The palace of Wangdichholing was built in 1857 on the site of a battle camp of the penlop of Trongsa, Jigme Namgyal. It was the first palace in Bhutan that was not designed primarily as a fortress. The grand but rather neglected building is used as a lobdra (monastic school); however, the Bhutan Foundation (www.bhutanfound.org) plans to convert it into a museum.
Namgyal's son, King Ugyen Wangchuck, the first king of Bhutan, was born in Wangdichholing and chose it as his principal residence. The entire court moved from here to Kuenga Rabten each winter in a procession that took three days. Wangdichholing was also for a time the home of the third king, before he moved the royal court to Punakha in 1952.
There are five giant prayer wheels inside square chortens just to the north. The sleek modern building next door is the upmarket Amankora resort.