Ask to trip Expert
Ask to trip Expert

Bhutan Culture Tour for 2018

PRIVATE TOUR ITINERARY

TRIP FACTS:
Trip length: 13 Nights / 14 Days
Starts in: Paro(Bhutan)
Ends in: Paro(Bhutan)
Activities- Cultural sightseeing and day hikes. Maximum Altitude: 3140m / 10362ft above sea level

OUTLINE ITINERARY:
Day 01: Arrive Paro. Drive to Thimphu, half day sightseeing. Overnight in Paro.
Day 02: Drive toThimphu. Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 03: Drive to Punakha. Overnight in Punakha.
Day 04: Sightseeing in Punakha. Overnight in Punakha.
Day 05: Drive to Gangtey. Overnight in Gangtey.
Day 06: Sightseeing in Gangtey and Overnight in Gangtey.
Day 07: Sightseeing in Gangtey. Overnight in Gangtey.
Day 08: Drive to Punakha/ Wangdue. Overnight in Punakha/ Wangdue.
Day 09: Drive to Thimphu. Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 10: Sightseeing in Thimphu. Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 11: Sightseeing in Thimphu. Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 12: Sightseeing in Thimphu. Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 13: Drive to Paro. Overnight in Paro.
Day 14: Depart from Paro Airport.

TRIP HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Hike to Tiger’s Nest in Paro and other day hikes
  • Visit Farm House
  • Attend Thimphu Festival.
  • Visit Monastery and some Museums
  • Stroll around the city shopping

TRIP ITINERARY:

18th Sept | Day 01: ARRIVE PARO AIRPORT OF BHUTAN (B,L,D) 

Arrive at Paro Airport. Altitude: 2280m/7524ft above sea level

The flight into the Himalayas reveals scenic and breathtaking views of Himalayan Mountains of the world. If weather permits you will be able to see Mt Everest (8848m, 29,198ft) and other Himalayan mountain ranges. After checking into the hotel later visit,
Your representative from Raven Tours and Trek will greet you on arrival and later visit…

Ta Dzong: This means - watch tower, which it served as during the 17th century to guard the region from the Tibetan invasion. It was converted to the National Museum in 1968. It houses a fine collection of Bhutanese art, relics, religious thankas (used to bolster the visualization generated during meditation and were made from Himalayan animal fibers), paintings, animals found in Bhutan, arms and ammunitions and the country’s exquisite stamp collections.

Rimpung Dzong: Means fortress of the heap of jewels. It was built during the time of Zhabdrung (deeply revered to this day as dynamic political and spiritual leader) in 1644. It houses both administrative and monastic bodies. It is also the venue for the Paro festival (Tsechu), held once in a year during spring season (March/April). The main highlight of Paro festival is that it has the unfurling of the one of the oldest Thongdol (gigantic scroll painting) which literally means.

Overnight in Paro.

19th Sept | Day 02: PARO TO THIMPHU (B, L, D) 
Altitude: 2320m/ 7656ft above sea level.(1 hour drive)

Morning drive to Thimphu, on the way visit, Tamchhog Lhakhang which is located on the opposite side of the river. This is a temple built by Thang Thong Gyalpo of Tibet, who was responsible for building numerous iron bridges throughout Bhutan.

Kuenselcholing View Point:  A place from where you can get a good overview of the Thimphu valley is from the Buddha point (Kuensel Phodrang). It is again a short drive from the town. You can pay your obeisance and offer prayers to the Buddha, the largest statue in the country and then walk around and take a glimpse of the valley.

Memorial Chorten:  This particular chorten was constructed in 1974 as a memorial for the third King of the country, King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, who is widely regarded as the father of modern Bhutan.

Later relax for the day and stroll around the city.

Overnight in Thimphu.

20th Sept | Day 03: THIMPHU TO PUNAKHA (B, L, D)
Altitude: 1350m/4455ft above sea level.(3 hour 30 minutes drive).

Morning driving towards Punakha, we come across a pass known as Dochula (3140m, 10362ft) from where a beautiful panoramic view of the Himalayan mountain range can be seen, especially in clear winter days. The beauty of this place is further enhanced by the Druk Wangyal Chortens- a 108 stupas built by the eldest Queen, Her Majesty Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck.
Later you can also visit the Botanical garden just below Dochula Pass where there are lot of collection of rhododendrons.
Overnight in Punakha/Wangdue.

21st Sep | Day 04: IN PUNAKHA/WANGDUE (B, L, D)

Morning visit Punakha Dzong (fortress): Built in 1637 by Zhabdrung which is remarkably located between the rivers of Mo (Female) Chu (river) and Pho (Male) Chu. Until the time of second king it served as a seat of the king. Now it is the winter capital of the central monk body.

Chimi Lhakhang: This Temple was built by lam Drukpa Kuenley (The Divine Madman) in 1499. It is about thirty minutes hike across fields from the road – a welcome chance to stretch your legs after the drive.  His style of teaching was thought shocking, insulting and including obscene behavior. His outrageous actions and sexual antics were a deliberate method of provoking people to discard preconceptions. In the temple you will receive a blessing from his wooden phallus. Wooden phalluses are often found hanging in the four corners of the houses and also phalluses are painted on the walls of houses. It is the common belief that this helps in driving away evil spirits.

Later stroll around the city and relax

Overnight in Punakha/Wangdue.

22nd Sept | Day 05: PUNAKHA/WANGDUE TO GANGTEY (B, L, D)
Altitude: 2800m/ 9240ft above sea level (2 hours drive)

Morning drive to Gangtey.
On the way visit Rinchengang village.
Overnight in Gangtey.

23rd Sept | Day 06: IN GANGTEY (B, L, D) 

Morning you will hike across Gangtey Nature Trail: (Duration: Half day: two hours at a quicker pace): This is one of the most beautiful and shortest of the existing nature trail. In this trail you have the opportunity to visit the magnificent Goemba(Monastery), it also leads to sloping area of green grass, flanked by pine trees on either side. You will even come across some villages, rivers, crane roosting ground. Overnight in Gangtey.

24th Sept | Day 07: IN GANGTEY B, L, D)

Visit the Black Necked Crane Observation center and Gangtey Monastery.
Stroll around the villages.
Overnight in Gangtey.  

25th Sept | Day 08: GANTEY TO WANGDUE (B, L, D) 

Morning drive towards Wangdue : Wangdue has a unique town to look around with small huts by the side of the road.

Walk around the town and relax.Overnight in Wangdue.

26th Sept | Day 09: WANGDUE TO THIMPHU (B, L, D)

Morning drive to Thimphu (3 hours 30 minutes drive). Overnight in Thimphu.

27th Sept | Day 10: : IN THIMPHU (B, L, D)

Morning visit, General Post office of Bhutan: Get an insight into Bhutan through its stamps. Visit their Philatelic Bureau for their beautiful, unique and wide range of stamps and philatelic products. You can also order them from Bhutan Post and its agents around the world. All types of attractive postage stamps, picture post cards, stamp albums, envelopes, etc., are available at the philatelic counters which are best for presentation and gift purposes. The bureau also maintains prepaid customer accounts such as Ordinary account and Standing order account.

Paper factory: The handmade paper making in Bhutan stemmed from the age old tradition originated in 8th century of Bhutanese history. It began as domestic ancient activity which is still in practice in remote areas. The handmade paper constitutes as valuable National heritage of Bhutanese cultural identity and is preserved through all the ages. The Traditional paper is recognized and held high esteem both in home and outside world. Jungshi Paper Factory was established in November 1990 as an undertaking of the Royal Government of Bhutan. The unit now boasts as a major and sole dealer in handmade paper and its products.

Weekend market: The days are absolutely central to the lives of the Bhutanese, but there are many reasons to visit other than the delicious fresh food on offer every Friday, Saturday and Sunday.There are regular competitions centered on the national sport of Bhutan - archery - as well as the opportunities to buy beautifully handcrafted items such as yak tail dusters and butter tea cups.  The people crowd the stalls every day, dressed in full colour and gathered to meet and to barter, much like the street markets in London! Overnight in Thimphu.

28th Sept | Day 11: IN THIMPHU (B, L, D) 

Hike to Cheri Monastery(Includes Dodina and Jigme Dorji Wild life Sanctuary): Hike about1hour leds to Cheri Goemba (Cheri Dorji Dhen). The trail starts by crossing a lovely covered bridge that spans the Wang Chu, and then climbs to the monastery. Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal built this monastery in 1620 and established the first monk body here. Silver Chorten inside the monastery holds the ashes of Shabdrung father.(Option for meditation). A chance to spot birds such as Mrs Gould's Sunbird, Yellow-browed Tit, Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Long-billed Thrush, Ultramarine Flycatcher. Later stroll around the city and relax.

29th Sept | Day 12: IN THIMPHU (B, L, D) 

Morning visit, the opening ceremony of the famous Thimphu Festival: The day begins with the famous mask dances. Festivals in the Land Of Thunder Dragon are rich and happy expressions of its ancient Buddhist culture. These festivals are held in all districts in honor of Guru Rinpoche, the saint who introduced Buddhism to Bhutan in the 8th century. There is simply no better way of experiencing the colour, passion and sheer vibrancy of Bhutan than by attending one of the numerous religious festivals that take place around the year.Tsechus are held on auspicious days and months in the Bhutanese calendar, and last up to four days in which a series of highly stylized masked dance rituals are performed. Attendees adorned in astounding colour gather from far and wide, sporting exotic masks and taking part in the myriad events that are on offer, from games of chance at the local fairs to elaborate mystic rituals. An experience that is not to be missed!

Overnight in Thimphu.

30th Sept | Day 13: THIMPHU TO PARO (B, L, D) 

Morning drive to Paro, hike to Taktshang Monastery (Tiger’s nest): This is Bhutan’s most recognizable cultural icon perched 800m/2640ft up a seemingly sheer cliff. Although it was tragically and mysteriously consumed by fire in April 1998 it has now been restored to its former glory. It is believed that in the 8th century, the great tantric master Guru Rimopche/ Padmasambhava (2nd Buddha) flew on the back of a tigress to the site where the monastery now stands. Three hours hike to and fro, some gentle and some steep hike, some stony foot path and some good ones) If you ride a horse upward it will cost extra US$15 per person.

Visit Farmhouse:  Eating, taking bath and staying for a night at a local farmhouse gives a different variation, and a chance to see the inside of such a home, rather than just the brightly decorated exteriors If you take hot stone bath and eat in the farm house it will cost extra US$25 per person.

Later stroll around the town and see how locals live. Overnight in Paro

01st Oct | Day 14: DEPART FROM PARO (B, L, D)

Early breakfast at the hotel and then drive to the airport. Your escort will assist you with exit formalities and bid you farewell.

CHECK LISTS

  • Valid passport (valid for six months from the date of your trip)
  • One other picture ID, such as driver’s license (in case of emergency and for use as a substitute of passport or incase of loss of your passport) Photocopy of passport page to carry in wallet
  • Air tickets (Make a copy of flight tickets which may be helpful, in case of loss)
  • Visa Clearance (Make a copy of visa clearance which may be helpful, in case of emergencies)
  • MasterCard, Visa Credit and Debit Cards are accepted in Bhutan. However travelers cheques and some cash are highly recommended.
  • Mobile (if your cell phone is from CINGULLAR USA or ATNT (USA) operators then your cell phone will work in Bhutan.)

WHAT TO BRING DURING THE TOUR IN BHUTAN 

Warm Jackets
Hiking shorts (for men) or skirt
Winter clothes
Gloves
Warm hats
Hiking/trekking boots
Socks for hiking boots
Sunscreen for lips and face
Sunglasses
Sneakers
Long and short T- shirts or cotton shirts
Sun Hats
Walking Sticks
Back pack or Suitcase

DRESS CODE FOR VISITING FORTRESSES, MONASTERIES AND TEMPLES IN BHUTAN

Shirt(either half or full sleeve)
Full pants/long skirts
Any type of shoes with socks
No Hats, No Umbrella, No Slippers, No t-shirts, No short skirt and No half-pants
Photographs allowed in the courtyard only.

Transportation and Travel situation in Bhutan
Ground transportation is by private  vehicles based on number of travelers. we provide clean Air conditioning  and  heat in vehicles . expect bad roads with uphill and narrow tracks too, travel time might delay due to weather too.

please consult your doctor before you come to travel. in Bhutan we have local doctors to assist incase if needed.

Hotels / Resorts / Tents
We choose nice and best available hotels based on your budget. you will have private rooms with hot and cold showers

Guide, Driver and helpers
local expert guides and drivers.
this program can be customized based on your time and interest

Service Includes during Bhutan Tour

  • Bhutan Visa arrangement service
  • Government royalty and all the taxes
  • FIT Surcharge for one and two persons
  • Accommodations in A grade hotels
  • Three meals a day breakfast, lunch & dinner
  • Full time English speaking Bhutanese guide
  • Private transportation and sightseeing as per the itinerary
  • Museums and parks fees indicated in the itinerary
  • Bottled drinking water throughout the journey

 Excludes in the package / supplement during Bhutan Tour

  • Flight fares from Kathmandu, Bangkok, Singapore, Delhi, Kolkata, Bagdogra, Dhaka, Mumbai, Guwahati, Gaya to Bhutan- please choose the route and let us know we book for you
  • Personal expenses and any alcoholic, non-alcoholic beverages
  • Tips to guide, driver, trekking staff, hotel service, etc.
  • Single room supplement charge for two Pax and above
  • Luxury hotels/resorts available on supplement cost
  • Specialized /language guides available on supplement cost
  • Travel / Medical Insurance

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 . for flights and package please contact us now

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

Make An Enquiry




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

Read All Reviews