Where the sacred old meets the vibrant new, that’s Bhutan’s capital city, Thimphu. Your holiday here will be full of memorable moments set against postcard Himalayan backdrops. Most of them when you’re out and about experiencing the best things to do in Thimphu. Like learning how to craft authentic Bhutanese paper from the pulp of the native daphne and dhekap trees, at the Jungshi Handmade Paper Factory. Or soaking in the calm of the Trashi Chhoe Dzong, the most famous in the region. Maybe you’re one for observing the Bhutanese national animal, the ‘takins’, at the nature reserve they call home. Really, you can choose what things to do in Thimphu just by following your own wanderlust.
You could go sightseeing to all the renowned sights, be it the National Library, the Textile Museum, Folk Heritage Museum or the highly revered National Memorial Chorten. As some of the more visited spots, you’ll hear all about them once you step foot in the city. Or you could choose things to do in Thimphu that don’t make it on every traveller’s list, but really should. Like a visit to the Nado Poizokhang Incense Factory. Give your senses an aromatic treat as you learn all about traditional handmade incense, using all the wonderful ingredients provided naturally by the earth. While you can find similar incense at the area of the Weekend Market dedicated to it, there is something special about watching it being made in front of you.
You could venture down a livelier path and visit some of Bhutan’s favourite activities. The first, is the Bhutan Bicycle Club, run by a local company which organises riding tours as well as bike rentals. Mountain biking is a specialty here with many enthusiasts making their way down narrow mountain paths. But of course, you could simply ride around the town as well. The other is the Changlimithang Stadium and Archery Ground, where you could catch a local tournament live or even try a few rounds yourself!
And then there’s some more of the fun stuff that everyone looks forward to — shopping in Thimphu. At the Weekend Market, you’ll find everything imaginable and more. But keep an eye out for the more traditional Bhutanese products and souvenirs as they surely make for more treasured keeps. You’ll also chance upon the local gooseberry flavoured tea and if it suits your palate, must find a place in your suitcase home. Shops like Choke Handicrafts, Sangay Arts & Crafts and Tsering Dollar Handicrafts are great stops to make. Between them they have everything from antiques, painted lama tables, student artworks, jewellery, prayer wheels, flags and a whole lot more. At Sanchok Enterprise, you’ll find any trekking gear you require so it’s a handy one to remember.
Shopping in Thimphu is like everything else in the city — an eclectic blend of past and present, fun and adventure, surprise and allure. And it will always leave you wanting more. SOTC has a multitude of Thimphu travel packages. Choose a different one every time you visit for a complete travel experience.