An Introduction to Bhutan
11 days from £4,200 per person
This is a perfect introductory itinerary for those who want to explore Bhutan's unique Mahayana Buddhist culture and stunning landscape of high mountain peaks, densely forested slopes and alluvial glacial plains. Each valley visited is different with its own regional cultural traditions and topography, whilst the lodges along the way are practical and occasionally charming. Highlights include a stay in Gangtey (Phobjikha Valley) to see rare Black Neck Cranes, the spectacular Dzong of Punakha and the unlikely and incredible Tiger’s Nest Monastery of Paro.
Thimphu, home to Bhutan's young King, is the starting point of this journey and one can see modern influence merge with traditional culture in this small capital city. Striking eastwards, the modern world quickly gives way to progressively more rural and traditional scenes where village life has remained largely unchanged. Crossing into the marshy Phobjikha Valley, where electricity is still considered a novelty, we have the chance of spotting the seasonal (October - March) population of Black Neck Cranes that over-winter from neighbouring Tibet. The settlement of Punakha, cradled in a low lying steamy valley, is one of the nation's rice bowls and home to the incredible Punakha Dzong, idyllically located at the confluence of two rivers.
Finish off in the Paro and Haa valleys, taking in local culture and magnificent scenery including the fabled Tiger's Nest (Taktsang) monastery. If you have a taste for hot food don't miss Bhutan’s national dish of ema datse, which simply consists of fiery whole chillies with cheese sauce; a guaranteed 'warmer-upper'!
This holiday is purely a suggested itinerary: it can be booked as it is, or alternatively used as a starting point for creating your own perfect tailor-made trip to Bhutan. If you'd like to see similar itineraries, take a look at our active holiday collection.
11 days from £4,200 per person
- Day 1 - Zhiwa Ling Ascent - Thimphu
Arrive in Paro and transfer to Thimphu, Bhutan's capital city.
- Day 2 - Zhiwa Ling Ascent - Thimphu
Full day sightseeing in Thimpu.
- Day 3 - Dewachen Hotel - Gangtey
Drive to Gangtey, stopping at high mountain passes and sites along the way.
- Day 4 - Dewachen Hotel - Gangtey
Nature walk and visit to the Black Neck Crane Centre.
- Day 5 - Dhensa Boutique Resort - Punakha
Drive to Punakha visiting the Wangdue prodang Dzong en-route.
- Day 6 - Dhensa Boutique Resort - Punakha
Full day sightseeing in Punakha visiting the famed Punakha Dzong.
- Day 7 - Zhiwa Ling Heritage - Paro
Drive to Paro and spend the remainder of the day at leisure.
- Day 8 - Zhiwa Ling Heritage - Paro
Full day sightseeing of Paro and the Tiger's Nest (Taktsang) monastery.
- Day 9 - Zhiwa Ling Heritage - Paro
Full day excursion to the beautiful Haa Valley.
- Day 10 - The Imperial Hotel - Delhi
Fly to Delhi and transfer to your luxury colonial hotel. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure.
- Day 11 - In transit.
Spend the morning at leisure before transferring to the airport for your departure flight home.
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India
- Jaime Benitez, South India
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, India
- Matthew Annable, Rajasthan, India
- Matthew Nicklin, North India
- Mr David Wallace, North India
- Anonymous, India
- Leslie Siben, India