The lovely Bumthang valley is the religious heartland of the nation and home to some of its oldest Buddhist temples and monasteries. This three-day trek passes through several villages on its meandering route through Bumthang countryside, and provides an exceptional opportunity for contact with Bhutanese rural life.
Seasons: The trek is recommended from March to May and then again from September to November.
Arrive Paro. After immigration and customs formalities, you will be received by the representative of Discover Happiness Tours & Travel.
Then drive to Thimphu which will take you through Chunzom (confluence of Pachu- the river flowing through Paro valley & Wangchu –the river flowing through Thimphu valley). On the way, enjoy walking over a suspension bridge to view iron chains suspended over the Pa chu. This scenic site provides a good place for photography too.
After crossing Chunzom, the drive will take you along the Wangchu upto Thimphu city. After lunch check into your hotel and visit the following:
Dinner and overnight at Namgay Heritage hotel or Thimphu Tower or similar in Thimphu.
Distance: 71 km & estimated driving time: 2 hours
After breakfast, visit the following:
Then travel to Punakha through Dochula Pass 3140 m).
At Dochula, in the clear spring sky, you can enjoy the panoramic view of the Himalayan Mountain ranges. You can take photos at the beautiful 108 chortens built on the hill by Her Majesty Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck (Queen Mother of Bhutan) for the security and wellbeing of His Majesty, the King of Bhutan.
You will also visit Druk Wangyal Lhakhang (monastery) which was built by Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck (the Queen Mother of Bhutan) as a tribute to His Majesty the fourth King of Bhutan, Jigme Singye Wangchuck and armed forces after His Majesty led a successful operation against Indian militants who had occupied certain areas of Bhutan. The gallery of the Druk Wangyal Lhakhang has beautiful murals depicting some of the important events in the reigns of the Kings of Bhutan.
You will have refreshment (tea/coffee andsnacks) at Dochula Pass Cafeteria and then travel onto Punakha. Punakha has been inextricably linked to some of the most momentous events in the Bhutanese history and deserves its reputation as one of the most beautiful and significant regions at the heart of Bhutanese culture. Punakha had served as the capital of Bhutan from 1637 till 1907. The dzong is historically important and stands as the symbol for a unified Bhutan.
On the way, stop for lunch at farmhouse in Lobesa village near Chimi Lhakhang. After lunch walk through paddy fields for about 20 minutes to visit the Devine Madman’s Monastery-Chhimi Lhakhang, famously known for its fertility shrine, where one can receive a special fertility blessing.
Then visit the Punakha Dzong, located on the island of the Pho - Chu (male river) and the Mochu (female river). The dzong was built in 1637 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal to serve as the religious and administrative seat of the region. At the dzong, you can see the highest standards in woodwork.
Dinner and overnight at Hotel Lobesa or Meri Puensum Resort in Punakha
Distance: 129 km, estimated driving time: 6 hours (road has improved 80%)
After breakfast travel through upper Punakha valley and take a leisure walk passing through suspension bridgeand through paddy fields to the beautiful Khamsum Yuelley Namgyal Lhakhang. The leisurely walk up to the temple would take about an hour. Visit the temple and also enjoy the breathtakingly beautiful view from there.
Then travel to Trongsa with lunch enroute. The drive will take you through Nobding village and dense forests of oak and blue pine trees and through the subtropical vegetation. The journey will also take you through Pele la pass (3300m). Throughout your trip you will come across the beautiful sceneries of rural Bhutan, with scattered settlements far from the road which makes for good photographing. You will also pass through open meadows, and valley of yak herders and several other villages via Chendebji Chorten (Stupa). On arrival at Trongsa, check into your hotel.
In the evening visit Trongsa Town.
Dinner and overnight at Yangkhil Resort in Trongsa.
Distance: 68 km, estimated travel time: 2 ½ hrs (road has improved 70%)
After breakfast visit Trongsa Dzong, which is the most impressive dzong in Bhutan. Built in 1644 by the Shabdrung, the dzong is an architectural masterpiece.
Then visit National Museum which is housed in the Ta Dzong (watch tower). A museum in which aspects of Bhutanese culture and history are explained by beautifully objects. Documentary will be shown too which explains a great deal about Bhutanese history and history of monarchy
Then travel to Bumthang passing through Yotong La Pass (3400 m). Just before reaching Bumthang visit “Yathra” Weaving Centre. Yathra” Weaving Centre at Zugney Village where you will see local weavers weaving Yathra. Yathra is the name for the colorful, hand-woven woolen cloth (often with geometric designs) that is produced in this region and wool used for this type of textile is sheep wools the sheep is reared in this Bumthang Valley. Yathra is made into jackets or bags, etc.
On arrival at Bumthang enjoy traditional Bhutanese lunch at farmhouse in Bumthang. From the farmhouse walk for about 20 minutes to visit Jambay Lhakhang.Jambay Lhakhang, built in the 7th century by the King Songtsen Goempo of Tibet. In his effort to propagate Buddhism he had a plan to build a total of 108 temples in Tibet and neighboring kingdoms.
Next walk to Kurjey Lhakhang. Kujey Lhakhang (Kujey means, "Body imprint"). The temple to the right is the oldest and was built by Minjur Tempa in 1652. It was built around the cave in which Guru Rimpoche meditated and left his body imprint.
After visiting Kurjey Lhakhang take a gentle and pleasant walk crossing a suspension bridge tovisit Tamshing Lhakhang. This temple is also known as Tamshing Lhendrup Chholing (Temple of the Good Message).
In the evening visit Bumthang Town.
Dinner and Overnight at Jakar Village Lodge or similar hotel in Bumthang Valley.
Distance :12 Kms about 4-5 hours
After breakfast drive to Tokto Zam (Toktu Bridge) and start your trek from Toktu Zam and trek along Chamkhar Chu (Chamkar river) known for its richness in trout. Lunch will be waiting for you at Tangbi Lhakhang. From here the trekking trail enters Ngang Yul (the land of the Swans) the centre of which lies the Ngang Lhakhang (Swan Temple) This part of the valley was first inhabited by the swans who gave their name Ngang (Swan). The Lamanamkha Samdrup having dreamt a vision of how to build a Gompa shot an arrow and at the spot where the arrow landed Nganglhakhang was erected.
Dinner and Overnight in camp Altitude:2800 m
Distance 16 km. 5-6 hrs.
After breakfast at campsite, climb gradually to Phephe La pass (3360 m) which is the highest point on this trek route. You will trek through beautiful forested areas where you may wish to stop and enjoy the natural beauty of the place. You can stop at beautiful stop to enjoy your lunch.The path leads you downhill into a broad valley.
Dinner and Overnight in camp. Altitude 2720 m.
Distance :10 Kms about 2-3 hours
After breakfast you will follow the trekking trail which leads you along the bank of Tang Chu (Tang River), another trout-filled river. On the bank of the river is the Tang Rimpoche’s Lhakhang (Temple on the cliff of Tiger Stripes). its initial foundation is ascribed to Guru Rinpoche and its second foundation to the "Treasure Finder" Terton Pemalingpa.. The trek will pass the Mebar Tsho (burning Lake) and lead you to Tang Ugyen Choling. You will visit the century old Ugyencholing Heritage Museum, which once belongs to the Royal Family of Tang valley. You will have your lunch at farmhouse at Ugyen Choling Palace.
Across the river your vehicle awaits you from where you will be driven to Bumthang Jakar.
In the evening You will relax in hot stone bath at a farmhouse in Bumthang Jakar and enjoy traditional Bumthap dishes for dinner.
Overnight at Jakar Village Lodge or similar hotel in Bumthang.
Distance: 155 km, estimated travel time: 7 hrs
After breakfast travel to Phobjikha valley through Trongsa and Pelela Pass. Phobjikha valley is part of the beautiful Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park (formerly known as Black Mountains National Park), one of Bhutan’s most important nature sanctuaries. Each winter it is home to a flock of 300 rare and endangered black-necked cranes. The surrounding hills and mountains are home to nomadic shepherds and yak-herders. This is one of the most remote and untouched regions in Bhutan.
You are expected to arrive at Phobjikha valley in the evening due to poor road conditions (as road widening project is underway along West-East Highway).
Then check into hotel. In the evening visit a farmhouse. Enjoy traditional Bhutanese dinner with family members of the house.
Overnight at Dewachen hotel or similar in Phobjikha Valley.
After breakfast take a short hike from Gangtey Monastery along the Gangtey Nature Trail enjoying spectacular view of several villages in Phobjikha valley. You will end your hike at Black Necked crane center and visit the Black necked crane center (cranes will start immigrating to this area by December). From black crane center take short walk through fields and farmhouses where you can have free interaction with local people and visit their houses.
After lunch travel to Thimphu a through Nobding village which is about 45 minutes’ drive from Phobjikha valley and also through Wangdue Phodrang and Dochula Pass.
You are expected to arrive Thimphu in the evening.
On arrival at Thimphu a check into your hotel and visit the National Memorial Chorten (stupa) which was constructed in 1974 as a memorial for the third King of Bhutan, King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, who is widely regarded as the father of modern Bhutan. The term ‘chorten’ literally means ' seat of faith' and Buddhists often call such monuments the 'Mind of Buddha'. Meet the local people in circumambulation, especially in the evenings, at the National Memorial Chorten.
Dinner restaurant in Thimphu Town and overnight at Namgay Heritage Hotel or Thimphu Tower Hotel in Thimphu.
After breakfast with our guide and Bhutan visa copy which our tour guide will carry for you as we have to show your Bhutan visa copy at Taktsang for entry, drive for about 25 minutes from Thimphu city towards the northern end of Thimphu valley, you will come to the base camp of Tango Monastery which is located at about 14 km from Thimphu city. Starting point of this nature & cultural hike is from the parking lot which is the end of motor road. You will hike up to the Monastery following the zig-zag trail through the forest filled with oak and pine trees as well as rhododendron flower trees. Since this area falls within Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Park you will come across Gray Langur (monkeys) along the way and some bird species as well.
Hiking for about 40 minutes you will come to a Chorten (stupa). From here you have an excellent view of several meditation houses and the monastery straight ahead. Then hike up another 20 minutes to the monastery. The round trip hike is about 2.5 km and estimated hiking time is about 2 hours for a slow hiker.
The Tango Monastery was built in 1689 by Gyalse Tenzin Rabgyal. At present Tango Monastery is the center for higher studies for monks. The view from Tango Monastery is breathtakingly beautiful. You will experience complete peace and serenity in this area.
You may visit the monastery and have interaction with monks.
Then take a slow walk back to the base of Tango Monastery from where you will travel back to Thimphu city.
After lunch you will travel to Paro and drive to parking lot near Paro Dzong and walk over traditional Cantilever Rimpung bridge which is oldest bridge in Bhutan to visit Paro dzong Paro Rinpung Dzong (fortress), built in 1645 to defend the valley against Tibetan invaders. The Dzong is now being used as an administration center and school for monks. From the Dzong you will walk back down to Rimpung Bridge.
Then visit Kyichu temple, one of the 108 temples built in the 7th century by the Tibetan King Songsten Gampo.
Dinner and overnight at Tashi Namgay Resort or similar in Paro.
After breakfast, with our tour guide travel for about 20 minutes to the base of Taktsang Monastery and then hike up to Taktsang Monastery, also known as ‘Tiger’s Nest’. The walk up to the viewpoint will take about 1 – 1 ½ hrs depending on your fitness and from View Point you will enjoy a spectacular view of the monastery clinging to the side of the cliff. Stop for refreshment at the View Point Cafeteria. Take photos with great view of Taktsang behind you.
Then walk further up to the monastery which will take about 1 hour. After visiting the monastery, walk downhill back to the road on the way stop for lunch at the view point cafeteria and then walk further downhill to the road point.
Then visit a Farmhouse in Paro Valley and a visit to a farmhouse offers a good glimpse into the lifestyle of a farmer.
In the evening relax in the Traditional Bhutanese Hotstone bath at a farmhouse in Paro valley.
Tradtional Hotstone bath: A traditional Bhutan hot stone bath uses river rocks that therapists place in water where they crack and steam, releasing key minerals and relieving deep-set aches.
You will also see around inside of the traditional Bhutanese house.
You will enjoy traditional Bhutanese dinner with the family members of the house.
Overnight at Tashi Namgay Resort or similar in Paro.
After breakfast your tour guide will escort you to the Paro airport for your Drukair flight out of Paro.
Note: This trek is considered to be the easiest. It is normally cultural treks that take you through villages, and involves walking within the tree line for an average of 5-6 hours a day. Not much training is required for this kind of treks. The ascent will not be more than 3000 mts. above the sea level. Moderate fitness is required.