Dumtse Lhakhang

Top choice in Paro

Just north of town, by the road leading to the National Museum, is Dumtse Lhakhang, an unusual chorten-like temple that was built in 1433 (some sources say 1421) by the iron-bridge builder Thangtong Gyalpo to subdue a demoness. Look for a mural of Thangtong to the right by the entrance. As you climb clockwise up through the atmospheric three-storeyed mandala-shaped temple core you'll pass some of the finest murals in Bhutan. It's essential to bring a good torch.

The middle floor is devoted to wrathful protectors and the animal-headed deities that the deceased face on their journey through the bardo, the transition between death and rebirth.

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