From the airport towards Paro town there is a traditional wooden bridge, some two kilometres away, called Nyamai Zam, leading towards a huge fortress (dzong) built with stones. It is white washed and is known by the name of Rinpung Dzong. The fortress was built in 1646 AD by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. Earlier it was known as Rinchen Pung Dzong literally meaning “fortress on a heap of jewels.” It is one of the finest example of Bhutanese architecture and it contains fourteen shrines.
The fortress houses the office of the district administration and the court including the monk body. The courtyard inside the fortress is used for Paro Tsechu, a festival conducted in the first day of spring. It is one of the most important festivals in Bhutan.