Pariwar Holidays is all about making your vacation grand. Welcome to this 8 –day Cultural tour leading towards Bhutan. Bhutan is also one of the most exotic places in the world and it lies in the midst of the Himalayan Mountains. This particular package leads us through mesmerizing and unspoiled cultural and natural grandeur. The tour leads us through various monasteries, dzongs, temples, chortens and museums. It is interesting to note the way how people of Bhutan preserve their culture and tradition. Bhutan still retains the religious tradition of Tantric Mahayana Buddhism. During the days of our tour, we will not only be enjoying the unique Bhutanese culture but also the panoramic views of the Himalayan Mountains.
The traditional markets of Bhutan are also very interesting. Delicious cuisines decorated in the open air market place including basket full of chilies, fresh cheese and varieties of seasonal fruits and vegetables. Bhutanese goods of handicrafts and household items are also decorated in the markets around Bhutan. The religious ceremony also differs from district to district in Bhutan.
All in overall, this tour is designed to get most of what Bhutan has in offer. Do remember Pariwar Holidays to get the first hand experience of Bhutan Tours. This tour is surely going to be an unforgettable tour of a lifetime.
Day 01: Arrival at Paro (2250m / 7382ft):
The tour to Bhutan begins from the Paro airport itself. While we are flying towards the airport of Paro, most scenic view of the Himalayan Mountains along with the magnificent view of the peaks like Jumolhari and Jichu Drake can be seen. After arriving at the airport and being done with the airport formalities, a representative and a guide of the company will meet you and transfer you to your hotel. Once we are at the hotel, after lunch we visit Ta Dzong museum. This museum is the national museum of Bhutan. After watching the museum, we visit Rinpung Dzong. Rinpung Dzong (fortress of the heaps of jewels). From Rinpung Dzong, the tour further continues to Drugyal Dzong. This fort is also known as the Bhutan’s Victory Fort. This fort was built in 1646 to commemorate Bhutan’s victory over Tibetan invaders in 1600s. After visiting these places we return back to Paro for overnight stay.
Day 02: Paro-Thimphu (2320m/7610 ft): 1 hr/54 km.
On this day, after breakfast, we drive to Thimphu. Thimpu is the capital city of Bhutan. We travel through the Paro valley to the confluence of Thimpu and Paro rivers. There are three different styles of Chortens at the confluence. After crossing this confluence we get to Tachogang Lhakhang. This Tachogang Lhakhang was built in 15th century by Thangthong Gyelpo. He was a trader who introduced Iron Bridges in Bhutan. By and by we reach Thimpu and do check-in at a hotel. In the afternoon, we do sightseeing around Thimpu. The sightseeing will take us to Memorial Chorten (This chorten was built in the memory of the third king of Bhutan who reigned from 1952-1972), Changangkha Monastery, Takin Reserve, School of Arts and Crafts and a Nunnery Temple. After visiting these places, we get back to the hotel to relax. Our overnight stay would be in a hotel at Thimphu.
Day 03: Sightseeing in Thimphu:
This morning, we visit a busy weekend market at the bank of Thimpu River. This market is popular among local people as various products of the farms are on sale there every week. In addition, many stalls contain Bhutanese handicrafts and household items. The stroll around the market is very mesmerizing as we see people hustling and bustling around the marketplace. This visit can also offer a chance to get mingled with the locals to have photographs. After having a wonderful time at the market, we visit Changlingmethang Archery Range. It is a place to practice archery. In the afternoon, we visit different handicraft shops to have wonderful shopping. In the evening, we stroll through the town of Thimphu. Our overnight stay will be at the hotel of Thimphu.
Day 04: Tour from Thimphu to Punakha (1300m / 4265 ft): 76km/3hrs.
The tour of this day begins after breakfast. We start our tour from a scenic drive to Punakha. At Punakha we see many teas- stall. We stop in one of the tea shops at Dochu La (3,100 m). From Dochu La, we get to see magnificent range of Himalayas. From the pass of Dochu La, we drive downhill through the forests of rhododendron, fir and hemlock. By and by, we reach Punakha Dzong. By the side of Punakha Dzong flows the Punakha River. There are numerous paddy fields by the side of the river. It is very interesting to note that at this Dzong, there are male and female rivers which look like an anchored ship. After having a wonderful time at the Dzong, we drive back to Punakha for our overnight stay.
Day 05: Excursion to Gangtey (2900m/9512 ft, To & fro 170km/5 hrs):
On this day, after breakfast we drive towards Gangtey. Along the way we visit Wangdue Dzong. This Dzong is perched on a ridge at the bend of the river. The trail further continues towards Gangtey. Along the way we pass through dense forest of fir, hemlock, oak trees and rhododendrons. The trail further continues along the high-way passing through a small pass blanketed with dwarf bamboos to arrive at Gangtey. At Gangtey, we see mesmerizing view of the Black Mountain range and the splendid view of the Phobjikha Valley. This valley marks as the winter habitat of the back-necked cranes. In the afternoon, we visit Gangtey Goenpa, it is the only Nyingmapa Monastery of the western Bhutan. It is the place of RSPN Education Center and crane roosting places. After having a wonderful time at Gangtey, we drive back to Punakha for our overnight stay.
Day 06: Drive from Punakha to Paro: 4 hr/140 km.
This day, we drive back to Paro. Along the way we stop at the Metshina Village to have a walk through the rice field. We stroll until we get to Chimi Lhakhang. There is a fertility temple dedicated to the Devine Madman or Lama Drukpa Kuenley at Chimi Lhakhang. The local people of this place go to this temple to receive blessing from the Lama’s wooden phallus. We can also opt to receive the blessing in the temple. After having a wonderful time at this temple, we continue driving towards Paro. Along the way, we reach Dochula. At Dochula we visit the new Druk Wangyal Monastery. This monastery is decorated with elaborate painting that depicts the lineage of the present monarchy and their visionary works. It is one of the most unique monasteries of Bhutan. The tour further continues towards Thimpu. We stop in one of the hotels at Thimpu for lunch and continue towards Paro. Our overnight stay will be at one of the hotels at Paro.
Day 07: Hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery (54Km/1 hr):
On this day, we hike to Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) Monastery. This is one of the most famous monasteries of Bhutan. This monastery is situated at 10,400 feet and is perched on the edge of a steep cliff of about 3,000 feet above the valley of Paro. The monastery has an interesting folklore. The folklore is about Guru Rinpoche (the great Buddhist spiritual master) who had flown on the back of a tigress to meditate in a cave where Taktsang Monastery now stands. While climbing up the mountain, we have our lunch at a cafeteria at the halfway up on the mountain. After having a wonderful time at this monastery, we hike back to the valley floor. From there, we drive back to the hotel of Paro for overnight stay.
Day 08: Depart Paro:
This day marks as the last day in Bhutan. We bid our goodbye to the tiny Himalayan Kingdom and the friendly people of this place. The weather of Bhutan is generally unpredictable so we depart from Druk Air in the morning. So after breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport for your final departure.
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I had an amazing time in Bhutan. Everything was so well organized, the guide and the driver made it extremely easy and comfortable throughout our stay. They were also very flexible about our schedule, they didn't mind staying late with us. The car they used was new and quite spacious, made the journey everywhere very comfortable. Both hotels we stayed in were very clean and comfortable, especially the one in Thimpu.I had an amazing journey in bhutan. Thanks Pariwar Holidays for making our trip so Memorable and special. :)