Witness the spectacle of a Bhutanese Festival

The festivals (or Tsechu) of Bhutan are wonderfully fascinating affairs and famous the world over for their combination of riotous colour, exuberant atmosphere and ancient religious tradition.

Historically festivals were a means of gathering communities together to celebrate auspicious religious occasions and for monks to impart the relevant wisdom from religious texts, to a largely illiterate population, through the medium of song and dance. Festival dates were also an opportunity for an agricultural community to stop work for a few days, dress up, make merry and perhaps meet a future partner. In many ways today's festivals serve the same purpose but the most important now make allowances for the advent of tourism.

Festivals take place throughout the year but the biggest, and most colourful, take place in the Spring and Autumn which coincides with the best times to visit Bhutan. If you are able to combine your trip with one of the major festivals such as those that take place in Paro and Thimphu it would really add that extra bit of spice to your tour of Bhutan.

Please see below for a list of the most important festivals throughout the year and ask us how we can incorporate one into your itinerary. However please note that accommodation during festival times is at a premium and so it is important to book early. 

Festival dates for 2022

Thimphu Drupchen (Thimphu) on 1 October

Wangdi Festival (Wangdiphodrang) from 3 to 5 October

Thimphu Festival (Thimphu) from 5 to 7 October

Tamshingphala Choepa (Bumthang) from 5 to 7 October

Gangtey Festival (Gangtey) from 7 to 9 October

Tangbi Mani (Bumthang) from 7 (evening) to 10 October

Jakar (Bumthang) from 1 to 3 November

Jambay Lhakhang Drup (Bumthang) from 8 (evening) to 12 November

Paker Festival (Bumthang) from 9 to 11 November

Black-Necked Crane Festival (Gangtey) 11 November

Mongar Festival (Mongar) from 1 to 3 December

Tashigang Festival (Tashigang) from 1 to 3 December

Nalakhar Festival (Bumthang) from 8 to 10 December

Trongsa Festival (Trongsa) from 30 December to 1 January 

Lhuntse Festival (Lhuntse) from 30 December to 1 January

Festival dates for 2023

Punakha Dromchen (Punakha) from 26 to 28 February

Punakha Tsechu (Punakha) from 1 to 3 March 

Chorten Kora (Tashi Yangtse) 7 and 21 March

Gom Kora (Tashigang) 29 to 31 March 

Paro Festival (Paro) from 1 to 5 April

Ura Festival (Bumthang) from 3 to 5 May

Nimalung Festival (Bumthang) from 26 to 28 June

Kurjey Festival (Bumthang) on 28 June

Thimphu Drupchen (Thimphu) on 21 September

Wangdi Festival (Wangdiphodrang) from 22 to 24 September

Thimphu Festival (Thimphu) from 24 to 26 September

Tamshingphala Choepa (Bumthang) from 24 to 26 September

Gangtey Festival (Gangtey) from 27 to 29 September

Tangbi Mani (Bumthang) from 27 (evening) to 29 September

Jakar (Bumthang) from 22 to 24 October

Jambay Lhakhang Drup (Bumthang) from 28 (evening) to 31 October

Paker Festival (Bumthang) from 29 to 31 October

Black-Necked Crane Festival (Gangtey) 11 November

Mongar Festival (Mongar) from 20 to 22 November

Tashigang Festival (Tashigang) from 21 to 23 November

Nalakhar Festival (Bumthang) from 27 to 29 November

Trongsa Festival (Trongsa) from 20 to 22 December 

Lhuntse Festival (Lhuntse) from 20 to 22 December

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