The capital of the Kingdom of Bhutan, is located in a valley surrounded by hills on all sides. It continues to grow along several of the slopes. It also has a lot of places where you can immerse yourself in the culture of the country. It is also relatively more modern looking than Paro.
The drive from Paro was quite scenic, most of the way along rivers. We stopped and took a break at Chuzzom, the confluence of 2 major rivers.
After just over an hour we reached Thimphu, and headed over to Archery grounds to watch several masters practice their art. While people have adopted modern graphite bows, they have also upgraded the challenge by putting targets farther away. Its quite a spectacle to watch, both teams taunt each other, celebrate successful hits on target with little dances.
After checking into the hotel, we spent some time strolling around the city. I also had the opportunity to visit a very old bookshop and buy a book named Treasures of the Thunder Dragon written by a member of the Royal Family about their nation, its unique history and culture. Dinner was at a pizza joint called the Seasons. They also have amazing dessert.
The next day we had two major places to visit, Thimphu Dzong and the Thimphu Market. Thimphu market is a wonderful place to see the local handicrafts and is a photographer’s dream.
Thimphu Dzong is a Buddhist monastery and fortress on the northern edge of the city. It looks stunning at night due to the lights. Our visit to the Thimphu Dzong was well timed, as we got to witness the daily flag hoisting ceremony and meet the Abbot of Thimphu region. The flag hoisting is always preceded by prayers and blessing of the flag, after which the guard march the flag out and hoist it at the entrance to the Dzong.
Another place to visit in Thimphu is the Memorial Chorten. It was built to commemorate the Third King of Bhutan, who wanted a symbol that represents the mind of Buddha.
There are a lot of other things to see and do in Thimphu such as visiting monasteries for history/culture buffs,Motithang Takin Wildlife Preserve, trekking etc. You can also see more of my pictures of Bhutan at Google+