Ever since Bhutan opened its doors to tourism; visitors have thronged the courtyards of Dzongs to attend the auspicious celebrations of tsechu festivals. Tsechu’s are held on the tenth day of the Bhutanese month commemorating the birth date and remarkable actions of the saint Guru Padhmasambhava. The close proximity of Thimphu and Paro to the airport makes their festivals the most popular to visitors. Bumthang festivals also very popular, are famed for their exotic fire dances in the evening which help childless women conceive in the following year.
The religious dances are the focus of the tsechu festivals and have didadactic and religious themes that can be traced to the age-old rituals and traditions practiced in the time when Buddhism first flourished in the country. Weaving through their complex choreography and attired in stunning costumes of silk, rich brocades and expressive masks the dancers present a vibrant and mesmerizing picture to the crowds.
During the festivals the Dzong vibrates with the cacophony of musical accompaniments and the non-stop chatter of Bhutanese people taking part in the auspicious celebrations. It is an important occasion for the deeply religious people of Bhutan to pay homage and receive blessings from their local guardian deities. Some festivals end with the presentation and worship of thongdels or huge religious appliqué which depicts Guru Rinpoche and his eight Manifestations. The thongdel bestows blessings and religious merits upon the participants of the ceremony. To plan your trip around tshechus, first check the festival dates, and for additional inquiries, please contact us.