If you follow Royal Central on Twitter, you might have seen a post we shared about the King of Bhutan taking a dangerous journey across his country to visit some of his people. Royal Central learned of this mission from the King’s Facebook page. Here’s a summary of his adventure.
For the last fortnight, His Majesty King Jigme Khesar Mangyel Wangchuck of Bhutan has been trekking over the Bhutanese countryside. He has visited some of the most remote and inaccessible places in his kingdom.
His royal adventure began in the far North in Laya. He participated in an event referred to as the Royal Highland Festival. After this festival, His Majesty continued his journey, taking six days to reach the Lunana region through a route known as the “Snowman Trek.”
Parts of this region of Bhutan is completely inaccessible for five months out of the year. Its population is sparse and climate treacherous, reaching altitudes of 5000 meters. Whilst there, the King visited with people from many local villages.
As in many parts of the world, Bhutan is threatened by climate change. His Majesty examined glacial lakes in this region which many of the country’s rivers are ‘sourced.’ The King was informed about the warning systems put in place if these lakes were to be breached and cause flooding downstream. Due to climate change, this is a grave possibility.
Before moving on to Lhedi, His Majesty spent a night with a local family. On his arrival in Lhedi, the King was welcomed with traditional songs and dances. He celebrated Coronation Day on November 1st at the settlement of Sephu.
During this celebration, the administrative head of this region spoke of the privilege of the King’s visit on this very special day, saying: “His Majesty has always placed service to the people above personal comfort. Today, after completing a very long and difficult trek, His Majesty chose to spend this very special day with the people….”