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Central Bhutan Tour

Central Bhutan Tour

Overview And Highlights

Central Bhutan is an exciting destination for all visitors. It includes some of the most significant historical and religious sites in the country. The district of Trongsa has always been of great political importance to the leaders of Bhutan due to its commanding location in the center of the nation while Bumthang district has some of the most ancient and important temples and monasteries in Bhutan.

Central Bhutan is a region blessed with great natural beauty and there are miles of pristine alpine and sub-tropical broadlead forests teeming with all manner of flora and fauna. The Thrumshingla National Park is located in this region and is famous for the many rare and endangered birds that inhabit it including the Rufous necked hornbill, Rufous-throated wren-babbler, Satyr Tragopan, Beautiful nuthatch, Ward’s trogon and Chestnut-breasted partridge. Visitors may even catch a glimpse of the exotic animals that live in the park such as the majestic Royal Bengal Tiger or the adorable Red Panda.

This central Bhutan tour will take you deep into the heart of the beautiful Bumthang valley, considered to be the ‘Switzerland of Bhutan.’ Our route crosses three high mountains passes: Dochula at 3100m, Pelela at 3300m and Yotongla, the highest at 3,400m. Bumthang is considered to be the spiritual home of the Bhutanese people. The entire Bumthang valley is dotted with some of the oldest historical monuments and Nyes (sacred places) in all of Bhutan, some dating back to the 7th century A.D., a period of which there is little modern knowledge. This tour also travels to Paro, Thimphu, Punakha, Wangdue and Trongsa. Besides these destinations, we also include highlights such as a visit to the Gangtey valley to spot the Black-Necked Crane. This rare bird is an endangered species that migrates in winter from the plateau of Tibet and Siberia. Another visit features the Kuenga Rabten Palace, a ruling home of Bhutan’s second King, Jigme Wangchuk, for a decade.

Day to Day Itinerary Expand/Collapse All

Day 1 : Arrival in Paro - Thimphu (1.2 hrs)

Food
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Accomodation
Hotel

Receive at Paro Airport, meet our English speaking Bhutanese Guide who will accompany with you throughout the tour & transfer to Thimphu in a private vehicle (65 km / 1.2 hrs) - the capital town of Bhutan and the centre of Government, religion and commerce. It is a unique city with unusual mixture of modern development alongside ancient traditions. Overnight in Thimphu.

 

Day 2 : Thimphu Sightseeing

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Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Accomodation
Hotel

Full day Thimphu sightseeing. After breakfast visit Memorial Chorten (from outside) - this stupa was built in 1974 in the memory of Bhutan's third King, His Late Majesty, King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk, who is popularly regarded as Father of modern Bhutan. The paintings and statues inside the monument provide a deep insight into Buddhist philosophy. Afterwards visit Mothinthang Zoo, Viewpoint, Handicraft Emporium - There are various Handicraft Emporiums in town displaying a wide assortment of beautifully hand-woven and crafted products. The National Handicrafts Emporium across the road is a government owned emporium. The handicraft emporiums are closed on Sundays, National Library - Bhutan's history imprented in archaic texts are preserved in the National Library. Besides thousands of ancient Buddhist manuscript, it also has modern academic books & printing blocks for prayer flags. Then proceed to Tashicho Dzong (This Dzong can visit only after 5 pm in summer) - also known as "fortress of the glorious religion" was built in 1641 and later rebuilt by late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk in 1965. The Dzong houses main secretariat building and it also has the throne room of His Majesty the King of Bhutan. Overnight in Thimphu.

 

Day 3 : Thimphu - Punakha/Wangdue

Food
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Accomodation
Hotel

After breakfast drive via scenic Dochu La Pass to Wangduephodrang (70 km / 3 hrs) - this is the last town on the highway before entering central Bhutan. The town is not more than an enlarged village with a few well-provided shops. The higher side of Wangduphodrang valley provide rich pastureland for cattle and it is famous for fine bamboo products, slate and stone carvings. Afternoon visit Punakha valley & Punakha Dzong. Punakha served as the capital of Bhutan until 1955 and still it is the winter seat of Chief Abbot. Pho Chhu & Mo Chhu rivers, splendid views of the Himalayas, product of crops & fruits are blessed to this warm valley. Overnight in Wangdue.

 

Day 4 : Punakha/Wangdue - Bumthang (7 Hrs)

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Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Accomodation
Hotel

Drive (200 km / 7-8 hrs) crossing 3 passes over 3000 meters. The route offers magnificent views of the Himalayas and beautiful landscape through scattered hamlets and forest of rhododendron and pine. After one and half hour from Chendebji Chorten arrive at a small town known as Trongsa meaning new village. The town mainly consists of fresh Tibetan refugees but the most impressive of all is the Trongsa Dzong. The whole of eastern Bhutan was controlled from this fortress during the mid 17th century. Visitors are not allowed inside the Dzong. Proceed another 2 hours to Bumthang visiting the Chume Weaving Center. Overnight in Bumthang.

 

Day 5 : Bumthang Sightseeing

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Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
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Hotel

Bumthang at an altitude of 2600m, has an individuality that charm its visitors and separates it from other regions. Comprised of four smaller valleys, the deeply spiritual region of Bumthang is shrouded in religious legend. Here tales of Guru Padmasambhava and his re-incarnation known as Tertons still linger in most nooks and corners. It is also known for its woollen material (Yathra) which can be seen hung outside the houses for sale. Sightseeing tour covering: Jakar Dzong, 7th century Jambay Lhakhang, Kurjey monastery, Tamshing and Kunchosum monastery. This sightseeing is a round trip so it is more interesting done on foot. Overnight in Bumthang.

 

Day 6 : Bumthang - Punakha

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Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
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Hotel

Drive back from Bumthang to Punakha/Wangdue (200 km / 7-8 hrs) passing various stops. Enroute sightseeing tour to Gangtey / Phobijkha Valley. East of Wangduephodrang lies the beautiful Phobjikha valley, on the slopes of which is situated the great monastery of Gangtey, established in the 17th Century. The village of Phobjikha lies a few km down from the monastery, on the valley floor. This quite, remote valley is the winter home of black necked cranes, which migrate from the arid plains of Tibet to pass the winter months in a milder climate. Overnight in Punakha.

 

Day 7 : Punakha - Paro

Food
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Accomodation
Hotel

Early breakfast and drive to Paro (150 km / 5 hrs) - The beautiful valley of Paro encapulates within itself a rich culture, scenic beauty and hundred of myths and legends. It is the home of many of Bhutan's oldest temples, monasteries, National Museum and countries only airport. Afternoon Paro sightseeing covering Kyichu Lhakhang - one of the oldest and most sacred shrine of the Kingdom dating back to 7th Century, Drukyel Dzong - with a delightful village nestling at its foothill, was built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal to commemorate his victory over the Tibetan invaders. The glory of Drukgyel Dzong remained even when it was destroyed by fire in 1951. On a clear weather one can see the commanding view of Mount Jumolhari from the village, below the Dzong. Afterward visit Rinpung Dzong - built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the first spiritual and temporal ruler of Bhutan, the Dzong houses the monastic body of Paro, the office of the Dzongda (district administrative head) and Thrimpon (judge) of Paro district. Overnight in Paro.

 

Day 8 : Paro Sightseeing

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Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
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Hotel

Today, be firm to hike to Taksang View Point / Takshang Lhakhang / also called "Tiger's Nest Monastery" - one of the most famous monastery in Bhutan, perched on the side of a cliff 900m above the Paro valley. It is said that Guru Rinpoche arrived here on the back of a tigress and meditated at this monastery, so it is called "Tiger's Nest". This site is recognised as a most sacred place and visited by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in 1646 and now visit by all Bhutanese at least once in their life time. Afternoon visit Bhutanese Farm House - Bhutanese farm houses are very colorful and traditionally built without the use of a single nail. The house looks very big from outside but is quite simple inside. It has normally three storey. The ground floor is always used for cattle while the attic is used to store hay. The families live in the middle floor. The best room is always kept for the family chapel. A visit to a Farm House is very interesting and offers a good glimpse into the lifestyle of a farmer in Bhutan. Overnight in Paro.

 

Day 9 : Paro Sightseeing

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Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Accomodation
Hotel

Day excursion tour to beautiful Chele La Pass / Haa Valley - this beautiful valley opened to visitors only in the past few years and remains a seldom visited destination. The route begins with a slow climb up to Chele La Pass through mixed forest of blue pine, cypress, larch, fir and rhododendron. Slowly the landscape changes to one of alpine pastures with carpets of mountain flowers including Bhutan's national flower - the Blue Poppy. On a clear day at Chele La Pass (3900 m) one can have a panoramic view of the snow-capped Himalayas. Reroute, the winding road descends through pastureland dotted with yaks, to Haa itself where fields of millet, barley, potatoes and wheat cover the valley floor. Unique architecture is reflected in the large farmhouses beautifully adorned with intricately painted cornices, frames and three-tiered windows. Back to hotel in the evening & explore the valley visiting colorful sovenier market place. Overnight in Paro.

 

Day 10 : Tour End

Food
Breakfast

Early breakfast and transfer to the airport for onward journey.

Service Includes

  • All Meals [Breakfast /Lunch/Dinner]
  • Accommodation [Twin Sharing] Single Room Supplement Extra US $: 40 per room  night
  • All transportation within the country including airport transfers
  • Royalty & Govt. Taxes
  • Entrance fees for Museums and Monuments only
  • Visa Fee
  • Airport tax
  • Tourism Development fund
  • Guide
  • Sightseeing

Service Excludes

  • International Airfare and airport taxes.
  • Expenses of personal nature such as bar bills, alcoholic beverages, laundry, telephone s, extra mileage, personal gratuities as tips to guide, porters, drivers etc
  • Personal insurance policy - suggested a comprehensive travel insurance covering tour  flight cancellations, loss of valuables, thefts, illness, accidents and hospitalization
  • Excess baggage
  • Expenses incurred by re-routing, inclement weather, floods, famine, political uptions, strikes, riots and other disturbances
  • Any items and services not mentioned on cost inclusions

Note:  Airfare is not included in the tour price.

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