Chimi Lhakhang was great experience after so much of sincere Buddhism for so many days in Sikkim & Bhutan. However we have not had once in life time experience of Punakha Dzong yet. The Punakha Dzong, also known as Pungtang Dechen Photrang Dzong, is the administrative centre of Punakha District in Punakha, Bhutan and one of the most beautiful Monastery I have ever seen.
We had to stop here, even before reaching the Dzong, just to stare at this beautiful thing and capture it. As usual they have built it on bank of river and there is a bridge way to cross the river and enter the Dzong.
We headed to the suspension bridge almost 1.5 kms away from the Dzong, walking there had become an experience as we had a small conversation we local ladies working in the vicinity and then asked way to school girls.
The bridge is about 200 m long and help you cross the river. We did cross the river just have fun of it and we saw this house at the end which is visible in the picture. I initially thought it might be a monastery as well but it turned out to be a house, where people were going about their daily chores.
We spent some time at the bridge and returned to the Dzong to resume the return journey as this was the point where we truly started to return to the place where we started but before that we have couple of more places to talk about which we will in next post.
Till then I hope you enjoy Punakha Dzong! Stay Happy!
Next we visited the monastery which houses a school as well, we saw a lot kids studying there lessons there. It was pleasant sight when a couple of kids looked back and smiled or I felt so.
The Monastery which house a school!
Chimi Lakhang was our next stop which is also known as “Monastery of Mad Monk”. This monk had its own way of showing traditional monks how is it to be liberated. Which shown something like this
A peculiar Monk and peculiar Monastery.
In Bhutan, felic is consider sign of thunderbolt and is a holy symbol. It has been in tradition since Chimi Lakhang was built. One can find all sizes of felic here and many forms and cane kept in home for good luck.
To reach chime lakhang one has to walk around 2-3 kms from main road toward to Monastery and cross the village which is nest of many handicraft seller where you can buy souvenir. The walk takes less then half an hour but it is fun walk if you have already done Tiger’s Nest.
Next we are heading to Punakha Dzong, keep watching, Stay Happy!
When you reach there, you get to choose options to go up there the mountain. These options are by foot or trek, by pony. However ponies do not deliver you to the last point and last leg of the trek which is not really difficult.
Information Board at Start of Trek
We took almost three hours to reach to the Monastery with several short breaks ( few minutes) and one long break ( ~half an hour, at the cafe which is en route the monastery ) while following standard precaution of drinking water in regular interval etc. which all trekkers now a days and I am skipping on that part.
When you trek up the monastery there are several trails and you can pick any of them as most of them lead to the monastery. I happened to take one of those trails and came to know not all the roads lead to Rome. This trial led me to take a little detour and I reached to a house where few people were going about daily chores.
After having a chat with them I came to know these were residents and lived there and currently were in process to add some portions to their heights. These locals offered some more insights about local weather and their life style being on a mountain. They also happened to have something to do with local pony business. They very politely redirected me to correct trail towards Tigers nest.
Weather in Thimpu was cool and for some it could be called cold though according to locals it was start of summer. Temperature hovered around 8 degree Celsius in Thimpu.
Office of SAARC!!
We started for Dochula Pass which is at altitude of 3050 m and offers 360 degree panoramic view of Himalayas. This place also have 108 Druk Wangyal Chortens and Druk Wangyal Lakhang beautifully built majestically in middle of the pass amidst tranquility of the mountains.
Druk Wangyal Chortens!
It was peaceful experience to be there for some time and just stare at mountains, it feel enriching to one’s inner self.
We got back to Thimpu after this and went to under construction Buddha Statues which sits above the city and visible from anywhere in the city.
Giant Buddha Statue!
We visited Changangkha Lakhang after that and returned to our hotel in order to leave for Paro.
What happened in Paro? For that keep watching! Stay Happy.