The Dzongs of Bhutan

Etiquette: Dress neatly and modestly (covered arms, no shorts or short skirts) and do not wear a hat in the precincts of dzongs or religious complexes. Do not smoke. Walk clockwise around chortens (stupas) and mani (prayer) walls. If you see a prayer flag-pole on the ground waiting to be erected, do not step over it, as this is considered extremely disrespectful, walk around it instead.

Photography: Photography is usually permitted in public areas, such as courtyards and dance grounds, but not permitted inside the chapels of religious complexes. Check first with your guide to avoid inadvertently giving offence, and at all times take care not to intrude upon the social space of others when taking photographs. Never stray onto the dance ground at a festival in search of the perfect shot - this is the height of bad manners and will definitely give offence to all Bhutanese who see you!

© Spirit of the Himalayas, 2005. All rights reserved.