Villages of Bhutan


Villages of Bhutan

If you are a fan of misty mountains and lush forests, then Bhutan might be on the top of your list. Other than the well-known tourist places, Bhutan has some hidden gems in the form of villages. Villages in Bhutan still practice traditional customs and their ways of life are absolutely a treat to watch. Ditching the mainstream touristy places in Bhutan and going to the villages, where time has literally stopped, gives you a chance to interact with locals and get to know about their customs, rituals and many interesting stories. Not only that, you get to spend a few days away from the hustle-bustle of the city and breathe in some fresh air!

Here is the list of 7 Villages of Bhutan

1. Sakteng

Sakteng is a remote village which is located near Trashigang in Bhutan. This village offers an unusual glimpse into the nomadic lifestyles of the rural lives of the inhabitants of Sakteng. It is often called as ‘nature’s greatest creation’ with surreal mountains and far-stretching meadows surrounding it from all sides. This village is one of Bhutan’s protected areas and is also being considered to be listed as a UNESCO site. 

Altitude: 2800m
Also known as: Sagteng Gewog
Highlights of this village: Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary

2. Merak

Inhabited by the semi-nomadic tribe known as brokpas, Merak village is located in eastern Bhutan at an altitude of 3500m. The village has a population of only 30 families and they region in which it is situated is also referred to as the land of Yeti or ‘the land of the abominable snowman’. The inhabitants of this village have their own dialect and also a unique traditional outfit.

Altitude: 3500m
Highlights of this village: Early morning Safari, Ema Datshi

3. Gangtey

Gangtey village is situated on the western edge of the Black Mountains of Bhutan, amidst a U-shaped valley. The local people of Gangtey often migrate to warmer regions during winters as it becomes freezing cold. Hence, Autumn and spring seasons are the best times to visit Gangtey. There is a monastery nearby which one can visit for spending some spiritual time.

Altitude: 2220m
Also known as: Phobjika
Highlights of this village: Stone bath and black necked crane festival.

4. Khoma

Located in Bhutan’s Lhuentse district, Khoma village is famous for Kishuthara, which is woven by the women of this village. You can witness the traditional weaving methods in this village and also learn about traditional Bhutanese handloom. The village is only a two hour walk from the Dzong.

Altitiude: Around 1700m
Highlights of this village: Traditional weaving, Kishuthara

5. Dhur

Located around 30kms from Chamkhar in Bhutan, the village of Dhur is famous for its trekking trail, leading to Dhur Tsachu. The Dhur Tshechu Festival is also something which attracts many tourists to this village during winter time. Surrounded by alpine forests, snow capped mountains, sheep and local inhabitants this village is also a good camping spot during the spring or autumn season.

Highlights of this village: Dhur Tshechu Festival

6. Rinchegang

Located opposite to the Wangdi Phodrang Dzong and Punatsangchhu, Rinchegang village is one of the oldest villages in Bhutan, which dates back to the Zhabdrungs era. The uniquely clustered village is visible from all corners and attracts large tourist attractions every year. The village also offers amazing panoramic views of the Punatsangchhu river and the Bajo town.

Altitiude: Around 1400m
Highlights of this village: Rinchengang Terraces and Shar Rinchengang Temple.

7. Ura

Ura Village is located in one of the highest valleys of Bhutan and takes around 2 hours to reach from Chamkar. During Spring time, the entire valley blooms into a beautiful sight with hundreds of bright and colourful flowers and during winters, Ura becomes snow-clad completely. Like many other villages in Bhutan, Ura is also a great trekking site.

Altitude: 3100m
Highlights of this village: Ura Yakchoe Festival

While you can always choose from the popular places to visit in Bhutan, you should really consider taking out some time to visit these villages. Nature’s best creation is reflected in these villages. The calm and tranquility that you will feel, sitting amidst the valleys and listening to stories from the locals,cannot be experienced anywhere else!

This post was published by Shreyasee Deb

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