Bhutan Travel Guide
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Duer Hot Spring Trek
Duer Hot Spring Trek: 16 days
This trek route falls under old expedition route to Mt. Gangkhar Puensum. The trek is known for its hot springs.
Season: The recommended season is March to April and September to early November.
Day 01: Arrive Paro
Druk Airways flight to Bhutan is one of the most spectacular in entire Himalayas. Whether flying along the Himalayan range from Kathmandu or over the foothills from Kolkatta, each flight is a mesmerizing aeronautical feat and offers an exciting descent into the Kingdom.
On arrival at Paro airport, immigration and custom formalities and then received by our representative and transfer to the hotel.
Evening take a stroll around town's main street. Overnight at the hotel in Paro.
Day 02: Paro
Full day Paro sightseeing, visit to ; Ta Dzong, built in 17th century as watch tower for Paro Dzong. This Dzong was later converted into National Museum in 1968, and is filled with antique thangkha paintings, textiles, weapons and armor. Also visit the Rinpung Dzong, built in 17th century to defend Paro valley against Tibetan invaders. It is now used as administrative centre and home of monastic community. Afternoon drive to Drukgyel Dzong, situated at the end of Paro valley and built by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal to commemorate his victory over Tibetan invaders. Kyichu Lhakhang, the oldest monastery of the Kingdom is another place of interest. Overnight at the hotel in Paro.
Day 03: Paro - Thimphu
Morning drive to Thimphu, the modern capital town of Bhutan. About 7 km before Thimphu, on a breezy hilltop rises Simtokha Dzong, Bhutan's most ancient fortress. After lunch, visit the Memorial Stupa of the Late King, built in 1974, the Traditional Medicine Institute where centuries old healing arts still practice, the Painting School which is particularly famous for thangkha paintings, the National Library that houses ancient Buddhist texts, manuscripts. Also visit Trashichhodong, the "fortress of the glorious religion". Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.
Day 04: Thimphu - Trongsa
Drive to Trongsa via Dochula pass (3,050m). From this pass, on a clear day, one can have a superb view of the highest peaks in Bhutan such as Gangkhar Puensum, Jeje Khang, Masagang, Gangchey Ta. Drive further to Wangduephodrang town which is also your lunch stop. Then proceed to Trongsa crossing 3,300m Pele la pass. Overnight at the lodge in Trongsa.
Day 05: Trongsa - Bumthang
Morning visit to striking Trongsa Dzong, ancestral abode of Bhutan's Royal family. Then visit Ta Dzong, built as watch tower to guard Trongsa Dzong. Proceed to Bumthang and in the afternoon, visit here ; the Jakar Dzong built in 17th century during the time of Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the first religious and temporal ruler of Bhutan. Then visit the Kurjey monastery where Guru Padsambhava left his body imprint in the 8th century. The temple was later built in 17th century. Later visit Jambay Lhakhang. Overnight at the lodge in Bumthang.
Day 06: Bumthang - Gorsum (18 km, 7 hours)
The trek route passes through Chemkhar Chhu, the river famous for trouts. Camp at altitude 3,120m.
Day 07: Gorsum - Lungsum (12 km, 5 hours)
Today's route passes through the dense forests of spruce, hemlock, cypress, juniper and maples. The trail is more or less muddy and ascends gradually till you reach to campsite at altitude 3,160m.
Day 08: Lungsum - Tshochenchen
Trek through dense vegetation till you reach Tashochenchen at an altitude of 3,700m. Camp is just above the treeline.
Day 09: Tshenchen - Duer Tsachu (17 km, 6/7 hours)
The day's walk is uphill, passing a small lake until you reach at Juli La (4,700m). After crossing the pass the trail descends to a lake, then climbs again to Gokthong La (pass). The trail then traverses tohrough jungle to a camp near Duer hot spring at 3,550m. Musk deer, Blue sheep and Himalayan bear may be seen on this part of trek.
Day 10: Duer Tsachu halt
Day to relax in the hot spring.
Day 11: Duer Tsachu - Tshochenchen (17 km, 6/7 hours)
Start early crossing again Juli La pass en route. After this pass it is gradual descent till the campsite.
Day 12: Tashochenchen - Gorsum
Being a long route, today's trek should be started early.
Day 13: Gorsum - Bumthang
From Gorsum walk downhill till you reach the Duer village. Then follow the new motorable road. Overnight at the lodge in Bumthang.
Day 14: Bumthang - Punakha (205 km, 6 hours)
Explore fascinating Bumthang valley. After early lunch drive to Punakha for overnight stay.
Day 15: Punakha - Paro (125 km, 4.1/2 hrs)
Morning visit to Punakha Dzong and Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten. Later drive to Wangduephodrang visiting Dzong and local market.
After lunch, proceed to Paro.
Day 16: Depart Paro
After early breakfast drive to the airport for flight to onward destination.