Duration:6 days

Difficulty Level:medium

Price:US$ 00

Group Size:3-4 adults

A TASTE OF BHUTAN

Reward yourself with a short trip to one of the world’s least visited countries- Bhutan. Fly into the magnificient Paro Valley to tour its Dzongs and Monasteries, then head out to Thimphu- Bhutan capital. Here you can learn about traditional medicine, shop the local markets, visit the traditional painting school and enjoy the people. Your trip ends with the foray into the countryside to the monasteries of Punakha and Wangdiphodrang.


DAY 01: FLY TO PARO.  (L/D)
Fly onboard Druk Air to Paro, Bhutan. On a clear day the panoramic views of the Himalaya are sensational, including Everest, but particularly exciting is the approach through the Bhutanese foothills and the landing, including a few steep turns to land at the tiny airstrip of Paro.  In Paro you will be met by our Bhutanese guide and transferred to your hotel. Overnight at hotel, Paro.

DAY 02: PARO VALLEY SIGHTSEEING, DRIVE TO THIMPHU (B/L/D)
In the morning tour of Bhutan's national museum, a fascinating place housed in an old watchtower above the huge Paro Dzong (monastery/fortress).  The museum holds a fantastic collection of Bhutanese national treasures ranging from ancient armour to textiles and thangkha paintings. Then, we drive to the head of the valley and visit Drukgyel Dzong built in a location that was chosen for its control over the route to Tibet. A spectacular view of Mount. Jumolhari (23,996ft /7314m) can be seen from here. Afternoon take short walks to visit villages and local farm houses. In the evening you will make the 2 hour drive to the least visited of all the Himalayan capitals, Thimphu. Overnight at hotel, Thimphu.
 
DAY 03: THIMPHU SIGHTSEEING. (B/L/D)
There are a good many things to see in the capital which has a very relaxed, laid-back feel about it. Thimphu is relatively small having a population of approximately 55,000 people and the streets are wide and tree lined.  
In the morning you will visit the indigenous hospital specializing in herbal medicine. Then visit the traditional painting school where young students learn the traditional arts and crafts (Zo Rig Chusum – the thirteen crafts).
You will also visit the Late King’s Memorial Chorten, the National Library, the Handicraft Emporium and the local handicraft centers. Overnight hotel, Thimphu.
 
 
DAY 04: DRIVE TO PUNAKHA, HIKE TO CHIMI LHAKHANG.  (B/L/D)
In the morning we drive to Punakha, the old winter capital. Leaving Thimphu the road
climbs via a series of zigzags over the Dochu La Pass, 10,000ft/3,048m.  On a clear day panoramic views can be had of the eastern Himalaya, including Bhutan's highest mountain, Gangkar Punsum, 24,770ft/7,550m.  The road drops down through varied forest finally emerging into the highly-cultivated Punakha valley.  
In the afternoon hike to Chimi Lhakhang, the divine mad monk’s temple. It is a beautiful walk through a lovely village. The temple can be visited and there is a tree outside which is supposed to have sprouted up after Drukpa Kunley sent a thunderbolt from an adjoining valley to kill some evil spirits who had gathered at the site. Provided the head of the monastic order and his monks have not migrated from Thimphu it should be possible to view the inner courtyards of Punakha Dzong. Overnight hotel, Punakha.

DAY 05: DRIVE TO PARO (VIA THIMPHU).  (B/L/D)
Early morning drive to Dochu La Pass (10,000ft) for tea/breakfast and sunrise views over panorama of peaks in the eastern Himalayas (clear day). Continue drive to Paro to visit Rinpung Dzong and time permitting visit private village homes. Overnight Hotel, Paro.

OPTIONAL: You may also choose to hike to Taktsang instead of above. Taktsang, a highlight of Bhutan trip was burnt by fire in 1998 and is undergoing restoration at this time. Besides the famous temple, the hike is in many ways interesting for the villages you pass, the vegetation and the sanctity of the place it holds for Buddhists.

DAY 06: PARO – DEPARTURE (B)
Early morning transfer to the airport for departure flight after breakfast at the hotel or airport.