Considered the spiritual heartland of Bhutan, Bumthang is approximately two and half hours’ drive from Trongsa and eight hours drive from Thimphu. One can also take a domestic flight from Paro to access the district. Located at an altitude of 8530 - 13125 feet, Bumthang is the general name given to a complex of four valleys- Chumey, Choekhor, Tang and Ura. Choekhor and Chumey are agricultural valleys while Tang and Ura depend mostly on the animal husbandry. Bhutanese from all over the country visit here on pilgrimage to pay their respect and to be blessed in some of the oldest temples in Bhutan. The valley is very fertile and come of the best buckwheat and rice originates from here. Dairy farms, apple farms and bee keeping are also common to this valley. The valley is host to some of the post popular festival including Kurjey festival, Nimalung festival, Ura festival and Jambay Lhakhang festival featuring the famous naked dance. Detailed listing at events page. Wide range of hotels in available from budget hotels to luxury hotel. Scroll our hotel in Bumthang page to access a wide range of selection. If you are beer fan, don’t forget to try the Red Panda beer, locally produced in this valley.
Places to see in Bumthang.
Jambay Lhakhang: The temple is oneof the 108 temples built miraculously by a Tibetan King Songtsen Gompo in the 7th century in order to consecrate the Himalayan region. This is also the venue for popular Jambay Lhakhang Festival during October or November.
Kurjey Lhakhang: Kurjey is complex of three temples, on the right beneath a giant cypress tree, lies the main temple, built in 1652 by Minjur Tenpa, the Penlop of Trongsa. This temple houses the cave where Guru Rimpoche had meditated and left his body imprint. The middle temple was built by the first king of Bhutan during his tenure as Trongsa Penlop in 1900. The third temple was recently constructed under patronage of Her Majesty Queen Mother Ashi Kesang Wangchuk. This beautiful edifice is surrounded by 108 stupas and host to the famous the kurjey festival.
Thangbi Temple: Founded by Shamar Rinpochey in 1470, this temple is located amidst buckwheat field. It is said after a dispute the temple was taken over by Pema Lingpa from Shamar Rimpoche. It is approximately 17 Kilometers drive north of Kurjey Temple on an unpaved road to Toktu Zampa. You start your walk from here by crossing a small suspension bride and walk 20 minutes past fields of buckwheat to the Thangbi Temple. The temple is also the venue of Thangbi Festival.
Tamshing Temple: Located opposite Kurjey Lhakhang this temple was founded by Bhutan's own religious treasure discoverer, Terton Pema Lingpa in 1501. Believed to be the reincarnation of Guru Rinpoche, he discovered many religious treasures around the country. The mural paintings inside the temple are known to be un-restored ancient painting.
Konchogsum Temple: Ten minutes’ walk south will bring you to Konchogsum temple. The temple was restored in 1995 and looks new, but it actually dates back to 7th century. This temple has many interesting stories to tell.
Membertsho (Burning Lake): It is believed that Pema Lingpa in the early 16th century discovered many religious items from a pond here. It is approximately 20 minutes’ drive Bumthang town.
Ura Village: It is approximately 50 kilometers from Chokhor valley and takes about one and half hour to reach Ura. Located on a broad valley, the village is a cluster of traditional houses fenced by cobblestone streets that give the village a mediaeval atmosphere. The women in Ura village cover their head with white cloth piece to protect from the harsh cold wind and carries sheepskin (behind their back) used as cushion and as well as to protect their cloth from the loads they carry. This is the venue for Ura Yakchu Festival.
Tang Village: Tang remotest vvillage Bumthang’s . As it is higher than Choskhor and the soil is not as rice. There’s not much agriculture here, although the valley, thought which runs the Tang Chhu, turns bright pink with buck white flower in October. People in this valley raise sheep and at higher elevations, yaks. There is a small chorten here, but no longer a village. The road climbs high above the river. After a short descent to the river, it’s 3km to school at Mesithang and to Tang Rimpochen Lhakhang.
Jakar Dzong : Jaker Dzong is a picturesque fortress, overlooking the Choskhor valley. The current structure was built in in 1667 and is said to be the largest dzong in Bhutan, with a circumference of more than 1500 meters. Its official name is Yuelay Namgay Dzong in honor of the victory, over the troops of Tibetan ruler Phuntsho Namgay. The fottress is currrnelty the office of Governor of Bumthang.
Chankhar Temple: Located behind Jambay Lhakang, this temple is a site of palace of Indian King Sindhu Raja. It looks like a conventional village house. However ,prior the structure was built of iron, only in 14th century the temple was rebuilt in its current form by Dorji Lingpa.
Lhodrak Kharchhu Temple: located approximately three kilometers from chamkhar town , the temple was built by Namkhai Rimpoche in 1984. It would be interesting to visit to temple to witness the simple lives of monks.
Ugenchholing Palace: Located in Tang Village, the palace in its current form is a museum, which depicts the life of Trongsa penlop Tshokey Dorji.
Kunzangdrak Temple: The temple is dedicated to Saint Pema Lingpa, the treasure discoverer of Bhutan. It takes two hours to reach the temple from Chel Tang Village and makes for a pleasant walk. The temple houses some of important artifacts related to the saint, importantly the stone bearing his foot print.
Pelseling Monastery. The temple is a four hour trek from Jakar and considered very sacred because of its ri
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