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Scenic Bhutan Tour 6 days

  • Private tour
  • Solo friendly
  • Family friendly
  • Book now pay later*

This cultural tour explores the wonderfully diverse environment of Bhutan's western valleys as well as their cultural heritage. Drive over high mountain passes and through rapidly changing vegetation from pine forests to hills covered in rhododendrons, magnolias and dwarf bamboo - abundant with birds and wildlife. The centrepiece of this tour is time spent exploring the beautiful Thimphu Valley, the capital city of Bhutan.

This tour also visits ancient fortresses, temples, monasteries, markets, farmhouses and museums in Paro, Thimphu and Punakha. Highlights include the Ta Dzong Museum, Rimpong Dzong, The National Memorial Chorten, the 12th-century Changangkha Temple, the National Library exhibiting ancient scriptures, and Hike to Tiger's Nest (Taktshang Monastery).

Day 1 Paro Airport - Thimphu City

After clearing immigration and customs you will be greeted by your guide and driver, and transferred to Bhutan's capital Thimphu (1 hr. 30 mins), travelling through the spectacular countryside en route. All the houses and buildings in the Kingdom are painted and constructed in traditional Bhutanese style.

On arrival in Thimphu check to your hotel and take lunch. Enjoy the remainder of the day to explore Thimphu, both by vehicle and on foot. Your options include visits to the National Memorial Stupa and Takin Preserve - home to Bhutan's most unusual national mammal.

Dinner and overnight in Thimphu.

Day 2 Thimphu Valley

This morning visit the majestic Tashichhodzong. Other recommended places to visit are Zorig Chusum - the Institute of the 13 Arts & Crafts of Bhutan, the Folk Heritage Museum; the National Library, which holds a vast collection of ancient Buddhist manuscripts; the hand-made paper making factory & the weekend market where everyone goes to buy an array of fresh fruits & vegetables; home-wares, handicrafts and clothes.

Don't forget to wander along Thimphu's main street, Norzin Lam, which offers good shopping, and the Craft Bazaar for those interested in quality weavings and local art, where you can interact with the weavers.

Your guide will advise you on the best options. Dinner and overnight in Thimphu.

Day 3 Thimphu - Punakha

After breakfast, drive to Punakha via Dochula pass (72 Km, 3 hours' drive). If the weather is clear, we stop for a while at Dochula Pass to view the Higher Himalayas. On the way, stop for a while to view Chimi Lhakhang, which was built by Lama Drukpa Kuenley in the 15th century. He subdued the demons with his “Magical Thunder bolt”. The Temple is also known as “the Temple of Fertility”.

Lunch at Punakha. After lunch, visit Punakha Dzong built in 1637 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal which is situated between Pho Chu (Male River) and Mo Chu (Female River). For many years until the time of the second king, it served as the seat of the Government. The construction of the Dzong was foretold by Guru Rimpoche, who predicted, that "a person named Namgyal will arrive at a hill that looks like an elephant”. There was a smaller building here called Dzong Chu (Small Dzong) that housed a statue of Buddha. It is said that Zhabdrung ordered the architect, Zowe Palep, to sleep in front of the statue, and while Palep was sleeping; the Zhabdrung took him in his dreams to Zangtopelri and showed him the palace of Guru Rimpoche.

From his vision, the architect conceived the design for the new Dzong, which in keeping with the tradition, was never committed to paper. The Dzong was named Druk Pungthang Dechen Phodrang (Palace of Great Happiness).

The war materials captured during the battle with Tibetans are preserved here. Punakha is still the winter residence of Je-Khenpo and King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk convened the new national Assembly here in 1952. Dinner and overnight in Punakha.

Day 4 Punakha Valley - Paro Valley

Depart Punakha early morning for your transfer westwards to the Paro Valley (4hrs +), once again traversing Dochu La, and arriving in Paro town in time for a late lunch at one of the local restaurants.

This afternoon enjoy an orientation tour of the major features in Paro town including Paro Dzong with its cantilever bridge; Kyichu Lhakhang - one of Bhutan's oldest and most beautiful temples boasting an orange tree that perpetually bears fruit followed by a visit to the old ruined fortress of the Drugyel Dzong (14km from Paro).

This is the historical site of the Fort of Drukpa Victory, from which the Bhutanese used to repel the Tibetan invaders again and again. On a clear day views of the 7314 m snow domed peaks of sacred Mt Chomolhari can be seen. Dinner and overnight in Paro.

Day 5 Paro - Tiger's Nest Monastery

After breakfast, hike up to Taktshang Monastery, known as ‘Tiger's Nest Monastery'. The climb up to the viewpoint will take around 1 ½ hours and from there you will enjoy a spectacular view of the monastery clinging to the side of the cliff. Stop for refreshments at the View Point Cafeteria. Then walk further up to the monastery which will take about 1 hour. It is said that in the 8th century Guru Rinpoche flew on the back of a tigress from eastern Bhutan to this place and meditated in a cave there for 3 months.

The principal Lhakhang (monastery) of the present monastic complex dates from 1692. Taktsang was damaged severely by fire in 1998 but has now been fully restored to its former beauty. After visiting the monastery, walk back down to the road on the way stop for lunch at the viewpoint cafeteria, and then walk further down to the Road Point.

Then drive back to the hotel. On the way visit Kichu temple, one of the 108 temples built in the 7th century by the Tibetan King Songsten Gampo. The story goes that a giant demon lay across the whole area of Tibet and the Himalayas and was preventing the spread of Buddhism. To overcome her, King Songtsen Gampo decided to build 108 temples, which would be placed on all the points of her body. Of these 108 temples, 12 were built under precise plans. Thus, it happened that in about the year AD 638 the temple of Jokhang in Lhasa was built over the very heart of the demon. In the evening relax. Dinner and overnight in Paro.

Day 6 Departure

In the morning, after breakfast, our representative will see you off at the Paro airport for your onward flight.

What's included

* Please check prices for full list of inclusions and exclusions


Inclusions

  • Accommodation
  • Guiding in selected language
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Meals (full board)
  • Pick up and drop off
  • Transportation
  • Park/ museum entrance fees
  • Taxes
  • Bottled mineral water throughout your tour
  • It is private tour, will be accompanied by your personal guide and your driver with vehicle
  • Bhutan visa processing fee
  • Bhutan Visa

Exclusions

  • Airfare
  • Travel insurance
  • Refreshment, any alcoholic/nonalcoholic beverages and any other personal expenses
  • Gratuities to guide, driver, trekking staff, etc
  • Other expenses of personal nature
  • 4 & 5 star hotel may require an additional premium

Details

Available in

English
(Language guide is avaibable on request.)


Available for

Infants, Children, Students, Adults, Seniors



Departure & Return

Start city: Paro , Paro, Bhutan

Pick up times available: 9:30

Pick up location: Your arrival gate at the Paro International Airport

Ends at: Paro International Airport

Nearest airport: Paro Airport (PBH)



Eco Features:

  • Licensed tour guide
  • Local or indigenous tour guide(s)

Cancellation policy

100% cancellation fee - between 0-2 days before the travel date
50% cancellation fee - between 3-6 days before the travel date
0% cancellation fee - 7 days or more before the travel date

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from $1843 per person