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An update from Evaneos

Semtoka (Bhutan)

Practical information on Semtoka

  • Place or Religious Monument
  • Castle and fortress
  • Place or Historical Monument
3 / 5 - One review
How to get there
10 minutes walk from Thimphu town centre
When to go
All year round
Minimum stay
One day

Reviews of Semtoka

François-Xavier Sahuc Seasoned Traveller
9 written opinions

Bhutan's oldest Dzong.

My suggestion:
Go in the afternoon, after the groups of tourists.
My review

Simtokha Dzong is similar to all the Dzongs in the country ... Or rather, I should say that all the Dzongs in Bhutan are similar to the one in Simtokha, located on a hill south of Thimphu ! It is, in effect, the first of these fortress-temples built under the reign of Bhutan's founder, Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal.

The structure is solid, the location strategic: at the junction of the roads leading towards the Punakha and Paro valleys. The Dzong is still inhabited by a community of rather shy, young monks. I preferred to visit at a quiet moment of the day, in order not to miss the sacred temple and the very revered statue of the goddess of compassion that is kept there. Bear in mind that it is strictly forbidden to take photos in the sanctuaries where statues and sacred objects are kept.