Bhutan is linguistically rich with over 23 dialects spoken in the country. The national language is Dzongkha, the native language of the Ngalops of western Bhutan. Dzongkha literally means the language spoken in the Dzongs, massive fortresses that serve as the administrative centers and monasteries. Two other major languages are the Tshanglakha and the Lhotshamkha. Tshanglakha is the native language of the Tshanglas of eastern Bhutan while Lhotshamkha is spoken by the southern Bhutanese of Nepali origin. English has been used as the medium of instructions in schools, institutes and to interact with foreign people.
Bhutan is the only Mahayana Buddhism Kingdom in the world, with Mahayana (tantric) Buddhism as its official religion. It is practised throughout the entire country by 75% of the inhabitants. Hinduism – closely related to Buddhism, is Bhutan’s second religion, practiced by about 25% of the population. Before Buddhism captured the heart of Bhutan, several forms of animistic religions were practiced. Minority groups still practice these traditions and rituals in some parts of the country.