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Bhutan Spritual Pilgrimage Tours 2017

According to Bhutanese tradition, the history of Bhutan began in the seventh century AD when the Tibetan King, Songtsen Gampo constructed the first two Buddhist temples: Kyichu in the Paro valley and Jampa in the Choekhor valley in Bumthang. In the eight century, a tantrist from Swat (in present day Pakistan) arrived in Bhutan. His name was Padmasambhava but he is generally known in Tibet and Bhutan as Guru Rinpoche, the 'Precious Master'. Here, as in Tibet he introduced Tantric Buddhism. He is considered by the Nyingmapa religious school (pa means means school or sect) to be their founder and the second Buddha. All the places he visited and in which he meditated are places of Pilgrimage for the Bhutanese, who also worship his Eight Manifestations in almost all the temples in the country.

Day 01| Flight to Paro
Day 02| Paro Sightseeing
Day 03| Paro Sightseeing
Day 04| Paro – Thimphu by Car (2 hr.)
Day 05| Chari / Tango Monastery
Day 06| Thimphu – Punakha Drive - 3 hr
Day 07| Punakha Sightseeing
Day 08| Punakha – Trongsa – Bumthang Drive (7 hr)
Day 09| Bumthang Sightsseing
Day 10| Bumthang Sightsseing ( Mebartsho 'the flaming lake' in the Tang valley )
Day 11| Bumthang Sightsseing ( Ugyen Choeling palace )
Day 12| Bumthang – Punakha Drive - 7 hr
Day 13| Punakha – Paro Drive - 4 hr 30 min
Day 14| Departure from Paro

Detailed Itinerary of Bhutan Tour

bhutan spritual pilgrimage tourDay 01| Flight to Paro
The flight to Paro is one of the most spectacular of all mountain flights. One can see the Mt. Everest, Mt. Kanchanjunga, Mt. Makalu and other peaks in Bhutan such as Mt. Chomolhari, Mt. Jichu Drakay, and Mt.Tsherimgang. The green wall of hills known as the doors, or gateways into Bhutan from the plains climbs continually higher as down the forested mountainsides, and to the north, the great snowcapped peaks of the inner Himalayas rise up to the sky. You will be received by guide and escorted to the hotel

Visit to Ta Dzong Museum for a colorful introduction to Bhutanese art, history and culture.
Drive to the Rinpung dzong, built in 1645 to defend the valley against Tibetan invaders. The dzong is now used as an
administration center and school for monks. Overnight hotel

Day 02| Paro Sightseeing
Hike to the famed Taktsang Monastery (Tiger's Nest) where Guru Rimpoche flew on a tigress in the 8th century and meditated there for three months. Perched on the side of the cliff at a height of 900 m above Paro valley, it is the most sacred place. After lunch at the cafeteria, descend down to the valley and drive to Drukgyal dzong (fortress) now in ruins, which were built in 1646 by Shabdrung to commemorate his victory over the Tibetan invaders, led by Mongolian Warlord, Gushri Khan. Historically and strategically this dzong withstood all its glory and had captured western eyes in 1914 vide National Geographic magazine. Overnight hotel

Day 03| Paro Sightseeing
Drive to Pamesa village to visit the Pamesa Lhakhang built by Terton Sherab. While Terton Sherab was in Tibet he heard that there were religious treasurer places in Bhutan so he came to Bhutan and founded the Pamasa lhakhang.

Return to Paro and after lunch at fine town restauremt visit Kyichu temple one of the 108 temples built in the 7th century by the Tibetan King Songsten Gampo. The story goes that a giant demoness lay across the whole area of Tibet and the Himalayas and was preventing the spread of Buddhism. To overcome her, King Songtsen Gampo decided to build 108 temples, which would be placed on all the points of her body. Of these 108 temples, 12 were built in accordance with precise plans. Thus, it happened that in about the year AD 638 the temple of Jokhang in Lhasa was built over the very heart of the demoness. Also visit Dungtse Lhakhang. Overnight hotel.

Day 04| Paro – Thimphu by Car (2 hr.)
After breakfast drive to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan. Check into hotel.

Afternoon: Walk around the National Memorial Chorten built in 1974 in honor of the late King. The Memorial Chorten is an impressive monument with its golden spires shining in the sun, its bell tinkling in the wind and an endless procession of elderly people circling around it. Visit Zilukha Nunnery where the nuns meditate and practice Buddhism. Visit the Changankha lhakhang to offer butter lamp. Overnight hotel

Day 05| Chari / Tango Monastery
About 14 miles from Thimphu, the road comes to a dead end at the foot of a mountain. Chari Monastery was built in 1619.

Afterlunch at Chari visit the Tango Monastery. The Tango Monastery dates back from the 13th century but it was rebuilt in its present from in 1688 the "Divine Madman", Lama Drukpa Kuenley. Return to Thimphu in the evening. Overnight hotel.

Day 06| Thimphu – Punakha Drive - 3 hr (Drive back to Thimphu.)
After lunch: Drive to Punakha the old capital via Dochula pass (altitude 3050 meters) and the winter residence of the Central Monk body. From here on a clear day one can have a superb view of the highest peaks in Bhutan, such as the Gangkar Puensum, table mountain, Jeje Khang, Masakhang Gangchey. Stop for tea/coffee and to take photos. Check into hotel.
Free time to relax. Overnight hotel.

Day 07| Punakha Sightseeing
Drive from your hotel to see the beautiful Punakha dzong (fortress) built between the confluences of two rivers the Pho (male) river and Mo (female) Chu. This dzong is the winter home of the state monastic body and houses the District Administration office. On the way back to your hotel at Wangdi, take a short walk to the Chimmi Lhakhang temple of the Divine Madman Lam Drukpa Kuenley where couples unable to have siblings come here to pray and their prayers are granted.

Afternoon: Walk for 55 Mins to see the Khamsum Yuelley Namgyal Chorten (50 Mins) – temple built by the Queen Of Bhutan for peace and stability in this ever-changing world. Overnight hotel.

Day 08| Punakha – Trongsa – Bumthang Drive (7 hr)
Today drive to Trongsa via Pele la pass at an altitude of 3,150 metres, a wonderful opportunity for photographs. Commanding the Mangde Chu at an altitude of 2,200 metres Trongsa Dzong is the most impressive dzong in Bhutan. Built in 1644 by the Shabdrung, the dzong is an architectural masterpiece.

Transfer to Bumthang which is approx two-hour drive.
This is one of the most spectacular valleys in Bhutan and also the heartland of Buddhism. Here the great teachers meditated and left in their wake many sacred grounds. The Guru and his lineage of Tertons, treasure finders, have led to the sprouting of many temples in the valley. Visit Yatha Weaving Center a cooperative of the National Women Association of Bhutan where the women of the region sell their textiles and Yatha specialty. Overnight Lodge.

Day 09| Bumthang Sightsseing
Today, it's a pilgrimage tour for you; your first stop is the Jambay Lhakhang, built in the 7th century by the King Songtsen Goempo of Tibet. In his effort to propagate Buddhism he had a plan to build a total of 108 temples in Tibet and neighboring kingdoms.
Chakhar Lhakhang: Besides the main road, a short distance beyond Jambay Temple, is Chakhar (Iron Castle) Lhakhang. Although it is easy to mistake it for a house and drive right by, this is an interesting temple and is worth a short visit.
Visit Jambay Lhakhang: This monastery was built in the 7th century of Tibetan King Songtsen Gembo, believed to be the reincarnation of the Buddha of Compassion. It is one of the 108 monasteries built by him to subdue evil spirits in the Himalayan region.

Drive up the valley to Kurjey Lhakhang. Kurjey means, "Body imprint". The temple to the right is the oldest and was built by Minjur Tempa in 1652. It was built around the cave in which Guru Rimpoche meditated and left his body imprint. A few minutes walk from Kurjey cross over to the other side of the river over a small suspension bridge and visit Tamshing Lhakhang. This temple is also known as Tamshing Lhendrup Chholing (Temple of the Good Message).

Visit to Jakar Dzong, " castle of the white bird". According to legend, when the lamas assembled in about 1549 to select a site for a monastery, a big white bird rose suddenly in the air and settled on a spur of a hill. This was interpreted as an important omen, and the hill was chosen as the site for a monastery and for Jakar Dzong. The fortress is now used as an administrative center of the valley and summer residence of Trongsa monks. Take a walk around the beautiful landscape of the Bumthang valley. Overnight Lodge.

Day 10| Bumthang
Drive to Mebartsho 'the flaming lake' in the Tang valley. This is where Pema Lingpa found the treasures hidden by Guru Rinpoche and thus became a terton, 'a discoverer or religious treasurer'. The Mebartsho is in fact, not a lake but a gorge through which the river rushes. It is great pilgrimage site, visitors launch small lighted lamps on the water. Images of Pema Lingpa and his two sons have been carved on the rock.

Visit the Kungzandra Monastery which is one and half hour walk from the road. It is one of the places where Guru Rinpoche meditated as did his disciple Namkha Nyingpo, and a little temple is said to be to have been established there at the end of the eight century. However the present site was founded by the saint Pema Lingpa in 1488. Overnight Lodge.

Day 11| Bumthang
Today visit the Ugyen Choeling palace which is half hour from the road. This site visa occupied in the middle of the 14th century by the Nyingmapa Master Longchen Rabjampa, who built a little retreat there. At the end of the 14th century, the saint Dorje Lingpa decided to settle there where the great Master had meditated and there he discovered numerous religious treasures.

Four hours walk north from Ugyen Choeling, another monastery nestles into a cliff that appears to block the Tang valley. Thowadra meaning 'the highest rock'. The monastery was blessed by Guru Rinpoche who came there to meditate and left many marks on the rock. This is where Guru Rinpoche is said to have left behind a wooden bird which was used to expel a wicked king from the Khenpalung valley north of Bumthang. It is also one of the gates leading into this secret valley, which was sealed by Guru Rinpoche after he drove out the king. Overnight Lodge.

Day 12| Bumthang – Punakha Drive - 7 hr
After an early breakfast drive to Punakha/Wangdue via Gantay Goempa, which is perched a top a small hill that rises from the valley floor. This monastery is the only Nyingmapa Monastery and also the biggest Nyingmapa Monastery in the country. This monastery was founded by Pema Thinley the grandson of Pema Lingpa. This days it is directed by the Gangtey Trulku, the 9th reincarnation of Pema Lingpa. Drive further downhill to Punakha for overnight stay. Overnight hotel.

Day 13| Punakha – Paro Drive - 4 hr 30 min
Drive back to Paro, On the way sto at Tachogang Temple or the "Temple of the Hill of Excellent Horse"which rises in austere surroundings on the left bank of the river, a few km before Chhuzom at the confluence of the Paro and Thimphu rivers. A Tibetan Saint had a vision of the excellent Horse Balaha – an emanation of Avalokiteshwara while he was meditating there. He decided thereupon to build a temple at this spot in addition to one of his famous iron bridges (later carried away by floods in 1969). The exact date of the temple's construction is not certain, but it was probably around the year 1433. Overnight hotel.

Day 14| Departure from Paro
Early morning your guide will escort you to the airport for your flight onwards.

Cost Includes during Bhutan tour

- All hotels with all meals in Full Board
- Sightseeing fees, English speaking guide and transportation
- Bhutan Tourist visa processing
- Air ticket booking service to and back from Bhutan

Cost Does Not Include

- Drinks, tipping to guides and drivers and other expenses of personal nature such as phone, laundry etc.
- Extra expenses or loss due to nature and unforeseen events beyond the control of our management.
- Travel Insurance
- International airfares and airport taxes, visa fees

Visa processing

  • Bhutan visa is pre-process by our company we need to have your passport copy by scan on our e-mail. we will send you electronic visa on your mail. you need to print and carry to fly to Bhutan. at immigration authorities will stamp on your passport.
  • your passport must be valid more than 6 months at the time  of travel in Bhutan

Notes
There are regular flights from Kathmandu Nepal, Bangkok Thailand, Delhi India to Bhutan By Druk air.

Some useful Bhutanese phrases during tours
Hello :              Ku-zu-zam-po-la (meaning good health)
Thank You :     Ka din chey la
See you :          Lok jey gay
Good bye :       Lus la “or” Laso la

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Latest Review

Dear Rajan,
Many thanks for organizing such a wonderful tour for us. This will remain our unforgettable trip! We felt so lucky that we were able to visit your beautiful country during the 30th Anniversary of the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations between Bhutan and Japan.

We spent one night in Thimphu, two nights in Phunakha, and two nights in Paro. Phunaka's Lobesa hotel became one of the most impressive splendid hotels we have ever stayed! Its view from the window was just gorgeous and took our breath away.

Nawang was a knowledgeable, kind and caring guide and we learned a lot about your beautiful country from him. Ugay was a safe driver and we felt so comfortable in the lovely Nissan four wheels.

The tour was both very informative and fun. In addition, Nawang accommodated many of our requests and re-arranged the original schedule to our satisfaction. Going to the weekend market in Thimphu became one of the highlights of this tour for us !

We'd like to visit Bhutan again in the future and we will definitely ask you again to organize tour for us.

Finally, we would like to thank Rajan for being such a friendly coordinator. Your responses were always so prompt!!

Yours sincerely,
Nory and Mayuri from Tokyo, Japan
Email: mayurih@hotmail.com

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