Trip Overview Fly in Fly out in the land of Thunder Dragon 3 Nights 4 Days
The tiny Buddhist Kingdom of Bhutan awaits, nestled high in the Himalayas its isolation from the world has cultivated a culture rich in traditions, religion and a benevolent monarchy. The dramatic landscapes, from snow-capped peaks and deeply forested slopes to raging, boulder strewn rivers, sit largely undisturbed as the endeared environmental initiatives and religious beliefs leave the Kingdom pristine and a jewel of nature. The program takes you into this ancient Kingdom for an adventure into the hearts and lands of charming farmers, fascinating weavers, enchanting monks and charismatic leaders.
Day 01: Paro-Thimphu
Day 02: Thimphu – Paro
Day 03: Paro
Day 04: Departure
Day 01: Arrival and Transfer to Thimphu Valley (1.5 hour Drive)
On a clear day, the flight to Paro is breath-taking, with views of major Himalayan peaks such as Everest, Kanchenjunga and Makalu, and on the final approach Bhutan’s own snowy peaks, the sacred Jhomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tserimgang. On arrival at Paro airport and after completion of airport formalities, you will be met by your Guide. Drive from Paro to Thimphu, the modern capital town of Bhutan and an exciting blend of tradition and modernity. Visit Iron Bridge on the way to Thimphu.
On arrival, check-in at the hotel. In the late afternoon, drive to Kuensel Phodrang, (Buddha Point) which is a place from where one can get a complete view of the town of Thimphu. The view point has the largest statue of the Buddha. Drive back to town and visit at National Memorial Chorten: The building of this landmark was envisaged by the third king, His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuk, as 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 world peace. The paintings and statues inside the monument provide a deep insight into Buddhist philosophy.
Visit to the Tashichhoe Dzong: The “fortress of the glorious religion” was initially erected in 1641 and rebuilt by King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck in the 1960s. Tashichho Dzong houses some ministries, His Majesty’s secretariat, and the central monk body. It is open to visitors during the Thimphu Tsechu (held in autumn) and while the monk body is resident in its winter quarters at Punakha Dzong. In the evening, take a stroll along the town’s main street. (Overnight at Thimphu)
Day 02: Tour of Thimphu and Drive back to Paro
Today’s half day of sightseeing in Thimphu and other half in Paro valley includes visits to:
* Folk Heritage Museum: a restored mid-19th century house which gives one insight into the average household & lifestyle in the region during that era. The house replicates a traditional farmhouse and is furnished as it would have been about a century ago.
* Takin Preservation Center: Visit Takin Preservation Center where Bhutan’s National Animal is being preserved.
* Changangkha lhakhang founded in the 13th century by one of the most revered saint of the drukpa kadgued tradition, Lama Phajo Dugom. It is a focus of daily worship for many local residents.
* Traditional paper factory for wide range of Bhutanese papers.
After lunch we drive back to Paro. Check in the hotel and visit the following places
* The National Museum where an intriguing collection of artefacts provide a wonderful introduction to the rich culture and heritage of the Kingdom. Just a short walk downhill lays the dominating Paro Dzong, a fine example of Bhutanese historic architecture. From the Dzong, the tour crosses Nyamai Zampa, a traditional cantilever bridge, and guests are then driven to the town temple, built in 1525, to view ancient wall paintings. After lunch you can visit the auspicious Kichu Lhakhang, a sacred monument pinning down the left foot of a treacherous ogress. This is one of the oldest temples in Bhutan dating back to the 7th century. (Overnight at Paro)
Day 03: Tiger’s Nest Hike
This morning will begin with a hike up to view one of Bhutan’s most revered monuments, the Taktshang Goemba, more commonly referred to as the “Tiger’s Nest”. The four to five hour return trek offers spectacular views of this sacred monastery perched on a cliff face 900m above the valley floor. While returning from the hike, should you wish to stretch your leg further, there is an opportunity for quick strolls to the nearby Drukgyel Dzong ruins or perhaps visit to some of the valley’s oldest and holiest religious monuments or a ramble down Paro’s main street. The balance of the day can be spent browsing shops in town or at your leisure. (Overnight at Paro)
Day 04: Departure Day
Early morning transfer from Paro to Paro Airport for your international departure.