Bhutan, a place shrouded in mystery, magic and rich culture. Western Bhutan is home to some of the country’s finest museums, temples, dzongs, meditation & wellness facilities. See the elegant, traditional-style houses & natural beauty in Paro, visit Thimpu – the kingdom’s capital city & explore Punakha’s fortress & majestic structures.
Hot Stone Bath : One of the best way to unwind after a long day in Bhutan is the HOT STONE BATH (Dotsho or Menchu). Traditionally, practiced since ages in Bhutan. It is not only practiced as a comforting SOAK but also to treat various alignments. Soaking in Menchu with (Water with medicinal properties) is one of the favorite activities for Bhutanese, especially during the winters.
The hot stone bath is a ritual in itself, riverside rocks are heated till red hot and gradually dropped into a wooden tub filled with water and scattered with Artemisia leaves. The burning rocks heats the water gradually and thus release minerals in to the water. Traditionally these bath are done near a river bed with plenty supplies of stones and water and preferably after dark in the open air. However, more luxurious version of hot stone bath are offered by different hotels and resorts, which are more suitable to the general standards of visitor. It is still kept authentic to a certain level were a visitor can enjoy the bath in a traditional way without having to feel the discomfort. A hot cup of tea or a glass of locally brewed wine can be a cherry topping to the whole experience, don’t forget to keep yourself hydrated.
THAG-ZO : The textile industry is an integral part of Bhutanese life and culture. As such the art of weaving is widely practiced.
Women of eastern Bhutan are skilled at weaving and some of the most highly prized textiles are woven by them. In the past, textiles were paid as a form tax to the government in place of cash and people from western Bhutan travelled all the way to Samdrup Jongkhar to acquire/barter for woven textiles. Bhutanese textiles are woven from cotton, raw cotton and silk with intricate motifs woven into the cloth.
Khoma village in Lhuentse is famous for Kushithara, while Rahi and Bidung are known for bura textiles, namely Mentsi Matha and Aikapur. One type of cotton fabric woven in Pemagatshel is the Dungsam Kamtham. Which lends its name to the village Decheling (Samdrup Jongkhar)Adang village in Wangdue Phodrang is known for textiles such as Adang Mathra, Adang Rachu and Adang Khamar while the Bumthaps in central Bhutan are known for Bumthap Mathra and Yathra, both textiles woven out of Yak hair and sheep wool. It’s interesting to note that the people of Nabji and Korphu in Trongsa are known for textiles woven out of nettle fibers. Weaving is also a vocation amongst the Brokpas of Merak and Sakteng.
Men contribute in spinning yak hair and sheep wool into thread There are four types of looms that are used by Bhutanese weavers. They are the blackstrap loom, the horizontal fixed loom, the horizontal-framed loom and the card loom. The predominant type is the indigenous back-strap loom. It is used mostly by weavers from eastern Bhutan and is set up on porches or in thatched sheds to protect weavers and the cloth from the sun and rain. The horizontal frame loom and the card loom were brought into Bhutan from Tibet and are still used today.