Day 1: Arrival Paro to Thimphu
Arrive in Paro by druk air, the only national carrier. The flight offers you beautiful view of mountains and landscapes. Upon arriving the Paro Valley and after completing visa formalities, you will be met by Gawaling Tours & Treks’ representative at the airport. We will then drive to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan. The journey would take us one and half hours.
Upon arriving Thimphu, we will visit the National Painting school to see the young men and women at work in the production of handicraft items. Some specialize in mask making, some in wood curving, some in slate curving, and others in embroidery & scroll painting. Overnight stay in a hotel.
Day 2: Thimphu to Trongsa
After Breakfast Drive towards Trongsa. Drive over the DochuLa pass in the morning. On clear weather, we can see around 200 miles of Himalayan summits bordering northern Bhutan.
As we descend from the pass, we will notice that the vegetation changes from sub-alpine to sub-tropical. Night halt at Trongsa.
Day 3: Trongsa
Witness Trongsa Festival
Day 4: Trongsa to Bumthang
we start our journey to Bumthang, located two and half hours towards east. We cross over the Yotongla Pass(3400m) and then descend to Chumi Valley where we can see a weaving center- where professional weavers weave well-patterned fabrics out of wool known as “yathra”.
After our lunch, we will visit Jambay lhakhang- one of the two oldest monasteries built in Bhutan in the 7th century. Then we move on to visit Kurji Lhakhang. Overnight at the lodge in Bumthang.
Day 5: Bumthang to Punakha
We drive early morning and drive to Punakha . Lunch would be served en-route at one of the hotels in Trongsa. En-route at Wangdiphodrang take a short break for tea or coffee and then proceed to Punakha. We will stay in a hotel.
Day 6: Punakha to Paro
After breakfast drive to Paro; en-route via Thimphu.
Afternoon, visit Ta Dzong (watch tower) that houses the National Museum. The museum has an interesting collections of different costumes and thangkas from various parts of Bhutan. After Museum visit, we drive towards the north to see the Drukgyel Dzong, which is in ruins. Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel built it in 1649 to commemorate a victory over the Tibetan forces. Unfortunately the fortress was destroyed by fire and was never rebuilt. On clear weather, we will be able to see Mt. chomolhari from the Drukgyal Dzong. En-route visit Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the two oldest monasteries built in Bhutan by the King of Tibet, Songtsen Gampo in the 7th century. Overnight at a hotel in Paro.
Day 7: Paro (hike to Tiger’s Nest)
Paro is a valley of religion and myth. The most famous landmark, the Taktsang Monastery (Tiger’s Nest), stands on a granite cliff about 800m above the valley. Legend has it that Guru Rinpoche, a famous Buddhist saint, flew to Paro on a tigress and meditated at Taktsang. The monastery is considered as a national treasure of Bhutan.
The hike to Taktsang would take us around two and half hours. To reach a cafeteria, a point from where one can enjoy a great view of the monastery is more than an hour walk from the road-head uphill. Those interested can walk further 45 minutes uphill to get a closer view of the monastery and return to the cafeteria for lunch. The journey downward to the road-head would take us less than one and half hours.
Day 8: Departure