Paro Festival is one of the biggest and popular festivals in Bhutan. As you embark on this festival trip during the colorful spring season in Bhutan, you will see several flowers in bloom including different types of Rhododendrons, Magnolia, Primula etc. The whether in April is really pleasant with mostly clear sky during the day, and the temperature too is moderate at night or in the morning. It’s one of the best time to travel through Bhutan.
DAY 01: ARRIVE PARO FROM BANGKOK/KATHMANDU
The flight to Paro is one of the most spectacular mountain flights in the world, with a constantly changing panorama of some of the highest mountains on earth. Our Bhutan Life Exposure Tours and Trek representative will meet you at Paro airport exit doors following customs formalities.
After lunch enjoy afternoon sightseeing around Paro, including a visit to the Ta Dzong Museum housing many religious relics, works of art and handicrafts offering a great orientation into Bhutan’s historical, cultural, and religious past. Next, visit the Rimpong Dzong to see the painting of the great saint Milarepa, considered as the master of meditation by the Bhutanese and believed to have attained enlightenment in a lifetime. Dzong’s are large monasteries and district administrative centres, which were once strategic forts.
DAY 02: PARO TSECHU AND LATER TO THIMPHU.
Paro Tsechu is one of the most popular festivals in Bhutan. Featuring dances performed by trained monks and laymen in amazing masks and costumes, Tshechus (festivals) are one of the best ways to experience the ancient living culture of Bhutan.
A Tsechu is a Buddhist festival in honor of Guru Rimpoche, the saint who brought Buddhism to Bhutan. A highlight of the Paro Tsechu is the unfurling of the silk Thangka – so large it covers the face of an entire building and is considered one of the most sacred blessings in the whole of Bhutan. The ‘Thangka, known in Bhutan as a ‘thongdroel’ is a religious picture scroll, and is only exhibited for a few hours at daybreak on the final day of the festival enabling the people to obtain its blessing. This holy scroll “confers liberation by the mere sight of it” (the meaning of the word ‘thongdroel’ in Bhutanese). You will attend the first day of Paro Tsechu, whole day. Towards the evening, you will drive to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan.
DAY 03: THIMPHU
After breakfast, you will drive to Thimphu, the capital city of Bhutan. Thimphu is one of the most beautiful and the largest cities in the Bhutan. Upon arriving Thimphu, you will begin your sightseeing by visiting Buddha Dordenma, the largest Buddha Statue in the world. Buddha Dordenma is located on a ridge above Thimphu Town. The Buddha was constructed in the recent years and was consecrated by the present Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot) of Bhutan.
Then, you will take a short hike from Buddha Point to Changangkha Lhakhang, from where you will be picked up by your car. Next you will drive down to the Takin Zoo (Takin Conservation Center), where you will see the national animal of Bhutan. Takin Zoo is located in a beautiful pine forest and was established under the Royal Command.
Then return to National Memorial Chorten, which is located in the middle of the Thimphu City. The chorten was constructed by Her Majesty, the Queen mother of Bhutan in the memory of His Majesty Third King of Bhutan. Today is the center of devotees to offer prayer at the center. In the afternoon, you will visit Folk Heritage Museum, the museum dedicated to the culture and tradition of Bhutanese society. At the museum, the olden day’s Bhutanese culture and traditions are displayed to the visitors. Then return to National Textile museum, where you can see the beautiful textiles of Bhutan on display and also women weaving the textiles. Then proceed to Traditional Arts and Craft School at Kawajangsa. The school was established to uphold the values of 13 arts and crafts of Bhutan (Zorig Chusum). Students learn the Bhutanese craft and art at the institute. In the evening, you will be visiting the Tashichoedzong, the majestic structure which houses the office of His Majesty the King of Bhutan and also the central monk body.
DAY 04: THIMPHU – PUNAKHA
After breakfast, you will leave Thimphu for the Wangduephodrang/Phobjikha. On your first one hour drive, you will reach to one of the most beautiful passes of Bhutan – Dochula. Dochula has 108 stupas built by Her Majesty, the present Queen Mother of Bhutan in the memory of Royal Bhutan Army. The view from the Dochula is impressive of the mountains in the far ranges.
Then proceed to Chimi Lhakhang, the temple dedicated to the Devine Madman. The temple is considered sacred because of believe that temple bless the childless couple with child. Though, the temple is small in size, there are many amazing things depicting the history of Lama Drukpa Kuenley. Today, your lunch will be served as the picnic lunch, along the Punakha River.
Little drive from Temple will take you to Punakha Dzong. The majestic Dzong between the two rivers, Phochu and Mochu is connected by the traditional bridge over the river. The Dzong was built by the Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal and is considered one of the exemplary architectural structures in Bhutan. You will see monks and nuns around the temple.
DAY 05: PUNAKHA – PARO
From Punakha the road gradually ascends into the balmy valley before climbing up over Dochu La Pass. Then, you will enjoy your lunch at the Thimphu, after that, you will continue your journey to Paro.
DAY 06: PARO (HIKE TO PARO TAKTSHANG)
After breakfast hike to Taktsang Monastery. The walk of approximately 1.5 to 2 hours uphill takes you almost a kilometre above the Paro valley floor (for those who cannot hike we will arrange a horse for transfer up to cafeteria). The view of Taktsang Monastery built on a sheer cliff face 900 meters above the valley floor is a spectacular sight. The Monastery is also an important pilgrim site for the Buddhists. The great Guru Rimpoche is said to have flown here on the back of a tigress when he brought the teachings of the Buddhist Dharma to Bhutan in the 8th Century. Nearby there is a teahouse where you can stop for refreshments before returning to Paro for lunch.
In the afternoon drive to the ruins of the 17th Century Drukgyel Dzong, built to commemorate a victory against invading Tibetans in 1644. In fine weather the towering peak of the sacred Mount Jomolhari (7314m) appears as a stunning backdrop. On the return drive to Paro, visit 7th Century Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the 108 temples constructed by the Tibetan king Songtsen Gampo.
DAY 07: DEPARTURE
- Bhutan Tourist Tariff Royalty & Visa fees.
- All private excursions and transfers in superior air-conditioned vehicle.
- Local English speaking trekking guide/tour leader.
- Cook and camp hand who will take care of camp chores and provide wholesome meals.
- Services of horsemen who will look after the yaks & ponies that transport luggage and camp gear.
- Experienced driver.
- Accommodation in carefully selected, highest standard government approved hotels & guesthouses
- All meals in Bhutan.
- All entrance fees and permits.
- All personal expenses such as bars, beverages, laundry, telephone.
- Tips to guide and driver.
- Medical / Travel Insurance.
- Adventure and sport fees
- Luxury Hotel cost
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