Western Bhutan Tour
Paro (altitude 2300m)
This beautiful valley is home to many of Bhutan’s oldest monasteries and temples. The country’s only airport is in Paro. The valley is also home to Mt Jhomolhari (7,300 meters) situated at the northern end of the valley whose glacier water forms the Pa Chu (River) flowing through the valley.
The following are some of the prominent places to visit in Paro.
Drugyel Dzong: the fortress in ruin, built in 17th century by great drukpa master Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. On clear day one can see Mt. Jhomolhari from the village below the Dzong.
Rinpung Dzong.: this fortress of the heap of jewels “is the venue for the annual Paro Tshechu held every spring.
Ta Dzong: meaning ‘watch tower’ of Paro Dzong in the 17th century has been converted to the national museum of Bhutan by the 3rd king in 1968.
Taktshang Monastery: the Taktshang “tiger‘s lair” is perched on the side of a cliff at a height of 900m above the Paro valley. The hike up to the monastery takes about 2 hours from the car-point. There is a lookout point and a cafeteria on your hike to this sacred place
Kyichu Lhakhang: This monastery dates back to the 7th century and is one of the oldest and the most sacred.
Nishioka Chortern: The stupa on the hill top of Bondey village built in memory of the late Dasho Nishioka who served the people of Bhutan for 28 years in the filed of agriculture . Due to his great contribution in field of agriculture, the people of Bhutan, especially of Paro village are benefited a lot.
Thimphu (altitude 2400m)
Thimphu is a busting town on the banks of the Thimphu Chu and set gloriously in the hills of the Thimphu valley. It is home to the Bhutanese royal family,Government and to several foreign missions and development project. Bhutan only golf course a nine- hole circuit is situated next to the magnificent Tashichodzong.
Tashichho Dzong : The ‘fortress of the glorious religion’ houses the throne room of his Majesty the king , the main secretariat building and the central monk body, Its courtyard is open to visitor during the off- office hours, Thimphu Tsechu and when the monk body moves to its winter residence in P Punakha.
Memorial Chorten: This stupa was built in 1974 in memory of the late majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuck.The stupa at present is considered as the worship place for the people of Bhutan and each year on the 2nd of may, people around Bhutan come in this place to pay respect on his death anniversary and this day in the Bhutanese calendar is observed as the government holiday for a day.
Simtokha: Five kilometers from Thimphu town, on a lofty ridge stands Simtokha Dzong the oldest fortress in the kingdom. The dzong now houses the monastic school.
The Institutes for Zorig Chusum: The institutes’ of 13 traditional arts and crafts, this is the school where children of different backgrounds come together to learn the old age arts and crafts of Bhutan.
National library: Bhutan national library is located close to institutes of Zorig Chusum and contains Bhutan history in the form religious and historical literature.
The Folk Heritage Museum: Founded by her majesty the Queen Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuk, the museum is one of a kind that portrays the lifestyle of a genteel family in the Thimphu valley in the olden days.
The Institutes of Traditional Medicine: The complex has the traditional medicine production unit, the treatment hospital and the medicine college.
Weekend market: Every Saturday and Sunday most of the Thimphu population congregates on the bank of the river where the weekend market is held, here villager from the valley and other nearby places comes to sell their agriculture product.
Option tour: For the spiritually inclined and those that prefer short treks there are various monasteries and temples in and around the Thimphu.
Punakha (altitude 1350m)
Punakha served as the capital of Bhutan until 1955. It is the winter seat of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot) and the monk body. It has a temperate climate and its rich fertile valley is fed by the Pho Chu and Mo Chu rivers.
Druk Wangyal Chortens at Dochula: On the way to Punakha from Thimphu is the Dochula pass from where a beautiful panoramic view of the Himalayan mountain range can been seen, especially on clear winter days. The beauty of these places is further enhanced by the Druk Wangyal Chortens- 180 stupa built by eldest Queen Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuk.
Punakha Dzong: The Punakha dzong was built by the Shabdrung in 1637. It stands majestically at the junction of the two rivers- Pho Chu and Mo Chu. The old capital of Bhutan is still the winter home for the monk body. The common festival known as Punakha Dromche is popular among the Bhutanese due to its historic presentation by the dance from both the monastic school and local village. After witnessing the Dromche Festival for almost 3 days, peoples will have rough ideas of the ancient Bhutan and its legend.
Khamsum Yuley Namgyal Chorten: Built by her majesty the Queen Ashi Tshering Yangdon Wangchuk this Chorten is a splendid example of fine Bhutanese architecture.
Chimmi Lhakhang: The temple of fertility. A short hike to this temple leads through the paddy field of small and clustered lobesa village.
Wangdi Phodrang (altitude 1350)
This town is located south of Punakha and is the last town before central Bhutan. The district is famous for its fine bamboo work and its slate and stone carving.
Wangdi Phodrang Dzong: built in 1638 by great Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, to further strengthening the western Bhutan and in unifying the central Bhutan.
Gantey Gompa / Phobjikha: The valley of Phobjikha is well known as the winter home of the black neck cranes. Bhutan is home to around six hundred black necked cranes with Phobjikha begin one of the popular places that the bird migrate in the winter month from the Tibetan plateau.These elegant and shy birds can be observed from early November to end of March. Overlooking the Phobjikha valley is the Gantey Gompa .This is an old Monastery that dates back to the 15th century.
- Accomodation: Yes
- Activities:Cultural Tour
- Total Duration:10 Days
- Best Time:Jan- March / Aug - Dec
- Group Size:2 and Above