If you belong to a class of tourist who is looking forward to rest, solace and recuperation, Bhutan has many activities at your disposal. Whether it’s a session of peaceful and thoughtful meditation, Bhutan has just got the right thing you need to revive and rejuvenate your body and spirit.
There are several meditation retreats in Bhutan that offers respite from the stressful day to day life. Many tourists from Thailand and other Buddhist countries visit Bhutan specifically for meditation tours. There are various hotels in Bhutan that provide yoga sessions, meditation facilities and retreats within the hotel premises.
Sowa Rigpa is the traditional medicine of Bhutan and dates back to the 17th century when it first split from Tibetan region. The natural environment of Bhutan is rich in flora and has enabled the development of an unparalleled pharmacopoeia. The 20 Dzongkhags (districts) has local medical units that provide traditional remedies for all kinds of ailments.
Meditation and Retreat
One of the last strongholds of Vajrayana Buddhism, Meditation and Retreat are a common practice amongst Buddhist practitioners in Bhutan. Several hermitages and small retreat centers are located all over the country, usually adjacent to monasteries, monastic schools and temples. These retreats and meditation centers provide breather from the stress of daily life. Devout Buddhists often venture into the mountains for months to meditate.
Hot Spring Therapy
Also known as Tshachus, hot springs are found all over the Bhutan kingdom. These hot springs are known for their medicinal properties have been used by the Bhutanese people for centuries to cure various ailments such as body aches and sinuses. Visiting hot springs is a popular tradition among Bhutanese during the winter season. The five most well-known hot springs are:
Chubu Tshachu is another well-known hot spring in Bhutan. It is located alongside the banks of the Pho Chu River and is located within a day’s journey from Punakha town.
Located in Bumthang Dzongkhag in Central Bhutan, Dur Tshachu is famous for its medicinal value and is known for curing body aches. It is situated in the village of Dur.
Located alongside the banks of Mangde Chu River, Duenmang Tshachu is quite popular amongst the Khengpa population who visit it regularly.
The Gasa Tshachu
Located close to the banks of the MO Chu River, the hot springs at The Gasa Tshachu are one of the most popular springs in the country and are visited by both locals and tourists. There are three bath houses at the Gasa Tshachu. Out of three, one bath house contains a large bathing pool and the remaining two have two smaller pools.
In Southern Bhutan, Gelephu Tshachu is a hot spring mainly frequented by the local residents. In winter, people from all over the Bhutan journey come here to cure themselves of diseases. Here visitors can also try their hands at Menchu, ancient Bhutanese Hot Stone Baths. In this method, water is heated by inundating red-hot stones into the bath. It is a popular curative method used throughout the country.