It was the day the large body of state backed monks left the Punakha Dsong after over wintering for their cooler summer quarters in the capital Thimpu. Our knowledgeable and fascinating guide Dorgji checked with one of the brothers at what time the spectacle of leaving would start and we were told 8.30. We arrived the following morning in plenty of time to discover the plan had changed and led by the chief monk, of Je Khenpo, they we off.
There followed one of the more bizarre episodes of our lives as we set off in hot pursuit of a monkly procession taking short cuts and overtaking in places where one would not normally as we tried to get past the only traffic jam in Bhutan and catch them up.
Eventually we did - and it was worth it. What a spectacle with hundreds lining the road waiting to be blessed, incense bellowing out from roadside burners, a bus loads of monks slowly progressing to their summer residence.
Just another inspiring sight on our 12 day Amankora journey across Bhutan taking in the culture, religion and people of this mesmerising country.
Amankora's five lodges, we stayed in them all, are a strange mixture of familiarity with identical room layouts and facilities, yet different buildings each sitting happily in their different environments. This was the queen's former summer residence, indeed H.M. Still gets the rent.
Stunning walks, wonderful temples, and a welcome home on each return. Here the locals came round for a dance and a song as we sipped a G & T....a meeting of cultures to the benefit of both parties - we get a flavour of their deeply spiritual way if life - they get some of our cash.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Combining aman, the Sanskrit-derived word for 'peace', and kora or 'circular pilgrimage' in Dzongkha, the Bhutanese language, Amankora, is a series of lodges in the Kingdom of Bhutan's central and western valleys. The sole surviving Himalayan Buddhist Kingdom, Bhutan is one of the most remote and pristine environments on earth. To best experience all that Bhutan has to offer, Amankora can tailor journeys that include a combination of its lodges located in the valleys of Paro, Thimphu, Punakha, Gangtey and Bumthang. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Amankora Punakha Hotel Punakha