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December Events


YESHEY GOENPOI DRUPCHEN/ FESTIVAL OF MAHAKALA
This festival is dedicated to the dominant male protective deity of Bhutan, Yeshey Goenpo (Mahakala). It was first introduced by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in the 17th century in Punakha Dzong to commemorate the victory over Tibetan invasions. In 1988, Yeshey Goenpi Drupchen was introduced in Trongsa Dzong by His Majesty the 4th King and the 68th Je Khenpo His Holiness Tenzin Dendup.
1 – 3 December
Venue: Trongsa Dzong, Trongsa

DRUK WANGYEL TSHECHU
The Druk Wangyel Tshechu is a unique festival performed by the Royal Bhutan Army rather than monks or lay people. It is a tribute to the wise leadership of His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck, the Fourth King of Bhutan. It also celebrates the continuous efforts of the Royal Bhutan Army in protecting the sovereignty and the stability of the country. This one-of-a-kind tshechu is performed at the festival round near Dochula Pass, against the backdrop of the magnificent Jigme Singye Wangchuck mountain range.
13 December
Venue: Dochula,Thimphu

TRASHIGANG TSHECHU
The annual Trashigang Tshechu is one of the biggest festivals in eastern Bhutan. People from all over eastern Bhutan come to the festival. The nomadic community of Merak and Sakteng, called the Brokpas, stand out from the crowd with their unique dress and appeArance. Different sacred mask dances are performed during the festival, as well as other traditional folk songs and dances. The highlight of the festival is the unfurling of the Thongdrel (large tapestry) of Guru Tshengyed (eight manifestations of Guru Rinpoche). Another Thongdrel of Neten Chudrug (Sixteen Arhats) is also unfurled for the public.
3 – 5 December
Venue: Trashigang Dzong, Trashigang

MONGGAR TSHECHU
People from all over the region as far as Trashigang and Lhuentse come to attend the festival. A lot of unique dances indigenous to the region are also performed.
3 – 6 December
Venue: Monggar Dzong, Monggar

DECHENLING TSHECHU
This is the second Dechenling Tshechu taking place in Dechenling Lhakhang in Pemagatshel. Mask dances, along with different varieties of cultural items, make up the main highlights and entertainment of the festival. If you have missed the similar festival in July, you can still attend it this time round.
4 – 6 December
Venue: Dechenling Lhakhang, Dechenling, Pemagatshel

MENCHU PEMAPHUENDEY
This festival is held in Norbugang Gewog, Pemagatshel. Norbugang Gewog is a part of Nganglam Dungkhag and it has its own festival to celebrate.
4 – 6 December
Venue: Norbugang, Pemagatshel

THRICHU GOENPA TSHECHU
Thrichugoenpa Tshechu is a festival that takes place in the sacred Thrichu goenpa in Tongzhang, Trashiyangtse. Tongzhang is located on the Trashigang-Trashiyangtse highway, just before reaching the popular Gomphu Kora temple.
4 – 6 December
Venue: Thrichugoenpa, Tongzhang, Trashiyangtse

PEMA YOESELCHOLING GOENPA TSHECHU
The one-day tshechu is held at the Lhakhang. The mask dances are performed by the monks of the Lhakhang and women perform the folk dances.
5 – 7 December
Venue: Kencholing, Shompangkhag, Sarpang

TANG NAMKHAR RABNEY
The Tang Namkhar Lhakhang Rabney is a three-day annual festival commemorating the founding of the Namkha Lhakhang by Lama Namkha Samdrup. It is also performed for the peace and prosperity of the community.
5 – 6 December
Venue: Tang Namkhar Lhakhang, Tang, Bumthang

GEOKAR LHAKHANG TSHECHU
This festival takes place in Geokar Lhakhang in Yalang, Trashiyangtse. Local people gather at the temple to attend the festival and receive blessings.
6 – 12 December
Venue: Geokar Lhakhang, Yalang, Trashiyangtse

GAMUNG TSHECHU
Gamung Tshechu takes place in Shumar in Gamung, Pemagatshel. People gather to celebrate the festival and get blessings.
10 – 12 December
Venue: Shumar/Gamung, Pemagatshel

GOSHING TSHECHU
During this festival, different forms of mask dances and cultural items are showcased to the public.
10 – 12 December
Venue: Goshing Trong, Zhemgang

BULI TSHECHU
Different types of mask dances are performed with the unfurling of a huge Thongdrel (large tapestry) of Guru Rinpoche on the last day of the event.
10 – 12 December
Venue: Buli, Zhemgang

SHINGKHAR TSHECHU
During the tshechu, different forms of mask dances along with cultural items are performed.
10 – 12 December
Venue: Shingkhar, Zhemgang

WAMLING TSHECHU
During the tshechu, different forms of mask dances along with cultural items are performed.
10 – 12 December
Venue: Wamling, Zhemgang

THRISA TSHECHU
During the tshechu, different forms of mask dances along with cultural items are performed.
10 – 12 December
Venue: Thrisa, Zhemgang

PHUMITHANG TSHECHU
During the tshechu, different forms of mask dances along with cultural items are performed.
10 – 12 December
Venue: Phumithang Dratshang, Zhemgang

GONGPHU TSHECHU
During the tshechu, different mask dances along with a variety of cultural items are performed.
10 – 12 December
Venue: Gongphu, Zhemgang

BJOKA TSHECHU
Different forms of mask dances and traditional songs are performed to entertain the public.
11 – 14 December
Venue: Bjoka Trong, Zhemgang

CHOJAM RABNEY
The name ‘Chojam’ was originally derived when Yidam Khorlo Dompo (presently one of the most important relics of the Lhakhang) was brought down to the village. The local people noticed that the statue’s expression looked sad and got its name as Chojam Lhakhang. Chojam Rabney is celebrated for five days and is financially supported by the villagers of Tang, which includes four chiwogs (Chitsum, Nimlung, Gawjud and Sakarmed). The Tshogpa also seeks funds from any visitors in Tang for the Lhakhang. The Chams/ dances includes the Yakcham, Lhamgyem (performed in two types), Tempa Phuensum (which is said to have originated from Tibet) and many other cham/dance varieties performed in other Dzongkhags, all of which are performed by the monks, the local villagers and students.
11 – 15 December
Venue: Chojam Lhakhang, Tang, Bumthang

LADRONG RABNEY
Ladrong Rabney is an annual festival held at Ladrong Lhakhang. Ladrong Lhakhang was built by Terton (treasure revealer) Drimed Lingpa. The main relic is the Jowo Jampa, the main statue of the Lhakhang. Upon completion of the lhalkhang, the consecration ceremony (Rabney) was held on the 18th day of the 10th month of the Bhutanese Calendar. Five days later, the tshechu was initiated by the late Aja Rinpoche. This festival is conducted to honour the Lhakhang.
11 – 15 December
Venue: Ladrong Lhakhang, Jarey, Lhuentse

NANGLA TSHECHU
During the tshechu, different forms of mask dances and cultural items are show cased to the public.
12 December
Venue: Nangla, Trong, Zhemgang

MAMUNG TSHECHU
The community of Mamung Trong marks the occasion by performing annual ritual with the dances of Pawo and Pamo.
12 December
Venue: Mamung Trong, Zhemgang

KHARPHU BONCHOED
This festival brings together people from different places like Shingkhar, Wamling, Thrisa, Nimshong and Radi to do rituals and make offerings to their local deity. This is mainly done to bring peace and good harvest in the year.
12 December
Venue: Shingkhar/Thrisa/ Wamling/Radi/Nimshong, Zhemgang

TASHIBI TSHECHU
No mask dances are performed but people gather annually and offer the SOL-KHA in the Lhakhang. The tshechu is presided by the Meshey Lam and local Gomchens.
12 December
Venue: Tashibi, Zhemgang

BONCHOED
People perform rituals and make offerings to their local deity on this day. This is mainly done to bring peace and good harvest in the coming year.
12 December
Venue: Buli/Tali/Kikhar/Nangkhor, Zhemgang

KHOMSHAR TSHECHU
During the tshechu, different forms of mask dances and cultural items are performed with unfurling of Thongdrel (large tapestry) to the public on last day.
12 December
Venue: Khomshar, Zhemgang

LANGDURBI BONCHOED
People perform rituals and make offerings to their local deity. This is mainly done to bring peace and good harvest in the year.
12 December
Venue: Langdurbi, Zhemgang

DEKIDLING TSHECHU
The one-day Dekidling annual tshechu is held at the Lhakhang. The mask dances are performed by the Dzongkhag mask dancers, while the folk dances are performed by a group of women.
21 December
Venue: Lungtok Tharchen Goenpa, Dekidling, Sarpang

JAMBAY LHAKANG SINGYE CHAM
The Singye Cham (lion dance) is held at the Jambay Lhakhang in Bumthang. The Jambay Lhakhang Singye Cham is performed once a year.
12 December
Venue: Jambay Lhakhang, Choekhor, Bumthang

NGA LHAKHANG ZHI
The festival is held at the Nga Lhakhang in Nalakhar village in Bumthang. The three-day festival is one of the popular festivals in the Choekhor valley and attracts people from all over Bumthang, dressed in their finest clothes. This festival is celebrated to bring happiness and prosperity to the village and the country as a whole. It is also a symbolic prayer for good harvest and for the wellbeing of everyone.
12 – 14 December
Venue: Nga Lhakhang, Choekhor, Bumthang

PANGKHAR CHOEDPA
The festival is held at Pangkhar monastery in Ura, Bumthang. Legend says that when the monastery was under construction, langurs helped at night while humans used to work during the day. Hence the name Prakar which literally translates to white monkey. This festival celebrates the origin of this temple.
21 – 26 December
Venue: Pangkhar Lhakhang, Ura, Bumthang

DOEDEL PEMACHOLING TSHECHU
The festival is very popular in Ramjar Gewog in Trashiyangtse. It takes place in Doedel Pemacholing Lhakhang in Ramjar Gewog.
28 Nov – 13 December
Venue: Doedel Pemacholing Lhakhang, Ramjar, Trashiyangtse

JANGCHUBLING TSHECHU
This festival takes place at the Jangchubling monastery in Gangzur, Lhuentse. The Jangchubling Monastery is an important religious seat and place worth visiting. It was founded in the 18th century by Pekar Gyatso and until recently was under the patronage of the 16th Karmapa Rangjung Rigpe Dorji. The daughter of first King, Ashi Wangmo, lived here at the monastery as a nun. The monastery is easily accessible by a feeder road.
24 – 25 December
Venue: Gangzur, Lhuentse

LOMBA
Lomba is an important occasion for the people of Haa and Paro. In the olden days, they considered this day as New Year’s Day. It is also a time when all crops have been harvested and people get some free time before they begin their work again. During Lomba, families get together in their villages and treat themselves to a good meal. Haaps and Parops make their special dish called hoentey (buckwheat dumplings) and distribute them to friends and relatives. Men also play archery matches and other traditional games. People sing a rhyme “Lolay Lolay”, thanking god for the good year they had and to make wishes for the New Year. During this festival, people greet each other “Lolay”, meaning “good new year”. They also perform a small ceremony at home to drive away evil and bring in good health, happiness and prosperity for the New Year.
25 – 26 December
Venue: Individual house, Haa and Paro

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