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Dancing Monks of Bhutan

December 19th, 2012
Costumed dancers in a Dance festival in Bumthang, Bhutan

During many of the festivals in Bhutan (a country with lots of festivals), they act out their traditional stories in dance.  Most of the stories are quite incomprehensible to the uninitiated without a guide explaining them, but they are fantastic to watch and exciting to be a part of the enthusiastic crowd as the dancers whirl around the coutyard with their costumes flaring out in bright vibrant colours and patterns.

Costumed dancer in a Dance festival in Bumthang, Bhutan
Black Hat Dance
Costumed dancer in a Dance festival, Bumthang province, Bhutan
Black Hat Dance 2

Monasteries, Dzongs and Festivals

For many of the festivals, especially those in the Monasteries and Dzongs (temple fortress), the dancers are often the local Monks.  During my recent photographic tour of Bhutan we all saw many temples and Dzongs, but generally photography is forbidden within the inner sanctums of the temples themselves (fair enough i reckon, got to have some privacy).  Well imagine our surprise when we were standing (quiet and respectful) outside the temple door of the Trongsa Province Dzong watching while the Monks rehearsed their dances, when one of the senior Monks invited us in to take photos!

The light was streaming through the ancient windows behind the Monks and falling onto the old planked hardwood flooring creating a stunning backdrop to set off the deep red and saffron robes of the whirling Monks.  It was a magical experience, and was very hard to leave.

Dancing Monks of Bhutan
Dancing Monks of Bhutan
Dancing Monks of Trongsa Dzong

Bhutan Photo Tour 2013 dates released

The itinerary and the dates for the Bhutan Photography tour for 2013 have been finalised and booked.  I have reworked the whole itinerary and reduced the numbers of this photographic tour down to a maximum of 10 people to ensure a better and more rewarding experience for all.  You can read about this exciting new photo tour to Bhutan right here.

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