Bhutan Essential Tour

from $250.00

This trip will immerse you with the experiences of an unending surprises and wonders covering the most exotic attractions and sights, and sacred places and historical monuments that will stretch from the western bit of Bhutan to the central part.

Tour Detail

Duration: 8 Days, 7 Nights.
Route: Paro, Thimphu, Punakha, Wangduephodrang
Trip Type: Cultural tours.

Description: 

The complete travel will cover cultural, traditional, historical and contemporary exploration of Bhutan from Thimphu (the capital) to Punakha, Wangduephodrang and Phobjikha, Some light excursions and hikes absorbing the fresh clean air will make part of your trip — to reinvigorate you. And if the trip is timed to witness one of the local festivals, you would have experienced and explored most of what Bhutan has to offer to enliven and live memoirs of your lifetime.

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    0/5
  • Vacation Style Holiday Type
    Family Trips, Short Holidays
  • Activity Level Fairly Easy
    2/8
  • Group Size Large Group
    1+
All about the Bhutan Essential Tour.

Cost & Special offer

The minimum daily package applicable per tourist per night halt in Bhutan for tourists travelling in a group of 3 people or more is as follows:

 High Season: March, April, May, September, October & November

  • Single traveler: USD 250 per person + USD 40 per night.
  • 2 person:USD 250 Per person + USD 30 per night.
  • 3 plus person: USD 250 per person
  • US$ 40 per person for visa fee (one-time)

Low Season: January, February, June, July, August & December

  • Single traveler: USD 200 per person + USD 40 per night.
  • 2 person:USD 200 Per person + USD 30 per night.
  • 3 plus person: USD 200 per person
  • USD 40 per person for visa fee (one-time)

Tour Discounts:

There shall be no charge other than visa fee of USD 40 for children below the age of 5 years.

  • No charge for children under 5 years.
  • 50%  discount on minimum daily package rate for children in age group 5-12 years.
  • 25% discount on daily rates to full time students below the age of 25 years with valid identity cards.
  • 50% discount on daily rates to one person in a group of 11 people.
  • 100% discount to one member in a group exceeding 16 persons.
  • A 50% duration discount on SDF shall be provided after the 8th night and 100% discount on SDF shall be provided after 14th night.
  • 100% discount shall be provided on SDF on first and/or last night for groups with night halt in Phuntsholing, Sarpang and Samdrup Jongkhar on arrival and/or departure.
  • Please Note: The rate may go higher depending upon the nature of services desired beyond specified details above

Delayed Arrivals

There is no charge for delays in arrival and departure because of weather conditions disrupting flights or road blocks. The tourist must however bear the cost of food, accommodation, transportation, and other services required. It is highly recommended that you purchase travel insurance prior to travel.

(Note: airfares are subjected to change as per the notice by Druk Air and Bhutan Airlines)

The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.
  • A minimum of 3 star accommodation on twin-sharing basis
  • Meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner, mineral water) as per your choice.
  • Tea and snacks
  • Entrance fees to Temples and Monuments.
  • A licensed Bhutanese tour guide for the extent of your stay.
  • All internal road transport (excluding internal and external flights, which can be offered at additional costs).
  • Camping equipment and haulage for trekking tours.
  • All internal taxes and charges.
  • A sustainable Development fees of USD 65.
  • Visa Fees
  • Note:  Holidays Bhutan can also book your flights end-to-end.

Whats not included in this tour.Items that are not included in the cost of tour price.
  • Air fare.
  • Drinks and beverages.
  • Travel and health Insurance( All medical facilities in Bhutan is free )
  • Laundry, telephone, mobile, fax and Internet bills (Hotels in Bhutan provide free wifi facilities).
  • Tips for guide and driver.
  • Shopping and Entertainment.
  1. Day 1 Paro - Thimphu

    Thimphu, the capital city of Bhutan is located at an altitude of 2,300 meters and in its on way distinguishes itself by being the most unusual capital city in the world, by keeping a strong national character in its architecture. Thimphu is a bustling town and home of the Kingdom‘s royal family, monk body, civil servants and expatriates.

    Attractions and Interest:

    Memorial Chorten: Built in 1974 in memory of the Third King, Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, who is popularly considered as the Father of Modern Bhutan. The religious paintings and complex tantric statues inside the monument reflect both peaceful and wrathful aspects of Buddhist deities. It is one of the most visible religious stupas in Thimphu and for many Thimphu residents it is the place where they come to circumambulate the stupa andpay their daily worship.

    Tashichhodzong: Means “fortress of glorious religion”. The Dzong was initially erected in 1641 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel and later the third king Jigme Dorji Wangchuk rebuilt its present form in 1965. It was built in traditional fashion, without using nails and architectural plans. It is also the home of the throne room of His Majesty the king of Bhutan, the summer residence of central monastic body and ministries and various government organizations.

    Overnight: Thimphu

  2. Day 2 Sightseeing in Thimphu

    Attractions and Interest:

    Buddha Dordenma statue (One of the largest Buddha statue in the world). It is being built to become a ―major pilgrimage center and a focal point for Buddhists all over the world to converge, practice, meditate and retreat.

    Traditional Painting School: Centre where children learn traditional drawing and painting, wood carving, sculpture and other forms of traditional arts. On a visit, one can view the students at work.

    Textile Museum: This museum has a wide collection of colorful and intricately hand woven ancient and new textiles, depicting the unique and traditional art of Bhutan.

    Sangaygang: Visit a place known Sangang where you can view the entire valley of Thimphu. You can also visit a Takin Reserve (home for the national animal) to spot Takins.

    Weekend Market: Worth visiting the weekend market in Thimphu held on Friday afternoon and remains until Sunday evening. The weekend market certainly offers the best opportunity to see agriculture and dairy products and handicrafts, and to mix around with the local people.

    If time permits in the evening, cycle from Buddha point downhill. You will have the spectacular view of Thimphu Valley.

    Road: Blacktopped and smooth

    Overnight: Thimphu

  3. Day 3 Thimphu - Punakha

    Located at around 2 hours drive from Thimphu and at an altitude of 1,350 meters, Punakha served as the capital of Bhutan until 1955. It is still the winter residence of Jekhenpo (Chief Abbot) and the monks of Thimphu. The low altitude and temperate climate makes the valley one of the most fertile in Bhutan and allows two rice crops a year. On a clear day, there are splendid views of the distant Himalayas at Dochula Pass ( 3100m) on the way to Punakha from Thimphu.

    Attractions and Interest

    Punakha Dzong (the Fortress): Built in 1637 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel to serve as the religious and administrative centre of the region. It is located strategically between the confluence of Pho Chu (Male River) and Mo Chu (Female River). The Dzong was damaged by an earthquake, fire and flood a number of times and destroyed many historic documents. However, the Dzong has been fully restored to its original splendor by the present king.

    Chimi Lhakhang: A revered temple popularly recognized as a pilgrimage site for childless couples to receive blessings. Situated on a hillock in the centre of the valley, it is about 20 minute‘s pleasant walk across the rice fields from the road to the temple. The temple was built in the 15th century by Ngawang Chogyel after the ―Divine Madman‖ Lam Drukpa Kuenley built a small stupa on the site.

    Wangduephodrang:

    Located close to and at the same altitude as Punakha, it is the last western town before entering the central part of Bhutan. The district is known for fine bamboo work and its slate stone carvings.

    Wangdue Dzong: Perched on the spur at the confluence of two rivers, the Dzong was built in 1638 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel. It is the administrative seat of Wangdue district and also the venue of the Wangdue festival held in autumn.

    Overnight: Punakha Valley

  4. Day 4 Punakha - Phobjikha

    After breakfast hiking to Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten built by the third Queen Mother, Ashi Tshering Yangdon Wangchuck in dedication to 5th King of Bhutan. It will take one-hour walk crosses over a suspended footbridge over Mo-Chhu (Female River).

    After the hike we recommend you white River Rafting. White River Rafting can also be included in the Pho Chu (male river), with its  approx 16 km course with about 15 rapids of class 2-4 is the most popular for rafting in Bhutan followed by Mo Chu (Female river) with 10 Km course comprising around 10 rapids with 2 –  2+ rapids). (We only recommend).

    In the afternoon drive to Phobjikha valley, approximately 3 hours. It is one of the most beautiful valleys in Bhutan. The pristine green valley is the winter residence of rare and endangered black-necked cranes that migrate from Tibet to Bhutan in late autumn in a group of 200 to 300. There is also Gangtey Geonpa (Temple) built on the ridge overlooking the beautiful wide valley of Phobjikha.

    Enroute stop for possible sighting birds like Ward’s Trogons and Yellow-rumped Honeyguides.

    (Note: You can spot the cranes only in the month of November, December, January and February).

    Overnight: Phobjikha Valley Hotel/Camp

    (If you prefer to camp in the valley, you can inform us in advance)

  5. Day 5 Phobjikha - Paro

    In the morning drive back to Paro Valley. It is one of the most fascinating valleys in Bhutan. As you disembark at Bhutan‘s International Airport at Paro, you will be enthralled by the pleasant atmosphere, the absence of noise and scenic beauty of the valley. A unique tourist destination of its own, Paro valley is home to many venerated monasteries, oldest temples, National Museum and Bhutan‘s most impressive and well known Dzongs in the country. Paro is also known for producing the bulk of our famous red rice from its fertile terraced fields. This day will be a leisure driving with stop overs enroute.

    Overnight: Paro Valley

  6. Day 6 Sightseeing in Paro

    Early morning, you will drive to Chele La Pass (3810m), which is the famous habitat for three different species of Pheasants — colorful Himalayan Monals, Blood Pheasants and Kalij Pheasants. Not only Pheasants, you might also see other birds like Rose Finches, Grosbeaks and Laughing Thrushes. (OPTIONAL).

    You can also have stunning view of mountain Jhomolhari & Jichu Drake peak if the weather is clear.

    (Paro valley to Chelala pass is also considered one of best place for cycling therefore, if some prefers cycling, we will start from Paro valley up the hill 35 km towards Chelela pass at an elevation of 3810 meters for approximately two hour or Cycle down hill to Paro valley approx. time 1 hour). (OPTIONAL).

    In the afternoon, visit to popular sites and monuments in Paro.

    Ta Dzong: On top of the hill above the Rinpung Dzong is the Ta Dzong, originally built as a watch tower of Paro Dzong in1951. Unlike the rectangular shape of the Dzongs, Ta Dzong is round and is said to be in the shape of a conch shell or more like the parts of a European castle. It was converted to the National Museum in 1968. It has a unique and varied collection of ancient paintings, textiles, weapons and armour, bronze statues, old household objects, exquisite postage stamps, jewellery and many other decorative arts.

    Paro Dzong: Also known as Rinpung Dzong, which means ‘fortress of the heap of jewels’. It was built in 1646 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel and is one of Bhutan’s most impressive Dzongs in the country which depicts the finest examples of Bhutanese unusual architecture. It serves as the administrative centre of the Paro district and also houses the state monastic community. The courtyard of the Dzong serves as a venue of Paro Tshechu (festival), held annually in spring.

    Kyichu Lhakhang: It is one of the two oldest monasteries built in the seventh century by King Songtsen Gampo of Tibet in Bhutan. The other one is Jambay Lhakanhg in Bumthang. It is believed that a giant demoness lay across the whole area of Tibet and the Himalayas and was preventing the spread of Buddhism. To overcome her, Tibetan king Songtsen Gampo decided to build 108 temples in one day which would be placed all over her bodies to pin the ogress to the earth forever and at the same time, to convert Tibetan people to Buddhism. Kyichu Lhakhangs holds the left foot and Jambay Lhakhang in Bumthang pins the left knee.

    Overnight: Paro Valley

  7. Day 7 Paro (Taktsang Hike)

    Visit to Taktsang Monastery, literally meaning Tiger‘s Nest (approx. 5 hours round trip walk). According to legends, it is believed that Guru Rinpoche flew to this location from Tibet on the back of a Tigress and meditated in one of the caves for three months in the eight century. It is precariously perched on the right side of a cliff, at 2950 meters above sea level and is considered one of the holiest places of pilgrimage for the Buddhist world today. In April, 1998, a fire destroyed the main structure of the monastery. A visit to this monastery is challenging and amply rewarding. It is about 5 hours round trip including a lunch stop at the view point where there is a cafeteria.

    Overnight: Paro Valley

  8. Day 8 Departure

    After breakfast, transfer to the airport in time for your departure flight.

Accommodation

we hope to provide the ultimate best value for all our guests. We choose some of the finest hotels, offer free upgrades to make our visitors feel the most welcomed and well-taken care of while traveling in Bhutan. We take pride in providing first class accommodations for our travelers.

A wide variety of accommodations are available ranging from luxurious 5-star hotels to cozy little hotels, homestays in traditional Bhutanese homes to camping under the stars. Visitors can be assured of comfort, ambiance and hospitality.

The types of accommodations can be divided into:

  • Government Categorized 3 Star Hotels and Resorts.
  • Luxurious 4 Star Hotels & 5 Star International Hotel Chains.
  • Village Homestay.
  • Camping.

Government Categorized 3 Star Hotels & Resorts

Hotels in Bhutan are rated according to a National 5 Star rating System. All Tour Operators are required to provide their guests with Government Categorized Hotels and Resorts, a minimum of 3 Star accommodations so you can be assured of your comfort. Most hotels provide their guests with Basic Necessities, Room Service, Free Wi-fi, Television and some of them also have Fitness Centers and Spas.

Luxurious 4 Star Hotels & 5 Star International Hotel Chains

The luxury packages are based on 4 star luxury hotels and 5 star International Hotels Chain (Aman Kora, COMO Uma, Zhiwaling, Le Meridien and Taj Tashi) with extra charges in addition to the Mandatory Daily Tariff of USD $250/person/night.

Village Homestay

Visitors also have the option of spending a night in a traditional Bhutanese Farm House with a Bhutanese family. Agriculture is still one of the major sources of livelihood among the Bhutanese people and a farm-stay will give you an excellent glimpse into the day-to-day life of a typical Bhutanese family. You’ll be able to observe age old Bhutanese farming traditions as the family goes about its daily tasks. You’ll enjoy delicious home-cooked meals and the unparalleled hospitality of a Bhutanese host.

Camping

There’s nothing like camping in some of the most breath taking landscapes of Bhutan. Visitors embarking on long treks will be provided with tents and whatever other camping equipment is deemed necessary. Regardless of where you stay, visitors can be assured of their comfort and traditional Bhutanese hospitality.

The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance.
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.
  • A minimum of 3 star accommodation on twin-sharing basis
  • Meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner, mineral water) as per your choice.
  •  Tea and snacks
  • Entrance fees to Temples and Monuments.
  • A licensed Bhutanese tour guide for the extent of your stay.
  • All internal road transport (excluding internal and external flights, which can be offered at additional costs).
  • Camping equipment and haulage for trekking tours.
  • All internal taxes and charges.
  • A sustainable Development fees of USD 65.
  • Visa Fees
  • Note:  Holidays Bhutan can also book your flights end-to-end.
Whats not included in this tour.Items that are not included in the cost of tour price.
  • Air fare.
  • Drinks and beverages.
  • Travel and health Insurance( All medical facilities in Bhutan is free )
  • Laundry, telephone, mobile, fax and Internet bills (Hotels in Bhutan provide free wifi facilities).
  • Tips for guide and driver.
  • Shopping and Entertainment.