Tango Monastery, also known as Tango Cheri Monastery, is a Buddhist monastery located in Thimphu, the capital city of Bhutan. It is one of the most important religious institutions in the country and is known for its unique architectural style and religious significance.
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The monastery was founded in the 13th century by Phajo Drugom Zhigpo, a Tibetan lama who played a significant role in introducing and spreading the Drukpa Kagyu school of Buddhism in the nation. The monastery is situated on top of a hill surrounded by scenic beauty, making it an ideal location for meditation and spiritual retreat.
The main attraction of Tango Monastery is its ancient temple, which houses several sacred relics and statues. The temple is adorned with intricate woodwork and beautiful murals depicting Buddhist teachings and legends. Monks from the Drukpa Kagyu school reside in the monastery, devoting themselves to Buddhist teachings and practices.
Cheri Monastery, on the other hand, is located at the base of the Tango Monastery hill and is closely associated with it. Founded in the 17th century, Cheri Monastery is considered the first Buddhist monastery in Bhutan and was built by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the founder of the country.
Cheri Monastery holds great historical and religious importance, as it served as a retreat and meditation center for Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal during his stay in Bhutan. The monastery is also known for its peaceful surroundings and is a popular destination for pilgrims, tourists, and those seeking spiritual solace.
Both Tango and Cheri monasteries offer visitors a unique and serene environment to explore Bhutan’s rich cultural heritage and engage in spiritual practices. The stunning architecture, vibrant rituals, and peaceful ambiance make these monasteries a must-visit for anyone traveling to Bhutan.
The Tango and Cheri Monastery hike is another popular trekking route in Bhutan. It offers a unique opportunity to explore two monasteries, Tango and Cheri, which are important religious and cultural landmarks in the region.
Hike in Bhutan
The hike starts from Thimphu, the capital city of Bhutan, and takes you through forests and scenic landscapes. The trail is well-maintained and offers moderate difficulty, making it suitable for most hikers.
The first monastery you will encounter on the hike is Cheri Monastery, located about 15 kilometers from Thimphu. Cheri Monastery is renowned for its spiritual significance and peaceful ambiance. It was built in 1620 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the unifier of Bhutan. The monastery houses beautiful statues, paintings, and scriptures that give visitors insights into Bhutanese Buddhist culture.
Continuing onwards, the trail takes you to Tango Monastery, situated about 2 kilometers from Cheri Monastery. Tango Monastery holds immense importance as it is the seat of the Druk Desi, the highest religious authority in Bhutan, and also serves as a Buddhist university. The monastery complex features intricately designed architecture and stunning wall paintings that showcase the rich cultural heritage of Bhutan.
The hike to Tango and Cheri Monastery not only offers an opportunity for spiritual exploration but also allows hikers to enjoy the natural beauty of the surrounding landscapes. Along the trail, you can spot wildlife, birds, and beautiful views of the Thimphu Valley.
It is advisable to start the hike early in the morning to avoid any potential crowds and to make the most of your time at the monasteries. Carry appropriate hiking gear, water, snacks, and a camera to capture the stunning scenery. Remember to dress modestly and to respect the cultural and religious significance of these sacred sites.
Overall, the Tango and Cheri Monastery hike is a rewarding experience that combines nature, spirituality, and cultural exploration. It provides a unique insight into Bhutanese Buddhism and offers breathtaking views of the Himalayan landscape.