Wangdue Tshechu Festival

This three-day annual Wangdue Tshechu Festival is held at the Wangdue Dzong, which is one of the oldest fortresses in Bhutan built in 1638. The festival was introduced by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel as soon as the Dozng was constructed.

This is the biggest festival in the district. The festival is popular for the dance of the ox called the Raksha Mangcham. Apart from this dance, several other mask dances are also performed during the festival. On the third day of the festival, Guru Tshengye Thongdrol (large scroll painting of Guru Rinpoche and his eight manifestations) is unfurled for people to get blessings from.

One of the main attractions of the festival is the unfurling of the thongdrol (a large tapestry) of Guru Rinpoche on the last day of the festival. Guru Runpoche is believed to be the second Buddha and hold special significance in Bhutan. it is believed that a mere sight of the Thongdrol liberates onlookers of all sins and helps in accumulating good merit.

The Wangdue Dzong was completely destroyed by fire on June 24, 2012. However, reconstruction works are underway to restore the Dzong to its old grandeur.

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