|Trip Rating by Popularity||:||***|
|Physical Demand Rating||:||***|
|Tariff / Rate||:||$ 3,250 /- per pax|
|Group Size||:||Maximum 16 Pax / minimum 4 Pax|
|Group Leader||:||A Certified Tour Guide|
|Transport||:||Quality and appropriate transportation will be made available.|
This 13 days and 12 nights cultural tour includes visiting various Dzongkhags (districts) and some rural areas which requires hiking. In this tour you will visit number of Dzongs (fortress), which houses both; Monk Body and the District Administration (which you will only see in Bhutan), also showcasing our architecture, design, crafts and other heritage.
During your hike from one village to another you will also see some of our rural life, which has not changed for ages. While hiking in between the villages, you will see traces of Guru Rinpoche who had visited Bhutan during his time and in his passing left the people of Bhutan with an indelible allegiance to him.
Even today, Guru Rinpoche resides in every household and continues to be part of the Bhutanese everyday life. This holiday is to pay tribute to this great master who continues to bless many of us with his compassion and wisdom.
This trip is mainly undertaken by our Asian markets-Taiwan in particular. The trip is a fine combination of a spiritual soul-searching cultural experience with a trekking activity. The Nabji-Korphu Trek is not only the path taken by Guru on his way to Bumthang during his first visit, but also the piloted community-based nature trek initiated for a rich eco-tourism experience. You will leave Bhutan with a true sense of feeling blessed
Arrive Paro and Drive to Thimphu, (60 km, 1 hour)
If your flight to Bhutan is on a (bright) sunny day, it could (should) begin with the panoramic view of Mount Everest and Kanchenjunga, and our very own Jomolhari and Jichu Drakey (you may change your seat, if you are not on the right side).
We have been told the actual descent of the flight to the airport (Paro) is usually manual, which itself becomes a memorable experience, topped by surrounding hills and houses (Feeling you could touch them).
On arrival to Paro International Airport, you will be greeted by your personal guide and driver with traditional scarf ( Khadar ). You will be escorted to your car and drive to Thimphu, where you will check in your room and lunch will be served.
Acclimatise from Thimphu city by exploring it or rest and prepare for your long journey to other parts of Bhutan the next day.
Dinner and overnight in Hotel
Drive to Trongsa (170 km, 7 hours)
Early breakfast on day 2nd and we will proceed towards Trongsa, which has a historical significance, it is 170 km away from Thimphu and approximately 7 hours drive.
On the way, brief halt at Dochula Pass ( 10,000 ft ). Dochula Pass is scenic place and views of snow covered high Himalayan peaks are visible. Amongst them lies the Mt. Gangkar Phuensum ( 7,570 meters ) and it is considered as highest unclimbed mountain on Earth. There are 108 stupas built on it and is auspicious. From Dochula Pass the drive leads down.
You will go through Wangduephodrang Dzongkhag and a visit the Dzong ( fortress ) and see the ongoing reconstruction works.The Dzong was burnt down in 2012 and every effort is made to bring back to its old glory.
Continue drive to Pelela pass ( 3,351 meters ) and take short break to stretch your legs. High altitude animal Yaks are seen here in winter months. From here drive is scenic and gentle.
In Trongsa, check into your hotel room and explore the town in the evening and prepare for Nabji-Korphu Trek.
Dinner and overnight in Trongsa Hotel
Trongsa Dzongkhag holds an important chapter in the history of the Country. The first King of Bhutan was a Governor of Trongsa and ruled the valley from a fortress before ascending the throne as King of Druk Yul ( Kingdom of Bhutan ). Hence, every crown prince has to be a governor of Trongsa before he ascends the throne.
After Breakfast, guide will take you for visit to Tower of Trongsa, which had served as a watchtower now developed into a museum that houses some of Bhutan’s most prized possessions including the ‘Raven Crown’ used by the first two Kings.
After that visit Trongsa Dzong, which holds monumental political importance that was central to unification of the country under one central administration and eventually led to the introduction of Monarchy in Bhutan.
With the visit of His Majesty the Druk Gyalpo, Fourth Druk Gyalpo and the Gyalsey to Trongsa during the 109th National Day celebration, the importance of Trongsa Dzongkhag has scaled further.
Afterwards you’ll drive down to Reutala and start hiking to Nimshong.
The trek starts with a steep descent of 625m to the riverbed of Mangde Chhu (river); within an hour from the river, the trail begins a steep climb for about two hours to Nimshong. Nimshong is a small village (approximately 58-household), with a population of about 465 people.
The villagers will welcome you with dance and songs while cooks are preparing diner. The campsite will be in the forest near the village. Good chance of spotting one of the endemic animals of Bhutan, the Golden Langur. You’ll be camping at the community campsite.
Dinner and overnight at campsite.
Nyimshong to Nabji (total distance: about 9km; 4-5 hours)
Breakfast and along with your guide hike through a lush broad leaf forest, alive with abundant bird and mammal life. There is high possibility of sighting Golden Langur and Rufous-necked Hornbill.
Nabji is pretty much at the same elevation as Nimshong village; however, the trail will move up and down through a dense forest. Nabji consists of 55 households and an approximate population of 400 people.
The village is situated on a foothill above terraced fields of rice. The temple of Nabji, which means ‘promise’- was built to honour the truce between two warring kings of Bumthang and Assam after Guru had mediated the dispute by making the kings seal the friendship by imprinting their fingers on a stone pillar which lies inside the temple.
Dinner and Overnight at community campsite surrounded by the rice fields of Nabji.
Nabji to Kudra (total distance: 12 km; about 5-7 hours hiking)
Morning breakfast and along with your guide, trek will start on a trail to Kudra village, leaving Nabji village at the holy tree. Kudra is situated at an elevation of about 1,500m, around 6 hours walk from Nabji.
Along the way you’ll find traces of Guru Rinpoche, the 8th century saint who reintroduce Buddhism in the Himalayas. The habitat you traverse is very attractive for tigers and leopards (though it is very rare to spot them, droppings and spores can be found). Kudra has, only 3 households and the Monpa people living there are very happy to welcome you at their community campsite.
Dinner and overnight at Campsite
Kudra to Jangbi
On 6th Day, the trek will continue from Kudra to Jangbi village. Here again traces of Guru Rimpoche can be found along the way ( stone imprints of Guru’s feet, dragger and hat).
Please note, you will be walking a path that offers a great view of the pristine forest along the way. The Monpa people at your campsite will be preparing a welcome tea and the campsite which is set near Jangbi village with a beautiful view over the valley and Mangde Chhu.
Dinner and overnight at campsite
Drive to Bumthang (90 kms, 4 hours)
Day 7th will be the last day of the hike and it concludes at Tong Tongphey, where the driver with a vehicle will be waiting for you. From there we will continue our journey till Bumthang.
After reaching there, we will ensure you have a good shower, treated with some local delicacies and a good bed. However, If you are in adventurous mood, your dinner will be complimented with some ara (home brewed wine) that would perfectly fit with the Bumthang culinary.
Dinner and overnight at Hotel in Bumthang
Many visitors has tipped, that your visit to Bhutan is not complete without a visit to Bumthang. On your approach to this Dzongkhag, you will be welcomed by a huge valley that stretches deep into the hills.
Bhutan being a religious Country and locally we believe visiting the religious sites would wash away your sins and pave your way for a better after life.
The valley is dotted with some of Bhutan’s most important and sacred pilgrimage sites and you’ll be made witness to all the amazing stories that go with it as your guide will explain.
Visit Kurje lhakhang (temple) that is house to one of Bhutan’s biggest statue of Guru Rinpoche and more importantly the stone imprints of Guru’s body in a cave.
Followed by Jambay Lhakhang, most probably the oldest temple that is believed to be one of the two in Bhutan, out of 108 temples that King Songtsen Gembo of Tibet built across the entire Himalayan region in the 7th century.
Finally to Tamzhing monastery, it was built by Terton Pema Lingpa. Terton means treasure discoverer . His birth was prophesied by Guru Rimpoche in 8th century.
We can also arrange a visit to the local cheese factory, the beer factory and the bee keeping farmers if any of these may interests you. Now with a local airport, travel to Bumthang has become more easier and short.
Dinner and overnight in Hotel
Drive to Punakha
On day 9th, we will proceed towards Punakha . The drive will unfold panoramic views of different landscape and environment.
Just before you reach Punakha, visit Chimmi lhakhang. Dedicated to Lama Drukpa Kuenley ( Divine mad man ), Chimmi Lhakhang temple is visited by people all over from Bhutan to get blessings for birth of a child. Small monks live here and get their religious education.
At Punakha explore the town in the evening. Here you will have an option of camping for the night, next to the river.
Dinner and overnight in Hotel
Punakha Sightseeing and Drive to Thimphu (70 km, 3 hours)
Besides visiting local tourist sites, trip to Punakha is never complete without visiting the Dzong (fortress). The historical Dzong is also known as Pungtang Dechen Phodrang Dzong (meaning very awesome dzong “the palace of great happiness or bliss”). It is listed as a tentative site in Bhutan’s Tentative List for UNESCO inclusion.
Punakha Dzong served as the capital of the Country from 1637 to 1907 and the first National Assembly was held in 1953. The significance of the Dzong stepped up in 2011, when His Majesty the King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuk married Gyeltseun Her Majesty Jetsun Pema on October 13th at Punakha Dzong.
One of the beautiful aspect of Punakha Dzong is its location, the Dzong is located at the confluence of the Pho Chhu (father) and Mo Chhu (mother) rivers in the Punakha–Wangdue valley.
After lunch, we will travel to Thimphu. Check into your room and visit places of interests. Trashichhodzong, will be open to visitors after Bhutans working hours at 5 pm. Your guide will escort you inside the fortress, where monks reside in summer season. It also functions as government office and present King’s Throne room.
Dinner and overnight in Hotel
Breakfast and explore Thimphu.
In Thimphu sightseeing, you can begin your visit from any of the following tourist sites, such as; National Folk Heritage Museum, Zorig Chusum school of 13 traditional arts/crafts, Textile Museum, Memorial Chorten (stupa), Kuenselphodrang (AKA Budha Point) and the Simtokha Dzong. These visits will showcase not only our age old heritage, tradition, customs and even fabrics (which is the present identification of a Bhutanese) but our deep commitment to preserve and promote it.
Your visit to Centenary Farmers market will bring across our efforts to promote self sufficiency in agriculture produce against chemically infused vegetables imported from neighbouring states.
Do visit our only Takin Reserve Center and see an unique animal (mixture of a goat and wildebeest) which is also national animal of Bhutan – the Takin. Takin is chosen as the National Animal of Bhutan, because it is unique, rare and native to Bhutan. It is closely associated to religious history and mythology of the country. The animal was called ‘Dyiong-gyem tsi’ or takin.
Dinner and overnight at hotel
Drive to Paro ( 55 kms, 1 hour )
Breakfast in morning and drive to Paro.
Visit National Museum. The museum displays some of the most treasure collections of art, artifacts, textiles, stamps, statues, etc.
Rimpong dzong lies just below the Museum. Built in 17th century on a strategic location, the fortress defended the valley from Tibetan invaders . Now the fortress functions as residence for monks and also administrative office. The only Hollywood movie ” Little buddha ” was given permission to film inside this fortress.
Dumtse Lhakhang, built in 1421, has some old paintings inside its dark corridors and flashlight is necessary to move around . The notable structure of this temple is that pinnacle is tied with chains to ground for it attempted to fly away to Tibet.
Kyichu temple lies further north. It was built by Tibetan king Tsongtsen Gompo, in 7th century, to subdue evil Ogress that was terrorizing the Himalayan regions. The main statue of future Buddha ( Maitreya ) is still preserved inside and can be viewed by visitors.
Drugyel Dzong lies further up north and was burned down in 1955. constructed on commanding position, it overlooks the route the Tibetan invaders used to enter the valley.
Dinner and overnight in Hotel
HIKE TO TAKTSANG MONASTERY
Early breakfasting in morning and your guide will take for hike to Taktsang Monastery ( Tigers Nest ).
Constructed in 1629, on sheer cliff, 1000 meters above the valley, Taktsang is sacred pilgrimage site to all Bhutanese people. On 8th century, Guru Rimpoche ( Guru Padsambhava ), also considered as 2nd Buddha in Bhutan, flew on back of Tigress to a cave here and meditated for 3 years.
Photography inside the temple is prohibited for security reasons.
On way back, lunch will be served at Taktsang cafeteria.
In the evening, with a local theatre company, we will organize a cultural evening at the hotel which will showcase some of our traditional music and dances, mask dances and folklore at the hotel. After dinner, a dip in the traditional hot-stone bath may help you unwind and reflect about your journey before departing.
Dinner and overnight in Hotel
After breakfast, your personal guide and driver will drive you to Paro International Airport and assists you to board flight to your next destination.
Additional Activities that can be included: Specialised Language Guides, Mountain biking, Motorcycling, Attending rituals in private homes, More Meditation Sessions with reputed lamas, Yoga sessions etc.
What’s Not Included