Trongsa

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Ideal duration: 1-2 days

Best Time: November - February Read More

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"The Heart of the Himalayan Kingdom"

Trongsa Tourism

Trongsa is a hilltop town situated at the centre of Bhutan; hence known to be the heart of the Himalayan Kingdom. It's translated as "new village" in Dzongkha that has a backdrop of the black mountains offering beautiful views of the surrounding valleys.

Being located at a junction that connects other regions such as Gelephu and Bumthang; Trongsa was given much strategic importance as the route from East to the West of Bhutan. Trongsa is also where the rule of the Wangchuck dynasty originated. It holds a lot of significance in the history of Bhutan that's reflected in the district dzong and watchtower. Trongsa Dzong controlled the east-west trade for centuries, while the watchtower was converted into a museum. The Trongsa-Tsechu is celebrated for five days at the northern courtyard during December or January. Trongsa offers not just an insight into its heritage but also opportunities for hiking and trekking along the picturesque landscape.

Things to do in Trongsa

1. Trongsa Dzong

Trongsa Dzong
Trongsa Dzong is the largest and one of the most majestic dzongs in Bhutan and is a magnificent structure located on a ridge that overlooks the Mangde Chhu river. To it's South, it drops sharply into (Read More)clouds and mist. There are two ways to reach this Dzong- Mangdue foot trail, which is a steep climb towards the Eastern gate and the other is a more leisurely walk to the Western entrance.

2. Jigme Singye Wangchuk National Park

Jigme Singye Wangchuk National Park
A perfect example of serenity in nature, Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park is one of the country's largest national park areawise. Located in Trongsa and occupying parts of other districts such as Wangdue Phodrang also, it is a popular birdwatching spot in Bhutan.

3. Chendebji Chorten

Chendebji Chorten
Chendebji Chorten is located on a beautiful gorge and is a stop on the way from Thimphu to Trongsa. It is believed to be located where the three ridges and the three edges of the sky meet. It is an im (Read More)portant site for religious practices and bears resemblance to the Bouddhanath stupa in the Kathmandu valley of Nepal. There is also a prayer wall beside it. The chorten attracts a lot of tourist during the Sambha Lhundrup Molam Chenmo Festival, it is also popular as a tourist spot with a restaurant that has opened nearby.

4. Thruepang Palace

Thruepang Palace
Thruepang Palace is situated just a little ahead of the Trongsa Dzong near the local vegetable market. This p (Read More)alace was built by the second King Jigme Wangchuck and is the birthplace of the third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck. It is not very grand and resembles a large house with a courtyard. This courtyard has a number of traditional houses which were used by the entourage of the King when he used to come to stay. It is symbolic of the lifestyle led by the monarchs who used to change valleys as per the season. The palace also contains valuable traditional paintings and is still used by the present King to reside in when he travels through Trongsa. It is advisable to follow appropriate clothing etiquette while visiting the Palace.

5. Kuenga Rabten Palace

Kuenga Rabten Palace
Kuenga Rabten Palace is situated around 23 km from Trongsa and it takes about an hour to reach by car. Along the drive, one could hope to see many beautiful fields and villages. This palace served as (Read More)the winter home of the second King but is now the National Commission for Cultural Affairs. It has excellent woodwork, crafts and paintings and also contains statues of Guru Rinpoche and Shakyamuni. There are also very good paintings of the 35 Buddhas of Compassion and Guru Rinpoches paradise Zangdopelri. A part of it is also used as a library. A further 20-minute hike from the palace is the Karma Drubdey Nunnery, where one could visit the hostel, dining hall and main shrine. It is advisable to follow appropriate clothing etiquette.

6. Mangdue Foot Trail

Mangdue Foot Trail
The Mangdue Foot Trail is a wonderful option for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts. It is a trail that begins from the Viewpoint restaurant and goes through the forest of pine and Rhododendrons (Read More)and ends at the Western gate of the Trongsa Dzong. The entire trek covers a distance of about 14 km and should approximately take about two and a half hours.

More on Trongsa

Strategic location of Trongsa

Trongsa commanded a lot of importance because of its strategic location in the center of the country. It connected the Eastern and Western part of the country such that the Penelop Governor of Trongsa had complete control. The road that connects the two sides of Bhutan passes through Trongsa and earlier even through the Trongsa Dzong itself. This way the Trongsa Penelop control travel and trade and enabled him to establish contol over Eastern and Central Bhutan. The watchtower near the Dzong was used to guard the region against attack and rebellion. The first two kings ruled Bhutan from their seat in Trongsa. It is customary for the prince to serve as the Penelop Governor of Trongsa before ascending the throne.

Trongsa Tsechu

The Trongsa Tsechu is held in mid-December or early January in the Trongsa Dzong grounds.This is a religious festival that is held every winter in honour of Guru Rinpoche (or Guru Padmasambhava) who brought Buddhism to Bhutan in the 8th century. It is one of the oldest Tsechus in Bhutan and Tsechus are said to have spread from Trongsa. The speciality of this Tsechu is that on the last day they unfurl the sacred Thongdrol and receive blessings.

Language of Trongsa

There are quite a few languages spoken in the district depending upon the region. These include Bumthangkha, Thengkha, Lakha and Nyenkha. There could possibly be limited understanding of English.

History of Trongsa

Trongsa was the seat from which the first two kings of Bhutan ruled the Kingdom. It also held a very strategic position.

Nightlife in Trongsa

There are not many options for experiencing an active nightlife culture in the region. However, the Trongsa Dzong is a sight to behold at night when it is lit up with lights.

Shopping in Trongsa

Trongsa is a popular destination to shop for weaves (a lot of which are made with dyed wool). The carpets and textiles are cheaper than they are in Thimphu. Machine made carpets are also a popular item.There are also some handicraft shops in the town from which one could take back some souvenirs.

Best Time to Visit Trongsa

How to Reach Trongsa

How to Reach Overview

There exist the following ways to reach Trongsa, which is located right in the centre of the country.

How to reach Trongsa by flight

The closest airport would be Paro Airport. From Paro, one could then reach Trongsa by cab.

How to reach Trongsa by bus

From Gelephu in Southern Bhutan, Dungkar Transport plies buses to Trongsa on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 7:00 (arrival time is roughly 17:30). From the border town of Phuentsholing, Sernye Transport plies buses to Trongsa on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 6:00. (arrival time is roughly 19:30). From Thimphu in the Western region, Sernya Transport plies buses to Trongsa daily at 7:00 (arrival time is roughly 15:00).

How to reach Trongsa by waterways

Not applicable

Local transport in Trongsa

The attractive spots in Trongsa are situated close to each other and can hence be covered by foot. However, one could opt for hired cabs but this might prove to be slightly on the expensive side.

Trongsa Photos

Trongsa, Bhutan
Trongsa Dzong - Largest Dzong in Bhutan
Interiors of Trongsa Dzong
Panoramic View of Chendebji Chorten

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FAQs on Trongsa

What is famous about Trongsa?

A great mix of heritage and natural beauty

What is not so good about Trongsa?

Limited scope for recreational activities

What is the best time to visit Trongsa?

November to February is the best time to visit Trongsa. The weather is very pleasant and just right for outdoor activities. The festivals towards the end of November and the month of December only make this period more preferable. Room tariffs could be higher, so it's advised to preplan trips. April to June is the summer season, this time sees less number of footfall comparatively. The temperature hovers around 21-25 degree Celcius. Monsoon season falls from June to September, where the rainfall could be 188mm. It is considered as the offseason to visit Trongsa as there is no scope for outdoor activities like trekking and hiking. 
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What is the local food in Trongsa?

Central Bhutan is known for the dishes made with yak meat. Apart from the national delicacies like Ema Datshi, there are also certain local specialities which one should try, such as Zow Shungo which comprises vegetables with steamed rice. There are also pork and beef based dishes known as Paa and also a sweet banana soup containing tapioca.There are not many options for dining out in restaurants. One could opt for the in-hotel restaurants. But the most popular restaurant would be the Oyster House which serves Bhutanese and Tibetan food such as thukpas, momos among other dishes. A dish to try out could be the Juru Jaju soup from Norbu Yangkhel restaurant near Sephu village.

Read more about Traditional Bhutanese Dishes

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What is the best way to reach Trongsa?

There exist the following ways to reach Trongsa, which is located right in the centre of the country.
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What are the things to do in Trongsa?

The top things to do in Trongsa are Trongsa Dzong, Jigme Singye Wangchuk National Park, Chendebji Chorten, Thruepang Palace, Kuenga Rabten Palace, Semji Village. You can see all the places to visit in Trongsa here

What are the places near Trongsa?

The top places near to Trongsa are Thimpu which is 85 km from Trongsa, Punakha which is located 62 km from Trongsa, Paro which is located 108 km from Trongsa, Phobjikha valley which is located 29 km from Trongsa, Jakar which is located 23 km from Trongsa

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