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Sunday, October 17, 2010

Bhutan Himalayan Spendor

Himalayan Spendor

7 nights 8 days(Covering Paro, Haa, Thimphu and Phuentsholing)

Day 01-Arrive to Bhutan

On the clear day, the flight to Paro is breathtaking, with views of Himalayan peaks such as Mt. Everest, Kanchenjunga and Makalu, and on the approach Bhutan’s own snowy peaks, the sacred Mt. Chomolhari,Jichu Drake and Tsherimgang. On the arrival you will be greet by our tour executive, and after completion of arrival formalities you will be transfer to you hotel. In the evening, take a stroll along the town. Overnight at the hotel in Paro.

Day 02-Paro Sightseeing

* Paro DzongIn the morning, take an excursion to Taktsang Monastery, also known as Tiger’s Nest. It is believed that Guru Rinpoche, founding father of the Bhutanese form of Mahayana Buddhism, arrived here on the back of a tigress and meditated at this monastery.
* After lunch, visit Ta Dzong, formerly a watchtower and now the National Museum. The museum collection includes ancient Bhutanese art and artifacts, weapons, coins, stamps and a small natural history collection. Then walk down a hillside trail to visit Rinpung Dzong (Paro Dzong) situated at a commanding height overlooking Paro valley. Built by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in 1646, this dzong now houses Paro’s monk body and the offices of the civil administration and is symbolic as the religious and secular center of all affairs of the valley.

In the evening, visit a traditional farm house to get an idea of the lifestyle of local people. Overnight at the hotel in Paro.

Day 03: Paro –Haa valley via Chili-La

After breakfast, set off for Haa valley, it is 62 km from Paro. On the way take around 45 minutes hiking to Kili goempa nunnery, established as a meditation site in the 9th century and reputedly the oldest nunnery in Bhutan. From here, it’s 4 km to the pass. At an elevation of 3988m, during the clear skies of October and November it’s worth taking the hiking trails that lead up the mountain ridge for 1 1/2hours to spectacular mountain views.

Haa ValleyEvening visit Haa Wangchulo Dzong, Lhakhang Karpo (White Chapel), Lhakhang Nagpo (Black Chapel) and the scenic road to the north passes the Talung valley and Chhundu Lhakhang. Overnight at the hotel in Haa.

Afternoon sightseeing in Thimphu, visiting the National Memorial Chorten, the Institute for Zorig Chusum (where students learn the 13 traditional arts and crafts of Bhutan), the National Institute of Traditional Medicine (outside only), and the National Textile Museum, Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.

Day04-Haa- Thimphu

* After breakfast, set off for Thimphu, the modern capital town of Bhutan. Stop en route at Chuzom (Confluence) at the entrance to the Paro valley, where the Paro and Thimphu rivers meet. Three chortens on the riverbank at this place, each in a different style, mark the confluence of the two rivers.
* Afternoon visit the National memorial Chorten (stupa) that depicts the Buddhist teachings in form of paintings and statues. This stupa was built in 1974 by Her Majesty Ashi Phuntsho Choden Wangchuck in the memory of her son Bhutan’s late King His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, who is popularly regarded as Father of modern Bhutan. So it is commonly known as the memorial Chorten. Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.

Day 05-Thimphu Sightseeing

Visit Changgangkha monastery of the 12 th century and then take a drive to the viewpoint of Thimphu (BBS TOWER). The tower provides you with an opportunity to enjoy and take photograph of Thimphu city. This is one of the favorite places either for enjoying the view of the Thimphu valley or relaxation. Perhaps, it is also known as Lover’s Point! On the way we take a look at the national animal-Takin research center.

The Folk heritage museum, which contains the medieval life style of the Bhutanese.

Then to the national library which contains the collections of literature and scriptures. There is a book that is 1400 years old written in liquid gold on Bhutanese handmade paper.

We then proceed to the textile museum to see old collections of textile.

If you have time take a visit to the Tashichho Dzong which is the center of both spiritual and temporal powers. Overnight at the Hotel in Thimphu.

Day 06- Day Hike to Tango & Chari monastery with dry picnic.

These monasteries are situated north of Thimphu, and it is about 30 minutes drive from the main Thimphu town followed by a 45 minutes hiking through beautiful forest from the road point. The name ‘Tango’ means head of a horse. This monastery was founded by Lama Gyalwa Lhanampa in the 12th century.

The other side is Chari monastery built by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgayal in 1620. If you have never seen mountain goats and you want to really find out how mountain goats can walk on steep cliffs, this is the right place.

In the evening, take a stroll along the town’s main street. Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.

Day 07-Thimphu –PhuentsholingGateway to Bhutan

After breakfast drive down to Phuentsholing, en route visiting Simtokha Dzong, built in 1627 and the oldest fortress of the kingdom, which now houses the Institute for Language and Culture Studies. The Thimphu–Phuentsholing road was built in 1962 by Dantak, the Indian Border Roads organization. The drive on this route is very pleasant with numerous scenic spots en route. Just before arriving in Phuentsholing, we will stop to visit Kharbandi Gompa, a temple built in 1967. It houses large statues of Sakyamuni, Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal and Guru Rinpoche.

Overnight at the hotel in Phuentsholing.

Day 08-Depart from Bhutan
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