The Land of the Thunder Dragon
The Land of the Thunder Dragon is shrouded in legend, framed by majestic mountains, steeped in tradition and spirituality – a land of monasteries, mandalas, Gross National Happiness and deep eco-consciousness – mystic Bhutan is the last Shangri-La.
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Day 1: Arrive Paro – Thimphu
Tashi Delek and welcome to the beautiful Kingdom of Bhutan. Receive VIP assistance on arrival in Paro and continue overland to Thimphu via Simtokha Dzong, an atmospheric Buddhist fort and the gateway to Thimphu Valley. Drop your bags in your luxury hotel and enjoy the beautiful sights of Bhutan’s tiny and pretty capital, the third highest in the world at a base altitude of 2248 metres. Later visit the Memorial Chorten, a large Tibetan-style Buddhist monastery designed to be the most visible religious structure in Thimphu.
Hotel: Taj Tashi, 2 nights
Day 2: Thimph
tep inside an exquisite monastery to watch monks as they chant their daily prayers. Receive blessings from a monk and experience the wonders of Bhutan’s spirituality lighting 108 butter lamps, a ceremony believed to awaken your spirit and focus your mind.
Delve into the country’s past at the National Library with its small collection of precious texts, the Folk Heritage Museum which provides a glimpse into Bhutanese lifestyle and the National Institute of Traditional Medicine showcasing traditional systems of healing. Continue to the National Textile Museums and the Handicrafts Emporium to admire the art of weaving that has been carefully preserved for centuries in Bhutan. Finally, visit the Tashichho Dzong, an impressive monastery built without a single drawing or a single nail. This evening you may choose to attend a talk by a well-respected local person about Bhutan’s History, Politics and society to get an orientation on Bhutan or take your seat for a Bhutanese dinner with traditional dancing (additional charges).
Day 3: Thimphu – Punakha
Time to bid farewell to the capital and journey east over the spectacular Dochu La Pass (3140m). Breathe in the most enchanting views of Bhutan and the Himalaya mountains before continuing into the green vales of Punakha, an ancient capital. Stretch your legs with a short hike to Chimi Lhakhang, the temple of the Divine Madman, Bhutan’s most unorthodox saint. See the stunning 17th century Punakha Dzong, also known as ‘the palace of great happiness or bliss’ and the second largest dzong in Bhutan.
Day 4: Punakha
Take a hike through pine forests to Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten, set on a beautiful ridge above the Punakha valley. This fine example of Bhutanese architecture and artistic traditions was built by the four queens of Bhutan. Enjoy an afternoon at leisure. If you’re feeling adventurous, take a rafting trip at Pho Chhu (additional charge).
Day 5: Punakha – Paro
Hotel: COMO Uma Paro, 3 nights
Day 6: Paro
Rise early for an unforgettable hike to Taktsang Monastery (The Tiger’s Nest). Clinging to sheer granite cliffs high above the valley floor, this seemingly impregnable fortress is truly magnificent. Spend the day among the monks at this sacred pilgrimage site, where the great tantric mystic Guru Rinpoche is believed to have flown on the back of the tiger to bring the teachings of the Buddhist Dharma to Bhutan. This evening, try your skills at Bhutan’s national sport on the resort’s archery field or take a traditional Bhutanese hot stone bath for the perfect end to your day’s adventures.
Day 7: Paro – Haa Valley – Paro
Head along the inspiring route to Chele La Pass (3810m) and take in spectacular views of the sacred Jhomolhari and Jitchu Drake mountains. Continue over the pass into the Haa Valley, also known as “Hidden-Land Rice Valley”. Perhaps the most picturesque area in Bhutan, this valley is home to minority villages with traditional animist beliefs. Learn to cook traditional Bhutanese food from the executive chef. Using traditional utensils like the sume, designed to churn butter, and a tshome, similar to a mortar and pestle uncover the secrets to fermented yak cheese and chili dish known as ema datshi, a yak milk yogurt called dau, Bhutanese buckwheat noodles and momo yak dumplings.
Day 8: Depart Paro
Farewell this enchanting kingdom and transfer privately to the airport for your onward journey.
|2019 Dates & Prices||Twin Share||Solo Traveller|
|Departs daily from Paro:||From $10,675.00||From $15,995.00|
|Meals:||7 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 7 dinners|
|Transport:||Airport transfers & Modern air-conditioned vehicle|
|Accommodation:||7 nights accommodation|
|Guide:||Local English Speaking Guide|
|Entrance Fees & Touring:||Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary|
* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.