Day 01: Arrival at Paro (by Druk Air):
The flight into Paro by Bhutanese National carrier; Druk Air, is a befitting introduction to the spectacular beauty of our country. In clear weather, magnificent views of the world’s highest peaks give way to the lush green Paro valley as you land. The first gift from Bhutan will be the cool, clean fresh air as you step out of the plane. After clearing customs and visa control you are met by your guide and transferred to your hotel to settle in. After lunch drive to visit the Paro (Rinpung Dzong). A flagstone path rises gradually from a beautiful wooden bridge with shingle roofing and abutted by two guardhouses, to the Dzong. Today, the Dzong is the seat of the district administration as well as the home for the monastic school. The central tower (Utse) of the Dzong, with its superb woodwork, is one of the most beautiful in the nation. The Dzong was built in 1645 A.D. Dinner and overnight at hotel.
Day 02: Paro sightseeing - Thimphu:
Morning: Drive to Drugyal Dzong (a ruined fortress - 16 km away from Paro town). The Dzong, although in ruins, holds great historical significance. It was from this fortress that the Bhutanese repelled many Tibetan invasions. The name means the victorious Bhutanese. This spot offers a magnificent vista of Mount Chomolhari, "Mountain of Goddess" (7329 m). Visit a typical Bhutanese farmhouse on the way back. A short distance south of the road is Kyichu Lhakhang. This temple is said to have been built in 659 by King Songtsen Gampo of Tibet. It holds down the left foot of an ogress whose body is so large that it covers Bhutan and most of eastern Tibet. Afternoon drive to Thimphu. The drive will take around 1½ hour. Thimphu has a population of about 98,500. The town is made up of just three lines of shops and is the only capital in the world without traffic lights. Check In at the hotel your hotel. Dinner and stay overnight at hotel in Thimpu.
Day 03: Thimphu – Punakha - Wangdue:
After breakfast transfer to Wangdue. En-route stop at Dochula Pass (3150 m), 30 km from Thimphu, for tea and biscuits and enjoy a view of the Eastern Himalayan Mountains. From Dochula to Wangdue, it's another two hours drive. Wangdue Phodrang Dzong is perched on a spur at the confluence of 02 rivers. The position of the Dzong is remarkable as it completely covers the spur and commands an impressive view over both the north-south and east-west roads. The main road climbs the length of the spur and on the left, across the river, comes the first glimpse of the picturesque village of Rinchengang whose inhabitants are celebrated, stonemasons. After lunch in Lobesa, visit the Punakha Dzong. This is the winter residence of Bhutan's spiritual leader, the Head Abbot, and the Central Monastic Body. The Dzong is built between two rivers known as "Phochu" (Male River) and "Mochu" (Female River). Check into Hotel. Dinner and stay overnight at hotel in Wangdue.
Day 04: Wangdue – Gangtey – Bumthang
Today early morning we depart for central Bhutan through the tropical vegetation to Nobding. Throughout your trip, you will come across the beautiful sceneries of rural Bhutan, with scattered settlements far from the road. We drive about an hour towards Pelela pass (11,000ft) and retrace our Steps and take a road that heads to Gangtey Gompa over Tashi La pass. Descend about an hour to Phobjikha Valley. It is a wide open valley, where Gangtey Gompa is ideally located on a hill overlooking the valley. It is the winter habitat for the Black-necked cranes migrating from Tibet early November till mid-March. Gangtey Gompa is instituting for monks following the Nyingmapa sect in the country. After visiting the monastery we drive back over the Pelela pass. Descend through the open meadows and valley of yak herders and several villages via Chendeji Chorten built in a form of Nepalese style in the 15th century. Picnic lunch will be served en route or at the restaurant at Chendebji. We drive for another 2 hours passing through several villages like Tsongkhapa, Tashicholing. Enroute stop at the viewpoint of Trongsa Dzong. Continue drive to Bumthang. Dinner and stay overnight at hotel in Bumthang.
Day 05: Bumthang Sightseeing
This is one of the most spectacular valleys in Bhutan and also the heartland of Buddhism. The Guru and his lineage of Tertons (treasure finders) have led to the sprouting of many temples in the valley. In the morning we hike to visit the Tamshing Monastery (one of the oldest monastic schools built by Terton Pema Lingpa) and Kurjey Lhakhang (where the Guru Rinpoche subdued a local demon and left his body imprint on a rock). We also visit Jambay Lhakhang (one of the oldest temples in Bhutan built in the 7th century) and Jakar Dzong (seat of the district administration). In the afternoon, hike to Thangbi valley across the suspension bridge and visit the Thangbi Lhakhang built in the 14th century, dinner and overnight at a hotel or drive to Ura and witness Shingkhar Rabney (Yak Festival).
Day 06: Bumthang – Wangdue – Punakha
The drive to Punakha via Wangdue takes about 7hours over the Pelela pass and Youtongla pass. Lunch served at Chendebji Chorten. Dinner and stay overnight at hotel in Punakha.
Day 07: Punakha – Thimphu:
After breakfast drive to Thimphu via Dochula pass ( 3150 m). In Thimphu witness Celebration of 5th King’s Coronation at Changlimithang ground. An evening stroll through the main town of Thimphu. Dinner and stay overnight at hotel in Thimpu.
Day 08: Thimphu Sightseeing
.Morning: Visit the Memorial Chorten, a huge stupa built in memory of the third King who reigned from 1952-1972. Visit the National Library where ancient manuscripts are preserved. Visit the Painting School where traditional art is still preserved. Artists are taught to paint Thankas here (sacred Buddhist scroll). Visit the Handicrafts Emporium where one can buy Bhutanese textiles and other arts and crafts. Visit the Weekend market where vendors from throughout the region arrive on Friday afternoon and remain till Sunday. Here you will find indigenous goods, handicrafts, locally produced goods, etc. Afternoon: Visit Simtokha Dzong. This is the oldest fortress in Bhutan, built in 1629 A.D. by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. It also houses the largest monastic schools in the country. Visit Tashichho Dzong - the main secretariat building. It is from here that the King and other prominent civil servants run the country. The Head Abbot and the central monastic body also reside here during the summer. Visit Pangri Zampa Monastery, situated just beyond Dechencholing Palace (5 km. from Thimphu). This temple was the first residence of Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal when he arrived in Bhutan in 1616 A.D. Ngawang Chogyel, the great ancestor of the Shabdrung, built it during the first quarter of the 16th century. Dinner and stay overnight at hotel in Thimpu.
Day 09: Thimphu – Haa – Paro
After breakfast at your hotel then depart to Haa valley via Chunzom (confluence). The drive will give you the opportunity to drive you through the deep pine forest and into the narrow valley of Haa. Haa is made up of five counties and is closed to the outside world until 2002. There is a military camp by the Indian Army. Visit Wangchuk Dzong which dates back to 1915 and also visits Lhakhang Nakpo (Black temple) is said to have been built by pigeon emanation of King Songtsen Gampo in the 7th century. Picnic lunch served at one of the many inviting spots. After lunch drive to Paro via Chelela pass (3,810 m) which takes two hours drive to cover 68 km. From the pass, you will get a good view of the highest mountains of Bhutan and the Himalayan peaks. Dinner and stay overnight at hotel in Paro.
Day 10: Paro hike to Taktsang
In the morning drive to Shari for a hike up (or horse ride) to the Taktsang monastery (Tiger’s nest). The horse rides up or hikes to the cafeteria will take around one and half hour. At the view point enjoy the stunning view of the monastery, where Guru Padmasambhava landed on the back of a tigress in the 8th century. After lunch at the café walk back to the road point. After lunch at the cafeteria walk back to the road point. Dinner and stay overnight at hotel in Paro.
Day 11: Paro – Departure (By Druk Air)
We serve early breakfast at your hotel and then drive a short distance to the Paro airport where your Bhutanese escort will bid you farewell at Paro airport. Good-bye and happy journey back home.