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Tour ID: 24
Tour type: Forthcoming Tours

Tour Category: International

Tour Description:

SERENE  BHUTAN

DETAILED ITINERARY

Delhi, Paro (2 + 1), Thimpu (1 + 1), Punakha (1) Delhi

 

Day 01 :: Arrive Paro (By Druk Air) (D): Your Guide will receive you at the Airport. After Tea, drive to the ruins of the Drukgyal Dzong 16 km up the valley built in 1647 by the great Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, father and unifier of medieval Bhutan, the Dzong was destroyed by accidental fire and left in ruins as an evocative reminder of the great victories it was built to commemorate. Explore the ramparts and on a clear day experience an unforgettable view of Mt. Jhomolhari (7,314 m). On the way back, visit Kichu Lhakhang, built in 659 A.D by the Tibetan king Srongsen Gampo. Dinner and over night in Hotel in Paro.


Day 02 :: Paro - Excursion to Taktsang Monastery (B,L,D):

A very special day, with an excursion to view the spectacular Taktsang (Tiger's Nest) Monastery - After breakfast a short drive takes us to Satsam Chorten, from there a 2 hour trek till the viewpoint point of the monastery. The trail climbs through beautiful pine forest, many of the trees festooned with Spanish moss, and an occasional grove of fluttering prayer flags. We stop for a rest and light refreshments at the Taktsang Jakhang (cafeteria) and then walk a short distance until we see, clearly and seemingly within reach, Taktsang monastery. The primary Lhakhang was built around Guru Rimpoche’s meditation cave in the 1684 by the Penlop of Paro Gyaltse Tenzin Rabgay. This incredible monastery clings to the edge of a sheer rock cliff that plunges 900 meters into the valley below. Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava, the tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan, flew here on the back of a flying tiger, Dorji Drolo, said to be his favourite consort.

NOTE : Those opting for a horse ride instead will have to hire horses at an additional cost of Rs 1000 each. Those opting out of this trek, will be taken for a drive in the coach to adjoining areas of Satsam Chorten.

After Lunch, visit Ta Dzong (built in 1656 and renovated in 1968), an ancient watchtower, which now houses the National Museum. Below the museum is the Paro Rimpung Dzong (literally meaning “Heap of Jewels”, built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the centre of civil and religious authority in this valley. A short walk takes you to the base of the dzong and across a traditional cantilevered, covered bridge. In the evening, drive to Thimphu (65 Kms – 1 hr). Dinner and over night in Paro.


Day 03 ::Thimpu Sightseeing (B,L,D):

The day begins with a visit to the National Memorial Chorten (1974) built in honour of our late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk and the Dupthop Lhakhang one of the few surviving nunneries in Bhutan. We then visit the National Library, stocked with ancient Buddhist manuscripts, and the Painting School where traditional art is still kept alive through instructions in the art of painting Thangkas (sacred Buddhist religious scrolls).

Other highlights include a visit to the Tashichho Dzong, seat of the national government and the Central Monastic Body, including the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot of Bhutan). We drive to Simtokha Dzong; the oldest Dzong of Bhutan built by Shabdrung in 1627 and finally visit the Handicrafts Emporium followed by shopping for souvenirs in the shops of Thimphu. Over night in Thimpu.


Day 04 :: Thimpu - Punakha (D):

After breakfast, check out and drive to Punakha via Dochula pass. If the weather is clear, we stop for a while at Dochula pass to view Higher Himalayas. On the way, visit Chime Lhakhang, which was built by Lama Drukpa Kuenley. He subdued the demons with his “ Magical Thunder bolt”. The Temple is also known as “the Temple of Fertility”.While in Punakha, visit Punakha Dzong which was built in 1637 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal  and is situated between Pho Chu (Male River)  and Mo Chu(Female River). The Dzong was named Druk Pungthang Dechen Phodrang. For many years until the time of the second king, it served as the seat of the Government. The construction of the Dzong was foretold by Guru Rimpoche, who predicted, “…a person named Namgyal will arrive at a hill that looks like an elephant”. There was a smaller building here called Dzong Chu (Small Dzong) that housed a statue of Buddha. It is said that Shabdrung ordered the architect, Zowe Palep, to sleep in front of the statue, while Palep was sleeping, the Shabdrung took him in his dreams to Zangtopelri and showed him the palace of Guru Rimpoche. From his vision, the architect conceived the design for the new Dzong, which in keeping with the tradition, was never committed to paper. The Dzong was named Druk Pungthang Dechen Phodrang (Palace of Great Happiness). The war materials captured during the battle with Tibetans are preserved here. Punakha is still the winter residence of Je-Khenpo and King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk convened the new national Assembly here in 1952.

After Lunch, Excursion to Khamsung Yulley Namgyal Choling Monastery. Dinner and overnight in Punakha.


Day 05 :: Punakha - Thimphu (B,L,D):

After  breakfast, check out and drive to Thimphu. After lunch, visit Folk Heritage Museum and then later undertake an excursion to Cheri Monastery. Overnight in Thimphu.

Day 06 :: Thimphu - Paro & Chelela Excursion (B,L, D):

After breakfast, check out and drive to Paro. On arrival, proceed for an excursion to Chelala (30 kms). Overnight in Paro.


Day 07 :: Paro - Depart for Delhi  (B):

Early morning, check out and drive to Paro Airport to board the flight back.

 End of Tour

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