Arrive Paro from New Delhi / Kolkata / Guwahati / Mumbai / Bagodgra & transfer to Thimphu 65 km 1hrs drive
The most spectacular mountain flights you will ever experience in a life time. Flying in from the heat of the plains of India one can witness from the left side of the aircrafts window a series of the world’s highest peaks. Your pilot will announce the names of the peaks if the weather is clear. You will descend into the high mountains and as the plane lowers you will not find any airstrip or any city but instead you will enjoy the view of the approaching valley of Paro, the alpine forests, little monasteries, temples and farm houses. Before the plane touches the runaway you will get a glimpse of the fertile valley of Paro, the Paro Dzong and Paro chu (river). Our representative will be at the airport to assist you, meet and greet and transfer to the capital city Thimphu and rest of the day at leisure. O/n at Thimphu.
Thimphu – capital city
When in Thimphu you got to prepare for surprises where this unique capital has no traffic lights but adopted its own version of the British – Indian colonial times traffic policemen who can startle you and memorize others with his elaborate hand gestures, sometimes he may be signaling stop when it looks like go but don’t worry you can observe the flow and notice his smile as you stare at him. Sightseeing includes visit to the National Memorial Chorten a stupa dedicated to the third king of Bhutan and Buddha statue, Takin Zoo where you will find national animal of Bhutan and drive downhill stop at the junction to take a glimpse of Trashichho Dzong. Proceed towards National Library and Folk Heritage Museum. Afternoon take a short walk to Handicraft Bazaar to view the traditional arts. Afternoon at leisure or take a walk to the main city from Clock tower square for shopping. O/n at Thimphu.
Thimphu - Punakha via Dochula pass 77 km 3 hrs drive
Morning drive to low lands of Punakha valley touching Dochula pass 10,000 ft and on the stop at Hongtsho village. Stop at the immigration check point to stamp in your permit. Next to the check point you will find small local stalls selling fresh juicy local apples available for sale in plastic bags you could try some. You will be driving through the first mountain pass in the western part of Bhutan. You will find the 108 DrukWangyal chortens on the top of the pass where the ridges are draped in colorful prayer flags greet you. You could take three rounds and offer prayers, take some best photo shots. If the weather is clear you will be able to see the highest peaks towards the north, GangarPunsum among others is the highest unclimbed peak (24,000 ft) in the world. Proceed down towards Punakha through Thinleygang village and upon reaching Lobesa turn left and drive down further. Stop and take a short walk through the villages to Chimmi Lhakhang - The divine madman also known, as Drukpa Kinley is a famous teacher with whom the phallic symbol is associated. Tales told by your guide would have excited you to visit Chimmi Lhakhang. Do not miss the master’s deeds painted on the walls. Japanese and several American couples visited this temple and were blessed miraculously with children. Afternoon visit majestic Punakha Dzong placed strategically at the junction of the Pho Chu and Mo Chu rivers, the Dzong was built in 1637 by ZhabdrungNgawang Namgyal to serve as the religious and administrative seat of the region. It was here that the dual system of government was introduced in the 17th century and in 1907, enthroned the first King GongsarUgyen Wangchuk. Evening at leisure. O/n at Punakha.
Punakha – Paro 145 km 4 hrs drive
Morning drive to Thimphu via same road and stop at Lamperi. Visit the Royal Botanical Park for 30 minutes. If you are lucky you could see red pandas, different species of birds, you can take some photo shot close to the natural lake. You could watch a short documentary about the park. Proceed to Paro via Semtokha and check in the hotel. Day at leisure. O/n at Paro.
Morning visit Paro Dzong, the National Museum housed in a round fortress called as the Ta Dzong considered to be one of the best natural history museums in Asia where it has a fine collection of natural and historic artifacts. Afternoon visit Paro Penlop Heritage Farm house the ruins of Drukgyel Dzong, a 17th century fortress that used to keep invaders from Tibet and in 1951 the fort was destroyed by fire. Kyichu Lhakhang the monastery dates back to 7th century and is one of the oldest and most sacred. Your last stop for the day will be at the base of the Tigers Nest. O/n at Paro.
Paro – Chele la pass - half day excursion 36 km
Morning enjoy your drive till Chele la-la pass (3800m), a favorite place for many visitors and is one of highest motor able passes in the country. For the Buddhists, it is also a sacred place to festoon the pass with prayer flags. For naturalists, the Chele la ridge offers gardens of Himalayan flowers, plants and of special pheasant species. Water is scarce on these ridges and it is recommended to have enough water supplies with you. Late noon return to Paro and visit the town for shopping or leisure. O/n at Paro.
Morning transfer to Paro International Airport for your next destination.