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Thimphu

Travel Guide Asia Bhutan Thimphu

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Introduction

Thimphu Dzong: The admistrative and religious center of the capital city of Bhutan

Thimphu Dzong: The admistrative and religious center of the capital city of Bhutan

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Thimphu (Tibetan script: ཐིམ་ཕུག།) is the capital and largest urban centre in Bhutan and has about 100,000 inhabitants. It is located in a valley along the Wang Chhu river on an altitude of 2320 meters above sea level. The goverment of Bhutan has been located here since 1952 and uses the Tashichoedzong building just outside the city as its main residence. Surrounded by green forests and the snowcapped peaks of the eastern Himalaya on the background, the city has an extremely pleasant charm and the local culture only adds to the imagination. Thimphu is the only capital in the world that has no traffic lights, one was installed in the 90s but it was thought to lower happiness so it was removed. The city has a lot to offer for travellers, including good accommodation and 'tsechhus', the colourful dance festivals.

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Sights and Activities

  • Tashichoedzong
  • National Library
  • The Buddha Dordenma statue, the largest Buddha statue in the world, which will be completed in 2008

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Events and Festivals

  • Masked-dance festival (tsechhu) at the end of summer

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Weather

Despite its elevation, Thimphu has a warm, mostly mild climate. The summer lasts from June to September with generally warm weather but this is also the rainy season. Average temperatures in summer are almost 25 °C during the day. Winter night temperatures average below 0 °C however and snow is possible from December to March.
The best times to visit are spring (March-May) and autumn (late September - November) when mostly warm, dry and sunny condtions are the norm. Temperatures are usually around 20 degrees or a bit more while nights can be relatively cool, so bring some extra warm clothes.

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This is version 4. Last edited at 10:13 on Feb 13, 09 by Utrecht. 2 articles link to this page.

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