Festivals in Bhutan

The Bhutanese people are highly festive as they strongly believe in their age-old customs and traditions. The festivals bring smile on their faces. The Bhutanese celebrate their festivals with huge pomp and show. They dance, sing and eat, and follow customs which are inextricably associated with these festivals. Watching them perform these festivals is a delightful and intriguing sight.

Dromche
Dromche (festival) generally includes dances and this festival is dedicated to Yeshe Gompo (Mahakala) or Palden Lhamo, the two main protective deities of Drukpas (Drukpas = means people of Druk land or Bhutanese). Punakha Dromche take place in the first month of the lunar year and ends with 'Serda', a magnificent procession which re-enacts an episode of the war against the Tibetan in the 17th century. 

Jambay Lhakhang Drup
The festival is held for duel reasons; to commemorate an establishment of Jambay Lhakhang (temple) in 7 th century and to honor Guru Rimpoche, a saint who introduced Tantric form of Buddhism in Bhutan . A variety of traditional and mask dances are performed and each dance bear significant meaning/importance. 

This festival is one of the most important in Bhutan and its high light is the 'Mewang" - the fire ceremony and the " Tercham" - a religious dance. A fire dance is held in the evening to bless infertile women so that they may bear children.

Paro Festival
There is a sequence of dances at Paro Tshechu. Most dances are the same at others Tshechus, but the sequence varies. On day one is Shinje Yab Yum, dance of the lord of death and his consort. The costume is of buffalo mask and long brocade dress. The day two begins with "chipdrel" traditional reception. The Astara (clown) welcomes the audience with the marchang ceremony. The the mask dances begin 

Thimpu Festival
Thimpu festival is the festival of dances. Some of these dances are shacham or the dance of the four stag, pelage gingsum or the dance of the three kinds of ging, pacham or the dance of the heroes, shawo shachi or dance of the stags and the hounds, dranyeo cham or dance with guitar, shana or black dance, shaa nga cham or dance of the 21 black hats with drum and, pholeg moleg or dance of the noblemen and the ladies.

Tshechu
Tshechu is festival honouring Guru Padsambhava - 'one who was born from lotus flower'. This Indian saint contributed enormously to the diffusion of Tantric Buddhism in the Himalayan regions of Tibet, Nepal, Bhutan etc. around 800 A.D. He is the founder of the Nyingmapa, the 'old school' of Lamaism which still has numerous followers. 

TENTATIVE FESTIVAL DATES FOR 2010
Sl. No FESTIVAL PLACE DATES  1 PUNAKHA DROMCHE Punakha Dzong; PUNAKHA   2 PUNAKHA TSHECHU Punakha Dzong; PUNAKHA   3 CHORTEN KORA Chorten Kora; TRASHIYANGTSE   4 THARPALING THONGDROL Tharpaling Lhakhang, Chummi, BUMTHANG   5 TANGSIBI MANI (URA) Tangsibi Lhakhang, Ura, BUMTHANG   6 BULLI MANI (CHUMMI) Buli Lhakhang, Chummi, BUMTHANG   7 GADEN CHODPA (URA) Gaden Lhakhang, Ura, BUMTHANG   8 GOMKORA Gom Kora Lhakhang; TRASHIGANG   9 PARO TSHECHU Rinpung Dzong; PARO   10 CHUKHA TSHECHU CHUKHA   11 DOMKHAR TSHECHU Domkhar, Chummi, BUMTHANG   12 URA YAKCHOE Ura Lhakhang; BUMTHANG   13 PADSEL-LING KUCHOD Padsel-ling Gonpa, Choekhor, BUMTHANG   14 NIMALUNG TSHECHU Nimalung Dratshang, Chummi, BUMTHANG   15 KURJEY TSHECHU Kurjey Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG   16 THIMPHU DRUBCHEN Tashi Chhodzong, THIMPHU   17 WANGDI TSHECHU Wangdi Dzong, WANGDUE PHODRANG   18 TAMSHINGPHALA CHOEPA Tamshing Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG   19 THIMPHU TSHECHU TaashiChhodzong, THIMPHU   20 TANGBI MANI Tangbi Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG   21 SHINGKHAR RABNEY (URA) Shingkhar Lhakhang, Ura, BUMTHANG   22 JAKAR TSECHU Jakar Dzong, Choekhor, BUMTHANG   23 JAMBAY LHAKHANG DRUP Jambay Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG   24 PRAKHAR DUCHHOED Prakar Lhakhang, Chummi, BUMTHANG   25 SUMDRANG KANGSOL(URA) Sumdrang Lhakhang, Ura, BUMTHANG   26 CRANE FESTIVAL PHOBJI KHA; WANGDUE PHODRANG   27 MONGAR TSHECHU Mongar Dzong, MONGAR   28 PEMAGATSHEL TSHECHU Pemagatshel Dzong, PEMAGATSHEL   29 TRASHIGANG TSHECHU Trashigang Dzong, TRASHIGANG   30 TANG NAMKHA RABNEY (TANG) Tang Namkha Lhakhang, BUMTHANG   31 JAMBAY LAHKHANG SINGYE CHAM Jambay Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG   32 NALAKHAR TSHECHU (Zhey) Ngaa Lhakhang, Choekhor, BUMTHANG
   33 CHOJAM RABNEY (TANG) Chojamrab Lhakhang, Tang, BUMTHANG   34 TRONGSA TSHECHU
 Trongsa Dzong, TRONGSA   35 LHUNTSE TSHECHU Lhuntse Dzong, LHUNTSE
   36 SHINGKHAR METOCHODPA (URA) Shingkhar Lhakhang, Ura, BUMTHANG   37 NABJI LHAKHANG DRUP Nabji Lhakhang, Nabji, TRONGSA   
Note: Please verify dates with us before confirming your tour to combine any of above specified festivals. The festival dates vary according to our lunar calendar. 

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