Destination : Paro &  Thimphu
Duration : 4 Nights and 5 days
Starts: Paro
Ends : Paro
Transportation: By car (Sante-Fe, Creta, Prado or Tucson)
Activities :  Architecture /Forts / Market / Bazaar / Takin zoo / Handicraft stores/ Bhutanese textiles/ School of Traditional Painting and Crafts/ Archery match

Tour  at a Glance

Day 1: Arrive in Paro  and drive to Thimphu
Day 2: Thimphu to Punakha
Day 3: Punakha  to Paro
Day 4: Paro- Hike to Taktshang (Tiger’s Den)
Day 5: Depart Paro

Highlights of the Trip

On a clear blue sky day anyone coming to land in the only international airport in Bhutan, Paro airport  would be greeted by the beautiful view of the younger Himalayas, not to miss out on the wonderful and unique patterns of settlement with Bhutanese houses scattered and clustered over the hills and amongst the terraced paddy fields. Buddhist prayer flags are a common sight adding to the uniqueness and exoticness of the last Shangri-La on earth.

Once you land and are done with the visa formalities  with the Paro airport staff, you would be once again greeted by the much awaited & excited , well experienced tour guide and a driver from Of Bhutan Hills and Valleys Tours. Then you will travel towards  Thimphu.Upon checking into your hotel, as per your comfort, your day will start, your tour guide and driver will be at your service anytime.

Day 1 (arrival day)- Paro to Thimphu
Visit  Tashichho Dzong:
Bhutanese architecture is famous for its originality, its harmonious proportions and its adaption to the landscape. In Bhutanese architecture, there is generally no planning and designing unlike in the present days. The chief carpenter is the master of work and has the, layout and structure in his mind. He uses his body parts for measurement and proportions of the different features of the building. No nails are used and the wood pieces are assembled by the dovetail technique. This gigantic structure with the massive  clay and stone  walls, elegant woodwork are among the most impressive form of architecture not just in Bhutan, but in Asia too.

Watching Archery, a Sport With a Difference in Bhutan:

In Bhutan, archery is definitely played as a sport, but a sport with a difference as the Bhutanese men have become so passionate about playing this sport that no men, given a chance would ever say “NO!” to archery. Some claim that playing archery is not just a sport, but its celebration of the way of life and expression of Bhutan’s rich culture and heritage as playing archery is with complete set of traditional attires. Men and women both take part in making this sport more fun and memorable. Men play archery and must be sturdy to be able to shuttle between two wooden targets, which are 145 meters apart, double the Olympic distance of 90 meters.

A Walk Through The Authentic Craft Market:

Another wonder of Thimphu valley  is the beautiful craft boutiques. Here one would get to observe and understand the actual Bhutanese craftsmanship from all over the country. A must explore and experience market, one of its kind in Bhutan is the Farmer’s Centenary Market. Here farmers come with their  produces from in and around Thimphu city  as well as also from far and wide regions of the country.

The visit to the School of Arts and Crafts would give an insight into the actual 13 crafts of the Bhutanese. Wood carving, weaving, gold, silver and metal smiths, painting (mud and  metal statues), wall painting, scroll painting embroidery, stone sculpture are some of the examples.

National Animal Zoo:

Visit to the  zoo of the National animal, Takin (cattle chamois). This is a very special animal as the Bhutanese believe in the myth of this animal. It is believed that the sometime during the 6th -7th century, a Divine madman in Tibet, first butchered ungulates,  who later gave life to these animals during that time, the belief is that the head of a goat somehow got placed on the body of an oxen. It is a herbivore and is found in the north western and north eastern mountains of Bhutan. Taken is also recognised as a rare specie of animal in the world but is flourishing quite well in the alpines of the national parks of Bhutan.

Hand-loom Museum:

Bhutanese society enjoys a colourful, unique, special woven textiles. Women majorly takes  responsibility of the weaving. The fibres used for weaving are cotton, wool, silk (both raw and fine). The raw silk that is commonly used in the eastern region of the country are mostly imported from the neighbouring Indian states. Interestingly, most weavers of both plain, simple design and complicated, special intricate design textiles hail from the extreme east regions of the country.

Yak hair is commonly used by the high altitude inhabitants of the country known as the bjobs (nomads), for weaving highly  durable tents, waterproof coats, hats and aprons for women. Bhutanese art, architecture and handicrafts are an integral part of the Kingdom’s rich cultural heritage. They stand out uniquely in the world today. These handicrafts and textiles reflect  the rich customs, traditions and social values of the people and therefore manifests the country’s cultural identity.

Overnight at Thimphu.

Day 2: Thimphu to Punakha 
Travelling to Punakha from Thimphu in the early hours of the day would just add more serenity to the journey. Reaching one of the hot spots of tourist destination, Dochula pass  en route to Punakha, you will be welcomed to an altitude of  3088 meters above the sea level to be brought face to face with the snow capped  younger Himalayan mountain’s panoramic view and as a bonus to the view, you would see the 108 chortens/ stone and mud stupas  built in the honour of the Fourth King of Bhutan and for the well being and security of the country Queen Mother Dorji Wangmo Wangchuk, Her Majesty  also built  Druk Wangyal Lhakhang (temple) which has stories of supreme warriors, whose vision reflects the distant future in a fine blend of history and mythology of the country.

After bitting on a snack or two over a cup of hot coffee or tea in the beautifully located Dochula cafe, your next destination would be the Divine Madman’s Monastery, known as Chimi Lhakhang. Located in Punakha region, it stands on a round hillock and was built in 1499 by a buddhist saint.  A special feature of this monastery is to strike pilgrims on the heads with a 10-inch (25 cm) wooden phallus, traditionally signifying the ward off evils and also to get blessings for women to conceive.

Overnight  at Punakha.

Day 3: Punakha to Paro
(125 kms/ 3 1/2 hours)
Return by the same route, Dochula to Thimphu to Paro.
National Museum is a cultural museum established in 1968. One would find the finest specimens of Bhutanese arts, including the master pieces of bronze statutes and paintings. Works of art will be  elegantly exhibited. The museum has in it over 3000 works of Bhutanese art, covering over 1500 years of Bhutan’s cultural heritage. It’s rich holdings of various creative traditions and disciplines, represent a remarkable blend of the past with the present and is a major appeal  for both local and foreign visitors.

Overnight  at Paro

Day 4:   Paro – Climb  Up the  Tiger’s Nest -Taktshang
Taktshang is a prominent Himalayan Buddhist scared site and the temple complex is located in the cliffside of the upper Paro valley. It was founded in the 8th century as a meditation cave. Padmasambhava is credited with introducing Buddhism to Bhutan. According to legend, it is believed that Guru Rinpoche flew to this location from Tibet on the back of a tigress. Therefore, this place is was consecrated to tame the Tiger demon.

Today many monks and lamas visit Taktshang for  meditation or praying purposes. Climbing up hill to Taktshang monastery is about 1 1/2 hours. There is a trail which is has railings to secure the pilgrims and to enjoy the views from the hill top.

Overnight  at Paro.

Day 5: Depart Paro
Of Bhutan Divine Hills and Valley’s tour representative will see you off at the airport  for your onward flight. Thank you for visiting!

Pricing Detail and time to visit Bhutan

Category Months for Travel 1 – 5 Pax 6- 10 Pax 10 Pax & more
A March/ April/ May/ September/October & November US $ 260 per day US $ 240 each per day US $  215 each per day
B January/ February / June/July/ August & December US $ 230 per day US $ 210 each per day US $ 195 each per day

 

*The charge  of the trip for 5 days & 4 nights  INCLUDES accommodation in a 3 star hotel, an English speaking experienced  guide,bottled mineral water, tourist SIM with 4G, 3  meals (light refreshments to carry as well), a professional tourism driver with a luxury SUV transportation, fees & taxes.However, cost DOES NOT INCLUDE :

  1. Airfare to Bhutan
  2. Travel & medical Insurance coverage.
  3. Alcohol beverages, Internet, telephone etc…,
  4. Laundry, riding pony, tips and other expenses of personal nature.
  5. Meals in 5* hotels
  6. Bhutan visa fee.
  7. Language speaking Guide
  8. Overseas call