Ta Dzong is the National Museum of Bhutan. It is located above the Paro Rinpung Dzong. It is a cultural museum. Actually Ta dzong means watch tower as it was used to serve as a watchtower and fortress to protect the Paro Rinpung Dzong.
Who built Ta Dzong?
Ta dzong was built by Tenzin Drugdra, first Penlop (governor) of Paro in the year 1649. Ta dzong protected the Rinpung dzong from all the invasions by serving as a watchtower. The building of Ta dzong is round and has seven storeys. The building design is unusual as it is round and has the shape of a conch shell. The stone walls of the building are 2.5 meters wide. In other words, the design also looks like a union of the sun (circular) and the moon (crescent). It is believed that the union symbolizes victory and fame. In the past, Ta dzong also served in housing the soldiers and as well as the prison for rival soldiers.
Ta dzong was officially opened and renovated as the museum in the year 1968 under the command of His Majesty, King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck. Ta dzong as the national museum helps in contributing to one of the four pillars of Gross National Happiness (GNH). The Paro national museum helps in supporting one of the four pillars of GNH by being as a preserver and promoter of Bhutanese cultural values, lifestyles and architectures.