Tshechus, literally meaning the ‘tenth day’ are annual religious festivals held in all the twenty districts of the country on the tenth day of a month of the lunar calendar. The month of the Tshechu varies from place to place but it is usually around the time of October. The centrepiece of the Tshechu festivals is the sacred masked dances known as chham. These costumed masked dances depict and narrates moral stories based on incidents from the life of Guru Padmasambhava and other saints. The cham is performed by monks in the monasteries and by laymen in the villages.
Another much awaited part of the Tshechu is the unfurling of Thongdroel (or Thangka) ‘ a large painting of Buddha, saints and other holy beings. Buddhists believe that a mere sighting of it is potent and sacred enough to cleanse the viewer of his sins.
In addition to the sacred masked dances, Tshechus also include traditional Bhutanese dances and theme-based comedy acts by jesters who are called as Atsaras.
Of all the Tshechu festivals in Bhutan, Thimphu and Paro Tshechus are very popular in terms of scale, grandeur and audience.
Bhutan Festival Schedule for 2015
|1||PUNAKHA DRUBCHEN||Punakha Dzong,PUNAKHA||23rd – 27th February|
|2||PUNAKHA TSHECHU||Punakha Dzong,PUNAKHA||28th February – 2nd March|
|3||CHHORTEN KORA||Chorten Kora,TRASHIYANGTSHE||5th March & 20th March|
|4||GOMPHU KORA||Gom Kora Lhakhang, TRASHIGANG||27th – 29th March|
|5||GASA TSHECHU||Gasa Dzong,GASA||27th – 30th March|
|6||PARO TSHECHU||Rinpung Dzong,PARO||31st March – 4th April|
|7||URA YAKCHOE||Ura Lhakhang,BUMTHANG||30th April – 4th May|
|8||NIMALUNG TSHECHU||Nimalung Dratshang,Chummi, BUMTHANG||24th – 26th June|
|9||KURJEY TSHECHU||Kurjey Lhakhang, Choekhor,BUMTHANG||6th June|
|10||TOUR OF THE DRAGON(BICYCLE RACE)||Bumthang to Thimphu||5th September|
|11||THIMPHU DRUBCHEN||Tashi Chhodzong, THIMPHU||18th – 22nd September|
|12||WANGDUE TSHECHU||Tencholing Army Ground,WANGDUEPHODRANG||21st – 23rd September|
|13||TAMSHING PHALACHHOEPA||Tamshing Lhakhang,Choekhor, BUMTHANG||22nd – 24th September|
|14||THIMPHU TSHECHU||Tashi Chhodzong, THIMPHU||23rd – 25th September|
|15||PEMAGATSHEL TSHECHU||Pemagatshel Dzong,PEMAGATSHEL||20th – 23rd October|
|16||CHHUKHA TSHECHU||Chhukha Dzong,CHHUKHA||21st – 23rd October|
|17||THANGBI MANI||Tangbi Lhakhang, Choekor, BUMTHANG||27th – 29th October|
|18||JAMBAY LHAKHANGDRUP||Jambay Lhakhang, Choekhor,BUMTHANG||27th – 31st October|
|19||PRAKHAR DUCHHOED||Prakar Lhakhang, Chummi,BUMTHANG||28th – 30th October|
|20||BLACK NECKED CRANE FESTIVAL||Gangtey Gonpa, Phobjikha, WANGDUEPHODRANG||11th November|
|21||MONGAR TSHECHU||Mongar Dzong,MONGAR||18th – 21st November|
|22||TRASHIGANG TSHECHU||Trashigang Dzong,TRASHIGANG||19th – 22nd November|
|23||NALAKHAR TSHECHU||Ngaa Lhakhang, Choekhor,BUMTHANG||25th – 27th November|
|24||DRUK WANGYELTSHECHU||Dochula,THIMPHU||13th December|
|25||TRONGSA TSHECHU||Trongsa Dzong,TRONGSA||20th – 22nd December|
|26||LHUENTSE TSHECHU||Lhuentse Dzong,LHUENTSE||20th – 22nd December|
- Please note that the dates are tentative. Contact us for confirmation.
- Dates are based on the Bhutanese Lunar Calendar.
- This schedule is provided by Association of Bhutanese Tour Operators (ABTO) and the Tourism Council of Bhutan (TCB). They are subject to changes without notice.