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National Memorial Chorten

National Memorial Chorten

Bhutan Tours - National Memorial Chorten, Thimphu

The large National Memorial Chorten in Thimphu is dedicated to Bhutan’s third king, His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuck (“the father of modern Bhutan”) and was built in 1974 two years after his death.  It is one of the most visible structures in the capital and has become the focus of daily worship for many Bhutanese. 

Throughout the day there is a steady stream of worshippers circumambulating the chorten, turning the large red prayer wheels (below).

This chorten is unlike other chortens as it does not enshrine the mortal remains of the late King.  Only the King’s photo in a ceremonial dress adorns a hall in the ground floor. The King when he was alive wanted to build "a chorten to represent the mind of the Buddha".