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  • Colorful mask dances during festivals serve dual purposes: Entertainment and Medium of Religious Teachings
  • The majestic Punakha Dzong: Showcasing the beauty and intricacy of Bhutanese architecture
  • Bhutan has more than 5400 species of plants.
  • Despite its small geographical area, Bhutan has about 770 species of birds

People & Languages

Bhutanese people primarily consist of the Ngalops and Sharchops, called the Western Bhutanese and Eastern Bhutanese respectively. The Lhotshampa, meaning "southerners", are a heterogeneous group of mostly Nepali descent. The Ngalops primarily consist of Bhutanese living in the western part, while Sharchops consist of Bhutanese living in the central and eastern part of the county. The Lhotshampas are Bhutanese living in the southern part of the country.

In modern times, with improved transportation infrastructure, there has been much intermarriage between these groups.

The national language is Dzongkha, one of 53 languages in the Tibetan language family. The Dzongkha script is identical to classical Tibetan. In the schools English is the medium of instruction and Dzongkha is taught as the national language. Ethnologue lists 24 languages currently spoken in Bhutan, all of them in the Tibeto-Burman family, except Nepali, an Indo-Aryan language.

Dzongkha is spoken natively by the Ngalops which constitute 25% of the population. Tshagla (also called Sharchopa-kha) is spoken by the Sharchops. In the south of the country, Lhotshampas speak Nepali (Lhotsham-kha). The larger minority languages are Dzala (11%), Limbu (10%), and Kheng (8%)