The Blissful West (6 days)

The Charming West– The Blissful West  –

Trip Duration: 6 days, 5 nights
Destinations: Paro, Thimphu & Punakha
Max. Altitude: 3,120m/10,240 ft
Best Season: March to May and September to November
Meal: Full board (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
Accommodation: Government approved 3 stars hotels and above
Transportation: 4 wheel drive – suvs, tour vans & mini buses

Note: Use this as a general guide to get an idea of the tour. Do keep in mind that there will be further customization on the given itinerary, depending on the season, your interests, group size and your preferred duration of the tour.

Tour Overview

The Blissful West is an exhilarating tour giving full insight of the art & architecture, tradition & culture of the Dragon Kingdom. The tour visits the prime tourist locations in western Bhutan such as Paro, Thimphu (Capital of Bhutan) and the old capital of Bhutan – Punakha.

Tour Highlights

  • Witness spectacular bird’s eye view of the Himalayas while flying in/out from Paro.
  • Excursions in Thimphu, Punakha and Paro
  • Weekend nightlife and Farmers Market in Thimphu
  • Dochula Pass – it offers an amazing 360-degree panoramic view of the Himalayas
  • Punakha Dzong – the most beautiful fortress in Bhutan
  • Hike to Taktsang Monastery – the Tiger’s Nest
  • Experience Bhutanese culture, tradition and food.

Day to Day Itinerary

Day 01: Arrive Paro, drive to Thimphu

Welcome to Bhutan, the Land of the Thunder Dragon. Touching down at Paro International Airport, you will be greeted by your guide upon exiting the arrival hall. Today, we will take it easy to acclimatize you to the altitude. Drive to Thimphu, check in to the hotel and lets have your first taste of Bhutanese cuisine. After which, you will visit the National Memorial Chorten which is built in honor of the late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk. Thimphu Dzong, the largest Dzong in Bhutan, is also the seat of the office of the King of Bhutan. Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday most of the Thimphu population congregate on the banks of the Thimphu river where the Weekend Centenary Farmers’ Market is held. Here villagers from the valley and other nearby places come to sell their agriculture products. Thereafter, we will drive up to Kuenselphodrang Nature Park where the 169 feet bronze statue of Buddha Dordenma, Vajra Throne Buddha is located. It one of the largest statue of Buddha in the world. You can enjoy the night walking around Thimphu Town after dinner and may be walk into a bar for some local beer.

Day 02: Thimphu – Punakha

Dochula Pass – the 108 chortens was built by the present Queen Mother of Bhutan Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck to commemorate Bhutan’s victory over Indian militants and to liberate the souls of the souls lost. Punakha Dzong – Built in 1637, the dzong continues to be the winter home for the clergy, headed by the Chief Abbott, the Je Khenpo. It is a stunning example of Bhutanese architecture, sitting at the fork of two rivers, portraying the image of a medieval city from a distance. The dzong was destroyed by fire and glacial floods over the years but has been carefully restored and is, today, a fine example of Bhutanese craftsmanship.

Day 03: Punakha – Thimphu

Short hike to Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten – Built by the third Queen Mother Ashi Tshering Yangdon wangchuck this Chorten is a splendid example of of the Bhutanese architecture and art and is the only one of its kind in the world. It has been built over eight and a half years and its details have been drawn from religious scripture.  Chhimi Lhakhang – A 20 minutes walk across terraced fields through the village of Sopsokha from the roadside to the small temple located on a hillock in the centre of the valley below Metshina. Ngawang Chogyel built the temple in 15th century after the ’divine Madman’ Drukpa Kuenlay built a small chorten there. It is a pilgrim site for barren women.

Day 04: Paro and Chele-la Pass

Paro Valley – The beautiful valley is home to many of Bhutan’s old monasteries and temples. The country’s only Airport is in Paro. The valley is also home to mount Chomolhari (7,300 meters) situated at the northern end of the valley whose glacier water forms the Pachu flowing through the valley. The following are some of the prominent places to visit in Paro. Paro Dzong also known as Rinpung Dzong, this 15th century massive fortress/monastery, is also the administrative center of the dzonkhag. A morning drive, north of Paro valley brings us to the ruins of Drukgyal Dzong. Built in 1647 by the great Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, father and unifier of medieval Bhutan, the Dzong was destroyed by an accidental fire and left in ruins as an evocative reminder of the great victories it was built to commemorate.Explore the ramparts and relive the memories of a glorious past.

Day 05: Paro – Hike to Taktsang Monastery

Are you ready? We will be making the hike up to one of the key highlights in Bhutan today! Tiger’s Nest aka Taktsang Monastery. Taktsang Monastery – A one hour hike to the cafeteria is also a vantage view whereby you can enjoy the stunning view of the monastery. Prayer flags adorn the cliffs and this is also where Guru Padmasambhava landed on the back of a tigress in the 8th century. Kyichu Lhakhang – After a sumptuous local lunch, we will retrace our steps to visit Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest temples in Bhutan.

Day 06: Paro – Depart

Today we will bid fond farewell to this beautiful Himalayan country and take an early flight back home or to your next travel destination. We hope by now you would have made some friends and also kept many photos and beautiful memories of Bhutan! And we look forward to seeing you again in this beautiful land of endless Enchantments! Tashi Delek!

Cost Details:

Spring & Autumn: March, April, May, September, October & November
Single traveler: US$ 290 per day
2 person: US$ 280 Per person per day
3 person and more: US$ 250 per person per day

Winter & Summer: January, February, June, July, August & December
Single traveler: US$ 240 per day
2 person: US$ 230 Per person per day
3 person and more: US$ 200 per person per day

Note: On the above rates there will be a one time extra payment as follows:
01: Visa Fee: US $ 40 per person
02: TDF (Tourism Development Fund): US $ 10 per person

– Check with us for discounts and offers. We can also customize a tour for you, free of cost – 

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Package Include:

  • Tours specified in the itinerary
  • Three star hotel accommodation (Government approved 3 stars and above)
  • Meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner, tea/coffee with snacks as and when required)
  • Vehicle and driver
  • Experienced and English speaking licensed guide
  • Mineral water on long trips both on trek and cultural tours
  • Museum fees and other special entry fees
  • All necessary permits for entering Dzongs, Monasteries, Monuments and restricted areas.
  • Visa and TDF fees
  • Government royalty, tax and fees
  • Service charge

Package does not include:

  • Airfare
  • Travel Insurance
  • Expenses of personal nature
  • Expenses occurred due to unavoidable events i.e. road wrecks, flight delays etc.
  • Tips for guides and drivers

Note:

– Travel writers and travel agents get discount on above quotation. Contact us for details.

– Students below the age of 25 years with valid Student ID card can avail 25% discount on daily rates and 20% discount on the net airfare.

– There shall be no charges for children upto the age of 5 years. However, those between the age of 6 to 12 years old accompanied by elders or guardians will be given 50% discount on daily rates (airlines rule apply for airfare).