First time hiking to Dodeydra Monastery through the scenic trails from Northern Part of Thimphu

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Dodeydra is situated on the side of a hill on the north-western flank of Thimphu city. The hike up to the monastery is considered one of the best day hikes by locals in the capital. The 5-kilometre trail has some of the best views of Thimphu Valley. Hikers/pilgrims can choose to either hike from Jungzhina near the gate of Samteling palace or start from Dechenling Goemba. It takes around two hours to reach the monastery.

HIGHLIGHT

View from trail

THE TRAILS & CANOPIES

One of the easiest ways to explore a place or any destination is through taking local hiking trails. Among numerous hiking trails in Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan hike towards Dodeydra is one of the highlights. Although the initial 30 minutes climb is gruelling, the climb is worth as hiker’s eyes conquer the scenic view of Thimphu Valley from Northern Belt.

Unlike another hiking trail around the capital, en route Dodeydra there are canopies and resting spots thoughtfully built along the trail overlooking stunning landscape and awe-inspiring view of the capital city.

RELIGIOUS SIGNIFICANCE

The monastery was built by the 13th Chief Abbot of Bhutan, Je Khenpo Yonten Thaye, in the year 1779 on a cliff face inside which is believed to be the hidden text known as Dodey Kezang on the teachings of the Buddha. Some say the sound of someone reading the text inside the cliff can be still heard today.

Statues of the past, present and future Buddhas and Zhabdrung Phuntso Tshongpo, a mural of Avalokitesh painted by Je Jamyang Gyeltsen considered to be priceless, a mandala created by Je Jamyang Gyeltsen; the shape of Dorji Phagmo on a rock wall inside the temple. Nearby is holy spring water that is supposed to aid those whose hearing is impaired.


Today the monastery is home to 180 student monks pursuing higher studies in Buddhism, which is a 4 years course. The compound also has a guest room to accommodate locals looking to spend a night in this heavenly place in their pursuit of spiritual wellness.

The compound of the monastery is lively and is decorated with garden and miniature images of stupas and sacred infrastructures. One can read the art of calligraphy on the rock, woods and trees within the vicinity.


THE SPORTS GROUND

According to the principal of the monastery, the reason for the development of playground for the monks was to encourage the monks to keep physically active and to enhance social rapport amongst the fraternity.

Monks playing soccer with Football Star Chencho Gyeltsen

Video about the Hike ;

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