If you are in Thimphu and looking to explore beyond the city, Pangri Zampa Lhakhang is one of the gems that you should certainly explore.
Located around 8 Kms from Thimphu on the way to Tango & Cheri Goemba, Pangri Zampa is the national center of traditional astrology. Bhutanese parents also visit this lhakhang for getting auspicious names and blessings for their newborns.
Built in 16th century, Lhakhang consists of two temples which will be visible to you as soon as you enter the compound. Huge stone walls painted with white will make you look to the top. As you raise your eyes from the prayer wheels at the entrance to the heights of huge temple walls, you will be stunned seeing the beautiful combination of sheer scale with simplicity.
Both these buildings have temples on their top floors. It’s all dark inside and you have to take wooden stairs to reach to the top but temple sites are very calm and peaceful and you would love to spend time there listening stories and anecdote from one of the young monks from the temple about Zhabdung (God of Astrology) and the temple.
Since there was a zam (bridge) connecting the temple with Pangri (flat land near mountain), it came to be known as Pangri Zampa. With time, original bridge was destroy leaving behind the remnants of it and a new cantilever bridge has recently been built on Thimphu Chu (River) to replace the old one and look this monument complete.
There are around 100 monks in Lhakhang pursuing their studies in astrology. They dedicate 6 or more years to get trained in various areas of traditional astrology before moving to either teaching or meditation.
How to reach Pangri Zampa Lhakhang
Location. Pangri Zampa is not marked on Google maps but you can ask locals and they will guide you to the place. There are regular cabs that run from Thimphu to Pangri Zampa. You can either book the full cab or share your ride at Nu. 40 per person one way.
Pangri Zampa Lhakhang Timings and Entry Charges
There are no specified timings for the temple but it is recommended to visit in day time as most monasteries close in the evening. There is no entry fee.