Best of Bhutan Tour

(2 customer reviews)
Tour is rated as #6 in destination Bhutan
Duration 📅

6 Days

Flights ✈️

International flights are NOT included

Airport Transfer 🧳

Drop-Off, Pickup

Accommodation 🛏️

3 Star Hotel

Tour Size 🧑🏻‍🤝‍🧑🏻

Small Group

Language 🌐

English

Visa 🛂

Visa is Included

Transport 🚍

Airconditioned Vehicle

Difficulty 🚥

Easy

Inclusions

Bhutan Visa Fee is included. Visa will be arranged for you.
All ground transportations including round trip airport transfers
Entrance fees to parks, museums, and other national monuments
Bottled mineral water in the car
Light snacks between meals wherever necessary
Tour Guide
5xBreakfast
5xLunch
5xDinner

From: $1,425.00

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💎 Why we love it ?

On this 6 Days 5 Nights adventure through the hearts of 3 western districts of Bhutan, you’ll go on nature hikes and appreciate the pristine natural environment, explore and ramble through rural villages and gain firsthand experience on its culture and people. Come visit Bhutan with us and explore one of the most unique and extraordinary countries in the world. Bhutan is one of the most beautiful and least traveled countries in the world and the last living Vajrayana Buddhist Kingdom. Bhutan has both natural beauty and cultural wealth so carefully preserved and passed down from generation to generation, that visitors are not surprised to hear its nickname ‘Kingdom of Happiness’.

🏁 Tour Itinerary: Best of Bhutan Tour

Day 1: Arrive Paro International Airport / Transfer to Thimphu (2334m)

After receiving you at the Paro International Airport, our guide and driver will escort you on your first adventure in the Kingdom of Bhutan. Visit the National Museum of Bhutan established in 1968. It is housed in the 17th-century watchtower called Paro Ta Dzong (Ta Dzong means “watchtower fortress”) built-in 1649. It displays hundreds of ancient Bhutanese artifacts and artworks including traditional costumes, armor, weaponry, and handcrafted implements for daily life. The collection at the National Museum preserves a snapshot of the rich cultural traditions of the country.
We then drive to Thimphu, the only capital city in the world without traffic lights and home to some 115,000 residents and the main center of commerce, religion, and government.
Distance 55km | Driving time 1.5-hours | Thimphu altitude 2334m | Paro altitude 2200m
On arrival in Thimphu, visit the Weaving Center to learn about the weaving culture and tradition of Bhutan. Weaving is an integral component of Bhutanese culture. Not so long ago, it was common to see one member of the family weaving for the entire family. We then drive to visit the magnificent 169ft tall bronze statue of Lord Buddha located on a hilltop overlooking the Thimphu valley. It was built in 2015 to celebrate the 60th birth anniversary of the Fourth King His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck and also to usher in world peace.
If time permits, you can visit Changlimithang Archery Range to witness the game of archery if the match is in progress. You will see archers singing and dancing each time the target is hit from a whopping distance of 145m. Archery is the national sport of Bhutan.
🏚️ Accommodation: Overnight at Kuenphen Rabten Resort, Damisa, or Hotel Amodhara.

 

Day 2: Hike to Tango Monastery & Sightseeing in Thimphu

After breakfast, drive about 14km towards the north of Thimphu city and hike to one of the important religious centers in the Kingdom, the 13th-century Tango Monastery. There is also a monastery called Cheri located on a mountainside in the neighborhood. Hiking to Tango is much easier as most part of the footpath is paved and the uphill ascent is not as steep. Following the trail through the forests, the walk uphill takes about 1.5 hours at a slow pace. Tango Monastery was founded in 1222 by the Tibetan saint Phajo Drugom Zhigpo, who first established the Drukpa Kagyu School of Buddhism in Bhutan and subsequently became the state religion. The present form of the monastery was built later in 1689 by the Tenzin Rabgye, the 4th Temporal ruler of Bhutan.
After the hike, drive back to the town where traditional lunch will be served at the Folk Heritage Museum Restaurant. After lunch, visit the National Institute of Zorig Chusum (Zorig Chusum means 13 Traditional Arts & Crafts) was established to promote and preserve the thirteen traditional arts and crafts of Bhutan and to facilitate increased access in learning Zorig skills by Bhutanese youths. Many of these traditional arts and crafts are declining with modernization. The thirteen arts and crafts are categorized as Shing Zo (woodwork), Dho Zo (stonework), Par Zo (carving), Lha Zo (painting), Jim Zo (sculpting), Lug Zo (casting), Shag Zo (woodturning), Gar Zo (blacksmith), Troe Zo (ornament making), Tsa Zo (bamboo work), De Zo (paper making), Tsem Zo (tailoring, embroidery, and applique) and Thag Zo (weaving). These thirteen arts and crafts are an essential part of Bhutan’s cultural heritage that has been practiced from time immemorial.
Just nearby is the National Library & Archives of Bhutan considered a national treasure and a fundamental source of Bhutanese history, religion, medicine, arts, and culture.
From there we drive to visit the craft bazaar along the main streets of Thimphu and if time permits, visit the Postal Museum to get insights into Bhutan’s postal history and even get stamps printed with your own photo. This is a must-visit especially if you are interested in stamp collection and philatelic products.
🏚️ Accommodation: Overnight at Kuenphen Rabten Resort, Damisa, or Hotel Amodhara.

 

Day 3: Thimphu / Transfer to Punakha valley (1200m)

After an early breakfast, transfer to Punakha valley via the sacred mountain pass Dochula. About 45 min drive from Thimphu towards Punakha is a mountain pass at an altitude of 3,150 meters above sea level from where you can see, on a clear day, some of the highest peaks of Bhutan. From Dochu La Pass, we continue driving towards Punakha, passing through some villages the elevation drops gradually, and the road winds through the pine trees. As you reach the lower subtropical valley, you will feel the drastic change in altitude from 3,150m just an hour and a half ago to the subtropical valley at 1,200m.
Just about 11km before reaching proper Punakha town, visit Chimi Lhakhang, a 15th-century temple located on a gentle hilltop near the village of Sopsokha. To reach the temple, you have to walk 20 – 30 minutes through beautiful terraced paddy fields and traditional farmhouses. Lunch will be served at a nearby restaurant.
After lunch, we drive to Punakha and visit the historic Punakha Dzong originally known as Pungthang Dewa Chenpoi Phodrang, meaning the “Palace of Great Bliss”. It was built in 1637 AD by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel, the Tibetan Buddhist master who came to Bhutan in 1616 and founded the nation-state of Bhutan. Punakha Dzong is the second oldest and second-largest Dzong in Bhutan. The sacred wall paintings and main artifacts inside the dzong, the intricate woodwork, and the architectural structure of the dzong display fine examples of Bhutanese arts and craftsmanship which continues to influence Bhutanese architecture to this day. From there walk to Bhutan’s longest suspension bridge that runs over the Phochu (male river), one of the two glacial-fed rivers which form confluence near the Punakha Dzong.
If time permits, visit Sangchhen Dorji Lhundrup Buddhist College for Nuns located on a peaceful hilltop overlooking partial Punakha valley. You can meet and mingle with peace-loving nuns. You may also spend a quiet spiritual moment inside the temple.
Distance from Thimphu – Punakha 74km | Driving time 3-hours | Punakha altitude 1200m
🏚️ Accommodation: Overnight at Meri Puensum Resort or Namgay Zam Homestay.
Experience the typical life of a Bhutanese family living in rural Bhutan.

 

Day 4: Sightseeing in Punakha valley / Transfer back to Paro valley (2200m)

After an early breakfast, you will go for a 2.5-hour round trip hike to Khamsum Yuelley Namgyel Chorten. Located on a mountain ridge overlooking the picturesque Punakha valley, this wonderful Buddhist structure is a fine example of Bhutanese architecture used in building temples, monasteries, and temples. It takes only about 20 minutes to drive from the main town of Punakha to the nearest road point. From there you cross a suspension bridge over the Punakha Mochu River (female river) and the trail takes you through terraced rice fields and a short climb before reaching the sacred site. Normally the round trip hike takes about 2.5 hours. The view below is stunning with the glacial-fed Mochu river snaking through the fertile valley of Punakha. After the hike, return to the road head, and drive to Dochula Pass for lunch.
On arrival in Dochula Pass, enjoy lunch at the Dochula Cafe. After lunch ff you are interested, you can do a short easy hike to Tashigang Gonpa from Dochula Pass. This wonderful hiking takes you downhill through pristine forests of Juniper, Hemlock, blue pine among many others. It offers a great opportunity to photograph nature and landscapes. You’ll also come across different species of birds along the trail. The hike downhill takes about an hour to reach the Gonpa.
Tashigang Gonpa is a monastery located on top of a mountain below Dochula Pass. It was built in 1768 by the 12th Abbot of Bhutan, Je Kunga Jamtsho. The monastery houses priceless relics and several statues of past Abbots of Bhutan. Today, the monastery serves as a monastic school for dozens of monks. You’ll have an opportunity to visit the monastery and get blessings. The driver will be waiting here at the monastery. From here, continue driving to Paro which will take about 2 hours.
Distance from Punakha – Paro 115km, Driving time 3.5-4 hours, Paro altitude 2,200m
🏚️ Accommodation: Overnight at Khangkhu Resort or Bhutan Mandala Resort.

 

Day 5: Hike to the famous Tiger’s Nest (Paro Taktsang)

After early breakfast, you will hike to the famous Paro Taktsang popularly known as Tiger’s Nest. Taktsang monastery is located on the face of a sheer rock cliff some 800 meters above the valley floor. The round-trip hiking normally takes about 4-5 hours for most visitors. You can hike at your own pace but we recommend you start early before the sun gets stronger. Oneway horse riding is available on your way up to the mid-point (Taktsang Viewpoint Cafeteria) for a fee of about USD20 per horse person. Horse riding is not recommended on your way down and most owners will not allow it.
The history of Taktsang is associated with the visit of Guru Padmasambhava (known as Guru Rinpoche), the Indian saint who came to Bhutan and introduced Tantric Buddhism in the 8th century AD. It is believed that Guru Padmasambhava flew into the cave from Kurtoe Khenpajong in eastern Bhutan, riding on a tigress. It is not only considered as one of the most sacred pilgrimage sites in Bhutan but also “a must-visit” place for tourists. After the hike, descend back to the base and drive to Paro and spend some leisure time exploring the town.
Later in the evening, visit one of the beautiful farmhouses for authentic home-cooked local cuisine. You can participate in preparing some of the popular local dishes. If interested in a relaxing home spa, you can soak in a traditional hot stone bath believed to have therapeutic, revitalizing benefits for an additional fee of about $15 per person, as charged by the owner.
🏚️ Accommodation: Overnight at Khangkhu Resort or Bhutan Mandala Resort.

 

Day 6: Departure from Paro International Airport

After breakfast, depending on your flight departure time you will be transferred to Paro International Airport for your onward journey.

2 reviews for Best of Bhutan Tour

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  1. JohnT

    We entered Bhutan on March 4th of 2020 and the country closed its border the very next day following the first detection of COVID-19 case. We felt so relieved and extremely lucky to have entered the country just before the closure of border. Our guide and driver took special care of us making sure that we were comfortable and enjoying the entire trip.

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  2. Thorsten

    Highly satisfied with the services of Bhutan Acorn. I booked Bhutan only 1 week before actually going there but Visa was handled most professional and obtained within 3 days. My personal guide Sonam provided lots of valuable stories and background information about country, people, buddhism and other aspects. I enjoyed a trip that consisted of hiking, culture, religion, good bhutanese food and a good portion of flexibility. An incredible experience and I will be back – with Bhutan Acorn again. Thanks a lot!

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    Terms & Conditions

    Cancellation Policy

    • Free cancellation for up to 30 days prior to departure date
    • 20% will be charged if cancelled 16-29 days prior to departure date
    • 30% will be charged if cancelled 08-15 days prior to departure date
    • 50% will be charged if cancelled 03-07 days prior to departure date
    • No refund will be available if No Show or cancelled 0-02 days prior to departure date

    Flights

    The flight tends to get fully booked months ahead especially during the peak season. We highly recommend you book flights a few months ahead of your departure date. We can help with the arrangement of flights to and from Bhutan. There are only two airlines operating in and out of Bhutan:

    • Drukair, the national flag carrier of Bhutan (www.drukair.com.bt) operates from and to these cities/International Airports: Bangkok, Bagdogra, Bodhgaya, Dhaka, Delhi, Guwahati, Kathmandu, Kolkata, Singapore.
    • Bhutan Airlines, a private airline introduced in 2011 (www.bhutanairlines.bt) operates from and to these cities/International Airport: Bangkok, Delhi, Kolkata, Kathmandu

    Other Important Information

    • Airport pick-up and drop-off time will be coordinated depending on your flight timings
    • For the purpose of processing a visa, you must send us a clear passport copy of all the participants after you book the tour. A whole biodata page including the machine-readable zone must be seen clearly. It can be either scanned or just a mobile photo shot as long as it is clear and legible. Passports should have a validity of at least SIX MONTHS from the day you depart from Bhutan.
    • You’ll receive a copy of your approved e-Visa Clearance letter in PDF format within 3-4 business days from the day the visa application is submitted. You MUST print a copy of this letter and present it at the check-in counter of the airline flying into Bhutan. Without the proof of an e-Visa Clearance letter, you may be denied boarding the flight to Bhutan. The actual visa will be stamped on your passport on arrival at the Paro International Airport.
    • Child(ren) below 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult
    • All participants between the age of 13 – 17 years old must send us a valid copy of the Student Photo ID Card/document after booking the tour. Discounts are already applied in the price. Those who do not have a valid student photo ID Card will have to pay the price difference.
    • All our tour guides speak very fluent English. Guides speaking other major languages (Chinese, Japanese, French & German) can be arranged at an additional fee of $120 per day.
    • You must let us know prior to your arrival if you have any dietary restrictions/preference.

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