This trip allows the travelers to enjoy the daily lives of friendly Bhutanese people by visiting temples, monasteries and gigantic fortresses. It gives you a chance to meet people, enjoy the pristine forest with rare glimpse of wildlife and observe the ancient old traditions arts and crafts. We would be travelling through the less frequented areas of Bhutan. Our journey starts from Paro valley where our flight lands. We spent two and a half days sightseeing and hiking in Paro to acclimatize ourselves and begin the trek from Paro and arrive in the lush valley of Thimphu, the capital city, After visiting the historical sites in Thimphu we will return back to Paro and take our flight back home with beautiful memories.
- The 5 day trek is wonderfully varied: beautiful scenery, good views of snow capped Himalayan peaks, a monastery high up in the mountains, and a visit to a dzong. There are campsites next to the monastery, and also near some beautiful lakes. There are several possible campsites besides the ones listed in the itinerary, so make sure that you know where the horsemen are aiming for, in case they push to a different camp!
- After the initial climb the route is not too hard and, if needed, there are access down to a road from several spots. Part of the route follows the original mule track that linked the Thimphu and Paro valleys, and eventually connected Bhutan to the Indian border.
- *The trek begins at high altitude, plan some extra days in Thimphu or Paro. You can begin from Paro to Thimphu, or vice versa.
On a typical trek day, we will be woken at 6.00 am, by a member of the camp crew bringing a bed tea (in your tent), followed shortly by a bowl of hot washing water. By 7.00 am, when breakfast is ready, we will have packed ready for the day’s activity (day pack, and main luggage). We leave with our guide just before the camp crew at 8.00 am and spent the rest of the day at an unhurried but steady pace. We stop for about an hour for lunch, which will be carried by a camp crew and continue for our next campsite. The crew will break down the tents, load the horses, overtake us and have the new camp ready for our arrival. A hot drink will be ready when we arrive, followed by wash water and our evening meal. After dinner, we discuss for the following day with our guide before retiring to bed.
This will sound familiar to anyone who has trekked in Nepal, the main difference being that camp crew is much smaller in Bhutan and there are no tea houses along the way.
*Note: Use designated campsites only approved by the Tourism Council of Bhutan. No campfires or cooking fires at the campsite. Usage of LPG (liquid petroleum gas) gas stove is mandatory. Pack out solid waste (pack it in and pack it out), should not bring out flora and fauna products, respect the nature and culture of the area. Most trekking routes are in the National Parks and Reserves.
It is essential that participants undertake regular walking and hiking in the months leading up to the start of the Tour so that you can enjoy to the full what this trip offers. The itinerary gives an indication of the distances and elevations involved. Previous experience of multi-day trekking as well as of extended periods of camping over 3,000m is preferable.
Every effort has been made to allow gradual acclimatization to the altitude, but this is a factor which is unpredictable for anyone. Many folk have their own ideas about how to combat the effects of altitude and we always carry Diamox (Acetazolamide) with us and use it if we feel the need. If you plan to use such a drug for the first time, visit your doctor well in advance of the trip and ensure that you have a trail at home so that you understand what the effect is on you before administering it at height.
Day1: Arrive in Bhutan, Paro
Flying into the country, is an experience on its own, offering great views of the Inner Himalayas. The imposing monasteries, clear mountain air and welcoming Bhutanese in their striking national dress, provides a breath-taking first impression.
Your guide, for the entire trip from Bhutan Kurukulle Adventures will meet you and transfer you to the hotel for check-in and refreshment.
In the afternoon, visit the National Museum, housed in a 17th century watch tower which will serve as a great introduction before you delve deep into the country. Nearby is the Rinpong Dzong, the centre of civil and religious authority of the Paro province, built in 1647 by the Shabdrung, unifier of medieval Bhutan.
O/N at hotel in Paro. Elevation: 2,800m.
Day2: Paro Halt
After breakfast, before the sun gets too hot, hike to Taktsang (literally translated as Tiger’s Nest). Built in the 1600s, this incredible monastery/temple clings to the edge of a sheer rock cliff that plunges 900 meters into the valley below. The history states that Guru Rinpoche, the Tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan, landed here on the back of a flying tigress. Looking at the monastery/temple flying tigress doesn’t seem so impossible after all.
The trail to the monastery/temple climbs through beautiful pine and rhododendron forest, lichens overhanging from the trees above notifies that you are walking along pristine forest surrounded with clean, fresh air without any pollution. It takes 5 hours in total to complete the whole hike and to visit the shrines inside.
Next visit the ruins of Drugyal Dzong in the northern end of the valley, the Jumolhari mountain is visible from here on a clear day. Visit the Kyichu Lhakhang on the way back.
O/N at hotel in Paro.
Day3: Paro Halt
This morning we drive up to the Chelela pass (3,800m), for another hike on the ridge of the pass. This is a beautiful hike which offers panoramic views of the snow-capped peaks in Bhutan and other mountains of bordering India, the road is aligned with different species of rhododendrons including the high altitudinal alpine rhododendrons. It is also a paradise for bird watchers, some of the birds seen on this road and the trail are Kalij pheasant, Blood Pheasant, Satyr Tragopan, Himalayan Monal, Himalayan Griffon and many more. The hiking trail goes a little over 4,000m a good way of acclimatizing just before the trek. The hike ends with a visit to the Kila Goemba Nunnery (a solitary place), where Buddhist nuns practice the dharma teachings.
O/N at hotel in Paro.
Day4: Paro-Jili Dzong (4-5hours)
We drive for 30 minutes to the trail head to the National Museum (2,370m), where you will meet the trekking crew, the horsemen and pack animals. At the start of the trek the crew takes some time to get organized, so don’t be in a hurry to rush to arrive early at camp-the luggage will undoubtedly be behind you.
Today’s trek climbs non-stop for over 1065m, before dropping down over 80m to camp. This is a major effort at this altitude, so take your time and drink as much as possible. The trail winds its way up through blue pine forest and around several farmhouses and fenced apple orchards, and cross a dusty road-mainly used during the apple harvest season. Damchena (2,900m/9,510ft), marks the end of the dusty road. Then you pass by a meadow and start the steeper part of the trail, finally bringing you to the Jili La Pass (3,490m), our camp is just below the pass in a yak pasture. If you are not tired and yu have time you can walk along the ridge which provides good views of the valley.
Distance: 5miles/8kms, Time: 4-5 hours, Altitude Gain: 3,503ft/1,065m. Altitude loss: 80m.
O/N in tents near Jili Dzong. Camp elevation: 3,436m/11,270ft.
Day5: Jili Dzong-Tshokam (4-5 hours)
From the camp, climb back to the ridge and the small pass leading to the dzong (3,5595m/11,790ft), from here the view is awesome, to the east is the Gidakom valley and to the west is the Paro valley. The trail then follows the ridge, making many up and downs, along the side of the ridge to the other side, heading towards northeast to Jangchulakha (3,770m/12,300ft) an optional campsite. Another hour of gradual ups and downs will bring us to Tshokam (3,926m/12,365ft), our campsite, yet yak another pasture. En route you are like to see some Satyr Tragopan and Himalayan Monal, and if weather permits, you will be rewarded with the breathtaking views of the Jumolhari (7,315m/23,995ft), and its associates.
Distance: 5.5miles/9kms. Time:4-5 hours. Altitude gain: 526m/1726ft. Altitude loss: 0m/0ft.
O/N in tents at Tshokam. Camp elevation: 3,962m/12,995ft.
Day6: Tshokam-Jimilangtsho (6-7 hours)
The ridge walk followed by the trekkers is about 2 hours longer than the pack animal’s route, and more spectacular. Weather permitting, there are several views of snowy peaks to the north and a grand view down into the valleys. Once again we proceed in a northerly direction most of the day. Looking east tonight’s camp, as well as some of tomorrow’s route, is visible. Climb gently from the camp for hour and half to a small pass 4,070m/13,350ft, and the trail gets gentle for a while till you come to a ridge. Continue along the ridge, with views of Jumolhari (7,315m/23,995ft) to the north and to the west below is the Paro valley and on the opposite is the Jimilang Tsho. From here you descend down to the east slopes of the ridge to a stream and gradually drop down to the Jimilang Tsho lake.
Distance: 6miles/10kms. Time: 6-7 hours. Altitude gain: 450m/1,475ft. Altitude loss: 295m/965ft.
O/N in tents at Jimilang Tsho. Camp elevation: 3,880m/12,726ft.
Day7: Jimilang Tsho-Simkorta (4-5 hours)
Today to start our climb we have t
O walk down to the southern end of the lake and then climb through dwarf rhododendrons till the trail becomes a little flat to get to another lake known as Jayne Tsho (3,956m/12,975ft). From her the trail gets much wider as it meanders uphill through the dwarf rhododendrons till the summit (4,150m/13,610ft), another will lead you to the camp at Somkorta (4,090m/13,415ft).
Distance: 4.5miles/7kms. Time: 4-5hours. Altitude gain: 270m. Altitude loss: 60m.
O/n in tents at Simkorta. Camp elevation: 4,090m/13,415ft.
Day8: Simkorta-Phajoding (5 hours)
The trail is good but there are several minor climbs to small passes before you finally look down to Phajoding monastery and Thimphu city. Monks frequently pass here on their way to meditate at the sacred lakes of Dungtsho.
The trail climbs and descends a couple of small passes to reach the highest pass on the trek Phume La Pass (4,210m/14,170ft), a climb of 250m on the left of this pass is a sky burial site with prayer flags, from where you get an incredible view over the whole of Bhutan Himalayas. An hour of downhill will lead you to the last and final pass of the entire trek Thuji la Pass (3,910m)-Gangkar Puensum (7546m/24,750ft) becomes visible. Take the right diversion to Thujidrak temple and visit it before you descend down to the camp at Phajoding (3,690m/12,103ft).
Distance: 6miles/10kms. Time: 5 hours. Altitude gain: 230m/755ft. Altitude loss: 405m/1,330ft.
O/N in tents at Phajoding. Camp elevation: 3,690m/12,103ft.
Day9: Phajoding-Radio Tower (2-3 hours)
From Phajoding there are three trails to Thimphu.
. One stays high and climbs to Pumo La (3,710m/12,170ft), and leads down to the Takin Preserve.
.The other two trails start with the same steep descent. At 3,343m/10,965ft you arrive at a big split in the trail. a) Straight down is a steep route past the Queen’s compound. This trail descends 250m more than the alternate route b).
.b) The other route goes left at the split, and follows a more gentle trail descending slowly through thick forest until Choekhortse Goemba (3,010m/9,870ft) in a clearing. A steep, 200m descent leads to the Radio Tower, past hundreds of prayer flags put up by the people from Thimphu. This is the transmission tower of Bhutan’s radio station BBS. From here drive down to the Takin Preserve, to see the National Animal, and then into Thimphu.
O/N at hotel in Thimphu. Elevation: 2,320m.
Day10: Thimphu-Paro (46miles/58kms, 1.5 hours of driving)
Today we spend this morning visiting Thimphu’s highlights including the Institute of Traditional Medicine, where the ancient way of healing system called Sowa Rigpa is still practiced. School of Traditional Arts and Crafts, the school offers an eight-year course in the techniques of traditional art in religious and secular paintings, woodcarvings, clay sculpture, embroidery and weaving.
Visit the National Memorial Chorten, built in the memory of the Third King popularly known as the “Father of Modern Bhutan”. Next drive to Kuenselphodrang to see the gigantic Buddha statue (169ft/51m), the site overlooks into the city and its entrance. Enjoy a scenic walk if you have time. Then visit the Jungshi Handmade Paper Factory, where you can see the traditional way of paper making from Daphne plants. Bhutan in ancient days was the biggest paper supplier in the Himalayan region for printing religious scriptures and prayers. Then proceed to Paro for the overnight stay.
O/N at hotel in Paro. Elevation:2,300m.
Your tour to this beautiful Himalayan Kingdom ends today. Your guide will see you off at the Paro International Airport for your onward journey.
6 Days/5 Nights Cultural Tour Package
- Hike, visit massive fortress (dzongs), Buddhist temples, goembas (solitary places), and experience the culture of the hidden land.
- Bhutan, nestled in the heart of the great Himalaya, has for centuries remained aloof from the rest of the world. Since its doors were cautiously opened in 1974 visitors have been mesmerized: the environment is pristine, the scenery and architecture awesome and the people hospitable and charming.
Day1: Arrive in the Hidden Land
The flight into Bhutan offers great views of the Greater Himalayas, after immigrations and custom formalities, your local guide-for the whole trip, will receive and escort you to a restaurant for refreshment/lunch in town.
- After refreshment/lunch, visit the National Museum housed in the ancient watch tower, which will serve as a great introduction to Bhutan before you delve deeper into the country.
- Visit the Rinpong Dzong (literally meaning “heap of Jewels), the centre of civil and religious authority in the Paro province, built in the 17th century by Ngawang Namgyal, unifier of medieval Bhutan.
Later in the afternoon, proceed to Thimphu, the capital city, 46 miles 1.5 hours drive. With a population of 100,000, it is like no other capital city-the valley is unique, displaying harmony of traditions and modernity. There are no traffic lights and policemen direct traffic at intersections. Yet it is the biggest city in the country and seat of the government as well as the main hub of commerce in the country.
- In the evening your guide will brief you on the upcoming days.
- O/N at hotel in Thimphu. Elevation: 2,320m.
Day2: Thimphu Halt
After breakfast, drive to Dodena (2,450m), the base of Cheri Goemba (2,740m) and do a short hike to the Cheri, founded by the Shabdrung in the 17th century now serving as a meditation centres for the Tango Buddhist University and other monastic communities. Meditations last as long as three years and three months at a stretch. Diving distance from town to Dodena= 16.22 kilometers, total hiking distance= 2.6 kilometers. It’s a steep climb up to the Goemba.
- *Note: Please try to maintain silence at the temple because you might distract the meditation.
Drive back to town for lunch, on the way back visit the Pangri Zampa Lhakhang, built by Ngawang Chogyal in the 16th century, now hosing a monastic school for Astrology, where young monks can go and learn astrology and become one after graduation. Astrology is very important in the Bhutanese/Buddhist life. You can have your horoscope worked out here if you wish to do so.
- Next visit the Institute of Traditional Medicine, where the ancient art of Bhutanese healing system called Sowa Rigpa is still practiced.
- Next visit the Jungshi Handmade Paper Factory, to see the traditional way of making papers from bark of Daphne plants. Bhutan in ancient days was the biggest supplier of paper in the Himalayan region for printing religious scriptures and prayers. Then visit the Gagyel Lhendrup Weaving Centre, where you will find women at work on their looms, weaving some of the most beautiful fabrics with intricate flower patterns and designs on them.
- O/N at hotel in Thimphu.
Day3: Thimphu to Punakha over the Dochula Pass
Today we drive to Punakha valley, the road starts with a climb to Dochula pass at 3,100m, where we stop for a while to visit the Druk Wangyal Lhakhang, founde by the Queen Mother Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck in the year 2003, to honor the Kings of Bhutan.
- On a clear day the pass heralds the most enchanting view of Bhutan’s Himalaya peaks, including the highest unclimbed mountain Gangkar Puensum (7,650m) in the world.
- Good part of the drive after the pass in the spring season, offers vista of blooming giant magnolias, fields of rhododendrons, mountain lilies, primulas (primrose) and many other flowers. It is also a paradise for bird watchers.
- An hour and half downhill from here will bring us to Lobesa, where we take a short, easy hike of an hour to Chimed Lhakhang, a temple dedicated to Lam Drukpa Kuenlay, built in the 15th century. It is a popular destination for fertility blessings including foreigners.
- After lunch we will visit the spectacular Punakha Dzong, built in 1637, on a strategic location at the confluence of the Pho chhu and Mo Chhu rivers.
- O/N at hotel in Punakha. Elevation: 1,200m.
Day4: Punakha to Paro.
After breakfast drive through the Khuruthang town, past the Dzong towards the north of the valley to the car park of Khamsum Yuelley. Hike to Khamsum Yuelly Namgyal Chorten, it is another short hike covering a distance of 2.6 kilometers in total, through rice fields and Chir pine forests. It offers great views of the valley and the farmlands from the chorten.
- Elevation at Car park: 1,240m, Elevation at Chorten (top): 1,420m.
- Then retrace the road back to Paro, once again over the Dochula pass, another opportunity to see the mountains, if it was not clear last time.
- O/N at hotel in Paro. Elevation: 2,280m.
Day5: Paro Halt
After breakfast before the sun gets too hot, hike to Taktsang (literally translated as Tiger’s Nest). Built on an impossible perch in a cliff, 900m higher than the valley floor, it is a sight to behold. One of the most sacred Buddhist pilgrimage sites for locals and tourists alike. Guru Rinpoche, the Indian saint who brought tantric Buddhism to Bhutan, is believed to have flown here riding a tigress and remained in meditation for about three months.
- It takes 5 hours in all to go up, visit the shrines and to come back down.
- On the way back to the hotel visit the ruins of Drukgyal dzong in the northern corner of the valley from where you can view the Jumolhari mountain on a clear day.
- Visit the Kyichu Lhakhang, a 7th century Buddhist temple, founded by the Tibetan King Songtsen Gampo.
- In the evening, stroll around the Paro town to look for souvenirs.
- Farewell dinner at a restaurant.
- O/N at hotel in Paro.
Your tour to the Hidden Land ends today. Your guide will see you off at the airport for your onward destination.
Cross Culture Journeys with Festivals
- Duration: 9 Days, 8 Nights
Hike, Visit Dzongs (fortresses), Temples, and Mingle along with the locals at the Festivals.
Note: Festivals in Bhutan are wonderful opportunities to witness authentic centuries-old traditions. They are not held for tourists-we are simply welcome guests at a sacred Bhutanese celebration. Festivals are centered around dances held annually at important religious sites. They are performed by monks and locals dressed in brightly colored silk robes and masks. Dances are enactments of visions of ancient saints and dharma lessons that remind people of the frailty of life and the need for proper living to attain a higher realm of existence in future lives. Shops, games and food stalls are set up to create a country fair atmosphere.
Day 1. Arrive in Bhutan
On Arrival at the airport, after immigration and customs formalities, your guide-for the whole trip, will receive and escort you to a restaurant in town for lunch.
After lunch proceed to Thimphu, the capital city, 46 miles, 1.5 hours. With a population of about 100,000, it is like no other capital city- the valley is unique, displaying harmony of tradition and modernity. There are no traffic lights and policemen direct traffic at intersections. Yet it is the biggest city in the country and seat of the government as well as the main hub of commerce in the country.
- Other sights en route include 15th century Tamchog Lhakhang, three types of stupa s at Chunzom ( the confluence of the Pa Chhu and Wang Chhu, rivers from Paro and Thimphu).
- In the evening your guide will brief you on the upcoming days.
Day 2. Thimphu Halt.
Today is the second day of the annual festival of Thimphu, attend the festival performed at the courtyard of the Tashichoedzong.
The most popular religious festival are the dromche and tshechus (religious dance festival) which are held annually in different parts of the country. Thimphu’s annual festival and Paro Tshechu are the most popular festivals that attract thousands of crowds from the remotest of villages and tourists alike. It is believed by attending them one gains merit and blessings and at the same time take respite from the hard mountain life. It is a good time to see relatives in a jovial atmosphere outside their fields and offices. They rejoice and feast, and exhibit their best hand-woven dresses and precious jewelry.
- In the afternoon, visit the Tashichoedzong, the summer seat of the Je Khenpo- the head Abbot, and the central monastic body, the Golden Throne and the Office of the King.
- The Memorial Chorten, built in 1974 in memory of the third King, his Majesty Jigme Singye wangchuck, lovingly known as the Father of Modern Bhutan. It is one of the few stupa’s that has an inner sanctum of temples.
Day 3. Thimphu Halt.
- Attend the festival in the morning until lunch.
- Later visit the Jungshi Handmade Paper Factory, where you can see the traditional way of making papers from the bark of Daphne plants. Bhutan in ancient days was the biggest supplier of paper in the Himalayan region for printing religious scripture and prayers.
- Drive to Kuenselphodrang to see the giant Buddha (169ft/51m) and enjoy the view with the scenic walk.
- Visit the Takin preserve, which showcases Bhutan’s National Animal, the Takin, along with some Deer species and Himalayan Goats.
- Then visit the Drubthob Nunnery, where you can see young and elder nuns practicing the dharma teachings.
Day 4. Thimphu to Punakha.
This morning we drive to the beautiful Punakha valley over the spectacular Dochula Pass (3,150m), beautifully decorated with the Druk wangyal Chortens (108 stupas), and the Druk Wangyal Lhakhang, situated on the hillock above. We stop for pictures and visit the Druk Wangyal Lhakhang, on a clear day the pass heralds the most enchanting view of Bhutan’s Himalaya peaks including the highest unclimbed mountain in the world, Gangkar Puensum 24,835ft/7,5600m.
- Good part of the drive after Dochula Pass, in the right season offers vista of blooming giant magnolias, fields of rhododendrons, mountain lilies, primroses and many other flowers, it is also a paradise for bird lovers/watchers.
- Explore the Royal Botanical Park at Lampelri, to see the rhododendron garden and visit the Visitors Information Centre.
- An hour and half downhill from here will bring you to Punakha, the old capital of Bhutan, where we stop for lunch.
- Visit the Punakha Dzong, it is one of the most magnificent dzongs in the country, located on a strategic point at the confluence of the Pho Chhu (male) and the Mo Chhu (female) rivers connected by a traditional cantilever bridge over the Mo Chhu. Punakha played an important role in the history of Bhutan, it served as the seat of Shabdrung’s government.
Day 5. Punakha Halt.
Today we are attending the annual festival of Wangdiphodrang, the whole day at the festival. In the afternoon hike to Chimed Lhakhang, a popular destination for fertility blessings including foreigners.
Day 6. Punakha Halt.
Today is the last day of the Wangdiphodrang festival, attend the festival and if you think you had enough of the festival you can opt to drive to Gangtey/Phobjikha Valley and visit the Gangtey Sangnacholing monastery.
- Hike the Nature Trail maintained by the RSPN Centre, which is a good walk downhill through farmhouses, pine forest covering 4.1kms.
- In the evening drive back to Punakha.
Day 7. Punakha to Paro
After breakfast retrace the road back to Paro, once again over the Dochula Pass, another chance to see the mountains if you missed the last time. Stop for lunch at the Pass or in Thimphu, before continuing to Paro.
- In the evening witness some locals practicing archery near the Paro town.
Day 8. Paro Halt.
- Hike to Taktsang (literally translated as tiger’s Nest), built on an impossible perch in a cliff, it is a sight to behold. One of the most famous temples of Bhutan, especially to the outside world, is perched 900 metres above the valley floor. Guru Rinpoche, the Tantric saint who brought Buddhism to Bhutan, is believed to have arrived here on the back of tigress and remained in meditation for about three months. Revered as one of the most sacred place, many saints from Tibet and India travelled here on pilgrimage.
- It is a 5 hour hike including visit to the lhakhang.
- On the way back visit the kyichu Lhakhang, a 7th century Buddhist temple, founded by the Tibetan King Songtsen Gampo to overcome a demoness who was trying to stop the spread of Buddhism in Tibet and the Himalayas.
Day 9. Depart.
Your tour to the Mystical Bhutan ends today, your guide will see you off at the Paro airport.
Duration:6-7 Days. Total Distance: . Maximum Elevation: 4271m. Grade; Moderate/Demanding. This trek starts just north of Haa town and take an easterly direction for three days, followed by a three day return journey that ends at Lukha village near Haa. There are seven passes to be crossed, ranging from 3900m-4256m. Nub Tshona Patta Tsho (lake) is the point of return, where a day is recommended. Several routes leads to this lake.
Day 01. Kajenang village to Tshokam. 10kms, 4-5.5 hours, 785m ascent.
Drive to the starting point near the village of Kajeneng 2750m, and start climbing to Djanag Dingkha lhakhang 3230m. Continue climbing on the ridge till you come to a trail junction, the left trail leads you to the camp of Tshokam at 3536m, in a small meadow.
Day 02. Tshokam to Wanjithang. 16kms, 6-7 hours, 267m ascent, 419m descent.
A gradual ascent leads to the pass of Chozu La 3900m. Then slowly descend on the other side to Yulo meadow at 3840m. To the west, lies the pass for today, Tsabjo La 4107m, leading to Wanjithang Camp at 3688m.
Day 03. Wanjithang to Nub Tshona Patta. 18kms, 6-7 hours, 366m ascent, 160m descent.
The trail keeps high up on pasturelands with yaks to reach Gongche La 4231m, the first pass of the day then follows a steep descent to the meadow of Chhosho Lumpa. Ascend again to the meadow via Ghoom Maru to Tshejay La 4237m. From this pass, there are great views of the snow-capped mountains including the Kanchenjunga 8586m/28,160ft; the third highest mountain in the world o the border of Sikkim/Nepal. Gangkar Puensum 7541m/24,735ft; the highest unclimbed peak in the world in Bhutan, Jitchu Drakey 6850m/22,470ft. Descend for a while and another ascent to Dankha Bjodo ridge 4120m and a final descent to the camp at Lura 4076m.
Day 04. Tshona Patta Halt. Explore the valley and hike to the lake below but make sure the deity of the lake is not offended.
Day 05. Tshona Patta to Rigona Tsho. 14kms, 5-6 hours, 85m ascent, 65m descent.
The trail is a very good one in the northern direction crossing Dong Kacheydo La 4158m, with views of Kanchenjunga, and then descend to the camp at Rigona at 4090m.
Day 06. Rigona Tsho to Yulo. 16kms, 6-7 hours, 165m ascent, 416m descent.
The route now takes an easterly direction,There is a hard start to the day, climbing on rocks to the pass Bjara La, the highest pass of the trek. Great views of snow-capped mountains are visible. After some hours the second pass of the day is reached, Tshabjo La4115m. Then further down is Yulo meadow, tonight’s camp 3840m.
Day 07. Yulo to Lukha/Haa. 20kms, 7-8 hours, 1128m descent.
A long day of descent through silver fir and pine forests, finally reaching the village of Lukha, near Haa town.
Day01. Arrive in Bhutan. Transfer to hotel and Sightseeing.
After immigrations and custom formalities, our representatives your guide for the trip will receive and transfer you to the hotel. After refreshments you can start to explore Paro;
- Visit the National Museum, housed in an ancient watch tower which is a good introduction before you delve deep into the country.
- Then visit the Rinpong Dzong(a 17th century fortress, now housing the Administrative Offices and the Monastic Community of Paro).
- Leisure time, take an evening stroll in the Paro town or relax back at the hotel.
Overnight at Hotel.
Day02. Paro- Thimphu (58 kms, 11/2 hrs).
After breakfast drive to Thimphu. En route stop at Tamchog Lhakhang to visit the Lhakhang and to look at the 15th century Iron Chain Bridge.
- Next stop at Chuzom (The Confluence of Wang Chhu and Pa Chhu), here you will be able to see the three styles of Stupa’s, The Tibetan, The Nepalese and the Bhutanese.
- Semtokha Dzong, founded by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in the 17th century.
- Changangkha Lhakhang, 15th century.
- National Memorial chorten.
Dinner with Cultural Program.
Overnight at Hotel.
Day03. Thimphu sightseeing.
Buddha Dordenma Statue, 169ft/51mtrs.
- Institute of Traditional Medicines, visit the chambers of the Dungtsho’s (Traditional Doctors) and see for yourself how the ancient way of treatment known as So-Wa-Rigpa is still practiced.
- National Institute of 13 Traditional Arts and Crafts.
- National Library.
After lunch, hike to Phajoding Monastery.
- Attend the evening prayer and experience a night at the monastery.
O/N at the Monastery.
Day04. Phajoding-Thimphu-Punakha (79kms).
The drive takes you over the Dochula Pass, which is decorated beautifully with 108 stupas, weather permitting you can view the Jigme Singye Wangchuck Range (snow capped mountains, including the Highest Unclimbed Peak in the World 7,650mtrs).
- Visit the Druk Wangyal Lhakhang, a recent construction done by Ashi Dorji Wangmo, The Queen Mother of Bhutan, which has the most intricate and finest wood and stone works in the country of our times.
- Continue the drive to Lobesa, where you stop for a short hike to Chimed Lhakhang, a popular destination for fertility.
- Then drive to the main valley of Punakha for the night.
Overnight at a Farmhouse, Here you will get a glimpse/experience of the Bhutanese way of life in the villages.
Day05. Archery sessions.
- Archery (The National sport of Bhutan) sessions for half day.
After lunch preparing a Hot Stone Bath with the locals, and then cooking sessions with the host (Bhutanese Cuisines).
- Hot Stone Bath, followed by tasting the local drink (Ara).
Overnight at Farmhouse.
Day06. Punakha-Thimphu.-Paro (133kms, 4.5hrs drive).
After breakfast, bid farewell to your host and drive to visit the magnificent Punakha Dzong, still serves as the winter Residence of the Je-Khenpo and the State Monk Body.
- . Visit the Sangchen Dorji Lhendrup Nunnery.
Drive to Thimphu and back to Paro.
Overnight at Hotel.
Da 07. Hike to Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest).
It takes 5 hours to visit the temple, going up and coming down.
- On the way back visit Kyichu Lhakhang, a 7th century Buddhist temple.
- Leisure time (massage/relax), or explore the Paro town and shop for Souvenirs.
Overnight at Hotel.
Day08. Departure for your next destination.
Afte#r breakfast, you guide and driver will drive you to the Airport and see you off.