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Bhutan Gangtey Tour 9Days

  • Punakha Dzong and the blue jacaranda in May
  • 9-day Bhutan Tour Map
  • Bhutan Airport and Paro Dzong
  • Tashichhoe Dzong, Thimphu
  • Bhutan Food
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Highlights:

  • Discover Paro, Thimphu, Gangtey, and Punakha
  • Be motivated with wonderful opportunity to explore urban and rural Bhutan
  • Visit the Dzongs, religious communities, Thangka painting schools, and handiwork centers
  • Relax yourself via a traditional hot stone bath
  • Drink traditional red rice beer with unique local taste
  • Dress in traditional National Attire to take a photo
  • Get 1 Bhutan sim card of 5GB internet access 
  • Culture dance show with dinner
  • Try local archery, which is not only Bhutan's national sports, but also art
8 Nights 9 Days
Tour Code:BTP005
From: USD2970
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Itinerary
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Day1   Arrive in Paro-Thimphu, Bhutan (airport pick-up & hotel check-in, Buddha Dordenma Statue, National Memorial Chorten, Tashichho Dzong)

Fly to Pro International Airport and spend 1 hour transferring to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan with your tour guide. Visit Kuensel Phodrang, National Memorial Chorten, Takin Preserve, Tashichhoe Dzong and a local craft bazaar after checking in your hotel.

Buddha Dordenma Statue (Kuenselphodrang, Buddha Point) is a landmark of Thimphu city and you can have a great view of the Thimphu Valley there. With 51.5m in height, built of bronze and gilded in gold, the statue is famed as the largest sitting Shakyamuni statue in the world and there are 125,000 smaller Buddha statues placed within it. The statue was finished in 2015(built for 9years) to fulfill an ancient prophecy to emanate an aura of happiness and peace all over the world.

National Memorial Chorten is the most visited landmark of Thimphu which was built in 1974 in memory of the Third King, His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuk(the Father of Modern Bhutan) by his mother. Due to the idea of Jigme Dorji, this stupa is dedicated to world peace and prosperity. It is a Tibetan-style chorten with amazing paintings and brilliant sculptures, you can see the classical stupa pattern like the pyramidal pillar crowned by a crescent moon and sun. It is also a good place to meet local Bhutanese people circumambulating the Chorten throughout the day in a clockwise direction for praying.

Motithang Takin Preserve (Takin Sanctuary, Takin Zoo) is a wildlife reserve area for Takin (Budorcas taxicolor), the national animal of Bhutan. Drukpa Kunley (Divine Madman), the famous Tibetan saint, is said to be responsible for the creation of this unique creature called Takin which has the head of a goat and the body of a cow.

Tashichho Dzong (Thimphu Dzong) is located on the right side of the Wangchu River in the northern part of Thimphu city. As the "Fortress of the glorious religion", it houses the throne room of His Majesty the King, government offices, and the central monk body. Thimphu Dzong was initially erected in 1641 and rebuilt by King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck in the 1960s. There are two main entrances in the Tashichho Dzong. One leads to the administrative section to the south and the other one (at the north) leads to the monastic quarter where festivals and dances are performed.

Meals:    Dinner

Accommodation:Thimphu

  • Paro airport runway
    Paro airport runway
  • Snow-capped Mountain around Paro Airport
    Snow-capped Mountain around Paro Airport
Day2  Thimphu ( Institute for Zorig Chusum, Coronation Park, Folk Heritage Museum, Changangkha Lhakhang)

Today, we will do Folk Culture and History Discovery tour in Thimphu. You will visit 4 Thimphu city highlights today: Institute for Zorig Chusum – See local students learning traditional handcrafting skills in this art school. Coronation Park – Take a stroll in this serene and beautiful park to relax yourself. The Folk Heritage Museum (Phelchey Toenkhyim) – This museum houses the relics and documents related to the educational history and ancient Bhutanese people’ daily life. A restored three-storey traditional rammed mud and timber house is the highlights in the museum. Changangkha Lhakhang – You can have a fascinating view of Thimphu Valley there.

Thimphu National Institute for Zorig Chusum (School of Arts and Crafts), established by the Government of Bhutan in 1971, is an institute that nurtures exemplary craftsmanship in Zorig Chusum (13 Arts and Crafts). In the Institute, thirteen skills are taught to students. These thirteen art forms are Traditional Painting (Lhazo), Sculpturing (Jinzo), Wood Carving (Shagzo), Calligraphy (Yigzo), Papermaking (Dezo), Bronze Casting (Lugzo), Embroidery (Tshemazo), Weaving (Thagzo), Carpentry (Parzo), Masonry (Dozo), Bamboo and cane weaving (Tshazo), Gold/Silver Smithy (Trozo), Black smithy (Garzo).

Folk Heritage Museum(Phelchey Toenkhyim) was established on July 28th, 2001 with the initiative of Her Majesty Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck (the Queen Mother of Bhutan). It is set inside a three-storied, 19th-century traditional house and provides visitors with a glimpse of the traditional Bhutanese lifestyle, artifacts from rural households, collection of typical household objects, tools, and equipment. The museum also organizes regular demonstrations of rural traditions, skills, habits, and customs as well as hosts educational programs for children.

Changangkha Lhakhang is an ancient fortress-like temple built in the 12th century which is visited by a large number of locals daily. It is strategically located on a ridge above the city of Thimphu, southeast of Motithang. Traditionally, Bhutan parents used to visit Changangkha Lhakhang to get auspicious names for their newborn babies or blessing for their young kids from the protector known as Deity Tamdrin. The parents usually bring incense, whiskey, biscuits, and sacks of snacks as an offering. You will be lucky to witness an excellent event if your visit coincides with a Buddhist ceremony. The temple also offers an amazing view of Thimphu from the courtyard.

Coronation Park (Centenary Park) is located in Thimphu on the banks of the Wangchu River. It was built to honor King His Majesty Jigme Khesar Namgyal Wangchuck and was inaugurated by Ashi Chimi Yangzom Wangchuck on 26th September 2006. There is a 45 feet tall statue of a walking Buddha. The park has over sixty species of flowers and trees, cute swings and slides, a mini basketball court, and a small sand football ground. It is a popular picnic spot for Bhutan people from young to old.

Meals:Breakfast   Lunch   Dinner

Accommodation:Thimphu

  • Institute for Zorig Chusum
    Institute for Zorig Chusum
  • Institute for Zorig Chusum
    Institute for Zorig Chusum
Day3  Thimphu-Gangtey (Phobjikha Valley, Black-Necked Cranes Center)

Today, you will be transferred to Gangtey, which is considered to be the most beautiful place in Bhutan. The sceneries along the road will not make you feel bored. The far views of 7 giant mountains (around 7000 meters high) and 108 chortens or stupas are the rewards while driving through the Dochu-la pass.

After lunch, visit the Gangtey Valley and Monastery before finally getting to the Black Necked Crane Information Center, where are equipped with high-power telescope and spotting scopes. These facilities allow you to catch every move of the Black Necked Cranes.

Dochula Pass (108 memorial chortens) is a place in honor of 108 Bhutanese Soldiers, there are 108 stupas called the "Druk Wangyal Chortens" representing each soldier's life that was lost in the war of December 2003. The pass is decorated with colorful prayer flags which are symbols of veneration and the best wishes for peace and prosperity for Bhutan. If the weather is good, the Dochula Pass will become the best platform to get breathtaking views of the snow-covered Himalayas.

In Black Necked Crane Information Centre, you can enter the observation room and use the telescope and spotting scopes to watch the Black-necked crane (Grus nigricollis). Every year (Oct. to Feb.), over 300 cranes migrate from Tibet to Bhutan for their winter months in Phobjikha Valley. As an indigenous Himalayan species, the black-necked cranes are the holy bird in the eyes of local people as it is a symbol of longevity. It was helpful for the center to protect and conserve the Black-necked crane and its species since 2003. It is a nice place to know more about the cranes and study their behavior.

Meals:Breakfast   Lunch   Dinner

Accommodation:Gangtey

  • Gangtey Valley
    Gangtey Valley
  • Gangtey Monastery
    Gangtey Monastery
Day4  Gangtey-Punakha (Gangtey Goemba, Chimi Lhakhang)

After visiting Gangtey Monastery, we will drive to Punakha and Visit Chimi Lhakhang. Chimi Lhakhang is dedicated to Lama Drukpa Kuenley, who taught Buddhism in a humorous and dramatic way. He was nicknamed “Divine Madman” due to his behaviors. Local people pray for children in this monastery.

Gangtey Monastery (Gangtey Goemba, Gangtey Gonpa) was first built in 1613 by Pema Thinley, the grandson, and re-embodiment of Pema Lingpa (the reincarnation of Guru Rinpoche, 1450-1521). It is a beautiful temple architecture that stands on the hilltop and is a great spot to view the picturesque Phobjikha Valley. It is said that the Black-necked cranes circle the monastery three times when they arrive and three times when they leave. Each year on Nov. 11, the Black-necked Crane Festival with local songs, dramas, and masked dances is held at the courtyard of Gangtey Goemba to celebrate the arrival of the endangered bird migrating from the Tibetan Plateau.

Chimi Lhakhang (Fertility Temple, Chime Lhakhang) is located on a hillock among the rice field and is a pilgrimage for a childless couple to seek blessings. The monk there blesses the couple with a wooden phallus that is believed to have the power to help the childless couple conceive a child. This temple is associated with the famous Drukpa Kunley (1455-1529, Divine Madman, Tibetan saint), who is famed for using his phallus to guide people to enlightenment and subdue demons. That is why you can see the symbol of phalluses scattered everywhere. You can buy handicraft souvenirs here with the phallic symbol in various colors, shapes, and sizes.

Meals:Breakfast   Lunch   Dinner

Accommodation:Punakha

  • Chimi Lhakhang
    Chimi Lhakhang
  • Chimi Lhakhang
    Chimi Lhakhang
Day5  Punakha (Khamsum Yuelley Namgel Chorten, Punakha Dzong, Limbukha Village)

Leisure Hike and Sightseeing in Punakha. Hike to Khamsum Yuelley Namgel Chorten, which was built in a painting-like Punakha Valley. Local people believe the Chorten can remove negative forces and promote peace, stability and harmony in the changing world. After lunch, visit the Punakha Dzong, a historical site survived 4 fires and 1 earthquake. The Dzong is open for visitors during Punakha festival and in summer months when the monk body moves to Thimphu. Drive to the Limbukha Village after lunch to see the fields of red rice, which is of high medicinal values. You will feel the local people’s love towards peace and tranquility there.

Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten is on the west bank of the Mo Chhu river. After across a suspension bridge, it is about 45mins' walk from the main road to the Chorten(stupa). The stupa was built in 1990 by Ashi Tsering Yangdon Wangchuck(the wife of King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck) to drive off evil forces and bring peace to Bhutan and the world. This Chorten was a typical combination of the art, architecture, and traditions of Bhutan. It took Bhutanese carpenters, painters, and sculptors 9 years to finish this Bhutan-style pagoda. Also, you will get an excellent view of the Punakha Valley and Punakha Dzong there.

Punakha Dzong stands at the junction of two great rivers called the Pho Chu river (father river) and Mo Chu river (mother river). As the palace of great happiness or bliss, it is also known as the most beautiful Dzong in Bhutan. It was first built in 1637 by the founder of Bhutan, Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel, and was played as the administrative center and the seat of the Bhutanese official till the capital city was moved from Punakha to Thimphu in 1955. Now, this Dzong is served as the winter residence for Je Khenpo, Chief Abbot of the Central Monastic Body. In 2011, the Dzong witnessed the royal wedding ceremony of the 5th Bhutan's King, His Majesty Jigme Namgyel Wangchuck to Queen Jetsun Pema. If you visit Bhutan in May, you will be amazed by the breathtaking purple-blue jacaranda blooms outside the fortress.

Limbukha Village is known for its love of peace and tranquility. During the annual festival, the Limbuk men are found carrying peace flags instead of swords and fireworks. We can walk along its red rice fields and have an idea about Bhutan's famous red rice which is supposed to have medicinal value. Also, you may meet local farmers in their tradition Gho or Kira working in the field with a pure smile on their face.

Meals:Breakfast   Lunch   Dinner

Accommodation:Punakha

  • Punakha Dzong
    Punakha Dzong
  • Khamsum Yuelley Namgel Chorten
    Khamsum Yuelley Namgel Chorten
Day6  Punakha-Paro (National Museum of Bhutan, Paro Dzong)

Today you will go back to Paro for a Historical Dzong and Museum Tour, where you entered Bhutan 5 days ago without taking any sightseeing activities. Explore the National Museum, where houses lots of exquisite local artworks and Paro Dzong (Rinpung Dzong), where offers you beautiful river view.

National Museum of Bhutan (Ta Dzong) is famed as Bhutan's tallest building (a cylindrical structure), which is 22 meters (72 feet) high and has 6 floors. It was completed in 1649 as a watchtower on the hill above the Rinpung Dzong (Paro Dzong). It was converted into the National Museum of Bhutan in 1968 with a rich collection of ancient artifacts like pottery, armor, thangkas, masks, stamps, photos, statues, costumes, relics, stone axes, and religious paintings...

Paro Dzong (Rinpung Dzon), the "fortress of the heap of jewels", is built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal and is located near the crystalline Paro Chu (Paro River). Through a traditional wooden cantilever bridge, we can reach it to get panoramic views of the Paro Valley. As the office of the district administration and monastic body of Bhutan, the annual religious festival Paro Tsechu also takes place in its courtyard.

Meals:Breakfast   Lunch   Dinner

Accommodation:Paro

  • National Museum
    National Museum
  • Paro Dzong
    Paro Dzong
Day7  Paro (Taktsang Monastery hike, Kyichu Temple)

Hike on Mountain Path to Taktsang Monastery. Around 2.5 hours’ hiking are needed to reach Taktsang Monastery, the most famous religious relic in Bhutan. It is possible to take a rest at the view terrace, which is located on the half point of the hiking route. You could also visit Kyichu Temple during the hike. The sceneries will not let you down.

Tiger's Nest Monastery (Taktsang Goemba, Takhtsang Lakhang, Paro Taktshang), first built in 1692, is the iconic landmark of Bhutan. As a world cultural heritage, it is sited on the side of a cliff at a height of 900m above the Paro valley. It is said that Guru Rinpoche (a Buddhist saint) rode a tigress to the current site of the monastery and meditated in a cave for 3 years 3 months and 3 days. Now it is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Bhutan and a sacred religious site for Bhutanese to pilgrimage at least once in a lifetime.

Kyichu Lhakhang is one of the oldest monasteries that marks the beginning of Buddhism in Bhutan. It was built in 659AD by King Songtsen Gompo (Tibetan Emperor) as one of the 108 monasteries he made. In 1971 a Guru Temple was added by Her Majesty Azhi Keshang Choden Wangchuck, the wife of the Third King of Bhutan. You can see the original 7th-century Jowo Sakyamuni Statue (the same era as the one in Lhasa's Jokhang Temple) and Chenrezig with 11 heads and 1000 arms there. There is also a magical orange tree outside the courtyard that is said to bear fruits all year round.

Meals:Breakfast   Lunch   Dinner

Accommodation:Paro

  • Taktsang Monastery
    Taktsang Monastery
  • Kyichu Temple
    Kyichu Temple
Day8  Paro (Chele La Pass, Kila Gompa Nunnery)

Drive to the 3988-meter-high Chele La pass where you will have a splendid view of the Himalaya range. You can hike to a view point with an altitude of 4500 meters for an even better view of Mount Jomolhari. At last, hike through rhododendron and hemlock forest towards Kila Gompa to catch your car back to Paro.

Chele La Pass (3988m) is the highest motorable road pass in Bhutan and can be reached by a two hours drive from Paro. As the spot with incredible views of the high Himalayan Mountains, you may get the chance to see Mount Jomolhari(6706m), the most sacred peak of Bhutan, Jichu Drake, as well as the majestic sights of the Tsherimgang Mountains. Also, Chele La Pass is the best site to discover the rare White Poppy native to this region.

Kila Gompa (Kila Nunnery, Kila Goempa nunnery, Chele la Gompa) is located below Chele La at about 3,500m, on the road to Haa (27km from Paro). Established as a meditation site in the 9th century by Drupthob Chhoeje Norbu, Kila Gompa is reputed to be the oldest nunnery in Bhutan. It is also fondly referred to as the ‘second Tiger’s Nest.’ The nunnery has around seven small temples and several retreat huts built into a dizzying sheer cliffside, with 30 to 70 nuns living in self-imposed isolation. You will be surprised to see that their life is so simple and live in serenity and harmony with Mother Nature. It has great views of Paro valley and Jele Dzong.

Meals:Breakfast   Lunch   Dinner

Accommodation:Paro

  • Chele La pass
    Chele La pass
  • Chele La pass
    Chele La pass
Day9  Paro Departure (Depart Bhutan, airport see-off)

Time to say goodbye to Bhutan, the beautiful Himalayan country. Our local representative will meet you at your hotel and send you to the international airport. Happiness is a place, wish you get happiness and great memories from the Bhutantrip with us. We look forward to seeing you again, Tashi Delek!

Note: Please note that some of the sites in the itinerary may change due to season, weather, national holidays, and special events. We maintain the right to alter the itinerary. The changes in itinerary will mainly base on improving your tour experience in Bhutan.

Meals:Breakfast     

Accommodation:/

Price Includes

    • 1.English-speaking local guide
    • 2.Meals listed in the itinerary [Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner]
    • 3.Accommodation in 3-star hotel under twin/dbl bed sharing basis
    • 4.All transportation within the country including airport transfers
    • 5.Entrance fees for Museums and Monuments
    • 6.Bhutan SDF fee: USD 200 per person per night
    • 7.Bhutan visa fee: USD 40 per person

Price Excludes

    • 1.Single room supplement charges
    • 2.Personal expense and Travel Insurance
    • 3.Cost for any services not mentioned in the "PRICE INCLUDES"

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