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Festivals & Cultural Events in Bhutan

Imbibed in the rich culture and blessed with a number of reasons to celebrate, Bhutan is not for nothing called the land of happiness. This Buddhist country never misses a reason to show gratitude be it towards Guru Rinpoche/Rimpoche (Guru Padmasambhava) or Mother Nature and it is evident with a large number of festivals it holds in a calendar year. Therefore, the yearly festival calendar of Bhutan is replete popular festival months and worth seeing events & activities. Almost every month there is a religious celebration in Bhutan called Tshechu which means ‘tenth day,’ corresponding to the birthday of Guru Rimpoche. In each Tshechu, the mask dance performed by monks (at the monasteries) is the prime attraction. The theme of the dance is mostly a popular legend/tale dating as far as the 8th century. Amongst the popular Tshechus in Bhutan are Paro and Thimphu Tshechu attended by a large number of people across the country who come with the belief that their sins will be washed by witnessing this event. These festivals are also amongst the top tourist attractions and a reason to travel to Bhutan for a festival holiday. Apart from the mask dance, other forms of Bhutanese dances and entertainment activities are also held during the Tshechus.

Apart from the popular Tsechus, a year in Bhutan is filled with many other celebrations that are a must-see. The Rhododendron festival near Thimphu, where around 46 species of rhododendron are exhibited, is one of the major festivals in Bhutan. A similar festival is Matsutake Mushroom Festival in Ura Valley where 40 species of mushroom are on display. In Ura, another grand festival takes place annually, known as Ura Yakchoe, in which the invoking and escorting of the statue of Chhana Dorje are the major attractions. It is also one of the most colourful festivals in Bhutan. The Haa Summer Festival is a popular tourism festival that gives an insight into the rich culture and history of Bhutan. Another worth seeing festival in Bhutan is Jhomolhari Mountain Festival where both nature and culture are celebrated including the existence of snow leopards. The Tour of the Dragon is an unusual festival to see in Bhutan, it is a bicycle race that commences from Bumthang and ends in the capital city, Thimphu via four major mountain passes in the country. There is so much the country has in store when it comes to festivals. Get all the insights on the Tshechus and other festivals in the country along with Bhutan Festivals dates of 2020, and major highlights of each festivity in this section.

Mark Your Calendar For These Top 10 Upcoming Festivals in Bhutan in 2020

S.No Festival Name Festival Dates
Starts on Ends on
1 Talo Tshechu Festival 01 March 2020 04 March 2020
2 Punakha Drubchen Festival 02 March 2020 04 March 2020
3 Punakha Tshechu Festival 05 March 2020 07 March 2020
4 Tharpaling Thongdrol Festival 09 March 2020 09 March 2020
5 Ura Yakchoe Festival 04 April 2020 08 April 2020
6 Paro Tshechu Festival 04 April 2020 08 April 2020
7 Chorten Kora Festival 08 April 2020 08 April 2020
8 Jakar Tshechu Festival 23 October 2020 27 October 2020
9 Jambay Lhakhang Drup 31 October 2020 03 November 2020
10 Black Necked Crane Festival 11 November 2020 11 November 2020

Must See Tourism Festivals & Cultural Events in Bhutan


Rhododendron Festival Bhutan

Date (Apr 21-23, 2020)


A famed tourism festival in the Punakha region, Rhododendron Festival is a must-see in Bhutan. Held in the Lamperi Botanical Garden, this festival is about exhibiting 29 out of 46 species of rhododendron that grow in Bhutan. At this three-day festival in the month of May, rhododendron garden walk and exhibition, traditional games, local culture and cuisines, cultural programmes, and arts and crafts are the major attractions.