We have designed this unique tour package for our guests to experience the extraordinary landscape and unique cultural heritage of the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan. .
The seven-night package includes visit to:-
Thimphu: The largest city and capital of Bhutan and the only Capital city in the world without traffic lights.
Punakha: The old capital and winter residence of Chief Abbot of Religion. The most historical ‘the abode of perpetual happiness’ – fortress is situated here.
Paro: Site of the international airport and the home to the legendary Tiger’s Nest Monastery. Your usual entry/exit points by Air.
Wangdue: Wangdue: Home for Black-necked crane bird; considered reincarnated beings that come back to our world to help other souls to enlightenment.
Your Eight-night holiday in the four different valley lights up with sightseeing to holy sites like Temples, Monasteries, Fortress, Living Museums, farm house, panoramic views of the unscaled snow-capped mountains, unsurpassed beauty of the valleys and walk through lush pristine forest with stunning lookout of waterfalls. The package also includes a guide who will elaborate on Bhutan’s era of landscape and cultural heritage.
Thimpu, Punakha, Phobjikha, Paro Valley, Paro Taktsang (Tiger's Nest)
Day 1- Paro Airport To Thimpu.
As you embark from your flight, the first thing that strikes your fancy is the architectural splendor of the Paro Airport, voted by notable travel magazines as one of the most beautiful airports in the world. Upon your arrival outside the terminal, you will be greeted with a smile by our Tour Executive and escorted to Thimphu. You will get the first insight of the spiritual and ethical values of the country as our guide takes you on your first cultural orientation to view Tamchogang Lhakhang, a 15th century temple famed for its iron bridge and it’s still more popular builder Thangthong Gyalpo, the reincarnate saint who brought the art of metallurgy in Bhutan. Enroute to Thimphu a stoppage for photos at confluence known for Chuzom meeting of two rivers. After check in at the hotel, your guide will await your convenience to give you the overview of the day’s activities and touch upon some issues in regard to the appropriate protocol to be observed while on visit to religious and secular institutions. Driving Distance: 55KM Duration: 1.5 Hours (Driving duration)|
Day 2- Thimphu Full Day Sightseeing.
The Capital of Bhutan has the unique distinction of being the only Capital city in the world without traffic lights. Also a Bhutanese City of Dreams and aspirations, it is a haven for many opportunistic youth who come here to ‘make it big’. One very hard to escape landmark while you are in Thimphu town is the gigantic statue of the sitting Buddha towering at 60m high and seeming to dwarf the other structures in the vicinity. Our latest pride in the list of tourism products, you will make a morning visit to the vantage point Kuensel Phodrang or Buddha point which affords a spectacular view of the Capital city. After this visit, you drive towards Changangkha monastery, a 15th century temple which has the glory of being the seat of the established Kagyu order, the state religion. You can wrap up the morning program with a visit to the Takin Zoo, the designated national animal of Bhutan that is a comical blend of the goat and a cow. Time permitting before lunch, your guide will take you on a visit to a 15th century Zilukha Nunnery that houses more than 50 resident Buddhist nuns and was founded by the reincarnation of iron bridge builder Thangthong Gyalpo. After lunch at a restaurant, the remaining program for the day entails a drive to the Simply Bhutan Museum that houses an interesting exhibition of items and artifacts still utilized in some rural households. This traditional rammed mud and timber house serves as a prototype design of a typical Bhutanese house as was the style and Bhutanese architecture. A visit to the museum will flash some light on 13 traditional arts and crafts of Bhutan. Highly influenced by Buddhism, the handiwork of the students is ornamental and symbolic in nature. In the event that your guide can turn over the itinerary and make it happen on one of the week days, then a visit to the Centennial farmers market will make for a kaleidoscopic experience. Duration: 7-8 Hours (Inclusive of sightseeing, lunch stop and drive) Overnight @ Hotel Elevation: 2320m|
Day 3- Thimphu-Punakha (Valley Of Happiness).
The morning drive to Punakha usually begins after breakfast. Your guide may set the hotel departure time early so that you can earn some significant breather time up at Dochu La a motor able pass that affords spectacular views of Eastern Himalayan ranges on a clear day and most importantly to avoid the road closure timing at different areas as highway is expanding with more construction. Here the elevation at 3140 m is the maximum on today’s trip and the altitude demands you to brace the cold as you step out of the car to make a detour to the Druk Wangyel temple immediately to your left, or alternatively, a quick walk to the set of 108 stupas will be a good way for better acclimatization. As the onward journey resumes, the drive descends through forest of magnolia, oak, birch and alder trees till you reach the Botanical garden, a designated nature park that is graced with a beautiful lake and has recreational facilities for the children. Continuing the drive, the valley opens with superb views of terraced fields and beautiful scattered farm houses into the Lobesa valley, where the painting of colorful human size phalluses will greet you from the front entrances of the houses. In the interlude, you will be given some preparatory directions by your guide for a visit to Chhime Lhakhang. More popularly known as the Temple of Fertility, it serves as a final refuge for the barren women who propitiate the Divine man by receiving ‘Wang’, a sort of empowerment blessing from the pair of wooden phalluses that are the main relics of this temple. About 20 minutes walk back to the car park just before the walk ends brings to a cafeteria where you stop for lunch and refreshments before the onward drive to Punakha. Your guide will escort you back to the hotel to spend the rest of the day at leisure. Driving distance: 76KM Duration: 7-8 Hours (Inclusive of sightseeing, lunch stop and drive) Overnight @ Hotel Elevation-1250m|
Day 4- Punakha Dzong And Phobjikha -Gangtey Valley (A Place Of Viewing Heavenly Abode Bird):
Visit Punakha Dzong, Punakha is a synonymous with history: the very reason that it is the winter Capital of Bhutan, the chosen refuge of the Chief Abbot and his monk subjects makes this locale a place of enormous holistic proportions. The main highlight of the trip to the Punakha valley partially owes its credit to the Dzong. Aptly named ‘Pungthang Dewachhen Phodrang (which translates as ‘the Palace of eternal joy’), this Dzong is the personal favorite of the majority not just for its historical associations but for the fact that the Bhutanese people who revere the mastermind builder of this and other Dzong’s in the country, the Venerable Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel. Built in 1637 at the confluence of the Pho Chu-Male River and Mo Chu-Female Rivers, Punakha Dzong is the winter home for the central monk body headed by the Chief Abbot of Bhutan. From the exterior, this formidable structure holds a commanding position and as you cross over a suspension bridge and embark on an exploration of this 17th century fortress with its white washed walls, steep entrance stairs and ornate interior, you will marvel how such a structure came to be built in the absence of modern technology. As you step in the Kuenrey or the assembly hall, the walls will reveal to you an intricate mural depicting the pictorial story from the events of the life of the Buddha while three giant gold statues dating from the 18th century preside over the 1000 praying monks. After lunch in Punakha continue drive towards the east to Phobjikha Valley, you will by-pass the Dzong at Wangduephodrang, strategically situated on a ridge overlooking the valley with its turquoise river that feeds the hydro electric plant some 5Km upstream from the security check-point. Once you negotiate the winding climb for 3 hours drive to enter Phobjikha, the vegetation changes abruptly and landscape is stunning. The last descent down to the valley across the mixed vegetation of weeping willows and dwarf bamboo takes about 30 minutes drive and brings you to your hotel for check-in and rest. Driving Distance: 85KM Duration: 5-6 Hours (Inclusive of sightseeing, lunch stop and drive) Overnight @ Hotel Elevation: 2900m|
Day 5- Phobjikha Nature Trail Walk – Paro:
Phobjikha valley is often referred to as ‘The valley of the Heavenly Bird’ in consequence of the denizens of this place, the Black Necked Cranes that have found their winter breeding ground here in the marshland. Locally known as Thrung thrung for their beauty, elegance, and as a veritable symbolism of longevity, these globally endangered birds are an inspiration for Bhutanese songs, folklores and dances. Today after breakfast, your guide will take you to the Crane Information Centre where you are greeted by Cranes if you view through powerful binoculars. Then a quick 5 minute drive below the marsh lands to kick-start the ‘nature’ trail walk to Gangtey Goemba. Then, the walk through the lovely alpine forests for about an hour and a half takes you to Gangtey Goemba monastery which is biggest Nyingma Monastery founded in 16th century by grandson of Pema Lingpa, the Treasure Revealer. The treasure revealing tradition takes root by the fact that a lot of the practitioners of the Nyingma school of Buddhism justified their practices by retrieving the relics believed to be hidden by Guru Padmasambhava to be revealed to the world in a specified time period. After the visit to the temple, you drive down to the valley floor for lunch at a motel in Nobding and resume your back-ward journey to Paro via Thimphu with a short stop for refreshment at the Dochula pass. An afternoon at leisure after check in and an evening stroll in the city will conclude your program for the day. Driving Distance: 200KM Duration: 8-9 Hours (Inclusive of hike, sightseeing, lunch stop and drive) Overnight @ Hotel|
Day 6- Paro Valley Sightseeing:
Paro valley asserts its superiority over other districts by the sheer fact that its flat landscape makes it ideal for the only International Airport in the country. Owing to this very fact, it is usually the first overnight destination for the many visitors who fly in the country. That could also very well account for the reason why we have numerous high end resorts and hotels in this valley. After an overnight stay at a hotel in Paro, your guide today will start the day’s activities today by a visit to the Taa Dzong. Originally a watch tower in the 17th century, the Taa Dzong lost some of its historic status as the first watch tower in the country when it was converted to a cultural museum in 1968. Nevertheless, in the present state, Taa Dzong lays its claim to be the best and the first cultural museum in the country. Located in a spectacular setting, it tends to loom over the Paro Dzong still asserting to date its status as a protector of yore. The architecture is stunning: Being believed to be built in the shape of a conch, it’s incredible formidable circular structure houses six floors of interesting and rare collections from throughout the kingdom dating back to early as 2000BC. Apart from cultural artifacts and mural paintings, the museum is set to give its visitors an awesome collection of stamps whereby Bhutan stands distinctly apart in the world of philately. The visit to the Paro Dzong is usually done in conjunction with the trip to the museum. Directly related to each other in the historical and to a large extent geographical context, the Paro Dzong or otherwise the ‘fortress on heap of jewels ‘was built in about the same era as the Taa Dzong. The Dzong in all its redolence of the medieval time period of the mid 17th century virtually smells of antiquity and the thickness of its walls and the gigantic size of the supporting beams are true testimonials of some glorious by-gone era of true artistic proportions. You may possibly be caught in some déjà vu experience as you walk down the cantilever bridge if your guide fails to inform you that a couple of scenes from the highly acclaimed Hollywood movie ‘The Little Buddha’ were shot in this wonderful setting. An afternoon visit to the Kichu temple will not just give you insights into the time period of Buddhism in Bhutan but will also give you sufficient reasons as to why the religion has come to stay. The first of the Buddhist temples to be built in the wake of the 7th century, it was a daunting enterprise of the first Tibetan Buddhist missionary king Songsten Gampo who is reported to have built 108 temples in and around the Himalayan region of Tibet and Bhutan to propagate the diamond teachings of Guru Padmasambhava or the ‘Lotus born’, the epithet he is more popularly with, in the Buddhist worlds. If time permits, your guide will take you on a visit to the Drukgyel Dzong at the northern end of the Paro valley. This citadel of the great victory of the Bhutanese over the joint coalition of the Mongolian and Tibetan armies, the Drukgyel Dzong (the word literally translates as the victory of the Dragons) has received numerous mention in travel journals including a grand picture feature by the National Geographic society. Duration: 7-8Hours (Inclusive of sightseeing, lunch stop and drive) Overnight @ Hotel Elevation: 2250m|
Day 7- Hike To Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) Monastery:
“It is said that even if you have seen all of Bhutan but have overlooked the visit to the Tiger’s nest, it implies that you have not visited Bhutan at all”. The above observation, made by a visitor after her first visit to Bhutan is indicative of itself, the importance of the Taktsang not just in socio- cultural dimensions, but more importantly, as a must-see attraction that Bhutan has to offer as an experience of a hermit kingdom. The very first view of the Tiger’s nest seeming to append out of the granite rock face will intimidate some of you: Remember that the anticipation is worse than the actuality! The trail which has a lot of switchbacks is wide enough to let packs of ponies pass by, but be advised to keep to the right side to avoid mules and ponies edge you out of the path. It is about an hour’s walk to get the glimpse of a homely inn where you may get a sense of satisfaction as you regale yourself with tea and snacks and the first wholesome view of the Tiger’s nest. Continuing the walk for the next 45 minutes brings you to the first view point, the spot designated by a huge stupa-shaped river rock which has become a foreground subject for numerous photographic enthusiasts who take pictures of it with the Tiger’s nest in the background. There are a lot of flat stones to secure your footing as you descend down some 450 steps and pass a stupa, another stupa, and a butter lamp offering altar till you reach a waterfall, an area sanctified by a lot of wish fulfilling string of prayer flags. You will see your efforts paid off as you trudge up the entrance to the Tiger’s nest and take a very well earned breather before you are escorted into the temples by your guide. Lunch will be served at the ‘cafeteria’ after which it is the last 45 min way down to the car park. For those who seem to be fazed by this virtual talk up the Taktsang, there are two options: your guide will always make sure to inform you about the alternative of riding a pony up, or better still, encourage you to walk up at your own pace till the inn from where you can have a vicarious delight of actually being up at the Tiger’s nest. Duration: 7-8Hours (Inclusive of hike, sightseeing and short drive) Overnight @ Hotel Elevation: 2250m|
Day 8- Airport Transfer.
Your last day here in Bhutan, your guide and driver will escort you to the Airport and bid you fare well to the destination of your choice.
Accommodation in handpicked properties during the entire tour duration Transportation on all days in Innova/Creta or similar vehicle Complimentary breakfast on all days. Guide fees during your Bhutan tour included Bhutan permit fees and taxes included.