Hidden realm of wonders! The only world capital without traffic lights, Thimphu is a regal yet bustling town amid glorious hills and home to the revered Bhutanese Royal family. Its ‘Shangri-la like’ appearance is embedded not merely in a wealth of historical sights, monasteries and museums, but also in its maze of streets with shops displaying traditional ware, local culture, smiling faces, cuisines and its sporting obsession for archery!
Hotel Thimphu Towers is a family-run heritage hotel located in the heart of Bhutan’s capital city. Facing the lively clock tower square and the Changlimithang stadium, check into the lofty multi-storied landmark building that showcases traditional architecture.
Khang Residency is a modern accommodation, set in an upscale residential area on the hills of lower Motithang just outside Thimphu. Expect contemporary interiors with accents of Bhutanese furnishing and art.
Enjoy a thrilling dance performance in a two hour long private session. Bhutanese masked dances reflect highly complex symbolic understandings of life in a complex universe. The Bhutanese see dance as an extension of their religious and social lives because the movement reflects their deep devotion, compassion, tolerance, and harmonious living.
City Highlights of Thimphu
Discover the vibrant heart of Thimphu! Begin your tour of Thimphu at the King’s Memorial Chorten, where many devotees congregate to pray and spin the Buddhist prayer wheels for luck. Nearby at Buddha Point, you’ll be awed by the largest statue of the sage overlooking the city and Thimphu Valley beyond. Thimphu is a treasure trove of craftwork, and you can see budding masters learn the craft at Zorig Chusum, the local art and craft school. Watch wood carving to mask making, weaving, embroidering, clay modelling, sculpture and thangka painting at the school. Later, visit the textile museum to learn how traditional Bhutanese dresses are made. Next on your itinerary are the impressive Tashichho Dzong, the seat of the king and government, and the National Library, which houses an extensive collection of priceless Buddhist manuscripts and modern academic books on Himalayan culture and religion. For a spot of lighthearted fun, saunter into the mini zoo to see the Takin, Bhutan’s national animal. If time permits, you also have the option of taking a wonderful drive to the hillside view point below the Bhutan Broadcasting Service Tower, set at a height of 2685 meters! Afterwards, browse the city’s various government-run handicrafts emporium and local craft shops showcasing Bhutan’s fine traditional artwork, jewelry, textiles and carvings. The weekends offer a particular treat to visitors – Thimphu’s bustling weekend market where locals folks gather. (Full Day; Duration: 8 hrs; Time of Day: 0800 to 1800 hrs; Private Activity & Transfers; Fitness level: Easy; please note that Zorig Chusum is closed on weekends, national holidays, examination days, summer and winter breaks in July and Dec – Feb. Tashichho Dzong can only be visited after 1730 hrs.)
Dinner and Dance at the Taj
Spend an enjoyable evening at the Taj Tashi, beginning with a traditional Bhutanese dance performance and followed by a sumptuous dinner. Watch artists in full traditional regalia complete with ornate costumes and typical masks perform intricate dances for half an hour. All Bhutanese art, dance, and music traces its roots to ancient Buddhist philosophy, with symbolic meaning ascribed to each aspect of the dance. Discover a spectrum of sub-genres, ranging from folk to religious renditions under the starry sky at the hotel’s sprawling courtyard. Afterwards, feast on international and Bhutanese favorites, cooked to perfection by award-winning chefs. (Evening Activity; Time of Day: 1800 hrs; Duration: 30 mins; Group Activity; Private Transfers; please bring suitable attire if you are visiting in winter as it can get very cold.)