The Bhutan Dragon Kingdom Tour offers the best of Bhutan’s history, culture and nature. The tour lets you discover Dzongs (Bhutan’s medieval fortresses), sacred Buddhist monasteries, traditional museums, cities, as well as lifestyle of Bhutanese people. We will visit some of the most famous and ancient monasteries and fortresses including Taksang Monastery, Tango Monastery, Paro Dzong and Simtokha Dzong. We will spend time sightseeing around the three cities of Paro, Punakha and Thimpu.
We will also encounter many rare wildlife and vegetation on our journey with superb views of popular Chelila and Chomlohari mountains.
Kathmandu - Paro – Thimphu (Drive – 1 hr)
Fly from Kathmandu to Paro on a Druk Air flight which offers the most fascinating aerial views of the Himalayas including Everest and Kanchendzonga. At first glimpse, the Bhutanese landscape will mesmerize you with its green rolling mountains, river valleys, waterfalls and the great snowcapped Himalayan peaks.
The flight takes about 1 hour to arrive at Paro Airport. We will stop at Paro for Lunch and then drive to Thimphu. In the evening, we will use our free time to explore the city. Overnight in a hotel in Thimphu.
Sightseeing in Thimphu
After early breakfast, we will visit the National Library to see ancient Buddhist manuscripts and traditional art school. The Traditional Medicine Institute showcases ancient Bhutanese practices of making medicine.
We will further visit Handicraft Emporium, an art and textile center, Bhutanese traditional paper making factory, the Memorial chorten built in the memory of the late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck and 15th century Changangkha monastery.
After lunch you will hike to Tango Monastery. The trail up to Tango is a climb of 280 meters which takes about an hour. Stay overnight at hotel in Thimpu.
Thimphu - Punakha (Drive – 3 hr)
Today we will go on a morning drive to Punakha via Simtokha Dzong. The trail takes us through the beautiful pine forest and rural villages as we close in on the mountains on the horizon. It is at reaching Dochula Pass (10,500 feet) that views of the Himalayas become spectacular.
Punakha used to be the capital of Bhutan until 1955 and is one of the best places to explore and learn about medieval Dzongs. Among them Punakha Dzong is one of the most important in the kingdom situated in the middle of two rivers (Pho chu and Mo chu).
After lunch you will hike to the beautiful Khamsum Yuelley Namgyal Chorten, dedicated to the Fifth King of Bhutan. The Chorten built to remove negative forces and to provide peace, stability and harmony, took eight and a half years to build. Overnight at hotel in Punakha.
Punakha – Paro (Drive – 4 hr)
Morning walk to Chimi Lhakhang Chorten. Built in 1499 by the 14th Drukpa, Ngawang Choegyel, the site was once blessed by the famous ‘divine madman’, Drukpa Kunley,. The chorten is a pilgrim site, especially for women who wish for fertility.
After lunch we will drive to Paro. Overnight in a hotel in Paro.
Sightseeing in Paro
Today we will go sightseeing in and around Paro. Our first stop is the Taktsang monastery or Tiger’s nest. The climb up to the top of the Monastery will take around three hours. It was here that Guru Padmasambava landed on the back of a tiger in the 8th century, and mediated for three months. The monastery took its present modern shape in 1684.
Further, we will visit the old fort ruins of the Drukgyal Dzong. The dzong was destroyed by fire and left in ruins as an evocative reminder of the great victories it was built to commemorate. On a clear day you could see the Mt. Jhomolhari (7314metres/24000 feet) on the horizon.
Built in 1656, Ta Dzong is an ancient watchtower, which now houses the National Museum. This unusual round building is believed to be in the shape of a conch shell.
Paro Rimpung Dzong, literally meaning “Heap of Jewels”, was built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, and represents the finest example of Bhutanese architecture.
Our final tour takes us to Kichu Lhakhang which was built in 659 A.D by the Tibetan king Srongsen Gampo. This Monastery is one of the 108 monasteries built across the Himalayan region by the Tibetan King to subdue the Demons living the Himalayan region. The rest of the monasteries lie in other neighboring countries.
Paro - Kathmandu
You will take morning flight to Kathmandu from Paro Airport.