A journey through Bhutan
Explore Bhutan and enjoy the diverse culture, flora and fauna throughout the country
1Arrival in Paro. You may avail Druk Air, national airline or Bhutan Airline which is privately owned to come to Bhutan. The tour guide will receive you at the airport and escort you to your dwelling inn where you can relax and anticipate yourself for a memorable experience for the coming days.
Tour in and around Paro (Drugyel Dzong, Kyichu Lhakhang, National Museum, Rinpung Dzong) and travel to Thimphu
The tour in Paro can be started by visiting Drugyel Dzong. Drugyel Dzong is approximately about 16 kms away from the main town of Paro. It is a must visit place in Paro which hold so much of historic importance. The name can directly be translated as “The Fortress of Victory” since it was built back in 1644 by the Great Master, Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel to mark glory over the Tibetans who waged invasive war against the Bhutanese centuries ago. The fortress was ruined by fire 1951. However, re-construction of the fortress started in 2016 coinciding with the birth of Crown Prince, Gyalsey Jigme Namgyel Wangchuck. Then, drive towards Kyichu Lhakhang. It is believed that Kyichu Lhakhang was one of the 108 holy shrines built in one day by a great Tibetan saint back in the 8th century. After lunch, visit the National Museum locally known as Ta Dzong. The National Museum in Paro is just few minutes walk away from Rinpung Dzong. The last travel destination in Paro will be Rinpung Dzong which means “Heap of Jewels”. Then proceed to Thimphu in the evening.
Thimphu ( Tashichhodzong, Zorig Chusum, Buddha Point, Memorial Chorten) – Paro
Start the day in Thimphu by visiting Tashichhodzong. Tashichhodzong is sacred in the sense that it houses the King’s Throne room with several important government offices. It is also the seat or summer residence for the Je Khenpo, the Chief Abbot and central monastic body. After that, visit Zorig Chusum, the embodiment of 13 unique traditional arts and crafts where you will be able to explore unique paintings and other crafts. After lunch, visit Buddha Point where you will be able to relish the breathtaking view of entire Thimphu City. 169 feet tall Statue of Lord Buddha was built to commemorate the 60th birth anniversary of His Majesty the Fourth King Jigme Singye Wangchuck. In the evening visit the Memorial Chorten built in loving memory of the Third King, Jigme Dorji Wangchuck. The tour in Thimphu will be concluded by visiting handicrafts emporium and local craft shops where locally produced goods are available. Then head back to Paro.
Thimphu- Punakha (Dochula, Short Hike to Longchutse and Chimi Lhakhang)
Drive to Punakha via Dochula pass which is 3,100 m above sea level where you will certainly enjoy the view of 108 stupas locally known as “Druk Wangyal Chortens. Then hike up to Longchutse about 3 hrs away from Dochula where you will be able to enjoy spectacular view of snowcapped mountains and lush green aromatic trees and herbs. Lunch at Dochula. Proceed on to Punakha where on the way you will visit Chimi Lhakhang known as the “Temple of fertility” where people or couples come to get blessings when they plan to conceive a child. Drive to Punakha and dine and relax at the hotel.
Punakha (Khamsum Yulley Namgyel Chorten)- Gangtey
Begin the day by hiking up to Khamsum Yulley Namgyel Chorten which is about 45 minutes walk. The stupa is located on a hill ridge overlooking Punakha valley with the patronage from the Queen Mother Ashi Tshering Yangdon Wangchuck. You will definitely relish the scenic beauty from there. After lunch in Punakha, proceed towards Gangtey under Wangdue Phodrang district. Gangtey is 3 hrs drive from Punakha. A farm stay experience will be waiting for the night at Gangtey that will give you the opportunity to experience a traditional Bhutanese lifestyle.
While at Gangtey you may not want or afford to not miss the opportunity to explore Phobjikha valley, the home for several endangered black necked cranes in winter. Visit Gangtey monastery, the main seat of Terton Pema Lingpa, one great saint in the Bhutanese history. After lunch, drive towards central Bhutan particularly Trongsa via Pelela pass. Enjoy the night in Trongsa.
The day will be started by visiting Trongsa Dzong which was built in 1644. It is the same fortress where Desi Jigme Namgyel, the father of the first king started his career as servant to run the errands to 48th Druk Desi. Then visit the museum in Trongsa that will flourish and enhance your knowledge on history of Bhutan. After lunch, Bumthang will be the next destination which is approximately 3 and half hours away from Trongsa.
The 6th day tour will entirely be in and around Bumthang. The day will be started by visiting Jambay Lhakhang, one of the 108 stupas built in one day by the Tibetan saint, Songtsen Goenpo. Kurje Lhakhang will be the next monastery to visit. This monastery has the body imprint of Guru Rinopoche left behind after he meditated there for three months sometimes back in 746 A.D. Then proceed on to Tamzhing Lhakhang. Next, visit the main Dzong in Bumthang known as Jakar Dzong where you will have the opportunity to appreciate some unique wall sculptures and ancient paintings. Then it is now time to visit the sacred Mebar Tso (The Burning Lake) after lunch. It is named as the Burning Lake since the great saint Pema Lingpa went inside the lake with a burning lamp to discover hidden treasure and came back with the lamp still alight.
The journey will continue towards the East to Mongar. Through beautiful village of Ura and via Thrumshingla pass, the next destination would be Mongar Dzong built in 1930s.
Mongar to Trashigang
On the 10th day, drive to Trashigang, the largest Dzongkhag in Bhutan from Mongar. Visit Trashidzong Dzong which servess as the administrative seat for local government officials and religious seat for the local monastic body.
Start the day by visiting Gom Kora which is about 25 kms away from Trashigang. This is believed to be one of the sacred places where the Great Tantric Master, Guru Rinpoche subdued some evil forces threatening the lives of local people there. Drive towards Trashiyangtse Dzong and Chorten Kora stupa also built to subdue evil forces. Drive back to Trashigang.
Trashigang- Samdrup Jongkhar
It is now time to move on to Samdrup Jongkhar about 6 hours’ drive from Trashigang.
Departure from the airport in Guwahati
Thimphu city view
Bumthang Jakar Dzong