monasteries.

MONGAR TSHECHU

Festival Date : 2017-11-25 to 2017-11-28

Venue : Mongar Dzong, Mongar

The most exciting local event in Mongar is the annual three-day Tshechu that is held every November. People from as far as Trashigang and Lhuentse witness it. There are numerous local Tshechus in this region all with their own unique dances and traditions. They occur at various times throughout the year so visitors can be assured that no matter when they visit a fantastic and colorful local festival will be taking place.

TRASHIGANG TSHECHU

Festival Date : 2017-11-26 to 2017-11-29

Venue : Trashigang Dzong, Trashigang

Trashigahg Dzong was built by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel in the year 1651 and now houses the district administrative seat of the district and the central monk body. The dzong commands a remarkable view of the surrounding countryside and has played a pivotal role in the history of the country by defending the province from several Tibetan attracts that were launched from Tawang in Aurnachal Pradesh (India). There are many festival held in this region and among them Trashigang Tshechu or festival is the most important one. The three days festival highlight many religious mask dance and other religious cultural dance. People from all over Trashigang and the neighboring district of Trashi Yangtse and Samdrup Jongkhar attend the festival. The festival last for three days and the grand one is the final day where the giant thongdrol (scroll) of Guru Tshegay was unfurled for the public to receive blessing and pray for the health, wellbeing and protection from evil forces.

TRASHIYANGTSE TSHECHU

Festival Date : 2017-11-26 to 2017-11-28

Venue : Trashiyangtse Dzong, Trashiyangtse

The annual Trashiyangtse Tshechu is one of the most popular religious festival in Trashiyangtse. The festival is held in Trashiyangtse Dzong for three days. The festival is the celebration of the birth anniversary of Guru Rinpoche who visited Bhutan in the eight century. Guru Rinpoche was believed to visited many sites in Trashiyangtse and there are several amazing stories related to Guru Rinpoche and his activities in eastern Bhutan. During this three-day festival the monks performed many sacred mask dances along with cultural and religious dances. This annual festival is witnessed by thousands of people and more over during this three-day festival both local and visitors pay their homage and respect to Guru Rinpoche. 

CHORTEN KORA

Festival Date : 2018-03-02 to 2018-03-02

Venue : Chorten Kora, Trashiyangtse

The legend states that ‘a young girl from Tawang (India), believed to have been a Khandrom (dakini) agreed to be buried alive inside the Chorten. For this reason, a ritual known as Dakpa Kora is organized every year where hundreds of people from Tawang (Arunachal Pradesh, India)  known as the Dakpas and the local Bhutanese comes together to remember the living sacrificial death of the girl, pray and circumambulate. Moreover, the biggest activities during the festival is the circumambulating the Chorten Kora. This annual festival attracts many visitors from all around the country. It also provides visitors an opportunity to explore the unique cultural traditions of the eastern Bhutan and the colorful textile, which is famous in the eastern Bhutan. 

GOMKORA TSHECHU

Festival Date : 2018-03-25 to 2018-03-26

Venue : Gomphu Kora, Trashiyangtse

The sanctity of the two-day religious festival even draws the Dakpa tribe from neighboring Arunachael Pradesh (India). They endure days of travel on foot through rugged environs with entire families in tow. Some say the Dakpas have done this for more than a millennium, beginning shortly after Guru Padmasambhava sanctified the place in the 8th century A.D. The Guru is attributed to have said that devotees will flock to Gomphu Kora for eons to celebrate the triumph of good over evil.

LHUENTSE TSHECHU

Festival Date : 2018-12-15 to 2018-12-19

Venue : Lhuentse Dzong, Lhuentse

Almost every village in Lhuentse boasts of festivals that are unique and distinct from those in other communities in Bhutan. Two notable festivals are the Cha and the Ha festivals. They are celebrated to honor the deities and avert misfortunes. However, the most important festival is the annual three-day festival. The Tshechu is normally celebrated in the month of November and draws large numbers of people together for the religious celebrations. During the Tshechus attendees can cleanse their sins by watching masked dances and can also receive blessings from sacred relics that are publicly displayed.  One of the most interesting and visually appealing aspects of these Tshechus is the colorful attire of Kushithara that Lhuentse is famous for. You will come across various intricate and beautiful patterns of Kira and rich ornaments on display.

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