Bhutan summer tour combines the very best the Kingdom of Bhutan has to offer in the west and central regions. This small group tour, catering to a maximum of 8 persons, travels from Paro to Bhutan’s capital Thimphu, to the remote beauty of the Phobjikha Valley, visits the most important temples of the central Bumthang region, the splendour of the magnificent Punakha Dzong and culminates with a hike to the majestic Taktsang Monastery. (Tiger Nest)
Below is Bhutan summer tour itinerary and for customized tour itinerary, cost deals, latest up to date summer tour information and Bhutan guide, talk to a team of adventure consultants and professional tour leader.
Day 1: Arrive in Paro Airport and drive to Thimphu (1 hrs 30mins)
Upon arrival at Paro airport, you will be greeted by your tour guide with driver and transferred to Thimphu, travelling through the spectacular countryside enroute.
Day 2: Thimphu Valley
This morning travel north up the Thimphu valley and hike through the forest to either picturesque Cheri or Tango Goemba, En route view the majestic Trashi Chhoe Dzong, the seat of Bhutan’s government and royal offices and, time permitting, pay a visit to Pangri Zampa – two 16th century buildings that now house a monastic training school for astrologers. Other options for places of interest to visit are the national library, which holds a vast collection of ancient Buddhist manuscripts, the handmade paper factory, Zorig Chusum – the institute of the 13 arts and crafts of Bhutan & where you can interact with the students & a visit to the National Textile Museum.
Day 3: Thimphu to Phobjikha Valley (5hrs)
This morning you will be transferred by road eastwards to the Phobjikha Valley via the town of Wangdue. Phobjikha is a glacial valley on the western slopes of the Black Mountains and is one of the most beautiful open valleys in Bhutan. It is also one of the most important wildlife preserves in the country and the winter home of the rare black necked crane, which annually flies in from Tibet. There are also barking deer, wild boars, sambars, himalayan black bears, leopards and red foxes. While you are in Phobjikha you will visit the Black Crane nature information centre, the carpet factory and the sacred Gangtey Monastery plus enjoy time to wander through Gangtey village and hike the Gangtey Nature Trail.
Day 4: Phobjika Valley.
Explore the Phobjikha valley today as per the above suggestions & perhaps enjoy one of the many additional hikes available in this beautiful valley.
Day 5: Phobjikha Valley to Bumthang (4 hrs 30mins)
Start drive to the central Bumthang region comprising the 4 valleys Choekhor, Tang, Ura and Chhume. Traverse the Pele La (Pass) which crosses through the Black Mountains National Park and divides western and central Bhutan and stop for lunch in Trongsa, where you will spend more time on your return journey. Keep a watchful eye out for Rhesus Macaques on the side of the road. The Trongsa Dzong is perched at the end of a ridge and seems to hang in space at the head of the valley. The Dzongs location afforded it great power over this part of the country as the only foot and mule trail between east and western Bhutan leads straight through Trongsa and through the Dzong itself.
Buckwheat noodles and pancakes are a Bumthang specialty. Enjoy the remainder of the afternoon is at leisure. There are short walks and hikes to choose from and your guide will be happy to make recommendations.
Day 6: Sightseeing in Bumthang
Today your sightseeing includes visits to the Wangdicholing Palace and one or both of the Jambay & Kurjey Lhakhangs, these are the oldest two monasteries in the kingdom and all the Kings of Bhutan are cremated at Kurjey Lhakhang. Time permitting, other options include the Tamshing Monastery where about 95 Monks reside. Most are under 15 and from poorer families who cannot afford to send their children to state school, the Mebartsho (Burning Lake), a short walk from the roadside, and one of the most sacred Buddhist pilgrimage sites and/or the Swiss Farm to taste sweet cheese, apple brandy and locally brewed wine and beer.
Alternatively enjoy one of the hikes available in this region or find a nice quiet spot at the hotel to catch up on some reading.
Day 7: Bumthang to Trongsa (2hrs)
Drive towards Trongsa via the Chhume valley for the opportunity to shop for excellent local handicrafts and textiles. This region is renowned for its exceptionally high quality weavings. The Trongsa Dzong is the ancestral home of the Royal Family of Bhutan and has recently added an excellent museum into its ancient watchtower.
Day 8: Trongsa to Punakha Valley (5 hrs)
Drive to the Punakha Valley which holds the title as the winter capital because of its more temperate climate. En route stop in Wanggue and wander the old shopping strip, soon to be demolished. Arriving into the Punakha valley visit Chimi Lhakhang, a monastery built by Lama Drukpa Kuenley (also known as the Divine Madman), which is a pleasant, easy 20 minute walk across paddy fields. It is believed that childless women who visit the temple will conceive after receiving a “wang” (blessing) from the resident monk.
Day 9: Sightseeing in Punakha.
This morning visit the dramatic Punakha Dzong, which formally served as the seat of the government and is still the winter residence of the Dratsheng (Central Monk Body). This is Bhutan’s most spectacular Dzong and an excellent example of how a medieval fortress and a centre of both monastic and administrative functions, has adapted and evolved for modern day use. Enjoy a relaxing afternoon or travel to the end of the valley and hike to Khamsum Yulley Namgyel Chorten. This Chorten hold very special significance being consecrated in 1999 and dedicated to the protection of the former Crown Prince – today’s current King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck.
Day 10: Punakha Valley to Paro Valley (4hr 45 mins)
Drive to Paro Valley, once again traversing Dochu La. This afternoon enjoy an orientation tour of the major features in Paro town including Paro Dzong with its cantilever bridge and Ta Dzong – the National Museum housed in an ancient watchtower and view the fine collection of ancient Thangkha paintings, textiles, weapons and other artifacts. While in Paro we recommend a wander along the main street which offers good shopping for jewellery and handicrafts.
Day 11: Sightseeing in the Paro Valley.
Hike to the Taktsang Monastery, also known as Tigers Nest. Choose between a 2 hour round trip hike to the Monastery viewpoint or a longer 5 hour and more strenuous hike into the Monastery itself. Tigers Nest clings impossibly to a cliff of rock at 3000 ft above the valley floor and where Guru Rinpoche flew on the back of a tigress to subdue the local demons followed by 3 months meditation in a cave still visible in the monastery. In 1998 the monastery was seriously damaged by fire and has since been painstakingly reconstructed to its original condition and consecrated by the 4th King in 2005.
This afternoon, time permitting, take a quick visit to Kyichu Lhakhang – one of Bhutan’s oldest and most beautiful temples boasting an orange tree that perpetually bears fruit followed by a visit to the old ruined fortress of the Drugyel Dzong (14km from Paro). This is the historical site of the Fort of Drukpa Victory, from which the Bhutanese used to repel the Tibetan invaders again and again. On a clear day views of the 24,000 ft snow domed peaks of sacred Mt Chomolhari can be seen.
Day 12: Paro Airport.
Transfer to Paro airport for your onward flight. Thanks for joining Bhutan Summer tour and hope you enjoy this tour.
Note:The daily tarrif per night for both the high season and the low season is set by the government of Bhutan. In addition; there is a government surcharge per night for individual travelers and for groups of two. For group of three or more there is no government surcharge.
Tourist high season rate: March to May and Sep to Nov.
1 pax group: USD 250 per night per person + surcharge of USD 40/night/person.
2 pax group: USD 250 per night per person + surcharge of USD 30/night/person
3 pax group and above: USD 250 per night per person, no surcharge.
Tourist low season rate: December to February and June to August.
1 pax group: USD 200 per night per person + surcharge of USD 40/night/person.
2 pax group: USD 200 per night per person + surcharge of USD 30/night/person
3 pax group and above: USD 200 per night per person, no surcharge.