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Walking & Hiking

BELGIUM

“Tsheten took us to charming places, telling about the country and its people, and wonderfully survived our never relenting stream of questions”

USA

“Journey to Discover Bhutan, organizes specialist tours for studying Bhutan’s natural history; cultural endeavors, especially those centered on the exuberant Buddhist religious festivals”

AUSTRALIA

“Tsheten has arranged my previous three visits to Bhutan in a professional and stress free manner (and he is currently arranging my fourth). “

AUSTRALIA

“Tsheten has arranged my previous three visits to Bhutan in a professional and stress free manner (and he is currently arranging my fourth). “

“Tsheten took very good care of me and introduced me at easy pace to Bhutan culture, customs, history and people. “

    OVERVIEW

    Walking & Hiking

    Embark on a captivating journey to the enchanting Kingdom of Bhutan, renowned for its majestic landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and unwavering commitment to Gross National Happiness. This famous Bhutan tour offers a unique blend of spiritual exploration and breathtaking scenery, with visits to iconic landmarks such as the cliffside Tiger’s Nest Monastery, the historic Punakha Dzong, and the vibrant capital city of Thimphu.

    Immerse yourself in the warmth of Bhutanese hospitality as you traverse through picturesque valleys, adorned with prayer flags and traditional architecture. Discover the nation’s deep-rooted traditions during colorful festivals, savor delectable Bhutanese cuisine, and witness the harmonious coexistence of tradition and modernity in this serene Himalayan haven.

    08

    DAYS

    Bhutan sits on the roof of the world, isolated as much by choice as by its own geography. Its magical essence can’t be expressed. From the rich Buddhist culture to its remote Himalaya setting. Here the people live unimaginably hard but full lives, rooted in age-old tradition yet ready to join the 21st century. Bhutan seems like a place that couldn’t still exist. A place you feel lucky to have experienced.
    WHAT’S THE WEATHER LIKE?

    When to visit for Bhutan Luxury Tour

    Bhutan experiences distinct seasons, with a monsoon season bringing heavy rainfall from June to September, nourishing the lush green landscapes. Winters, from November to February, bring cooler temperatures and occasional snowfall in higher elevations. Spring and autumn, from March to May and September to November respectively, offer pleasant weather with clear skies and blooming flora.


    4-25
    °C
    20-50
    MM
    Spring
    MAR – MAY
    15-27
    °C
    90-120
    MM
    Monsoons
    JUN – AUG
    3-26
    °C
    0-70
    MM
    Autumn
    SEPT – NOV
    (-2)-17
    °C
    5-10
    MM
    Winter
    DEC – FEB

    Trip Highlights

    Exploring Bhutan’s Ancient Landscape and Exchanging Ideas

    Embarking on a journey through Bhutan’s ancient landscape is a step into a realm where time seems to stand still, and nature and culture coexist in harmonious beauty. As you traverse emerald valleys, visit ancient dzongs, and behold snow-capped peaks, the landscape becomes a living testament to Bhutan’s rich history. Yet, the true magic lies in the exchange of ideas with the locals. Engaging with the people of Bhutan reveals a profound connection to their land, where centuries-old traditions seamlessly blend with the commitment to Gross National Happiness.

    Tiger’s Nest Monastery

    Perched precariously on the edge of a sheer cliff, the Tiger’s Nest Monastery, or Paro Taktsang, is a sacred jewel of Bhutan. Clinging to the mountainside at an elevation of 3,120 meters, this iconic monastery is a testament to both architectural marvel and spiritual significance. Legend has it that Guru Rinpoche, the father of Bhutanese Buddhism, meditated in a cave here on the back of a flying tigress, giving the monastery its awe-inspiring name. The complex, adorned with intricate murals and prayer flags, offers breathtaking panoramic views of the Paro Valley below.

    Bhutan’s Valley Vistas and Prayer Flag

    Bhutan is a visual feast of unparalleled beauty, where the expansive views of lush valleys captivate the soul. As the majestic landscapes unfold, adorned with terraced fields and meandering rivers, travelers are treated to a spectacle of nature’s grandeur. Amidst this breathtaking panorama, colorful prayer flags dance in the mountain breeze, creating a vibrant tapestry against the backdrop of serene valleys. These fluttering flags, adorned with sacred mantras and symbols, infuse the air with a sense of spirituality and peace.

    Tour Includes

    • Accommodation: 3 Star Hotels

    • Meal Plan: All the meals

    • Transport: Very Comfortable Transport (SUV/Mini Bus/Coaster Bus)

    • Guide: Professional English Speaking

    • Visa / Permits: Bhutan Visa & All Permits

    • Sightseeing: Extensive Sightseeing & Touring

    • Entrance fees: All Historic Monuments

    • Tax: Government Royalties And Taxes

    Tour Excludes

    • Airfare

    • Laundry

    • Private Calls

    • Beverages or Drinks

    • Insurance for travel and other contingencies.

    • Bank Charges

    Single room supplement charges of US $ 40 per night halt per person will apply for any single room requirement.

    Itinerary

    DAY 01: Arrival at Paro

    As the plane banks over the mountain slopes, the Paro Valley greet you with luminous paddies rippling in the breeze and tiny houses sprinkled on the bank of the meandering river. The air is crystal clear, light translucent and on horizon, snowcapped mountains frame the idyllic like painting. It does not matter how many times you land in Paro, the bucolic valley unfolds like a dream.

     After visa formalities and collection of baggage, you will meet our representative from Journey to Discover Bhutan.

    Afternoon

    Visit Paro Dzong built in 1646, which houses the administrative center of the Paro district and religious institute for monks. The Paro Dzong may be familiar to people who watched Bertolucci’s film “The Little Buddha” walk down to the coach crossing over the traditional wooden covered bridge called “Nymezampa” which spans over the Paro river.

    Over Night Leisure at Hotel

    DAY 02: Paro – Punakha
    • Dochu-la & Thinleygang Walk
    • 4½ Hours Walking & Hiking
    • Options: Royal Monastic Route: 4.3 Miles (1,300’ elevation loss)
    • Valley View Route: 6.1 Miles (400’ loss)

    Drive to Punakha over a Dochu-la ( 3030m) pass is one of the most beautiful drive in country and the pass is dotted my 108 Stupas with many colorful flags.

    If you are lucky, relish breathtaking views that encompass several snowcapped Himalayan peaks, including Gangkar Puensum, Bhutan’s highest at 24,740 feet. After stopping for tea at Dochu La, we continue to the trailhead at Thinleygang. Descend through pine forests, past rice paddies and over streams on bridges built by locals. The monastic body once used the trail that parallels our route to travel between

    DAY 03: Punakha
    • 1 Hour drive to Sirigang
    • 30 Minutes Chorten Nebu & Sirigang Valley Route
    • 6.1 Miles (1,400′ elevation gain)

    This morning we visit Punakha Dzong, which sits at the confluence of the Mo Chhu and Pho Chhu (Mother and Father Rivers). Appearing to have been ripped from the pages of National Geographic , the 17th‐century dzong has served as the winter capital of Bhutan for more than 300 years and is the site of the annual Punakha Serda festival.

    Our Bhutanese guide leads us on a tour, which includes the incredible meditation hall, and points out recent restoration of areas damaged by fires, a flood and an earthquake. The fort hosted the 2008 coronation of the fifth king and celebrations commemorating the country’s transition to democracy. After driving to Sirigang, hike up to 700‐year‐old Chorten Nebu (The Old Temple), which serves as a monastic school housing about 24 young monks. Our visit helps us gain insight into traditional Bhutanese life, as Chorten Nebu is representative of monasteries that lie far from the main roads.

    We stop for a packed lunch under an old oak tree outside the chorten , where our guide reveals more about the customs, history and religion of Bhutan. Back on the trail, drop from the ridge into the valley toward the Rong Chhu. After crossing the river, make a gradual descent through an agricultural valley dotted with farms and rice paddies.

    Enjoy the riverside scenery during the shuttle ride back to the hotel, where there’s time to relax before we rejoin our local guide for a culture and history

    DAY 04: Punakha – Thimphu
    • Drive to Po Chhu 30 Minutes
    • Po Chhu Route 4.8 Miles (400′ elevation gain)
    • Rafting on the Po Chhu River 2 Hours Drive to Thimphu.

    After breakfastdrive along the Po Chhu for a hike on a scenic trail to our rafting put‐in spot. In the hands of expert river runners we navigate small but thrilling rapids, all the while enjoying spectacular views of the Punakha Valley and Punakha Dzong. Keep an eye out for some of the brightly colored birds found in this area, such as the minivet, red‐headed trogon or rare white‐bellied heron. We pull off at a sandy beach that leads to Damchen Resort, where we have lunch.

    After rafting we drive to Thimphu, home to just under 100,000 people and perhaps the world’s only capital city without traffic lights.

    Though it is in the midst of rapid growth and modernization, much of the city’s infrastructure hasn’t caught up. For example, the 5 modern multistoried buildings under construction are being built behind large bamboo (no steel yet) scaffolding.

    Packaged goods are also relatively new to Bhutan, and even finding a convenient trash to dispose of the packaging can be a challenge. Over Night Leisure at Hotel

    DAY 05: Thimphu
    • Drive to Dodina 45 Minutes
    • Tango Goemba Route 2 Miles
    • (800′ elevation gain) Shuttle to Thimpu 30 Minutes

    We start our day with a shuttle past embassies, the parliament building and the royal palace toward the far end of the valley for the start of our hike up to Tango Goemba. Built in 1688 on a site that has held religious significance since the 12th century, the monastery serves as the highest center of Buddhist learning in Bhutan—almost every Je Khenpo (religious head) in the country has completed their 9‐year training program here. It’s a steep climb up, but Tango Goemba provides a beautiful perspective on the rural outskirts of the Thimphu Valley.

    After descending from the monastery picnic lunch will be served near the riverside.

    Afternoon: Free time for relax or shopping

    DAY 06: Thimphu – Paro
    • Drive to Kuensel Phordang ( Big Buddha Point) 30 Minutes
    • Walking with Buddha Route 1.9 Miles (400′ elevation gain)
    • Shuttle to Thimphu Ridgeline 30 Minutes
    • Thimphu Ridgeline Route 4.1 Miles (600′) Drive to Paro 1½ Hours

    The day began with short hike to the Buddha Dordenma, a giant golden statue towering above the Wang Chhu. At 169 feet tall, it’s one of the largest Buddha statues in the world and houses an astonishing 125,000 smaller figures inside. Watch as the morning sunshine illuminates the gilded exterior then turn your gaze to relish sweeping views of the valley below.

    After visiting the statue, we hop in the van and head to the ridgeline for a beautiful walk above Thimphu. Set out along the trail to a small monastery housing impressive 17th‐century religious art painted directly on its walls, continue hiking higher up the hillside through a tranquil pine forest. If the skies are clear, you may be able to catch a glimpse of the snowcapped Himalayan foothills. Then make your way down the trail as thousands of colorful prayer flags flap in the wind above you.

    Nestled beneath a rainbow of flags, a picnic lunch with panoramic views of the valley below and the surrounding peaks. Rest your legs in the shuttle to Paro, where we stop to explore town before continuing on to our home for the next two nights.

    Over Night Leisure at Hotel

    DAY 07: Paro
      • Shuttle to Taktshang 30 Minutes
      • Walking & Hiking Options: Taktshang Teahouse Route: 3.3 Miles (1,700’ elevation gain)
      • Taktshang Monastery Route: 6.1 Miles (2,200’)
      After starting the day with a hearty breakfast, we shuttle to Taktshang for a hike to one of Bhutan’s most sacred places and an important pilgrimage destination: the Taktshang (Tiger’s Nest) Monastery. Partly damaged by fire in 1998, the cliffside monastery was built atop the cave where Guru Rinpoche, father of Mahayana Buddhism, meditated for three months after arriving in the Paro Valley on the back of a legendary tigress.
      Locals often display handicrafts for sale along the route to the monastery—evidence of individual enterprise rarely seen until the past few years. Begin with an immediate ascent, following the trail high above the valley and passing through forests and by large prayer wheels turned by a stream.
      Continue hiking up a steep portion of the path to a ridge where prayer flags rustle in the wind. Just beyond, at 9,200 feet, is the Taktshang teahouse, where we stop for a hot drink and striking views of the monastery across Bthe valley. The scene seemingly belongs to a bygone era—it’s only when a cell phone rings that you realize it’s the 21st century! We break for lunch at a ridgetop teahouse, which affords phenomenal vistas of the Paro Valley. Depending on your energy level you can shuttle from here or tackle the remaining portion of the trail to Taktshang Monastery.
      After our visit, descend by foot to the valley to catch the shuttle back to Zhiwa Ling. If you’re still feeling energetic, take a short shuttle to the fortress of Drukgyel Dzong, built in the mid‐17th century to protect the valley from further invasions, and then devastated by fire three centuries later. It’s a short but steep climb to the dzong, whose ruins emanate a mystical aura.
      Tonight we celebrate our sojourn with a farewell dinner. You may decide to partake in a nightcap beside the hotel bar’s stone fireplace, or turn in early to get a good night’s sleep before our morning departure.
    DAY 08: Departure

    Depart for your onward flight.

    “The Last Shangri-la”.

    DISCOVER BHUTAN

    If you’re unsure or still deliberating where to travel in Bhutan, we’ll put you in touch with our Travel Specialists to offer you sound advice and an honest take on any places you might be considering for your trip.

    +975 17110849

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