Thimphu Festival

Day 1thim1
Arrive in Paro
Our team will receive you at the Paro international airport in a traditional Bhutanese way. The only gateway to Bhutan via flight, Paro presents best introduction to Bhutan. Except for few concrete and traditional buildings, Paro is dominated by paddy fields.
If you arrive early in the morning, we will take you to the National Museum of Bhutan housed in a medieval watch tower or Taa Dzong. The circular building on the ridge overlooking Rinpung Dzong is a piece of Bhutanese heritage.
We can also visit Rinpung Dzong. Rinpung Dzong is today the civil and religious administrative centre of the Paro District. Historically important, this dzong was first built by Hungral Drung Drung, a descendant of Phajo Drugom Zhigpo. In 1640s, the descendants of Hungral Drung Drung offered the dzong to Zhabdrung Rinpoche who built a new dzong in the same spot in 1646.
Day2
Halt in Thimphu
Today, we undertake a sightseeing tour around Thimphu. We will visit the popular Memorial Choeten in the heart of the city built in the memory of the third King of Bhutan, the traditional weaving centre, the heritage museum, the Bhutanese paper factory, the National Library, and the School of Traditional Arts and Crafts.
In the afternoon, we can either take a stroll around Thimphu city or visit historically significant Semtokha Dzong. Built in 1629 by the founder of Bhutanese state, Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, it is the oldest dzong in Bhutan.
Day 3
Attend Thimphu Festivalthimp2
Thimphu Tshechu is held at Tendrelthang, a recently built mini stadium attached to the Tashichhoe Dzong. Tashichhoe Dzong houses the Throne Room and office of His Majesty the King, office and summer residence of His Holiness the Je Khenpo, the Chief Abbot, quarters of the monks of the Central Monastic Body, government ministries and other offices.
We will witness diverse facets of Bhutanese culture and religion at the festival. At the tshechu, various mask dances, folk dances, and dance dramas are performed. We will also witness a large crowd of spectators dressed in their finest costumes and jewellery. Our guide will explain to you the significance of the day’s events.
Day 4
Thimphu to Punakha
Today, we start our journey early in the morning. The road to Punakha passes across Dochula Pass which is 3,150 m above sea level. We will stop on the pass for a while and enjoy the spectacular view of Jigme Singye Wangchuck mountain ranges as we sip our coffee. The 108 stupas built on the crest add beauty to the already magnificent mountain pass.
From Dochula, we descend to Lobesa where we will have our lunch. After lunch, we visit Chimi Lhakhang, which is 25 minutes hike from the road point. Also known as the fertility monastery, this temple built by Tibetan Lama Ngawang Chogyal is today associated with his cousin, Lama Drukpa Kinley, popularly known as Divine Madman. This temple is believed to bless childless couples with fertility.
After the temple visit we will drive to Punakha, Bhutan’s medieval capital.
Day 5
Punakha to Gangtey
Get ready for a great day. As we drive from Wangdiphodrang to Gangtey at 3,500 metres, you will come across different vegetations, landscape, and people. After reaching Gangtey, we will drive to Phobjikha valley, which is popular for endangered black-necked cranes. It is one of the two main winter roosting grounds for the cranes.
As we take Wangdi-Trongsa highway towards the east, we will climb Pelele Pass, one of the major, historic passes in Bhutan. Before we hit the crest of the popular pass, we turn right and follow the road leading to Gangtey. At Gangtey, we visit Gangtey Gompa, one of Bhutan’s oldest monasteries and the seat of an important lineage of Pema Lingpa, the 15th century Bhutanese treasure discoverer.

We will spend the night in a village in Gangtey. We will experience traditional Bhutanese rural life. Our guide will relate their experience of rural Bhutanese life.

Day 6
Gangtey to Paro
Today, from Gangtey, we drive to Paro via Wangdi and Thimphu. We will pass by the ruins of Wangdiphodrang Dzong. The Dzong that was burnt in a fire accident in 2012 was an important administrative centre in the medieval Bhutan. It was the seat of administration and district monastic body until it was destroyed by fire. The dzong is being rebuilt. Our guide will brief you on the historical and political significance of the dzong.
Day 7
Hike to Taktshang
Today, we hike to Taktshang Monastery clinging on the face of a cliff 900 metre above Paro valley. Taktshang, also known to the outsiders as the Tiger’s Nest, is one of the most sacred places in Bhutan. This place is said to have been blessed by a large number of enlightened Buddhist masters, among them Guru Padmasambhava (popularly known as Guru Rinpoche in Bhutan). Guru Rinpoche is believed to have flown to this place riding a tigress.
We will have lunch at Taktshang cafeteria from where we will enjoy a great view of the monastery.
Day 8
Depart
Our guide will drive you to the airport on time to catch your flight back home. We will bid you farewell in a traditional Bhutanese way by offering you a white silk scarf.