Still scattered with treasures from its regal past, Punakha is best known for the commanding Punakha Dzong. This magnificent building is often said to be Bhutan’s finest structure.
A pleasant town that makes the most of its scenic locale, Punakha is renowned for its fertile land. The surrounding valley sits at a lower altitude than most of Bhutan and produces an abundance of rice, oranges and bananas.
Spend time in Punakha to visit Punakha’s most famous sight, its eponymous dzong. Meaning the ‘palace of great happiness’, this is one of the country’s most majestic structures and the second oldest dzong in Bhutan. Located on the confluence of Punakha’s two rivers, the current building dates back almost 400 years and has been extended during the subsequent centuries.
Take an evening walk across Punakha’s paddy fields to the 15th century fertility temple of Chimi Lhakhang. Built by Drukpa Kunley, who was known as the ‘Divine Madman’, this bizarrely decorated temple celebrates his unorthodox ways.