Ta Dzong, the National Museum
National Museum of Bhutan is a cultural museum in the town of Paro in western Bhutan. Established in 1968, in the renovated ancient Ta-dzong building, above Rinpung Dzong under the command of His Majesty, the King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, the third hereditary Monarch of Bhutan. The necessary infrastructure was created to house some of the finest specimens of Bhutanese art, including masterpieces of bronze statues and paintings. Suitable galleries were constructed to house the extensive collections. Works of art were elegantly displayed on scientific lines.
Today the National Museum has in its possession over 3,000 works of Bhutanese art, covering more than 1,500 years of Bhutan’s cultural heritage. Its rich holdings of various creative traditions and disciplines, represent a remarkable blend of the past with the present and is a major attraction for local and foreign visitors.
The Museum is located on the hill behind the Paro Dzong. Open from 9 am to 4pm everyday except Mondays and some national holidays, a visit takes a good hour. On Sundays, it opens only at 11 am. Housed in a 17th century watch tower, it has a unique character and beautiful panoramic views over Paro Valley. Opened in 1968, its collection of fine arts, paintings and bronzes are famous. There are also textiles, jewellery, and handicrafts sections as well as galleries of stuffed animals and butterflies from Bhutan. The stamps’ hall is very popular and displays, among others, 3-D stamps, record stamps, silken stamps, embossed stamps and the famous triangular stamp depicting the yeti. The top floor of the Museum is a chapel containing a “tree” depicting the main figures of the four religious schools of Tibetan Buddhism.