The Yotong La pass at 11,500 feet separates the valleys of Trongsa from Bumthang. Bumthang has a quaintness that charms travelers.
Comprising of four small valleys, the deeply spiritual region of Bumthang is a stop, must for the Buddhist.
Apart from the Dzong at Jakar, smaller temples can be found throughout the valleys. Tales of Padma Sambhava dominate these holy sites. The valley is home to the sacred Jampa and Kurjey Monasteries where body marks of Guru Rimpoche can be seen, impressed into a Rock.
Bumthang is also home the 16th century Buddhist teacher Pema Lingpa, to whom many important dynasty traces its ancestry.
Jakar, the main town is famous for its honey production, cheese, apples, apples and apricots. Swiss and German aided projects have helped the local economy to dramatically improve over the recent years. A number of modern houses are evidence of the valley’s increased prosperity.
Visitors to Jakar should plan to spend a few days taking advantage of the valleys relatively gentle slopes to hike to nearby medieval temples and glimpse Bhutan’s mostly rural population.
The Eastern most valley in central Bhutan before the Thrumshing La pass is the Ura village. A small old temple at the end of cobblestone paths gives the village a medieval feel.