The flight to Paro is one of the most spectacular in entire Himalayas. This journey offers Bhutan fascinating views and an exciting descent into the Kingdom. Bhutan’s first gift, as you disembark from the aircraft will be cool, clean fresh mountain air. On arrival meet & greet by our representative, and transfer to Thimphu, the capital town of Bhutan with en-route stop at Chuzom, the confluence of Thimphu and Paro rivers.
Arrive Thimphu, check-into the hotel. Thimphu is a unique city with unusual mixture of modern development alongside ancient traditions. Evening an exploratory walk around Thimphu city centre. Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu. (Altitude 2,320m)
After breakfast, proceed for local sightseeing and visit the Simtokha Dzong – a monastery built in 1627 that today houses the Institute for Language and Cultural Studies. Then proceed to the Memorial Chorten- the most visible religious structure in Thimphu and the Buddha View Point. The view of the valley at this point is as magnificent as the statue of Lord Buddha that resides on the premises. Later proceed to the Takin Mini Zoo, home to Takin – the national animal of Bhutan that looks like a cross between a cow and a goat. Legend has it that it was created by the great Buddhist yogi Drupa Kunley. The animal is indigenous to Bhutan and its surrounding regions. Then head to the prominent Tashichho Dzong, a strikingly large structure amidst manicured lawns and beautiful gardens, featuring the throne room, offices of the secretariat and the King.
After exploring Thimphu, return to the hotel for a delicious dinner and stay.
After breakfast, drive up to Dochu-la pass (3,088m/ 10,130 ft). Later drive to Punakha. On arrival check into the hotel.
Afternoon visit Punakha Dzong or ‘Palace of Great Happiness or Bliss, built at the junction of the Phochu and Mochu rivers in 1637 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. It measures some 600 by 240 feet and has a six-story, gold-domed tower. Inside are courtyards and religious statuary that hint at the depth of history and spiritual tradition embodied here. After exploring Punakha city centre, embark on a short walking excursion to Chimi Lhakhang, located on a ridge surrounded by beautiful paddy fields. From road point, it takes about 10-15 minutes walk through Sobsukha village to reach the monastery. Also known as Fertility temple, it is associated with Lama Drukpa Kuenley, popularly known as ‘Divine Madman’. It is widely believed that couples who do not have children and wanting one, if they pray at this temple, they are usually blessed with a child very soon.
Evening drive pass Wangdue town and its market. Overnight at the hotel in Punakha & Wangdue.
A beautiful hike takes one to the regal Khamsum Yuelley Namgel Chorten (approx 2 hours round trip walk), which was built to remove negative forces and promote peace, stability and harmony in the changing world. Post lunch, visit to Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup Lhakhang (Nunnery). Perched on a ridge amid pine trees and overlooking valleys of Punakha and Wangdu gleams Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup temple. Then drive on to Talo village. The beautiful village of Talo (alt. 2,800m) which is scattered along the hill slopes, known for its cleanliness and hygiene among Punakha villages. The beautiful farm houses of the village have its own flower gardens and on the hill slope corns and sweet peas are grown in abundance. Also visit Talo Sangnacholing, built on a plateau and has majestic view of surrounding villages. Overnight at the hotel in Punakha & Wangdue.
After breakfast drive back to Paro descending back down from Dochu La. On arrival check in into hotel, Later proceed to visit Ta Dzong, originally built as Watchtower, which now houses National Museum. Then walk down the trail to visit Rinpung Dzong, meaning (“fortress of the heap of jewels”), which has a long and fascinating history. Along the wooden galleries lining the inner courtyard are fine wall paintings illustrating Buddhist lore such as four friends, the old man of long life, the wheel of life, scenes from the life of Milarepa, Mount. Sumeru and other cosmic Mandala.
Evening take a stroll around interesting city centre of Paro. Overnight at the hotel in Paro.
After a delicious breakfast at the hotel; visit the famous Tiger’s nest temple, also known as the Temple or Taksang Monastery. One of the most famous Bhutanese monasteries, it is said that Guru Rinpoche arrived here on the back of a tigress and meditated at the monastery. Perched precariously on the edge of a 1200 m cliff, this monastery is an impressive sight and the unofficial symbol of Bhutan. Do note that the up-hill hike would take around 2 hours, so it is recommended you wear comfortable walking shoes and carry light refreshments with water. An option to ride a horse from the parking lot to the monastery is also available. Alternately, you could also hike for about an hour to reach a cafeteria – a wooden tea-house restaurant which offers a good view of the monastery.
After that thrilling excursion, make your way to a local farmhouse to get a glimpse into the day-to-day life of a typical Bhutanese family. Here, you could take part in Bhutan’s national sport – archery. Deck-up in Bhutan’s national dress (gho and kira) to click pictures and also gulp down Ara, a local beverage made of rice. In the evening, you would be dropped at the hotel, with dinner and a comfortable overnight stay to end the day.
After early breakfast at the hotel, drive to the airport for flight to your onward destination. Our representative will help you with exit formalities and then bid you farewell.
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