- Trip Grade: EASY
- Hike to Tiger’s Nest in Paro and other day hikes
- Visit Farm House
- Visit the Religious Heartland of Bhutan, Bumthang
- Visit Monastery and some Museums
- Stroll around the city shopping
- Picnic Lunch and Archery practice session
- Hot stone bath
Day 01: ARRIVE IN PARO AIRPORT, BHUTAN (B,L,D)
Arrive at Paro Airport and then drive to the capital city Thimphu. Altitude: 2320m/ 7656ft above sea level.(1 hour 30 minutes drive)
The flight into the Himalayas reveals scenic and breathtaking views of Himalayan Mountains of the world. If weather permits you will be able to see Mt Everest (8848m, 29,198ft) and other Himalayan mountain ranges. After checking into the hotel later visit,
Your representative from our company will greet you on arrival and drive you to the capital city, Thimphu.
Later visit, Zorig Chusum Institute: The 13 arts and Crafts institute. The two main objectives of the institute are a) to preserve and promote the traditional arts and crafts and b) to create job opportunities for the underprivileged group of the society.
Folk Heritage museum: It was inaugurated by Her Majesty the Queen Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck, who is the founder and patron of the Museum, on 28th July 2001.It is dedicated to connecting people to the Bhutanese rural past through exhibition of its items and artifacts used in rural households
Paper factory: The handmade paper making in Bhutan stemmed from the age old tradition originated in 8th century of Bhutanese history. The handmade paper constitutes as valuable National heritage of Bhutanese cultural identity and is preserved through all the ages. The Traditional paper is recognized and held high esteem both in home and outside world.
Mini zoo: Here you can see just one animal – Bhutan’s national animal- the Takin. This is an extremely rare member of the goat family. Found in herds in the very high altitudes (13,125ft and over). They live on a diet of grass and bamboo.
Kuenselcholing View Point: The view point is also the perfect place to take in some truly breathtaking views of the entire city of Thimpu and also the largest Buddha in the world is being built.
Tashichho Dzong : The names means – Means Fortress of Glorious Religion. It was built in 1641 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel. It houses the secretariat building, the throne room and the office of the king, and the central monk body.
Later stroll around the city and later dinner at typical Bhutanese restaurant.
Overnight in Thimphu
Day 02: IN THIMPHU (B, L, D)
Morning visit the weekend market: Held every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, the people crowd the stalls every day, dressed in full colour and gathered to meet and to barter, much like the street markets in London!
Later take a hike to Cheri Monastery(Includes Dodina and Jigme Dorji Wild life Sanctuary): Hike about 1hrs(to and fro) leds to Cheri Goemba (Cheri Dorji Dhen). Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal built this monastery in 1620 and established the first monk body here. A chance to spot birds such as Mrs Gould’s Sunbird, Yellow-browed Tit, Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Long-billed Thrush, Ultramarine Flycatcher.
Morning visit, General Post office of Bhutan: Get an insight into Bhutan through its stamps. Visit their Philatelic Bureau for their beautiful, unique and wide range of stamps and philatelic products. You can also order them from Bhutan Post and its agents around the world. All types of attractive postage stamps, picture post cards, stamp albums, envelopes, etc., are available at the philatelic counters which are best for presentation and gift purposes. The bureau also maintains prepaid customer accounts such as Ordinary account and Standing order account.
Bhutan Craft bazaar: The private stalls had a variety of high-end quality products from places across the country such as wood carved national symbols, bags and western wears with touch of traditional designs, wooden and clay utensils, Bangchung, Dhapa, key hanger of jewelry boxes, bookmarks and handmade packing papers (Deysho) in different patterns, antique items and etc. The stalls have a distinctly rich outlook with fine tones of elegance, and a warm and inviting atmosphere. The craft bazaar is also an exemplary of how bamboo can be used to construct houses in the country.
Memorial Chorten: This particular chorten was constructed in 1974 as a memorial for the third King of the country, King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, who is widely regarded as the father of modern Bhutan.
Thangtong Dewachen(Nunnery): It was founded in 1976 by Rikey Jadrel, who is considered as emanation of Thangthong Gyalpo(1363 – 1485), the builder of numerous iron chain bridges across the Himalayas.
Later leisure time for you to take rest and prepare for the next journey.
Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 03: THIMPHU TO PUNAKHA/WANGDUE (B, L, D)
Altitude: 1350m/4455ft above sea level.(3 hour 30 minutes drive).
Morning driving towards Punakha/Wangdue, we come across a pass known as Dochula (3140m, 10362ft) from where a beautiful panoramic view of the Himalayan mountain range can be seen, especially in clear winter days. The beauty of this place is further enhanced by the Druk Wangyal Chortens- a 108 stupas built by the eldest Queen, Her Majesty Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck.
Once we reach Dochula , If interested we will take rest and sip a cup of in the cafeteria and then we will hike to the 18th century Lungchotse Lhakhang. For those who do not fancy walking for hours seeking solitude and peace of mind yet would like to have that, this is the place to go. It is a perfect place to enjoy the bounties of nature. On a clear sunny day one can see the entire Bhutan Himalaya with its snow covered peaks. The sunset from Lungchotse with different colors playing against the sky is a splendid spectacle. The view from the ridge as the sun sets over the rolling hills remains etched in mind for a long time.( 4 hours hike to and fro, gentle steep, nice foot path but some places could be moist and damp)
Later you can also visit the Botanical garden just below Dochula Pass where there are lot of collection of rhododendrons.
Overnight in Punakha
Day 04: IN PUNAKHA/WANGDUE (B, L, D)
Morning visit, Punakha Dzong (fortress): Built in 1637 by Zhabdrung which is remarkably located between the rivers of Mo (Female) Chu (river) and Pho (Male) Chu. Until the time of second king it served as a seat of the king.
Hike to Chimi Lhakhang(Temple of fertility): This Temple was built by lam Drukpa Kuenley (The Divine Madman) in 1499. It is about thirty minutes hike across fields from the road –Wooden phalluses are often found hanging in the four corners of the houses and also phalluses are painted on the walls of houses. It is the common belief that this helps in driving away evil spirits.(30 minutes hike to and fro, gentle steep, good footh path across the valleys and villages)
Overnight in Punakha/Wangdue.
Day 05: PUNAKHA/WANGDUE TO TRONGSA (B, L, D)
Altitude: 2200m /7260ft above sea level.(7 hours drive).
Morning drive to Trongsa.
Overnight in Trongsa.
Day 06: TRONGSA TO BUMTHANG (B, L, D)
Altitude: 2600m/ 8580ft above sea level.(3 hours drive)
Morning visit, Trongsa Dzong: It was built by Chhogyel Mingyur Tempa (sent by Zhabdrung to unify Eastern Bhutan to bring under the rule of the Desi) in the year 1644The dzong dominates the horizon, dwarfing the surrounding buildings. Both the First and the Second King ruled the country from this Dzong. And also visit the Trongsa Museum.
Later drive to Bumthang valley.
On the way visit Hand Loom shops.
Overnight in Bumthang.
Day 07: IN BUMTHANG(B, L, D)
Morning day excursion visit to Ogyen Choling Palace: It is a village in the Tang valley of Bumthang district. It is located on a commanding spur at an elevation of 3000m, on the east side of the Tang Chu. Visitors have to cross the Tangchu suspension bridge near Kizom and climb up to the village on foot. The trek takes about 45 minutes. Kizom is approximately 33 km from Jakar. The palace has been converted in a museum these days. (Gentle steep hike).
Later visit, Jambay Lhakhang: It is one of the 108 monasteries built by King Songtsen Goenpo in the 8th century to subdue evil spirits in the Himalayan region.
Later visit, Kurjey Lhakhang: Means body print. It dates back to 8th century when Guru Rimpoche first visited Bhutan. It is after his visit to the Monyul (country in the darkness); Buddhism was introduced in the country.
Visit, Mebar Tsho(Lake of Burning Fire):This is a sacred lake for Bhutanese who believe that Pema Lingpa discovered religious treasures from this lake in the 12th century.
Overnight in Bumthang.
Day 08: BUMTHANG TO GANGTEY VALLEY/PHOBJIKHA (B, L, D)
Altitude: 2800m/ 9240ft above sea level (6 hours drive)
Morning drive to Gangtey.
Later visit Gangtey Goemba: In the mountains east of Wangdue Phodrang lies the beautiful Phobjikha valley, on the slopes of which is situated the great monastery of Gangtey, established in the 17th century. The village of Phobjikha lies a few km. down from the monastery, on the valley floor. This quiet, remote valley is the winter home of black necked cranes, which migrate from the arid plains of Tibet in the north, to pass the winter months in a milder climate.
Later visit the Black Necked Crane Observation center.
Overnight in Gangtey.
Day 09: GANGTEY TO PUNAKHA/WANGDUE (B, L, D)
Altitude: 1350m/4455ft above sea level.(2 hours drive).
Morning you will hike across Gangtey Nature Trail: (Duration: Half day: two hours at a quicker pace): This is one of the most beautiful and shortest of the existing nature trail. In this trail you have the opportunity to visit the magnificent Goemba(Monastery), it also leads to sloping area of green grass, flanked by pine trees on either side. You will even come across some villages, rivers, crane roosting ground.
Later visit the royal Society for the Protection of Nature’s (RSPN) attractive new Observation and Education Center, where a presentation on RSPN’S will be made by their staff. The center has artful and effective educational displays about the valley and its cranes, a small showroom, which sells weavings made by local women, and a great view of the marshland- and its cranes. Constructed as part of RSPN’s Integrated Conservation and Development Project (ICDP) in the Phobjikha valley, the center was partly funded by the international crane foundation and ICF members. The women’s group of Phobjikha will perform some folk dances at the centre.
Later drive to Punakha/Wangdue and visit Wangdue Dzong.
Overnight in Punakha/Wangdue.
Day 10: PUNAKHA/WAMNGDUE TO PARO (B, L, D)
Altitude: 2280m/7524ft above sea level.
Morning drive to Paro(4 hours drive).
Later visit, Ta Dzong: This means – watch tower, which it served as during the 17th century to guard the region from the Tibetan invasion. It was converted to the National Museum in 1968.
Kichu Lhakhang(Monastery): It is one of the two most sacred and the oldest temples in Bhutan. It was built in 7th century by Tibetan King Songtsen Gampo. Overnight in Paro.
Day 11: IN PARO (B, L, D)
Morning hike to Taktshang Monastery (Tiger’s nest): This is Bhutan’s most recognizable cultural icon perched 800m/2640ft up a seemingly sheer cliff. Although it was tragically and mysteriously consumed by fire in April 1998 it has now been restored to its former glory. It is believed that in the 8th century, the great tantric master Guru Rimopche/ Padmasambhava (2nd Buddha) flew on the back of a tigress to the site where the monastery now stands. Three hours hike to and fro, some gentle and some steep hike, some stony foot path and some good ones) If you ride a horse upward it will cost extra US$15 per person.
Visit Farmhouse: Picturesque farm houses dot the valley amongst fields and hillsides. We welcome you to enjoy the hospitality of the Paro farmers. Thrill yourself as the farmers welcome you to their homes with genuine smiles. The two to three-storied Bhutanese farm houses are handsome in appearance, with colorfully decorated outer walls and lintels, and are traditionally built. A visit to a farm house gives an interesting glimpse into the lifestyle of a farming family. (If you take hot stone bath in the farm house it will cost extra US$25 per person.)
Later stroll around the town and see how locals live.
Overnight in Paro
Day 12: DEPART FROM PARO(B, L, D)
Early breakfast at the hotel and then drive to the airport. Your escort will assist you with exit formalities and bid you farewell.