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Bhutan Cultural Tour & Trek

Overview A Bhutan cultural tour and trek trip offers a fascinating and immersive experience, allowing you to explore the country's rich cultural heritage and stunning natural landscapes. Bhutan, nestled in the eastern Himalayas, also known for its commitment to preserving its unique traditions and pristine environment. Bhutan: Unveiling Cultural Marvels and Trekking Landscapes The cultural tour aspect of your trip will take you to iconic landmarks and cultural sites. One of the highlights is the Tiger's Nest Monastery, also known as Paro Taktsang, a sacred site perched on a cliffside. This awe-inspiring monastery offers breathtaking views and a glimpse into…


A Bhutan cultural tour and trek trip offers a fascinating and immersive experience, allowing you to explore the country’s rich cultural heritage and stunning natural landscapes. Bhutan, nestled in the eastern Himalayas, also known for its commitment to preserving its unique traditions and pristine environment.

Bhutan: Unveiling Cultural Marvels and Trekking Landscapes

The cultural tour aspect of your trip will take you to iconic landmarks and cultural sites. One of the highlights is the Tiger’s Nest Monastery, also known as Paro Taktsang, a sacred site perched on a cliffside. This awe-inspiring monastery offers breathtaking views and a glimpse into Bhutan’s spiritual practices. You’ll also visit Punakha Dzong, a magnificent fortress-monastery located at the confluence of two rivers, and Trongsa Dzong, an impressive structure overlooking the picturesque Mangde Chhu valley. In the capital city of Thimphu, you can explore the National Memorial Chorten, a stupa that serves as a place of prayer and remembrance.

The trekking portion of your trip will take you through Bhutan’s pristine landscapes. Depending on your preference and fitness level, you can choose from various trekking routes. The Druk Path Trek offers stunning views of the Himalayas, pristine lakes, and beautiful forests. The Jomolhari Trek is also renowned for its breathtaking scenery and the chance to spot rare wildlife. For those seeking a more challenging trek, the Snowman Trek also takes you through remote valleys and high mountain passes, providing a truly immersive adventure. The Bumthang Cultural Trek combines cultural exploration with moderate trekking, taking you through traditional villages, ancient temples, and verdant valleys.

Throughout your journey, you’ll be accompanied by experienced guides who will provide insights into Bhutan’s culture, history, and natural surroundings. The accommodations during the tour will be comfortable hotels and guesthouses, while during the trek, you’ll stay in campsites with basic facilities. Bhutan’s “Minimum Daily Package” policy also ensures that your trip covers accommodation, meals, transportation, and guide services, contributing to sustainable tourism and preserving Bhutan’s cultural heritage.

Conclusion and Summary

With its untouched beauty, vibrant culture, and warm hospitality, a Bhutan cultural tour and trek trip promises to be an unforgettable adventure that allows you to discover the hidden gems of this enchanting kingdom while immersing yourself in its rich cultural tapestry.

Trip Highlights

  • Witness spectacular bird’s eye view of the Himalayas while flying in/out from Paro.
  • Explore the tiny town of Paro exploding with colors and tradition.
  • Discover the tiny capital Thimphu.
  • Visit Taktsang Monastery ‘Tiger’s Nest’- one of the most famous monasteries in Bhutan.
  • Punakha Dzong – the most beautiful monastery in Bhutan.
  • Visit Mebertsho Lake -burning lake.
  • Three days hiking in the beautiful Gangtey Valley.
  • Visit Bumthang- the religious heartland home to oldest monasteries & temples.
  • Visit Kurje Lhakhang, Jambey Lhakhang & Tamshing Lhakhang in Bumthang.
  • Jakar Dzong – “the castle of the white bird”.

Itinerary Expand All

Arrive Paro by the Bhutanese National Carrier flying over the world’s highest mountains and finally landing at the lush green Paro valley. A cool and clean fresh air greets the visitor as stepping down from the plane, the first gift of Bhutan. After clearing customs and visa formalities, meet the representatives and the Bhutanese guide, and a short tour brief by the guide then transfer to Paro town for lunch. Then drive towards Thimphu (the capital of Bhutan) for about hour.

In Thimphu, visit Buddha point for a stunning view of Thimphu city and Takin Compound- on the way to the viewpoint over Thimphu is the home of Bhutan’s national animal, the Takin. Then continue to Tashi Choe Dzong- the fortress of the glorious religion was initially constructed in 1641 and rebuilt by King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk in the 1960s, Folk Heritage Museum – a 300 year old traditional house converted into a museum, Centenary Farmers Market, the new authentic craft bazaar. Overnight at Hotel (Lunch/Dinner included)

After early breakfast, drive towards Punakha for about 3 hours passing along Dochu La Pass at 3140m. On clear weather, the pass commands a wonderful panorama of the Eastern Himalayas. From the pass, the road descends through varied forest and finally emerging into the highly cultivated valley of Punakha. En-route take a short hike through beautiful rice fields to Chimmi Lhakhang, a temple dedicated to Drukpa Kuenley, who as a favorite saint of the Bhutanese people is known affectionately as “the Divine Madman”.

In the afternoon, visit Punakha Dzong. Located at the confluence of the Pho-chu (male-river) and Mo-chu (female-river), the Punakha Dzong is arguably the most impressive dzong in the country. Overnight at Hotel (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Drive to Wangduephodrang Dzong, which is perched on a spur at the confluence of two rivers. The position of the Dzong is remarkable as it completely covers the spur and commands an impressive view both up and down the valley. Then drive up a winding mountain road through oak and rhododendron forest, and over a high pass down into the Phobjikha valley, surely one of the loveliest high altitude valleys in Bhutan. Phobjikha is one of Bhutan’s few glacial valleys, and chosen winter home of black-necked cranes, migrating from the Tibetan plateau. Enjoy 1½ hours Gangtey nature trail from the monastery through the jungle before emerging to the valley floor. Overnight at Hotel (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Today, we drive 5 hours to Bumthang valley. The road climbs rapidly through a series of hairpins out of Trongsa and there are great views back to the Dzong and out across the valley. After passing through cultivated fields for a while, the trail re-enters the forest and reach the Yotong La (3400m). Descending to a low point of 2650m at a village called Chumey; the scenery is once again totally different as the route enters the wide-open Bumthang valleys. It takes about an hour to get to the roadside at Chumey, the first of the four valleys in Bumthang. Overnight at Hotel (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

In the morning visit Kurje Lhakhang, one of the most sacred places in the kingdom as Bhutan’s “patron saint”, Guru Rinpoche (Padmasambhava) meditated here. From Kurje monastery, a tarmac road heads south along the right bank of the river to Jambey Lhakhang. This temple, erected by the Tibetan king Songtsen Gampo in the 7th century, is one of the two oldest in Bhutan (the other being Kyichu Lhakhang in Paro). After lunch, hike to Tamshing Lhakhang, founded in 1501 by Pema Lingpa. It contains interesting and ancient Buddhist wall paintings. Later, visit Jakar Dzong, “the castle of the white bird”, and then take a stroll through Bumthang’s market area before returning to the hotel. Overnight at Hotel (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included).

Today the trek starts near the small village of Thangbi from Thangbi Goemba, and follows the Chamkhar Chu, a river known for trout fish. After an hour of walking the route will pass the Zangling Lhakhang on the hill to the right. Stop for lunch at Thangbi Lhakhang. The then trail enters the Ngang Yul (Land of the Swan), at the centre of which lies the Ngang Lhakhang (Swan Temple). The valley was populated by swans in the old days, and hence the name Ngang Yul. Overnight in Camp (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included).

Today the route gradually climbs to Phephe La Pass (3,360m) the highest point of the trek, and passes through beautiful forested areas enjoying the natural beauty of the surrounding. Then it descends to Tang valley before arriving at Ugyen Choling Village. Overnight in Camp (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included).

In the morning, walk up to the Ugyen Choling Palace, which is a repository for artifacts of ancient nobility. Afterwards take a short walk downhill to Kizam to meet up the vehicle. From here it is 25km drive to the junction of the road near Mebartsho. Visit the Mebertsho Lake (burning lake) where Terton Pemalingpa, is said to have discovered religious treasures in the 15th century. This lake is very sacred and visited by many Bhutanese on auspicious days. Afterwards, drive back to Bumthang. Overnight in Hotel (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included).


After breakfast, re-trace the same route back towards Gangtey and the road journey today is bit longer with 8 hours of drive. Upon arrival at Gangtey, check-in hotel. Overnight at Hotel (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

After breakfast, drive back to Paro cross Dochula pass which is about 5 hours drive. PM: Stroll around the streets of Paro. Overnight at Hotel.(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

After breakfast drive towards the base camp of Taktsang for the hike up to the Taktsang Monastery-Tiger’s Nest. It’s about two hours hike up the cafeteria. From this point, enjoy the spectacular view of the monastery, where Guru Padmasambhava landed on the back of a tigress in 8th century. Then visit the Taktsang Monastery and hike back to the road point then drive to Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest and most sacred shrines in Bhutan. Also visit Rinpung Dzong built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the first spiritual and temporal ruler of Bhutan; the Dzong continues its age-old function as the seat of the district administration, district court and the monastic body. The southern approach to the Dzong has a traditional roofed cantilever bridge called Nemi Zam. Overnight at Hotel (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

After breakfast, transfer to the airport to catch the onward flight. Bid farewell to the remote and legendary Dragon Kingdom disappearing again behind its guardian mountains. (Breakfast only included)

What's Included

Airport pick-up and drop-off by private vehicle.
• 3-star accommodation (4 & 5 stars may require an additional premium).
• Bhutan visa fee – including all necessary processing
• Route Permit
• Three meals per day during your stay in Bhutan
• A licensed Bhutanese tour guide
• All land transportation by private vehicle
• Camping equipment and haulage for trekking tours
• Sightseeing as per itinerary
• Drinking water
• All internal taxes and charges
• A sustainable development fee of $200 per person per night. (This sustainable development fee goes towards free education, free healthcare, poverty alleviation, along with the building of infrastructure.)

What's Excluded

Monuments entrance fees where applicable (Entrance fees)
• Airfare & Travel Insurance
• Expenses of personal nature, Tips to guides and drivers
• Expenses occurred due to unavoidable events i.e. road wrecks, flight delays etc.

Trip Information

Bhutan is a small landlocked country located in the eastern Himalayas, known for its stunning landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and unique traditions. A cultural tour combined with a trek in Bhutan offers a comprehensive experience, allowing you to explore the country’s natural beauty and immerse yourself in its vibrant culture. Here is some general information to help you plan your Bhutan cultural tour and trek trip:

  1. Tourist Visa: All tourists traveling to Bhutan must obtain a visa in advance. The visa can only be obtained through a licensed Bhutanese tour operator, who will make all the necessary arrangements for your trip.
  2. Best Time to Visit: The ideal time for a cultural tour and trek in Bhutan is during the spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November) seasons when the weather is pleasant, and the skies are clear. These seasons offer the best views of the Himalayan peaks and allow for comfortable trekking conditions.
  3. Cultural Highlights: Bhutan is renowned for its preserved culture and traditions. Some of the cultural highlights you can explore during your tour include the magnificent Tiger’s Nest Monastery (Paro Taktsang), Punakha Dzong (a fortress-monastery), Trongsa Dzong, National Memorial Chorten in Thimphu, and various local festivals known as “tsechus.”
  4. Trekking Routes: Bhutan offers a range of trekking routes suitable for different fitness levels and preferences. Popular trekking options include the Druk Path Trek, Jomolhari Trek, Snowman Trek, and the Bumthang Cultural Trek. These treks take you through pristine landscapes, high mountain passes, remote villages, and picturesque valleys.
  5. Tour Duration: The duration of your Bhutan cultural tour and trek can vary depending on the specific itinerary you choose. Generally, a cultural tour can last around 7-10 days, while a trek can range from 5 to 15 days or more, depending on the trekking route and difficulty level.
  6. Accommodation: During your tour, you’ll stay in comfortable hotels and guesthouses in major cities and towns. However, during the trekking portion, you’ll be accommodated in campsites with basic facilities. The tour operator will arrange all accommodations for you.
  7. Tour Operator: It’s mandatory to book your Bhutan trip through a licensed Bhutanese tour operator. They will handle visa arrangements, provide a guide, arrange transportation, and ensure a smooth experience throughout your journey.
  8. Cost: Bhutan has a “Minimum Daily Package” policy, which includes a fixed daily fee per person covering accommodation, meals, transport, and guide services. The cost varies depending on the season and group size. This policy is designed to promote sustainable tourism and preserve Bhutan’s cultural heritage.
  9. Altitude and Fitness: Many trekking routes in Bhutan involve high altitudes, so it’s important to be physically fit and acclimatize properly. Preparing for the trek in advance by engaging in regular exercise and consulting with a doctor is recommended.
  10. Permits and Regulations: Certain areas in Bhutan require special permits, such as the Paro Taktsang trek. Your tour operator will assist you in obtaining the necessary permits and complying with local regulations.

Remember, the information provided here is a general overview, and it’s advisable to consult with a licensed Bhutanese tour operator to plan your specific cultural tour and trek itinerary. They will tailor the trip to your preferences and provide detailed information about the available options, costs, and logistics.

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Trip Facts

Duration 12 Day(s)
Activities Bhutan Cultural Tours
Group Size 1 to 20
Best Season January to December
Start/End Point Bhutan / Bhutan
Difficulty Level Easy

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