Neten Dorji | Trashigang

Want to explore and experience the nature of Trashigang?

The Divisional Forest Office of Trashigang has widened an ancient route in Trashigang and developed it into a new trail for biking enthusiasts.

Calling it Shingtala-Kezang Eco-trail, the 3.4 kilometres eco-trail begins from Rawangko, which is a few metres away from dzongkhag court, provides a bird’s eye view of Trashigang Dzong, Yangner and valleys of Drametse.

The trail gently ascends to 1,220 metres above sea level and  passes  through a forest of chir-pine trees and gradually enters a lush green subtropical forest. There you will hear nothing but birdsongs and the sounds of your footsteps.

From the second canopy, Samkhar, Ranjung, and Phonmey villages can be seen.

The route was used by Shingtala Kezang, the last popular khochey of Samkhar village

With funding support from Vanishing Treasure,  Bhutan Tiger Center, Department of Forest and Park Services(DoFPs), the eco-trail was constructed along the contours of the track used by the villagers of Samkhar.

“It is mainly constructed to improve the livelihood of the people through eco-tourism programmes thereby seeking support in conservation of tiger as an umbrella species,” said an official. “The trail not only benefits villagers but also serves as a trekking route for urban dwellers.”

The eco-trail boasts numerous species of exotic birds and mammals Photo: Tandin Jamtsho

In olden days, the route was politically used by Shingtala Kezang, the last popular khochey of Samkhar village. Trail also serves as a recreational facility as Trashigang town becomes congested due to development.

“It takes around 30 minutes to reach Trashigang town,” a villager, Kinzang Norbu, said. “It has also shortened the distance.”

With the development of the trail, he said, urban dwellers started hiking and visiting villages. “We see people coming with their families for a picnic during the holidays.”

The eco-trail passes through the habitats of animals like langurs,barking deer, sambar, bear, and common leopards. It is also home to more than 60 species of birds, more than 37 different butterflies, and mamals.

“The trail is an excellent spot for bird lovers. You can see birds like black-napped monarch, common kestrel, grey-headed canary flycatcher, red-headed trogon and black eagle,” a forest official said.