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Bumthang Trek Bhutan Travel

Destination : Thimphu, Punakha, Bumthang, Paro, Trongsa (5/5) | 5 Reviews
  • guide
  • vehicle
  • visas
  • hotel
  • driver
  • walking
  • hikes
  • camping

Description

This is a 3-days trek. The route gives immense opportunities to visit villages and Lhakhangs and hence the name, Bumthang Cultural Trek. Although this is a short trek, this trek is strenuous as it involves a climb to Phephe La (3360 m). This is a popular Trek.

This trek may be experienced with extensions to other places with the increase in number of nights. Or may be combined with any other activities or interests as per the convenience, comfort and requirements of the travelers traveling to Bhutan.

In the comfort and convenience of the travelers and the idea of travel differs among every individual. In this regards we are flexible with the itineraries and are happy to do sightseeing as per the convenience and interests of the travelers. It is not necessary the itinerary has to be followed, except for the change of overnight destination, as this might invite cancellation charges by the hotels during tour and might brings inconveniences for camping and in the arrangements while on Trek. The guests may choose to visit places that may not be in the itinerary, if it is of interest to them. No extra cost shall be applicable for the same except for the entry fees or cost for activities, if not included in the cost.

In case of unforeseen contingencies (natural/man made) or unavailability of hotels, Ideal Travel Creations reserves the right to change the itinerary anytime as may be required to.

Some of the sightseeing places may be closed on government holidays or during breaks. In this regards we shall do other sightseeing in its place.



Outline Itinerary

Day 1. Arrive Paro/ Drive to Thimphu
Day 2. Thimphu Sightseeing
Day 3. Thimphu – Punakha
Day 4. Punakha – Gangtey – Trongsa
Day 5, Trongsa – Bumthang
Day 6, Bumthang Sightseeing
Day 7. Jakar – Nagang Lakhang (Trek Starts)
Day 8. Ngang Lhakang – Ugyenchholing
Day 9. Ugenchholing – Jakar (Trek Ends)
Day 10. Bumthang – Ura – Bumthang
Day 11. Bumthang – Punakha
Day 12. Punakha – Paro
Day 13. Paro
Day 14. Departure


Detailed Itinerary

Driving Distance: 65 Km, Driving Time: 1.5 – 2 Hr, Altitude of Paro: 2280 m, Altitude of Thimphu: 2350 m.

On your journey to Paro, the panoramic views of the Himalayas are sensational, including the Everest and other famous Himalayan Peaks. The approach through the Bhutanese foothills and the landing, including a few steep turns to land at the tiny airstrip of Paro becomes more exciting as you enter Bhutan.

On arrival, you will be received with a warm welcome by your Bhutanese Guide with Tashi khadar and a small gift and drive to Thimphu.

While in Thimphu, explore the Thimphu Town and valley.

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Altitude of Thimphu: 2350 m

After a leisure breakfast, sightseeing in Thimphu, includes;

National Memorial Chorten: This Chorten was built in the honour of the Third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, also known as “The Father of Modern Bhutan”. This Chorten was built in 1974 in a typical Tibetan style. This Chorten is also a center of worship for the people living in Thimphu and contains many religious paintings and tantric statues.

Kuenselphodrang: A place for refreshing with a huge statue of Buddha on the top of the Kuenselphodrang. The area also gives a very good view of the Thimphu valley from the west.

Folk Heritage Museum: Founded by Her Majesty the Queen Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck the museum is one of a kind that portrays the lifestyle of a family in the Thimphu valley in the olden days. This is a three storied, 19th century traditional house giving an insight to the Bhutanese lifestyle, and artifacts from the rural households. The museum contains typical Bhutanese household objects, tools and equipments.

Typical Bhutanese lunch at folk Heritage Restaurant would be a great experience.

After lunch, visit;

The Institute for Zorig Chusum: Students are taught the 13 traditional arts and crafts of Bhutan in this institute.

The Institute of Traditional medicine: Here Medicines are prepared according to the Tradition practices.

Sangaygang view point (2685 meters): to have view of whole Thimphu valley and walk through hundreds of colorful prayer flags that dot the hill overlooking the Thimphu valley.

Takin Preserve Centre: The takin, the national animal of Bhutan can be seen here. This particular animal is found only in the Himalayan region.

In the evening, visit;

Tashichho Dzong (Fortress of the Glorious Religion): A Doom (Blue Stone) Dzong was built on the hill above Thimphu  in 1216 the lama Gyalwa Lhanampa. A few years later Lama Phajo Drugom Shigpo, who brought the Drukpa Kagyu lineage to Bhutan, took over Dohon Dzong. Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal (The one who unified the country) acquired the Dzong in 1641 from the descendants of lama Phajo and renamed it as Trashi Chhoe Dzong. The Dzong is the seat of the national government and the Central Monastic Body, including the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot of Bhutan) at present.

Dinner and overnight in Hotel in Thimphu.

Driving Distance: 76 km, Driving Time: 2.5 – 3 hr, Altitude of Punakha: 1310 m.

After breakfast, drive to Punakha, On the way, visit

Dochula pass: The most known pass in Bhutan, about 30 km drive from the Capital City Thimphu on the way to Wangduephodrang. It is at around 3150 mt  height. On a clear day, spectacular view of the mighty Himalayas mountain ranges can be seen. The pass also has 108 Druk Wangyal Khangzang Chhortens which  is believed brings multi fold merit to all sentient beings and which make the pass a must visit place.

Drive further to Punakha and Visit the chhimi Lhakhang.

Chhimi Lhakhang: This temple is located on the way to Punakha. This temple is also known as the temple of fertility and was built by Lama Drukpa Kuenley in the 15 century. Lama drukpa Kuenley is also known as the Devine Madman.

After Lunch, visit

Punakha Dzong: This Dzong was built by the Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in 1637. It is built at the junction the Pho Chu and Mo Chu Rivers. The annual Punakha Tsechhu( Festival ) is held here. The monk body resides in this dzong in winter.

In the evening free time to walk around Punakha town and valley.

Over night in Hotel in Punakha.

Driving Distance (Punakha – Phobjika/Gangtey) : 78 km, Driving Time: 2- 3 hr, Driving Distance (Phobjika/Gangtey – Trongsa) : 59 km, Driving Time: 2- 3 hr, Altitude of Phobjikha: 2900 m, Altitude of Trongsa: 2300 m

After breakfast, drive to Gangtey.

While in Gangtey, visit the Gangtey Goempa.

Gangtey Goemba- This Monastery overlooks the large green expanse of the Phobjikha Valley. Gyaltse Pema Thinley, the grandson and mind reincarnation of Pema Lingpa founded the Temple in 1613, and Tenzin Legpai Dhendup, the second re-incarnation, built the temple. The present Abbot, Kunzang Pema Namgyal is the ninth re-incarnation.

Then explore the Phobjikha Valley.

The Phobjikha Valley- The Phobjikha is of immense beauty. Exploring the valley is always a great source of joy. Time is never enough to go around. This valley is one of the most beautiful glacial valleys in the Himalayas and the winter place for the endangered Black Necked Cranes.

After lunch, drive to Trongsa.

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Driving distance: 68 km, Driving time: 2 – 3 Hr, Altitude of Bumthang: 2600 m.

After breakfast.

Trongsa Dzong; The most impressive Dzong in Bhutan. The Dzong was built by Chogyal Minjur Tempa, the official who was sent by Zhabdrung to unify Eastern Bhutan and enlarged at the end of the 17th century by Desi Tenzin Rabgay. Trongsa Dzong is the ancestral home of the present Royal Family. The first two hereditary kings ruled Bhutan from this Dzong.

Ta Dzong ; An ancient watch tower. The chapel inside is said to be dedicated to the Trongsa Penlop Jigme Namgyal.

After lunch, drive to Bumthang.  While in Chumey valley in Bumthang, visit the Yathra weaving factory.

Yathra: It is the most famous textile product of Bumthang. The Chumey Valley is known for the beautiful yathra woven by the locals. Yathra is a hand woven fabric made from the wool of sheep or Yak. The wool is first spun into threads and then dyed before they are woven into Yathra with beautiful flower patterns and colours. The Yathra cloth is made into scarves, jackets, table cloths, bags, etc. Most of the women in this valley, especially in Zungye village earn their lively hood by weaving yathra which is supplied to various towns in Bhutan.

Overnight in Hotel in Bumthang.

After breakfast, sightseeing includes;

Jakar Dzong: Literally meaning the Castle of White Bird. The current structure was built in 1667.

Lamey Goemba: A large palace and monastery built in 18th century by Dasho Phuntsho Wangdi.

Jambay Lhakhang: built by King Srongsen Gampo of Tibet. In October one of the most spectacular festival, “Jambay Lhakhang Drup” is staged here.

Chakhar Lhakhang:  Literally meaning the Iron Castle, the original palace was made of Iron and hence the name “Chakhar”.

Kurjey Lhakhang: Named after body print of Guru Rimpoche.

After lunch, signtseeing includes:

Tamshing Lhakhang: Literally meaning the Temple of the good message, established in 1501 by Pema Lingpa.

Then, free time to explore Bumthang valley.

Overnight in Hotel in Bumthang.

Altitude of Camp site: 2900 meters, Walking time: 6 hours.

The trek route follows the Chamkhar Chu river, coming across many villages and temples. This is a very easy and relaxing day.

Arrive at the village and camp.

Altitude of campsite: 2850 meter, Walking time 7-8 hour.

The trail ascends gradually towards the Phephe la pass, going through the forest of junipers, until you arrive at the pass at an altitude 3340 meters. After the pass descend to Tang Valley, finally arriving at Ugyenchholing village.

Camp by the side of the river.

Morning walk up to the Ugyenchholing dzong and the surrounding village.

Then drive to Jakar following the Tang chhu river until you arrive at the main road junction.

On the way visit the Membertsho Lake, where Terton Pema Lingpa, the reincarnation of guru Padmasambava is supposed to have discovered religious treasure in the 12th century. This lake is very sacred and is visited by many Bhutanese during auspicious days to offer butter lamps.

Overnight in hotel.

Driving Distance: 50 kms (one way), Driving time; 2.5  hrs(one way)

After breakfast, excursion to Ura Valley.  Enjoy the remote Ura valley, meet the weavers and villagers.   In the evening drive back to Bumthang.

Dinner and overnight in Hotel.

Driving Distance: 197 Km, Driving time; 7 – 8 Hr, Altitude of Punakha: 1310 m.

After breakfast, drive to Punakha.  In the evening free time to relax.

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Driving Distance: 135  km, Driving Time: 5 – 5 Hr, Altitude of Paro: 2280 m

After breakfast, drive to Paro.  On the way spend sometime in the Royal Botanical Park.

Royal Botanical Park – Situated at an altitude range of 2100 meters – 3800 meters, the park covers an area of 47 square kilometers and is located between Thimphu and Punakha. The park contains a rich biodiversity of flora and fauna and features a huge species of plants and animals including endangered species such as Himalayan yew, native Rhododendron, Royal Bengal Tiger, Musk Deer, Red Panda, Blood pheasants and Himalayan Monal. You can also find Tetracentron (an ancient relict angiosperm with no vessel in its trunk) in the park. The park has 14.5 km of trails for eco trek for cycling and walking and one of the main attractions is the rhododendron garden including a picnic spot with children’s play ground.

Drive further to Paro.

After lunch, visit

Rinpung Dzong:  Meaning “fortress of the heap of jewels”. The dzong now serves as the administrative and judicial seat of Paro district and residence for around 200 monks of Paro and was built at the same time of Drukgyel Dzong.The famous Paro tshechhu (festival) is held here in spring.

Ta Dzong: It overlooks the Rimpung Dzong and was built in 1951 as a watch tower. This dzong is Round, more like parts of an European castle. The Dzong was established as the National Museum of Bhutan since 1967 and holds fascinating collection of arts, relics, religious thangkha,etc.

Dinner and overnight in hotel.



After breakfast, excursion to Taktshang Monastery.

Taktsang Monastery (Tiger’s Nest): Paro Taktshang is one of the country’s most famous tourist attractions. The trail to the monastery climbs through beautiful pine forest, and an occasional grove prayer flags. It is said that Guru Padmasambhava, the tantrum mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan, came in the form of form of Dorje Droloe riding a flying tigress to subdue the evil and demon that were obstructing the spread of Buddhism in the Himalayas.

After lunch, visit a village and a farm house and learn about the rural Bhutanese way of life. Relax in a traditional hot stone bath in the farm house.  The hot stone bath helps relaxing and is said to have medicinal values.

Hot stone bath: The traditional Bhutanese hot stone bath, known as Dotsho in local language has been practiced in Bhutan for centuries as a medicinal soak. Many Bhutanese believe that the bath helps in curing joint pains, helps in relaxing and other medical problems. River stones are heated and then put in water to heat the water; sometime medicinal herbs are added to the water before it is ready for the soak.

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

After breakfast, drive to Airport and farewell.


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