Punakha Dzong hosts Thimphu's monk community during the
winter months. It was strategically built at the con-fluence
of the Pho Chlu (Male River)and the Mo Chhu (Female River)
by the first Shabdrung of Bhutan and Ngawang Namgyal, in
1637. The dzong has been destroyed by four fires and an
earthquake in 1807, and has been frequently devastated by
floodwater coming from the great northern glaciers. The
dzong has now been fully restored to its original spendour.
In 1993, the largest thongdrel, a religious embroidery composed
entirely of applique on silk brocade, that has ever been
created was dedicated to the dzong and the people of Punakha
by His Majesty King Jigme Singye Wangchuck and the Je Khenpo
at a three-day consecration ceremony.