Haa is also known as “the Hidden Land Rice Valley”. Haa’s major feature is its narrow north-south valley. It’s new Dzong was built in 1915, near the older one which was destroyed by fire. Haa was the ancient centre of trade with Yatung in Chumbi Valley in Tibet. The valley has been the strong-hold of the Dorji family to which Her Majesty the Queen Mother, Ashi Kesang Choden Wangchuck, belongs.
Haa Dzongkhag has a total area of 1,900 sq.km with altitude ranging from 800m to 5,600m. The Dzongkhags has six Gweogs which include Bji, Eusu, Gakiling, Katsho, Samar and Sangbay. Haa is characterized by a rugged and mountainous terrain, which makes access and delivery of development services difficult as well as expensive. It is constrained by short growing seasons and limited arable land as only about two percent of the land is cultivable. Khamzing dominates agricultural activity, constituting an estimated 68 percent of the cultivated land. Most of the Gewogs consist of dry land areas and natural pasture land. The main crops grown in the valley are Wheat, barley, millet and potato although some rice is grown in the lower reaches of the valley. Potatoes, chillies, apples and other cash crops are grown by farmers on the valley floor along terraced hillsides. Almost 78 percent of Haa is covered with forest. And forest products play an important part in local economy. Livestock rearing constitutes an important economic activity in Haa with many of the northern Gewogs depending on livestock as their major source of income. In 2002, the valley was opened to foreign tourism.
Places of Interest
Chhundu Lhakhang is one several shrines dedicated t the valley’s protecting deity, Ap Chundu. The temple houses statues of the blue-faced Chundu and his red faced Cousin Jowya.
The monk body in Haa is not housed in its Wangchuk Lo Dzong but in Lhakhang Karpo in Eusu Gewog which functions as the Haa Dratshang (monastic body). The annual Haa Tshechu is held here.