Located in South West of Paro and covering an area of roughly 1706 sq. km. Haa is the smallest Dzongkhag in the country. This tiny region is one of the most beautiful and isolated areas in the kingdom, adorned with pristine alpine forests and tranquil mountain peaks. This valley remains one of the least visited areas in the country and retains the air of an unspoiled, primeval forest. The wooded hills of Haa provide an ideal location for hiking and mountain biking.
Lhakhang Karpo was established in the 7th century by Tibetan king Songtsen Gempo in his mission to build 108 monasteries in one day. He built Lhakhang Karpo and Lhakhang Nagpo in the Haa Valley. According to a legend, a black and white pigeon were released to select sites to build the temples.
These two temples stand as the guardian sentinels keeping watch at the south entrance of the valley. The white pigeon landed on the foothills of the three towering mountains worshipped as Rigsum Gonpo and is where the Lhakhang stands today.The temple was named Karpo (white) as it was built on the site where the white pigeon landed.
Lhakhang Karpo, Lhakhang Nagpo: Located in Dumchoe village, the monastery was established in the 7th century by King Songtsen Gampo in his mission to build 108 monasteries in one day. It is situated towards the north of Lhakhang Karpo, Chhundu Lhakhang: It is one of the many temples dedicated to the protective deity if Haa, Chhundu. It is 5 minutes walk from Gayekha, Tagchu Goemba: Established in the 20th century, this monastery is located in the Lungse Kha village under Haa Dzongkhag by Dali Lama Sangay Jamtsho.
It is 26 km from Haa to Chele La. There’s no habitation on the route as the road switches back through a forest of blue pine, fir and oak. At about 3400m the road traverses through alpine country towards the pass. Cheli La is 3,810m. It is then a 35 km drive down to the junction with the Paro road in Bondey.
Set among pristine lakes and high alpine valleys, the Haa summer festival is a lively and uplifting celebration of traditional living-culture, nomadic lifestyles, unique Bhutanese cuisine, traditional sports and religious performances. Annual Haa Tshechu is three-day festival showcases various mask dances namely Shazam and Zhana Chams.
Hikes & Treks
Sagala Trek – The view towards Paro includes sacred Mount Chomolhari & below in the valley the Drukgyel Dzong & the sacred Taktsang Monastery.Looking to the west the peaks of Haa and the border with Tibet can be seen. Day Hikes to Junidrak (2950m) / Katsho Goenpa (3070m), Yangthang Village (2770m), Jangkhakha (2800m), Jamtoe Goenpa (3230m) / Tshenka Goenpa/ Yangto Goenpa (2990m), Takchu Goenpa / ShelkardraYangto Goenpa, Shelkardra, Gyechukha Lhakhang (2940m) & Drana Trashidhingkha Goenpa, varies from 2 hours to 5 hours walk.
Wangchulo Dzong in Haa is one of the newest, built in 1915 to replace a smaller structure. It is a large square structure with battered (inward-sloping) walls