Whether you arrive by air at the dramatic, mountain-bound Paro valley or by road at steamy Phuentsholing, it soon becomes clear that you have arrived at a special destination. Prayer flags flutter from nearly every rooftop, men and women dress in traditional garb, chortens and stupas decorate river and road junctions, and fortress-like monasteries command mountain tops.
The west is the region of Bhutan that most tourists see and for good reason. It's the heartland of the Drukpa people and is home to the major airport, the capital, the most popular festivals and the most spectacular dzongs (fort-monasteries) in the kingdom. Throw in the trekking, the scope to get off the beaten track and the minimal driving times, and the appeal is obvious. Whether it's the beginning of your trip or the only part of Bhutan that you will explore, the west is a spectacular introduction to this magical country.
Day 01 : Arrive in Kathmandu. Meet and transfer to hotel. O/N in Hotel
Day 02 : Morning visit Boudhanath / Pashupatinath. Afternoon visit Bhakatapur. O/N In Hotel
Day 03 : Transfer to airport for your flight to Paro. Transfer to hotel. Afternoon: Visit the National Museum ( Ta-Dzong ). This was originally the Watch Tower of the Paro Rinpung Dzong. It was converted into the National Museum in 1968. It is located on top of a hill above the Paro Dzong overlooking Paro valley and river. On the way back from the Museum, take a leisurely stroll in the Paro market and along the beautiful Paro river. O/N in Hotel
Day 04 :Paro – Thimphu: Drive to Drugyal Dzong (a ruined fortress - 16 Kms away from Paro town).Although in ruins, this Fortress of great historical importance. It was here that the Bhutanese finally defeated the invading Tibetans and drove them back. From here, the peaks of Mount Jhomolhari (Alt. 7329m) “Mountain of Goddess” can be seen on a clear day. Visit the Rinpung Dzong. This massive fortress is located in the Paro valley and is approached by a gently sloping flagstone road and a beautiful wooden bridge roofed with shingles and abutted by two guard houses. Today, this fortress houses the Administrative seat of the district of Paro and the district Monk Body with about 200 monks. The central tower (Utse) of the fortress is one of the most beautiful in Bhutan with its superb woodwork. The Dzong ( fortress) was built in 1646 AD. Afternoon: Drive to Thimphu (capital). The drive to Thimphu through the winding road along the Paro and Thimphu River takes about 2 hr. (65 Kms.). Check in at the hotel. After tea at the hotel, take a leisurely stroll in the Thimphu town
Day 05 :Thimphu – Thimphu: Morning: Visit the Memorial Chorten ( a huge stupa ) built in memory of the third King of Bhutan who reigned the country from 1952-1972. Visit the Painting and Wood Craft school where traditional art and craft is still kept alive. Visit the National Library where ancient manuscripts are preserved. Visit the Handicrafts Emporium where Bhutanese textiles and other arts and crafts are displayed and can be purchased. Lunch at the hotel. Afternoon: Visit Simtokha Dzong. This is one of the oldest fortresses in Bhutan located about 6 Kms. from Thimphu town. It houses the largest Monastic schools in the country. Visit Tashichho Dzong, the main secretariat building. This massive fortress houses part of the government Ministries, the office of the King and the Throne Room. It also houses the State Monastic Body and the office and the living quarters of the Chief Abbot.
Day 06 :Thimphu – Paro: After an early breakfast, drive up to Dochula pass (26 Kms. ). Form the pass, you can enjoy the most spectacular view of the Eastern Himalayan mountain ranges. Tea/coffee at Dochula and return to Thimphu. Lunch at the hotel. Afternoon: Drive to Paro. Check in at the hotel. After Tea/coffee, Drive up to Satsam Chorten (10 Kms. form Paro town). Form there, you can view the picturesque Taktsang Monastery “Tigers Nest “perched on a rocky ledge with a sheer drop of nearly 800 ft.
Day 07 : Drive to Paro Airport for your flight back to Kathmandu. Transfer to hotel. O/N in hotel.
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