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The Best Private Luxury Tour of Bhutan

- 8 Days

Annual End of Summer Sale. From 9.10.22 to 9.25.22


Day 1: International Arrival – Paro – Thimphu. (Lunch and Dinner) Easy Tours will be happy to guide and/or assist you with planning your international flight logistics. The last part of your flight will possibly have offered you spectacular views of the tallest Himalayan Ranges. You are greeted at the Paro airport (it is a tiny airport and a fairly simple process) by your Bhutan Accompanying Tour Director and your chauffeur. They will both accompany you throughout your time in Bhutan. Your Visa for Bhutan is arranged by Easy Tours as part of your adventure with us.

Thimphu, the largest town in Bhutan

Thimphu, the largest town in Bhutan

Welcome to one of the last magical kingdoms on the planet, a peaceful country full of devout Buddhists who treasure GNH (Gross National Happiness), not GDP.

Bhutan is a country without traffic lights, and the single traffic control (by a police officer) is at the intersection of the two busiest streets of Thimphu, the capital. Yet traffic is nothing like it is in most of South Asia, partially because there are less vehicles, but also because of the unfailing politeness and consideration of the Bhutanese.

Proceed on the 90-minute drive to your amazing lodge near Thimphu. Much of the drive you will be next to the gushing Thimphu River and Bhutan’s incredible scenery will start to captivate you. Your Tour Director Guide and your chauffeur in Bhutan will continuously entertain you with anecdotes that attribute events, things, and places to results of actions by one of their legendary Buddhist Sages from past centuries. A lot of unique and/or peculiar beliefs and practices are attributed to one of the greatest miracle workers of them all, The Divine Madman, Lam Drukpa Kuenley.

Arrive at Thimphu and you are assisted with your check in at your unique luxury lodge. Lunch is included at your lodge upon arrival. If it is a little before 3pm at this time, an early check-in may be possible, but is not guaranteed. For most of our South Asian destinations, we recommend a day at leisure upon arrival so as to both recuperate from your international flights, as well as to build a cushion for unexpected flight delays.

Thimphu was just a dzong (fortress) surrounded by a few huts when it became the permanent capital of Bhutan in 1952. In pace with the tranquil passage of time in Bhutan, Thimphu has leisurely transformed into the city it is today. All the architecture in Thimphu is of traditional Bhutanese style because a royal decree demands that the city preserve the original national character of Bhutan’s architecture.

Late afternoon - you may want to rest for the remainder of this day so as to acclimatize yourself to the 8000 to 9000-foot elevation. If you feel the need for some activity, the facilities at your lodge and the amazing scenery and walking paths around it are well worth an exploration – the lodge staff will guide you on possibilities.
(Overnight - The Postcard Dewa)

Day 2: Thimphu. (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner) Start your guided exploration of Bhutan with a visit to the Buddha Dordenma, the massive Buddha statue located on a hilltop overlooking the highway entering Thimphu. This bronze Shakyamuni Buddha statue was completed in 2015 and is gilded in gold. It is 169 feet (51.5 meters) tall, and you will visit the 125,000 Buddha Dordenma (100,000 8 inch and 25,000 12 inch) gilded bronze Buddha statues which are placed inside the main statue. Its ornate base houses a large and beautiful meditation hall.

Buddha Dodernma Statue

Buddha Dodernma Statue

The views of Thimphu and the surrounding Himalayan ranges are spectacular from the area around the statue.

Head into Bhutan’s largest town and proceed for a visit to the King's Memorial Chorten (Buddhist funeral monument), which is continuously circled by people, murmuring mantras and spinning prayer wheels. Construction of this landmark was the idea of Bhutan’s third king, His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuk, the father of modern Bhutan. His plan was to dedicate this monument to world peace and prosperity. It was completed in 1974 after his untimely death. Today, it serves both as a memorial to the late King and as a monument of peace.

You will also visit the Folk Heritage Museum, which houses a fascinating collection of Bhutan’s living traditions, and can chose to visit the National Textile Museums. There is a break for lunch at your Lodge. You may want to change your attire at this time as the main activity today requires pants/long skirts and no bare shoulders.

Afternoon - Visit Tashichhoe Dzong, locally known as the Fortress of the Glorious Religion. Among other things, this impressive edifice is the center of the Bhutanese government. It houses the monarch’s throne room and the seat of JeKhenpo, the Chief Abbot.

Tashichho Dzong

Tashichho Dzong

Although the original dzong was built in 1641 by the political and religious unifier of Bhutan, Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel, it was renovated and rebuilt a couple of times over the last few centuries due to damage by fire and earthquake.

When His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuk moved the nation’s capital to Thimphu in 1952, he had the dzong enlarged and renovated extensively over a five-year period. Some parts of the dzong are off limits to visitors but there are plenty of fascinating area’s that you will explore. Of particular interest is the Lowering of the Flag ceremony that is performed in the early evening. After the ceremony you will return to your lodge.
(Overnight - The Postcard Dewa)

Day 3: Thimphu. (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner) This morning you will visit the Bhutan Post Office and be transported back decades when you enter. The Bhutanese are avid letter writers and this charming building is a fascinating window into their culture. Beautiful stamps are for sale and you can even have your picture taken and have stamps printed with you on them in a very short time. Mail a note to family or friends from Bhutan with you on the stamp!

Next you will enjoy a drive to Motithang Takin Preserve. This is a preserve for Bhutan’s National Animal, the Takin, which is a very rare and endangered species that is only found in Bhutan. Imagine a goat’s head on a cow’s body with a shiny thick brownish coat to protect from the wind. The creation of the Takin is also attributed to The Divine Madman. From the preserve you will return to your lodge where there is a break for lunch.

After lunch you will visit the National Library and Archives of Bhutan. This beautiful building houses the world’s largest book (protected by a glass enclosure), many amazing Buddhist books, and great historic photos of the royal family as well as foreign dignitaries.

Later this afternoon you will walk around the quaint and charming town of Thimphu with its boutique stores, cafés, and bars. Take a short break at the Clock Tower Square, where you might get lucky and get to watch a cultural performance. Right next to it is a great photo opportunity, the only controlled intersection in Bhutan, located where the two busiest roads meet. You will return to your lodge when you are through with this excursion.
(Overnight - The Postcard Dewa)

Day 4: Thimphu – Punakha. (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner) You are assisted with your check-out from your lodge and driven to Dochula Pass, which lies at 10,105 feet (3,080 m).

Druk Wangyal Chortens

Druk Wangyal Chortens

This scenic pass is home to 108 memorial Chortens (small Stupas), known as the Druk Wangyal Chortens.

There are spectacular Himalayan vistas from this pass on a clear day. The visible peaks include –

Gangkhar Puensum, the highest mountain in Bhutan at 24,836 feet (7570 m). This is widely accepted as the highest unclimbed mountain in the world.
Masagang – 23,602 feet (7,194 m)
Tsendagang – 22,835 feet 7060(6,960 m)
Terrigang – 23,163 feet (7,060 m)
Jejegangphugang – 23,484 feet (7,158 m)
Kangphugang – 23,524 feet (7,170 m)

After this you will continue on your drive to scenic Punakha. Upon your arrival in the Punakha region, you will be driven to your boutique resort that sits above Punakha and has gorgeous valley views. Enjoy a slightly late lunch and then you are free to freshen up and explore the facilities and views of your lodge.

just before you arrive at Punakha, you have the option to enjoy a stop near Chimi Lhakhand and experience a walk across fields and a village to the Chimi Lhakhand Monastery, which is located on a hillock next to a beautiful, gushing river. The small monastery of Chimi Lhakhand is dedicated to the Divine Madman. This stop is not recommended for families with children, or those who may be sensitive to what they will experience here. Please note that phallus paintings and sculptures are found in parts of Bhutan and are a part of the belief system, mainly as protectors that keep away evil spirits. The scenic village you will cross includes exposure to such explicit materials, as does the monastery to a lesser extent. This is one of The Divine Madman’s legacies.
(Overnight - Como Uma Punakha)

Day 5: Punakha. (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner) You are at leisure in the morning to enjoy the wonderful facilities and views of your lodge – walks around the spectacular surrounding landscape are encouraged. After a slightly early lunch you will enjoy a scenic drive to the tiny town of Punakha and proceed for a walk through the small town of Punakha with your guide and watch the locals go about their daily lives. Life here is even simpler than in Thimphu or Paro, and it takes only a short while to traverse the town.

Punakha Dzong

Punakha Dzong

Head further in the mid-afternoon to the awe-inspiring Punakha Dzong. All of Bhutan’s Dzong’s are a visual delight, and most are located with very scenic backdrops.

Punakha Dzong (officially Pungtang Dechen Photrang Dzong) is definitely among the very best in terms of spectacularly scenic surroundings. Located on the tip of the confluence of the Pho Chhu (father) River & the Mo Chhu (mother) River, with a scenic valley and mountains forming its backdrops, arriving at this location itself brings cheer to your heart, before you even cross the 180-foot wooden cantilevered bridge to enter the massive compound.

This is the second biggest and second oldest (1637 AD) Dzong in Bhutan and was the administrative Center of Bhutan’s government until the capital was shifted to Thimphu in 1995. Explore the structures and courtyards inside the Dzong and marvel as your guide explains how life is lived in the monastery, and tells you tales about its history and importance. Enjoy a picnic sunset drink and canapes by the river with amazing vistas - your lodge will arrange a special experience for you.
(Overnight - Como Uma Punakha)

Day 6: Punakha – Paro. (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner) You are assisted with your check-out of your lodge and driven to Paro. On the way to Paro, you have the option of stopping for a guided visit to Simtokha Dzong. This small fortress was built in 1627 and is one of the oldest in Bhutan. The fortress currently houses the Institute for Language and Culture studies. Upon your arrival near Paro, you are assisted with your check in at your lodge.

Monks at Rinpung Dzong

Monks at Rinpung Dzong

Enjoy a late lunch and a short break before your next experience.

Mid-afternoon – The valley of Paro contains many amazing attractions, crowned by the awe-inspiring Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) monastery, which is on your schedule for tomorrow. Proceed on the short drive, or a delightful walk (a little over a mile), to the National Museum of Bhutan, Ta Dzong. Ta Dzong was originally a watchtower built to defend Rinpung Dzong during the local Bhutanese wars of the 17th century. It was inaugurated as Bhutan’s National Museum in 1968. It houses a wealth of artifacts ranging from about 4000 BC to modern times.

After the museum you will walk 5 minutes to the adjacent Rinpung Dzong (Fortress that sits on a Heap of Jewels). Like other Bhutanese Dzong’s, it has a long and fascinating history and is an excellent example of Bhutanese architecture. Along the wooden galleries lining the inner courtyard are fine wall paintings illustrating Buddhist lore. It was built in the 16th century by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the first spiritual and temporal ruler of Bhutan. Currently the dzong houses the monastic body of Paro, the office of the Dzongda (District Administrative Head) and Thrimpon (Judge) of Paro district. Access to the dzong is across a traditional covered cantilever bridge called Nemi Zam. You can choose to either walk or drive back to your wonderful lodge after exploring the Dzong.
(Overnight - Como Uma Paro)

Day 7: Paro. (Breakfast, Packed Lunch and Dinner) Proceed for an excursion to Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) monastery, the most famous Bhutanese monastery, and the nation’s signature landmark. A packed snack will be provided by your lodge for this excursion.

Tiger’s Nest

Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) Monastery

Perched precariously on a small bluff on the side of a mountain, 3000 feet (900 meters) above the Paro valley, its actual elevation is 10,240 feet (3120 meters).

Guru Rinpoche (also known as Padmasambhava in Himalayan India, Tibet and surrounding regions) arrived here in the 8th century and meditated in a mountain cave for 3 years, 3 months, 3 weeks, 3 days and 3 hours. The original monastery was built in 1692 but has since expanded and the main building of the monastery burnt down in 1998 but has since been reconstructed.

The incredibly scenic monastery has to be experienced to be believed – no photo can do it justice. The guided trek up to, and down from, the monastery takes three to five hours, depending on whether you are fairly fit, or a very experienced, trekker. There are ponies available for those who do not want to make the trek. Even if you choose not to take the trek or even go up to the monastery, visiting this valley for its incredible views is a must.

The path to Tiger’s Nest takes you to a vantage point that is actually a little above the monastery, and there is a café located here for refreshments. This is where most of the published photos of the monastery are taken from – there is no view of the whole monastery once you actually get up to it. You will now proceed to descend for a while before climbing again to arrive at the Tiger’s Nest. Enjoy an exploration of the monastery and experience the lives of the monks that inhabit this legendary campus. The Bhutanese believe that Guru Rinpoche arrived here riding on a flying tigress, which some legends say was Queen Yeshe Tsogyal (his consort, and the mother of Tibetan Buddhism) who was transformed into a tigress for this journey. The cave where Guru Rinpoche meditated is called Pel Pfuk, and the monastery is built on the bluff adjoining it and other caves, such as Tholu Pfuk, the cave that he first entered upon arrival.

Afternoon – return to the valley and drive back to Paro, stopping at Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest and most sacred shrines of the Kingdom. The original structure of this temple was constructed in the 7th century by a Tibetan king, but many repairs and renovations have occurred over the centuries. There is a small steady stream of Paro’s residents visiting the shrine to pray, and the two orange trees in its compound are said to bear fruit throughout the year.
(Overnight - Como Uma Paro)

Produce Market in Paro

Produce Market in Paro

Head back to your lodging at Paro after this excursion.

Day 8: Paro – International Flight. (Breakfast) You are assisted with your check-out in the morning and driven to the airport and assisted in boarding your flight to your next destination – all flights tend to depart from Paro at some time in the morning. Bhutan has multiple daily flights to a number of cities in India, but unless you are planning to visit India, this is not an ideal solution for most guests because of India’s visa and other requirements. Flights from Bhutan cannot be ticketed in conjunction with any other airline, thereby requiring that you go through arrival and departure procedures at the connecting airport. There are fairly frequent flights to Bangkok, and two or three times a week to Singapore, both of which do not require visa’s etc. for U.S. citizens and the arrival and departure processes are easy. We are available to consult with our guests with guidance/assistance for your departure from Bhutan, and at any of the connecting countries.

 

Lodging

Thimphu
The Postcard Dewa – Luxury Room
Punakha
Como Uma Punakha – One Bedroom Villa
Paro
Como Uma Paro – One Bedroom Villa

Inclusions

Special Dining Experiences AND All Major Meals, including soft beverages and more.
Lodge check-in is available at 3 pm / Required check-out is before noon
Applicable monument entrance fees as per the itinerary
All transfers and sightseeing by personal upscale vehicle
Services of one of Bhutan’s best Accompanying Tour Director Guides
Bhutan Tourism Development Fees & Bhutan Government Royalty Fee
Bhutan Visa fee and procurement
Bottled water during sightseeing/excursions and long drives.
All currently applicable taxes.

Not Included

Expenses of a personal nature like tips, laundry, telephone calls, drinks etc.
Meals other than those specified above
Travel insurance, visa etc.
Camera fees – still and video

Dates & Prices

Annual End of Summer Sale. From 9.10.22 to 9.25.22

Annual End of Summer Sale - Exp. Sep 25th
Dates Price For
Per Person, based on Double Occupancy
On Tour
Flight Cost
Total For
2 Guests
Availability
1st Oct, 2022
to
20th Dec, 2022
$12750 $11475 $22950
Reserve Now
5th Jan, 2023
to
15th Apr, 2023
$12750 $11475 $22950
Reserve Now
Prices include all Current Taxes & Surcharges
This Exclusive Journey has very limited availability and online reservations are not possible. Some of the included luxury boutique resorts are very small and the few enhanced room/suite types we use can be sold out months in advance. Yes, even in 2022! Please fill out the Inquiry Form to see if your choice of dates is available.