We designed 2 day and 1 night's trekking tour to explore the land of happiness. You will enjoy the Himalayan flight with spectacular and stunning view over the Himalayas to Paro Airport. Visit Taktsang Monastery, known as Tiger's Nest. This trip is best for who have short time and to entry the Bhutan.
Arrival In Bhutan
Flying in to the country's only airport, in the beautiful Paro valley, the clear mountain air, forested ridges, imposing monasteries and welcoming Bhutanese people in their striking national dress, provides a breath-taking first impression.
After clearing customs and visa control then you will meet our guide at the exit gate. Then you will drive about 1 hour to Thimphu, Bhutan's capital (polulation 100,000): still the world's only capital city without a traffic light !
En-route visit Tachog Lhakhang which is located on the way to Paro valley, and one must cross one of Drupthob Thangtong Gyalpo bridges to get to the Lhakhang.
After lunch drive to Buddha Dordenma site, it is a gigantic Shakyamuni Buddha statue, which is sited amidst the ruins of Kuensel Phodrang, the palace of Sherab Wangchuck, the 13th Druk Desi, overlooking the southern approach to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan. It is one of the largest Buddha stupas in the world, at a height of 169 feet (51.5 meters).
We will also stop at National Memorial Chorten; the building of this landmark was originally envisaged by Bhutan’s third king, His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, who had wanted to erect a monument to world peace and prosperity. Completed in 1974 after his untimely death, it is both a memorial to the Late King (“the father of modern Bhutan”), and a monument to peace.
You can also visit 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.
Thimphu Sightseeing (Thimphu Alt. 2350m / 7,710ft)
Today sightseeing includes visit to National Post office; Our tour starts with the visit to the National Post Office, along the Chang lam, is an institute itself where the most famous Bhutanese export is exhibited and sold: the various stamps. Stamp collectors all over the world know that Bhutan is the first country to diversify and export quality stamps. Interesting thing is that you can make your own personal stamp with your photo and then send it to your family and friends.
The Zorig Chusum (The National Institute for Thirteen Arts / Painting School), is Bhutan’s leading institute to preserve and promote culture and to contribute to the country’s economy through the production of quality products and services. Visitors are invited to observe the students lessons in painting, calligraphy, embroidery, wood and slate carving, sculpturing, boot making, weaving, gold grinding and making religious drums. You then have the opportunity to purchase items made by the school in the school’s shop.
Then drive from Sangaygang (BBS Tower), the trail goes along the tower fence before it passes a chorten and follows the contours along the mountain side until reaching Wangditse. Along the way there are great views of Tashichhoe Dzong & the Thimphu valley. Wangditse Goemba was founded in 1750 by the attendants of Bhutan’s 8th Desi, Yeshey Rabgye. It was renovated in 2002 after it suffered serious damage by a windstorm in 1995. The goemba houses the statues of the guardian deities Yeshey Gonpo (Mahakala), Palden Lhamo (Mahakali) and Tsheringma (the Goddess of Longevity).
Then you will decent down to Dechen Phodrang Monastery: the site of Thimphu's original Trashi Chhoe Dzong. Since 1971 it has housed the state monastic school, and a long procession of monks often travels between here and the dzong. A team of 15 teachers provides an eight-year course to more than 450 students. The 12th-century paintings in the goemba's Guru Lhakhang are being restored by a United Nations Educational, Scientific, Cultural Organization (UNESCO) project. The upper floor features a large figure of Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal as well as the goenkhang (chapel devoted to protective and terrifying deities). The central figure in the downstairs chapel is the Buddha Sakyamuni Tashichodzong - It was built in 1641 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel and reconstructed in 1962, third King moved capital from Punakha to Thimphu. The complex central tower is original. Tashichhodzong houses the main secretariat building, throne room of His Majesty the king of Bhutan. During summer time this dzong is summer residence of monk body. They stay 6 months and move to Punakha as winter residence.
Thimphu to Punakha (alt. 1300m/4265ft)
After breakfast, we will drive to Sangay Gang then we can hike from Wangditse to Choekhortse Loop. From the Radio Tower, the trail goes along the tower fence before it passes a chorten and follows the contours along the mountainside until reaching Wangditse. Along the way there are great views of Tashichhoe Dzong. At Wangditse, follow the left trail leading straight up to Choekhortse. After a while, the trail levels out while crossing an open ridge with a field of prayer flags. From here, you will have excellent views of the city. After another section through the forest, the trail ends up at Choekhortse Goemba (3,010 m), a private temple where monks often go for meditation.
From here then walk down to Dechen Phodrang Monastery: the site of Thimphu's original Trashi Chhoe Dzong. Since 1971 it has housed the state monastic school, and a long procession of monks often travels between here and the dzong. A team of 15 teachers provides an eight-year course to more than 450 students. The 12th- century paintings in the goemba's Guru Lhakhang are being restored by a United Nations Educational, Scientific, Cultural Organization (UNESCO) project. The upper floor features a large figure of Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal as well as the goenkhang (chapel devoted to protective and terrifying deities). The central figure in the downstairs chapel is the Buddha Sakyamuni.
Then depart Thimphu, pass the Semtokha Dzong built in 1629 and once the oldest fortress of its kind that guarded the Thimphu valley. Today it is a Theological university. Stop for the lunch at the Dochu La Pass and view 108 Stupas and on a clear day you will witness a breathtaking view of the eastern Himalaya.
Then continue your drive to Punakha. Punakha served as Bhutan’s capital for over 300 years, before it was moved to Thimphu, with the first king crowned here in 1907. It sits in a fertile and beautiful valley at the junction of Mo Chhu (Mother River) and Pho Chhu (Father River).
Enjoy your evening walk to Chimi Lhakhang, temple of the Drukpa Kuenly who is also known as the Divine Madman. He inherited the Divine Madman title since he revolted against the orthodox Buddhism in his time. He taught the people that religion is an inner feeling and it’s not necessary that one should be an ordained monk. He is also considered a symbol of fertility and most childless couples go to his temple for blessing.
Punakha Sightseeing (Dress as a Bhutanese Man and Women)
After breakfast drive through the Punakha Valley, we begin our hike by crossing the Mochu River and ascending a numerous switchbacks to the Namgyel Khamsum Yuely Chorten. Looking downstream, the viewpoint here affords grand views of the Mochu River Valley below. We descend from the temple and follow a well-worn path down the valley through rice fields and small villages. Along the way we are rewarded with stunning views, the terraced rice paddies providing an exotic backdrop to the river below.
Enjoy a day to photograph the Punakha Valley, beginning with the impressive Punakha Dzong. The Punakha Dzongkha has been inextricably linked with momentous occasions in Bhutanese history. It served as the capital of the country from 1637 to 1907 and the first national assembly was hosted here in 1953. It is the second oldest and second largest dzong in Bhutan and one of the most majestic structures in the country.
After visiting Punakha Dzong, it is a nice spot to visit. A short walk from the Dzong is so exciting. It was fun crossing the bridge enjoy the view of the river. This bridge is known for the longest suspension bridge in Bhutan. At the high bridge, you can see the spectacular view of Punakha Dzong and Pho Chu river. Crossing the bridge, you can enjoy the normal life: the monks in their blazing red robes, the children frolicking back from school, the women-folk busy in their gossips. It is the long, narrow bridge so you should beware when crossing.
In the evening visit to Sangchhen Dorji Lhendrup nunnery, which was founded by Yab Ugyen Dorji, the father of the Queen Mothers. It sits astride the top of a hill high above Punakha and combines harmonious architectural proportions with carefully designed interiors, full of lovely traditional carvings and paintings.
Punakha – Paro
The journey west takes us back to Paro valley following through Wang Chhu and Pa Chhu Rivers. Paro Experiences: Paro Cultural Tour should always start with a casual browse through the National Museum, housed in the Ta Dzong (Watch Tower) of the Rinpung Dzong, where an intriguing collection of artifacts serves as a great introduction to the rich culture and heritage of the Kingdom. Just a short stroll below lies the dominating Paro Dzong, a premier example of Bhutan’s architecture. From the Dzong, a leisurely walk back into town crosses the scenic Nyamai zampa, a unique model of Bhutans traditional cantilever bridge. Continue to the town then drive to visit to the revered Kyichu Lhakhang, which pins down the left foot of a treacherous Ogress, are a great finish to this day of cultural immersion.
Paro - Bumdra (luxury camping) – Camping
Hike from Sang Choekhor Buddhist College (2,800m) to Yak Pasture Below Bumdra Monastery (3,800m). Today’s adventure begins with an early morning drive to Sang Choekhor, to meet our camp organiser. Striding out on foot from here, we make the one to two-hour ascent of the ridge, which is steep at times but in cool shade, and brings us to a clearing with prayer flags and views down into the Paro and Do Chhu Valleys. Above us, the Chhoe Tse Lhakhang nestles in the mountainside – a further two-hour walk away before lunch. The trail undulates for a while before the last steep pull up to the pretty temple, which offers commanding views south over Paro and north to the snow-capped Himalayas. After a final climb through ruins and fluttering prayer flags, we plunge back into ancient forest, coming out on a high wide meadow dotted with sacred chorten and prayer flags. Our wild camp for the night is tucked under Bumdra monastery (Cliff of a Hundred Thousand Prayers) with incredible views of the Himalayan range.
Duration: 4 to 6 hours to camp, 2 to 3 hours optional return trek to peak
Difficulty: Moderate to hard (guided with picnic lunch)
Overnight: Bumdra Wilderness Camp (3,800 m)
Bumdra to Paro via Taktsang Monastery (Tiger Nest)
Hike from Yak Pasture Below Bumdra Monastery (3,800m) via Zangtokpelri Monastery to Taktsang Monastery (2,900m), After a hearty breakfast, we either head back into the valley or linger a while to soak up the view and perhaps hang some prayer flags. Eventually we drop back into the ancient pine and rhododendron forest on the zig-zag trail. After our descent, we catch glimpses of temples below. The path snakes across the mountainside between the temples, before reaching the gardens of Zangktopelri, from where we can see straight down onto the ornate rooftops of Taktsang monastery, perched against the cliff-face far below. An hour later and we are at the gates of Taktsang, looking across the gorge; a steep descent to a waterfall then up some steps and we pass into Tiger’s Nest itself.
Retracing our steps, we begin the final descent to reach our vehicle and drive back to Paro, not forgetting to stop on the other side of the valley and take in all that we have achieved.
After breakfast in the hotel, drive to the airport in time to catch up your onward flight. Your escort from Charlotte Travel will bid you farewell and soon the remote and legendary Dragon Kingdom disappears again behind its guardian mountains.
DetailsContact us about this itinerary
- All Accommodation in standard hotels (Double/twin sharing)
- All porters & camping equipments ( if on trek)
- All meals (but not beverages). Bottled water is complimentary in the car/coach
- All transfers (SUV/mini bus) and sightseeing within Bhutan
- Services of an accompanying English speaking local tour leader/ guide
- Fees for museums and permits to enter temples & monuments
- 35% government welfare levy (used for developmental projects) & tourism development fee
- Visa and processing fee
- Roundtrip Air tickets between Hong Kong and Bangkok (or other transit hub); and between Bangkok (or other transit hub) and Paro. Please contact our travel consultants for flight arrangements.
- Bangkok (or other transit hub) Hotel for transit
- Accommodations in upscale properties
- Single supplement for hotel rooms
- Travel insurance (recommended, mandatory if on trek)
- Personal expenses such as laundry, phone calls, shopping, etc.
- Beverages (juice and alcohol)
- Tips and gratuities for staff (optional)