Hot Springs in Bhutan
Hot springs in Bhutan are usually called Tshachu. Almost all the Bhutanese make it a point to soak in at least one of the Bhutan Hot Springs in their lifetime. As they consider it to have a lot of medicinal properties and benefits. The hot springs of Bhutan can cure various ailments ranging from Skin disease, arthritis to body aches . Bhutan has many hot springs. The most Popular one is Gasa Hot Spring also locally known as Gasa Tshachu.
However Bhutan has hot springs all across the country, to name some
- Dur Hot Spring, Bhutan
- Koma Hot Spring, Bhutan
- Gelephu Hot Spring, Bhutan
- Chubu Tshachu Hot Spring, Bhutan
- Duenmang Tshachu
But ironically, most hot springs are not comfortably located. To reach most of the hot springs you have to hike for days. So owing to all these reasons we have dedicated this blog to Gasa Hot Spring as it is accessible, effective and pleasantly located in the valley of Gasa.
Gasa Tshachu or Hot Spring
Gasa hot springs are located on the bank of the Mo Chhu River. It is a wonder to watch the hot water frothing through the surface of land. Scientifically, the water coming into contact with very hot rock could have resulted in hot springs.
Gasa hot springs is one of the most popular springs in the country and is frequently visited by locals and occasionally by tourists as this hot spring is supposed to have a lot of health benefits.
A decade back, I remember well trekking for hours to reach the hot spring. But today there is a black topped road that takes you right there to the hot spring.
Type of Hot Springs in Gasa
There are five houses/pools at the Gasa Tshachu. Each Pool/Pond is designated to cure certain Ailments.
Pond A: Poisoning / Blood and humor disorder/ Digestive Disorder
Pool B:Good For Heavy metal poisoning/fracture and dislocation/ Contracture and Stiffness of Limbs/joint aches and Pain
Pond C: For Stomach disorder, Joint aches and pain
Pond D: Joint Aches /Skin problems /Throat problem and the VIP Pool
The water temperature varies in each of the pools so visitors can choose the one that they like best. Bathing facilities have also been provided to ensure that the Hot Springs remain clean and hygienic.
Till last year there was a pay pool whereby you could pay and book the pool but now this has been lifted and designated only to VIP guests.
We visited Gasa in the month of June so the pool was less crowded but I believe if you visit in the month of December, January or February then getting the pool all by yourself would be very difficult, people line up in queue and take turns. I believe during these peak months getting the rooms would be difficult as well. So usually the locals pitch their tent and stay there for months.
Accommodation at Gasa
There are Government guest houses close to the pools. There are three categories of room.Very basic, basic and comfortable. But we have to bring our own cooking items. However, in the comfortable category room they provide utensils, gas stove, and bedding; the toilet also has geysers but nothing is provided in the basic and very basic category.
Maybe due to the meager population the cost of food is very expensive and the choice of food is fewer so if you are planning to stay in Gasa guest house we recommend you to bring food items either from Thimphu or Punakha.
The locals soak in for hours in the hot spring water but honestly speaking, I could not do so for more than an hour at a stretch as the heat was getting into my head . But yes the short dip was relaxing and it soothed my muscles to a certain extent . The water gives the sulfuric smell which is supposed to have a healing effect. There are many stories whereby people were cured of many chronic diseases.
And it is an awesome feeling to just lie down there and watch the tall mountains.Occasionally, you will also be greeted by rare and beautiful birds.
Other Things To Do
This is also the best place to meet the locals from all walks of life .
There are many things that you can do other than Tshachhu/Hot spring while you are here. You can stroll around the Jigme Dorji National Park , do birding or take a short hike to the adjacent Jigme Dorji National Park.
All in one , it was a unique experience and each experience always adds some flavor to our life.