Every year Dochula Tshechu or festival is commissioned by the Queen Mother Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck in 2011 and will be the inaugural as festival. This is a unique festival as the festival is fully performed by the Royal Bhutan Army rather than monastery. The soldiers have been given three months training in folk and mask dance. The festival will start at 0900 and ends at 0415.
Day 1: Paro to Thimphu
Welcome to Bhutan, the Land of the Thunder Dragon. Touching down at Paro International Airport, you will be greeted by Quick Travellers representatives and Drive towards Thimphu, check in to the hotel and let’s have your first taste of Bhutanese cuisine and some light sightseeing in Thimphu. Afternoon visit to the Textile Museum, Handicrafts Emporium, Crafts Bazaar where Bhutanese textiles and other arts and crafts are displayed and can be purchased. In the evening free for a leisure walk to explore Thimphu city – the world’s smallest capital and the only capital city where Traffic Lights are absent. The walk around the city is easy and would be enjoyable to experience the Bhutanese way of life. Overnight at hotel in Thimphu.
Day 2: Thimphu
After morning breakfast you will drive towards tango and cheri monastery and will start hiking upto the monastery. Tango Goemba- This monastery was founded by Lama Gyalwa Lhanangpa in the 12th century and the present building was built in the 15th century by the “Divine Madman”, Lama Drukpa Kunley. In 1616 Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal visited Tango and meditated in a cave near the monastery. His meditation helped ensure the defeat of an invading Tibetan army. The head Lama, a descendent of Lama Drukpa Kunley presented the goemba to Shabdrung, who carved a sandalwood statue of Chenrezig which he installed in the monastery. The picturesque three-storey tower and several surrounding buildings were built in the 18th century by the eighth Desi, Druk Rabgye and Shabdrung Jigme Chhogyel added the golden roof in the 19th century.
Situated north of Thimphu, one way it takes about 30 minutes’ drive and one hour walk through shaded rhododendron forests to reach the monastery. Cheri Goemba–This monastery was built by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in 1620. A silver chorten inside the monastery holds the ashes of Shabdrung’s father. The goemba is situated about half an hour walk from Dodena (alt. 2,600m).
The trail commences by crossing a traditional wooden bridge that spans the Thimphu Chhu, then climbs steeply to the monastery. Being the place where the Shabdrung spent many years in meditation, Cheri today has numerous hermitages and small temples located on its slopes, commanding spectacular views. The one way walk to the monastery is approx 4.5 km, taking about 2 hours. By evening we will drive back to town and overnight hotel in Thimphu.
Day 3: Thimphu to Punakha
Drive to Dochula Pass that you can see 108 chortens which was built by the present Queen Mother of Bhutan Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck to commemorate Bhutan’s victory over indian militants and to liberate the souls of the lives lost.
Dochu La Nature Hike – Hike through the deep forest of Rhododendrons, Magnolia and Juniper for more than 2 hours to the Botanical Garden at the bottom. Beautiful hike to see the flora that Dochu la has to offer.After that we will drive to Punakha for Lunch and by afternoon visit Punakha Dzong which was built in year 1637, the dzong continues to be the winter home for the clergy, headed by the Chief Abbott, the Je Khenpo. It is a stunning example of Bhutanese architecture, sitting at the fork of two rivers, portraying the image of a medieval city from a distance. The dzong was destroyed by fire and glacial floods over the years but has been carefully restored and is, today, a fine example of Bhutanese craftsmanship.We can also visit Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten built by the third Queen Mother Ashi Tshering Yangdon Wangchuck this Chorten is a splendid example of Bhutanese architecture and art and is the only one of its kind in the world. It has been built over eight and a half years in its details have been drawn from religious scriptures. Overnight hotel in Punakha.
Day 4: Punakha TO PARO (DOCHU LA FESTIVAL)
Attend Dochula Festival at Dochula Pass and we will drive towards Punakha and will visit Punakha Dzong which was built in 1637, the dzong continues to be the winter home for the clergy, headed by the Chief Abbott, the Je Khenpo. It is a stunning example of Bhutanese architecture, sitting at the fork of two rivers, portraying the image of a medieval city from a distance. The dzong was destroyed by fire and glacial floods over the years but has been carefully restored and is, today, a fine example of Bhutanese craftsmanship and we also visit Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten – Built by the third Queen Mother Ashi Tshering Yangdon wangchuck this Chorten is a splendid example of the Bhutanese architecture and art and is the only one of its kind in the world. It has been built over eight and a half years and its details have been drawn from religious scripture. By evening we will drive to Paro and Overnight hotel in Paro.
Day 5: Paro
Early morning after breakfast you will visit Drugyel Dzong which was built in the year 1647 by the great Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, father and unifier of medieval Bhutan, the Dzong was destroyed by an accidental fire and left in ruins as an evocative reminder of the great victories it was built to commemorate. Explore the ramparts and relive the memories of a glorious past.
Beyond Satsam Chorten, we hike up to the Taktsang Monastery (Tiger’s Nest). The 1.5-hour hike to the cafeteria is also a vantage view whereby you can enjoy the stunning view of the monastery. Prayer flags adorn the cliffs and this is also where Guru Padmasambhava landed on the back of a tigress in the 8th century. After a sumptuous local lunch, we will retrace our steps to visit Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest temples in Bhutan.Overnight hotel in Paro.
Day 6: Paro
After Breakfast you can visit Paro Dzong also known as Rinpung Dzong, this 15th century massive fortress/monastery, is also the administrative center of the dzonkhag. Ta Dzong – Built as a watch tower the Ta Dzong, it was converted into the National Museum in 1968. The museum boasts antique Thangka, textiles, weapons and armour, household objects and rich assortment of natural and historic artifacts. Paro Valley – In evening you can visit the beautiful Paro valley where you can see many of Bhutan’s old monasteries and temples. The country’s only Airport is in Paro. The valley is also home to mount Chomolhari (7,300 meters) situated at the northern end of the valley whose glacier water forms the Pachu flowing through the valley. Overnight at Paro hotel.
Day 7: Departure
Quick Travellers representatives will drop you to airport after farewell for departure.
- Receive and Transfer to Airport
- Double/Twin in 3 Star Hotel
- An experienced driver and tour vehicle
- A qualified & licensed English Speaking Guide
- All Sightseeing
- Museum Fees
- Bhutan Visa
- All Permits
- Bottled Mineral Water.
Cost Does Not Include:
- Donations to Monasteries
- Travel Insurance
- Alcohol & Beverages
- Tips for Guide, Driver & Hotel Staff
- International Telephone Calls
- Round Trip Air fare
- Inbound Airfare
- Expenditure in personal nature