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12 DAYS BHUTAN - Journey to the central valley
Trip code:
Departure: Daily
picture of bhutan Land of the Thunder Dragon, one of the most mysterious and unknown of all Himalayan Kingdoms, hidden in isolation behind the high peaks of the Himalayas. For centuries forbidden to foreigners, this timeless Buddhist Kingdom has succeeded in preserving its enchanting traditions and ancestral way of life.

This is an in-depth trip which brings you all the way to the central valley at Bumthang. Besides the natural beauty, the valley is bountifully blessed with numerous ancient temples and is the revered birthplace of many saints. It was here that the legendary saint Pema Lingpa was born, to whom the Bhutanese Royalties trace their lineage. Bumthang is also distinguished in history as the first place in Bhutan where Guru Rimpoche introduced Buddhism to the kingdom.

Upon arrival, own transfer to Amari Airport Hotel for the night (connected to the airport by a bridge).
Fly Bangkok/Paro KB 121 0550/0900 - 1-stop in Calcutta  
On a clear day the panoramic view of the Himalayas are sensational including the Mount 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.
(NOTE: Try and get the left hand seat for better view of the Himalayas)
Met upon arrival and leave for Thimphu, the capital city. The drive takes about 2 hours and follows the Pa-Chu (river) down to its confluence with the Wang-Chu. Check into your hotel and after lunch, visit some of the interesting places like the school of fine arts, National Memorial Stupa and the Handicrafts emporium.
Day 03 THIMPHU (B,L,D)
After breakfast, visit the National Library, Zilukha Nunnery and the general post office. After lunch, visit the handmade paper factory. Evening, walk around the main square of Thimphu.
Leaving Thimphu, drive up the mountains and over the 3500m Dochu-la (pass). On clear day, you will be rewarded with a spectacular view of the snowcapped eastern Himalayas and the magnificent 108 Druk Wangyel Chorten (Stupa).
Gradually descend through varied forest finally emerging into the highly cultivated valley of Punakha. Check into your hotel and after lunch, visit the Punakha Dzong, the district civil and religious centre for Punakha. This is one of the most impressive Dzong in the country located at the confluence of the Pho-chu (male-river) and Mo-chu (female-river).
In the morning, drive to Phobjikha. This valley is well known as one of the last winter grounds of the black necked cranes that migrate from the Tibetan plateau. Arrive at Gangtey Gompa where you can see the small Gangtey village and the Gangtey monastery.
After breakfast, take a long but stunning scenic drive (about 7 hours) to Bumthang. This is the road where the movie "Travelers and Magicians" was filmed. The road winds its way up and cross two high passes at Yotong-la and Pele-la pass and arrive at the famous Bumthang Yathra weaving region.
* For the more adventurous, we can arrange a 3 days trek in the splendid Bumthang Valley. This trek passes through several villages on its meandering route through the Bumthang countryside and provides an exceptional opportunity to interact with the Bhutanese rural life.
Today, you explore the Tamshing valley by hiking. The hike starts from Kurjey and ends at the Swiss Farm. On the way, visit the Tamshing Monastery, founded in 15th century and the Konchogsum Temple. The late evening is spent strolling around Bumthang.
Early breakfast, drive back to Punakha re-crossing the Yotong-la and Pele-la pass. The journey would take around 7-8 hours with picnic lunch on the way.
Drive back to Paro breaking at Thimphu for lunch.
Day 10 PARO (B,L,D)
In the morning visit the Drugyel Dzong which is now in ruins after a fire in 1951. Continue to the National Museum, housed in an ancient watch tower and visit the Paro Dzong, the district administration and the religious centre for Paro. After the visit, walk down the gentle slope and over the traditional cantilever bridge to downtown Paro.
Day 11 PARO(B,L,D)
This morning, we make an excursion to Taksang Monastery - this has to be the monastery with the most outstanding setting in Bhutan. Set on a vertical cliff face 800 m above the ground, it defies all engineering logic. For the energetic, hike 2 hours up to get a more dramatic view of the monastery.
Transfer to the airport for flight
Fly Paro/Bangkok KB 120 1110/1610 - 1-stop in Calcutta  
  • These prices are based on min. two persons traveling together sharing one room.
  • The prices stated can only be indicative and may be adjusted once we know your date of travel, number in your party and if you have any other specific requirements.

    Tour price per person Twin-share Single supplement
    Based on standard hotels    
    Addition cost per person per night if upgrade to the following hotels:
  • Uma Paro (superior room) / Ziwaling
  • Amankora in Paro, Thimphu, Punakha & Gangtey Phobjikha Valley
  • Airfare Singapore/Bangkok/Singapore on Thai Airways;
  • Airfare Bangkok/Paro/Bangkok on Druk Air;
  • Accommodation on twin or double sharing basis;
  • All meals in Bhutan;
  • All meals as stated;
  • All tours & transfers with English speaking guide in private air-con vehicle and including all entrance fees
  • Airport taxes;
  • Visa - USD 20/- for Bhutan;
  • Travel insurance;
  • Per person per day tip for guide and driver;
  • Personal and other expenses not indicated
    In Paro
  • Pelri Cottages: located on a small hill top, the hotel has 12 cottages with 2 rooms in each of these cottages. Built in traditional design with the blend of modern amenities.
  • Kichu Resort: nestled in the valley, with its 49 rooms of ethnic décor and modern amenities. It spreads over 5 acre with manicured lawns, delightful flowers and an adjoining 500m river bank.
  • Olathang Hotel: initially built to host the state guests for the coronation of the current King in 1974, the hotel is spread over 23 acres of lovely pine forest.
  • Uma Paro: Fashioned by traditionally trained Bhutanese artisans, Uma Paro is a 29 room hotel offering 5-star comfort and sleek design, with all rooms offering views of the forested valley. (www.uma.como.bz/paro)
  • Zhiwaling Hotel: this is the first privately-owned Bhutanese luxury hotel which has 42 rooms and 3 suites, built on 10 acres of land. The main building is fashioned after a dzong, a traditional Bhutanese temple fortress. (www.zhiwaling.com)
  • Amankora Paro: The epitome of luxury and service, Amankora has a series of lodges throughout Bhutan. Amankora Paro is Bhutan’s first luxury hotel. The resort’s spa and yoga facilities make this the perfect place to relax after a long journey. (www.amanresorts.com)
    In Thimphu:
  • Hotel Riverview : built in architecture of traditional splendour, the 50 rooms with all modern amenities come with a private balcony offering the view of the river and the city.
  • Amankora Thimphu: Dzong-like architecture, situated in a steep valley surrounded by forested mountains. (www.amanresorts.com)
    In Punakha:
  • Meri Puensum Resort: the resort offers basic modern amenities and the spacious en-suite rooms offer views over the valley.
  • Zangdo Pelri Hotel: all the rooms are equipped with basic modern amenities with views looking out to the valley.
  • Amankora Punakha: fashioned after a traditional farm house and offers excellent walking opportunities around its pristine setting. (www.amanresorts.com)
    In Gangtey (Phobjikha Valley)
  • Dewachen Hotel: encircled by pine forests in the hidden valley of Phobjikha, the hotel features 16 rooms with en-suite bathroom faculties. (www.hoteldewachen.com)
  • Amankora Gangtey: Set in the rarely visited valley of Phobjikha and offers a peaceful and rural getaway. (www.amanresorts.com)
    In Bumthang:
  • Mepham Guesthouse: located on a hill opposite the Chamkhar valley and the impressive Jakar Dzong, the guesthouse has 18 basic wood paneled rooms with attached bathroom.
  • Discovery Indochina Co.,Ltd
    63A Cuabac str., Hanoi, Vietnam
    Tel: (+844) 37 164 132, Fax: (+844) 37 164 133
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