Kamal and Chandra stroll through the heart of the Thimphu city this morning while rests of us are engaged in our normal routine. Kamal comes back and shows his keenness to take us with him for a stroll beforehand. We too show our eagerness and set our feet with him upon the road to the Bhutan Thailand Friendship Park. It is small but a cute place. After some photo shoot we come back for breakfast.
To start with today’s tour our driver takes us to the Immigration office to get our permits extended for Punkaha. He suggests us to drop the application for extension of permit which we may collect later while returning back from the city tour. We do the same and resume our tour.
Our car stops first at National Memorial Chorten (Stupa). It was built in 1974 in memory of the Third King. The chorten with a golden spire is one of the main areas of worship in Thimphu. People circumambulate the Chorten,spin the large red prayer wheels and make their prayers. We also offer our prayers and circumambulate the chorten. It is really a charming place.
We now set out our journey to Buddha Point. We are fascinated by the excellent views over Thimphu valley from the road.
We reach the Buddha point and see a 169 feet tall bronze statue of Buddha Dordenma (meaning Vajra-throned Buddha) is sitting up high on a mountainside overlooking the Thimphu Valley.
Photo Galleries of Buddha Point
After spending a good time at Buddha Point we move towards the Takin Preserve which is located on a wooded hillside.We enter into the Preserve and see Takins are roaming. Takin is a national animal of Bhutan. I believe it is worth visiting this place because Takin is hardly seen outside, not even in zoo.
It is a small Preserve and we quickly return to see the Thimphu Dzong. The Taschichho Dzong is a beautiful fortress located just outside the city. It is also the seat of the office of the King of Bhutan.
After seeing the Dzong, we come back into the valley and collect our permits for Phunaka. We notice some mistakes in our permits and address to the officials immediately. It takes quite a time to get the permits corrected which leaves no office hour for the day to obtain a separate permit for our vehicle which is issued by the Department of RST located near the bridge. It comes as an unpleasant surprise which is now doubled by a piece of information that from tomorrow there is a three days Public Holiday for the festival Losar. We all stand speechless as we are not feeling at our best. Our driver is promising to give a try tomorrow morning at RST office. But no words of him are taking away the pain we are now feeling because we understand the implications of not having permit for our vehicle.
In the evening we pass through the National Stadium in Thimphu, a small but beautiful ground. Besides Archery, which is their national sports, other games are also played here.
We now stop by the side of a road on uphill and see the spectacular view of Dzong light up with red and yellow lights. A session of Photo shoot begins with all known poses.
Backed into the hotel we order for “Ema Datshi”, the national dish of Bhutan, for our dinner with Roti. Ema means Chilly, Datshi means cheese. Ema Datshi is a chilly and cheese stew. It is a tasty recipe and not hot at all.
I lie down on the bed for a good sleep. But it is not coming to me. My mind is grappling with so many questions. Will we be able to make our journey to Phunaka? Will we not see the famous Dochula Pass? Will we not see the Phunaka Dzong? I wish all of these will happen and we will have a delightful tomorrow.