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Get information on Simtokha Dzong situated in Thmpu.

Simtokha Dzong

Simtokha is about 5 km south of Thimphu on the road to Paro and Phuentsholing. Officially known as "Sangkak Zabdhon Phodrang" (Palace of the Profound Meaning of Secret Mantras), Simtokha Dzong was built in 1629 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. It is often said to be the first dzong built in Bhutan. It is the oldest dzong that has survived as a complete structure, and is the first structure that incorporated both monastic and administrative facilities. Since 1961 it has been the home of a rigney (religious and classical studies) school. Its students are both monks and lay people. The site is said to have been chosen to guard over a demon that had vanished into the rock nearby, hence the name Simtokha from sinmo (demoness), do (stone). Conveniently, the site is also an excellent location from which to protect the Thimphu valley and the valley leading to the Dochula and eastern Bhutan. The Simtokha Dzong, the oldest fortress of the country now houses the School for Buddhist studies. Built in 1627, this Dzong is oldest in Thimphu and gateway to the Thimphu Valley. The Dzong houses Rigney School for Dzongkha and monastic studies. There are beautiful frescos and slate carvings in Simtokha.

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