- This special offer is customized for the 6-day-5-night group in Bhutan. Bhutan Tour is one of the most popular tours in the country. In this tour, you will arrive by airplane at the dramatic mountain-bound Paro valley. Western Bhutan is the heartland of the Bhutanese people and it is home to the major airport, the capital, the most popular festivals and the most spectacular dzongs (fort-monastery) in the kingdom. Whether it's the beginning of your trip or the only part of Bhutan that you will explore, the West is a spectacular introduction to this magical kingdom.
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Rainbow Tours & Treks
- This special offer is customized for the 6-day-5-night group in Bhutan.
- Bhutan Tour is one of the most popular tours in the country. In this tour, you will arrive by airplane at the dramatic mountain-bound Paro valley. Western Bhutan is the heartland of the Bhutanese people and it is home to the major airport, the capital, the most popular festivals and the most spectacular dzongs (fort-monastery) in the kingdom. Whether it's the beginning of your trip or the only part of Bhutan that you will explore, the West is a spectacular introduction to this magical kingdom.
DAY 1: ARRIVE IN PARO / THIMPHU
Upon arrival, your tour executive from us will welcome you at the airport and transfer you to Thimphu (1.5h drive).
The drive follows Pa Chhu downstream until Chuzom where the two rivers meet, and here you can see the three different styles of stupas or chortens commonly found in Bhutan: Nepalese, Tibetan and Bhutanese. The chortens are Buddhist reliquaries, memorials to the teachings of the Buddha. Sometimes actual relics of the Buddha or revered monks are inserted into the dome of the stupa, and the stupas mark the landscape with reminders of the Buddha’s teachings.
Arrive in Thimphu. Check in hotel, have lunch and take a short rest.
* National Institute for Zorig Chusum. This institute, commonly known as 'the painting school', operates four- to six-year courses that provide instruction in Bhutan's 13 traditional arts. Students specialize in painting (thangka), woodcarving (masks, statues, bowls), embroidery (hangings, boots, clothes) or statue-making (clay).
* Tashichho Dzong (Thimphu Dzong), this is the main Secretariat Building, where the government ministries, the office of His Majesty the King, the Throne Room, the offices and living quarters of the monk body and its Chief Abbot are housed. The massive fortress, whose name translates as the fortress of glorious religion, was initially a smaller structure but took the present form after expansion/reconstruction commissioned by Late Majesty King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck in 1965. It is also the summer residence of Chief Abbot.
* Memorial Thimphu Chorten: This stupa was built in 1974 to honor the 3rd King of Bhutan, Jigme Dorji Wangchuck. This religious structure, circumambulate only in a clockwise direction (reciting prayers and whirling the large red prayer wheels). Your dinner will be served with the first taste of Bhutanese cuisine.
DAY 2: SIGHT-SEEING IN THIMPHU
In the morning, we will take a drive up the valley towards the North along ThimChhu (river) for a short hike to Cheri Monastery. Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal was founded it in 1620. Initially coming from Tibet, Zhabdrung moved to Bhutan and promoted a distinct Bhutanese cultural identity - distinct, that is, from the dominant Tibetan culture.
Cheri, also known as Chagry Dorjeden, had been a sacred place ever since Guru Rinpoche visited it in the 8th century. It is a prominent teaching centre of the Drukpa Kagyu order. Like many monasteries, Cheri offers many opportunities for the monks to go into retreat. Zhabdrung himself spent three years in retreat, and later, regularly used it as a residence.
Continue exploring the region with visits to the weekend market and Buddha Point (Kuenselphodrang) to see the one of the world’s largest sitting Buddha and enjoy a stunning view of Thimphu valley from this point. En-route, visits the Takin preserve center, the home of Bhutan’s national animal. Takin, a strange looking animal believed by the Bhutanese people that it was created by the Lama Drukpa Kuenley (the divine madman).
If time permits, we will visit the Changangkha Lhakhang- It is a fortress like temple and monastic school perched on a ridge above Thimphu, south of Motithang. The temple was established in 12th century on a site chosen by Lama Phajo Drugom Shigpo, who came from Tibet. The central statue here is Chenrezig in a manifestation with 11 heads.
DAY 3: THIMPHU - PUNAKHA / WANGDUE VALLEY (3 - 4 hours drive)
After breakfast, we begin our drive to Punakha. On the way, a drive takes us all the way up to Dochu La (3050m) to witness the magnificent view of the eastern Himalayan range (weather permitting). Dochu La is marked with 108 memoral stupas. Druk Wangyel Chorten, which was built to celebrate the stability and progress, brought to Bhutan by His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck, the Fourth King. Enjoying and taking pictures of the pass and its panoramic views of the Himalayas.
Arrive in Punakha and then take a 40 minutes hike round trip through the rice field to Chimmi Lhakhang, the 15th-century monastery built by Lam Ngawang Chogyal on the spot where his cousin Lam Drukpa Kuenley (popularly known as “the Divine Madman”) subdued a powerful demon. This monastery is also referred to as the “Abode of Fertility” and believed that any couple who gets blessing from this temple is blessed with a child in the next year or so.
Visit Punakha’s Dzong - The name means Palace of Great Bliss. This dzong stands magnificently on the spit of land where two rivers, Pho chu and Mo chu meet. Punakha Dzong has special significance in Bhutanese history as the place where Bhutan's first King Ugyen Wangchuck was crowned in 1907 and where and the Third King convened the first National Assembly. It is also the winter residence for the Je Khenpo (spiritual leader) and the entire central monk body.The central monastic body continues to reside here in winter. The embalm bodies of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal and Terton Pema Lingpa are housed on the top floor of the main tower.
DAY 4: PUNAKHA - PARO (4 – 5 hours drive)
Drive to Paro after breakfast taking the same route crossing Dochula Pass. Stop at Thimphu for Lunch. Then visit the following places in Paro:
National Museum – Ta Dzong (the watchtower) was built in the 17th century to guard the Paro Rimpong dzong (fortress) below. It offers great views of Paro Rinpung Dzong and Paro valley. It was said that the future first king was kept in this tower as a prisoner for a week. It was the third king who restored the Ta-dzong and converted it into the National Museum. The visit to the museum will familiarize you with the Bhutanese way of life and will also acquaint you with the natural and cultural history.
Continue visit Paro Rimpung Dzong - regal and imposing, dzongs are arguably among the most distinctive and important structures in Bhutan. This Dzong is the headquarters of the Paro district, housing the head administrator and staff, as well as a monastic body with about 200 monks. A quick descent takes us to covered cantilever bridge marked with giant chortens built in 1980’s by Royal Grandmother in memory of late majesty (3rd King).
From the dzong, hike down to the bridge and then take a short drive for an opportunity to explore the town of Paro.
Before returning to the hotel, visit Kyichu Lhakhang. It is one of the oldest and most sacred shrines of the Kingdom dating back to 7th century (the other is Jambey Lhakahng in Bumthang). The lhakhang complex is composed of two temples. The first temple was built by Tibetan King, Songtsen Gampo in the 7th century and in 1968, H.M. Ashi Kesang, the Queen Mother of Bhutan, built the second temple in original pattern.
DAY 5: HIKE TO TAKTSHANG MONASTERY (Tiger’s Nest)
After a refreshment stop at a cafeteria on the way, you will continue for a short distance until you see, across a deep chasm but clearly and seemingly within reach, the Taktsang Monastery.
Built in 1600s, this incredible monastery clings to the edge of a sheer rock cliff that plunges 900 meters into the valley below. History states that Guru Padmasambhava, the Tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan, landed here on the back of a flying tiger.
After reaching the basement around 3 or 4pm, drive back to town. You have free time on your own to walk along the street to see the people, the local stores to do some souvenir shopping.
DAY 6: PARO / DEPARTURE
After breakfast in the hotel, your tour executive will transfer you to the airport on time to catch your onward flight. Your escort from us bids you farewell.
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