Cultural Holiday in Bhutan - 6 days
'Cultural, historical exploration and scenic excursion of Thimphu, Paro, Wangduephodrang & Punakha'
Day 01: Arrive Paro by Druk Air
Druk Air flight to Paro is one of the most spectacular of all mountain flights. Whether flying along the Himalayan range from Kathmandu or over the foothills, each flight is a mesmerizing feat and offers exciting descent into the Kingdom. On arrival at the airport, received by our representative and then transfer to Thimphu, the modern capital town of Bhutan.
Day 02: Thimphu
After breakfast Thimphu sightseeing. Visit Trashichhoedzong, the beautiful medieval fortress/monastery which houses most of the Government's office and King's Throne room It is also the summer residence of Je Khenpo, the Chief Abbot. Then visit National Library which has vast collection of ancient Buddhist texts and manuscripts.
After that drive to Arts & Crafts School, famous for traditional thangkha paintings. Here you will see, students at work producing intricate design on cloth.
After lunch visit Handicrafts Emporium which displays wide assortment of beautifully handwoven and crafted products. Then drive to Memorial Chorten, the stupa built in the memory of Bhutan's Third King who is popularly regarded as Father of modern Bhutan. The paintings and statues inside this monument provide a deep insight into Buddhist philosophy.
Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.
Day 03: Thimphu/ Punakha ( 75 Km, 3 Hours )
After breakfast drive to Punakha with a short stop at Dochula pass
(3,080m) stopping briefly here to take in the view and admire the chorten, mani wall, and prayer flags which decorate the highest point on the road. If skies are clear, the following peaks can be seen from this pass (left to right): Masagang (7,158m), Tsendagang (6,960m), Terigang (7,060m ), Jejegangphugang (7,158 m ), Kangphugang (7,170 m ), Zongphugang (7, 060 m ), a table mountain that dominates the isolated region of Lunana - finally Gangkar puensum, the highest peak in Bhutan at 7,497m.
Later visit Punakha Dzong, built strategically at the junction of Pho Chhu and Mo Chhu rivers in 1637 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal to serve as the religious and administrative centre of the region, Punakha Dzong has played an important role in Bhutan's history. Damaged by four catastrophic fires and an earthquake, the Dzong has now been fully restored.
After that drive to Wangduephodrang visiting Dzong and local market. The district of Wangduephodrang is also famous for its bamboo products, slate and stone carvings.
Overnight at the hotel in Punakha.
Day 04: Punakha - Paro (125 Km, 4 Hours)
After breakfast drive to Paro en route visit Simtokha Dzong, the oldest fortress of the Kingdom built in 1627, it now houses the School for religious studies.
Afternoon in Paro visit Ta Dzong, the National Museum of the Kingdom. Originally built as Watch Tower since 1967 it is serving as the National Museum of the country and holding fascinating collection of art, artifacts, thangkha paintings and Bhutan's exquisite postage stamps.
Afterwards, walk down a hillside trail to visit Rinpung Dzong. Built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal , the first spiritual and temporal ruler of Bhutan, the Dzong houses the monastic body of Paro, the office of the Dzongda (district administrative head) and Thrimpon (judge) of Paro district.
Overnight at the hotel in Paro.
Day 05: Paro
After breakfast drive north of Paro valley to ruins of Drukgyel Dozng.
From this fort Bhutanese repelled several invasions by Tibetan armies.
Nearby visit traditional Bhutanese Farm House which offers good insight into lifestyle of local people.
Then take an excursion to Taktsang Monastery, the most famous of Bhutanese monasteries. It is said that Guru Rinpoche arrived here on the back of a tigress and meditated at this monastery hence it is called "Tiger's Nest". The excursion to monastery takes about 5 hours for round trip.
While return to Paro town visit en route Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest and most sacred shrines of the Kingdom.
Overnight at the hotel in Paro.
Day 06: Depart Paro
After breakfast drive to the airport for flight to onward destination.