The Temple of the Divine Madman
Located on a round hillock on the edge of the Punakha Valley, Chimi Lhakhang was built in 1499 by the 14th Drukpa hierarch, Ngawang Choegyel, after the site was blessed by ‘the Divine Madman’ the maverick saint, Drukpa Kunley. Famously known as the temple of fertility, the lhakhang draws local people, from near and far, to receive blessings from the lama (monk). The local people also bring their new-borns to be named here. The lhakhang is truly a revered and blessed space for many.
Many childless couples make a devout pilgrimage to the lhakhang in the hope that they will be honoured with a wang, or a blessing from the lama. Woman entering the temple, who are hoping to conceive, are made to carry a wooden phallus around the temple three times.
The lhakhang is about a 30-minute walk through fields from Sopsokha on the main road to Punakha.