Cities in Bhutan
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Bhutan is a wonderful country which offers tourists an opportunity to experience a pristine and unspoilt holiday destination. The absence of neon lights, billboard advertising, takeaway food chains, traffic lights, etc. is refreshing.
Besides the stunning natural scenery, the enduring image of the country for most visitors is the strong sense of culture and tradition that binds the kingdom and clearly distinguishes it from its larger neighbors. Bhutan is the only Vajrayana Buddhist nation in the world, and the profound teachings of this tradition remain well preserved and exert a strong influence in all aspects of life. Due to its pristine environment and harmonious society, the tiny Kingdom of Bhutan has been called "The Last Shangrila." Bhutan is a unique blend of the old and new. Here is a country that is slowly opening up to the modern world in a fine balance with its ancient traditions. Those fortunate enough to visit Bhutan describe it as a unique, deeply spiritual and mystical experience. This kingdom is an adventure like no other.
The land of the thunder dragon kingdom is a trekker’s paradise and an environmentalist’s dream. With 72 percent of the country under forest cover, Bhutan’s pristine ecology is home to rare and endangered flora and fauna. Although the country expanse is quite small Bhutanese weather varies from location to location mainly depending upon the elevation. In the North of Bhutan on the borders with Tibet it is perennially covered with snow. In the western, central and eastern Bhutan (Ha, Paro, Thimphu, Wandue, Trongsa, Bumthang, Trashi Yangtse, Lhuntse) you will mostly experience cold European-like weather. Winter lasts here from November to March. Punakha is an exception as it is in a lower valley and summer is pretty hot but winter is pleasant. Southern Bhutan bordering with India is hot and humid with a sub-tropical climate. The monsoon is the determining factor for rain here. Spring and autumn are the best season to visit Bhutan.
The most popular sites in Bhutan are Kurje Lhakhang and Taktsang Monastery. Kurje Lhakhang is a temple built around a cave with a body print of Guru Rinpoche embedded in the wall. Guru Rinpoche practiced meditation here on his first visit to Bhutan and as such it is the earliest Buddhist relic in the country. Taktsang Monastery (also called Tiger's Nest is one of the most important Buddhist sites in the world, and Guru Rinpoche visited here on his second visit to Bhutan. The temple is built on a 1,200 meter cliff and is Bhutan's most well known sacred site.
Tshechu is the largest religious festival in Bhutan and is celebrated in the late summer and early fall throughout the country, though the celebration in Thimphu is the most famous and attracts around 30,000 people. The highlight of the tshechu ceremonies is the masked dances by monks, which were developed according to precise instructions given by past Buddhist masters. According to Buddhist philosophy, all experiences leave an imprint in the mind stream that produces a corresponding result in the future, and so viewing these dances, which are imbued with sacred symbolism, is considered to be a very auspicious and sanctifying experience.