Bhutan Tour with Thimphu Tshechu

Bhutan Tour with Thimphu Tshechu
Bhutan Tour with Thimphu Tshechu

Bhutan Tour with Thimphu Tshechu offers the opportunity to witness the Thimphu Tshechu Festival celebrated in the Tashgichhodzong in Thimphu. Thimphu Tshechu was instituted by the fourth Desi Gyalse Tenzin Rabgye in 15th century to commemorate the birth anniversary of Guru Padmasambhava.

The highlights of the festival are the Guru Tshegye Cham or the dance of the eight manifestations of Guru Rinpochhe, the cham of the Ging and Tsholing and the Rigma Chudru cham or the dance of the sixteen fairies.

Please note that this Bhutan Tour with Thimphu Tshechu Festival Itinerary can be customized and combined with any adventures, activities or interest as per the requirements, convenience and interests of the travelers.

Tour Highlights – Bhutan Tour with Thimphu Tshechu

  • Opportunity to witness the Thimphu Festival, the country’s biggest festival.
  • Well-designed itinerary with overnight stays in four diverse main destinations; the most populous and developed Thimphu city to the untouched Glacial valley of Phobjikha.
  • Breathtaking views of the Himalayas and the nature from the Dochula pass and Lawala Pass.
  • Opportunities to walk around less touristy places and villages.
  • Opportunity to explore Gangtey/Phobjikha valley, Paro valley, Thimphu (the capital city of Bhutan without traffic lights) and the Punakha/Wangdue Valley (the old capital of Bhutan).
  • Travel as per your convenience and visit places of your interests as you travel with your own private guide and vehicle.
  • Personal attention by the tour operators.
  • A private traditional cultural show and experience of the traditional hotel stone bath.
  • Wonderful day hike to the abode of gods and monks, the world famous, Taktshang Monastery (Tigers’ nest)
  • Visit to the age old Lhakhang (Monasteries/ temples) and dzongs ( Fortress)
  • Opportunity to explore villages, visit to village houses and interact with local people.
  • Opportunity to play archery (the national game of Bhutan) and many more.

Detailed Itinerary – Bhutan tour with Thimphu Tshechu

Day 1. Arrive Paro

Altitude of Paro: 2280 mts

On your journey to Paro, the panoramic views of the Himalayas are sensational, including the Everest and other famous Himalayan Peaks. The approach through the Bhutanese foothills and the landing, including a few steep turns to land at the tiny airstrip of Paro becomes more exciting as you enter Bhutan.

On arrival, you will be received with a warm welcome by your Bhutanese Guide from Neptune Holidays Bhutan with Tashi khadar and a small gift and escort to hotel.

After lunch, free time.

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 2. Paro – Haa

Driving Distance: 65 Kms, Driving Hrs: 2.5 Hrs, Altitude of Haa: 2700 Mts.

After breakfast, drive to Haa via Chelela pass. Stop at Chelela pass and enjoy the view of High Mountains and the prayer flags. You can install your own prayer flags here.

Chelela Pass: It is the highest point between the Haa valley and Paro valley at an altitude of 3810 m. This place gives a very good view of the Himalayan mountains, including the mountain Jumolhari. The place also gives good view down towards the Haa valley. A lot of prayer flags flutter in the place.

Drive further to Haa Valley.

Haa Valley and places to visit in Haa:  Haa valley was known for its animist tradition during the pre- Buddhist era.  Inhabitants of Haa then believed offering animal blood to their local deities. However, after the visit of the tantric master, Guru Padmasambhava, in the 8th century the inhabitants were transformed into peaceful Buddhist.  Guru Padmasambhava, subdued the local deities such as Ap Chundu and made them the guardians of the Buddhist tradition. Traces of this belief system are still noticed in the form of festivals and rituals.

Opened to foreign tourist only in the year 2002, it is a culturally rich valley. A few famous places to visit are:

7th century Lhakhang Karpo (White temple) and Lhakhang Nagpo (Black temple) at the foothills of a venerated three brotherly mountains known as Meri Puensum. The grand annual Haa Tshechu is also performed here at Lhakhang Karpo on the 8th-10th day of the 8th Bhutanese month.

The Haa Wangchuklo Dzong built in 1915 after the Dumchog Dzong was razed to the ground by fire is worth visiting.

The valley is also unparalleled in Bhutan in terms of the diversity of the folk culture, legends and shamanistic rituals. The shamanistic traditions is vividly practiced in almost all the communities, most notable of which is the annual ceremony to honour Ap Chundu, the guardian deity of the valley. The valley is also a paradise for nature lovers and travelling there is a very rewarding experience.

Dinner and over night in hotel.

Day 3. Haa – Thimphu

Driving Distance; 115 Kms, Driving time: 3-4 Hrs, Altitude of Thimphu: 2320 mts

After breakfast, drive to Thimphu.

Lunch at Thimphu.  After lunch is a time to refresh in the cool breeze of the Himalayas with the perfect views of the Thimphu valley. Visit the following:

Sangaygang view point: (2685 meters) to have view of whole Thimphu valley and walk through hundreds of colorful prayer flags that dot the hill overlooking the Thimphu valley.

Takin Reserve Centre. The takin, the national animal of Bhutan can be seen here. This particular animal is found only in the Himalayan region.

Kuenselphodrang: A place for refreshing with a huge statue of Buddha on the top of  Kuenselphodrang. The area also gives a very good view of the Thimphu valley from the west.

National Memorial Chorten: This Chorten was built in the honour of the Third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, also known as “The Father of Modern Bhutan”. This Chorten was built in 1974 in a typical Tibetan style. This Chorten is also a center of worship for the people living in Thimphu and contains many religious paintings and tantric statues.

Then, free time to walk around The Thimphu town visiting different textile and handicraft shops.

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 4. Thimphu (Thimphu Tshechhu, Day 1)

Altitude of Thimphu: 2320 mts

After breakfast, visit, drive to the Tashi Chhodzong and witness festival. (Whole Day)

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 5. Thimphu (Thimphu Tshechhu, Day 2)

Altitude of Thimphu: 2320 mts

After breakfast, visit, drive to the Tashi Chhodzong and witness festival. (Whole Day)

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 6. Thimphu – Gangtey

Driving Distance; 76 Kms, Driving Time: 2.5 – 3 Hrs, Altitude of Punakha: 1310 mts

After breakfast, drive to Gangtey. On the way, stop at Dochula Pass and spend some time there.

Dochula pass: The most known pass in Bhutan, about 30 km drive from the Capital City Thimphu on the way to Wangduephodrang. It is at around 3150 m height. On a clear day, spectacular view of the mighty Himalayas mountain ranges can be seen. The pass also has 108 Druk Wangyal Khangzang Chhortens which is believed brings multi fold merit to all sentient beings and which make the pass a must visit place.

Drive further to Gangtey. While in Gangtey visit the Gangtey Goempa.

Gangtey Goemba– This Monastery overlooks the large green expanse of the Phobjikha Valley. Gyaltse Pema Thinley, the grandson and mind reincarnation of Pema Lingpa founded the Temple in 1613, and Tenzin Legpai Dhendup, the second re-incarnation, built the temple. The present Abbot, Kunzang Pema Namgyal is the ninth re-incarnation.

Then explore the Phobjikha Valley.

The Phobjikha Valley- This valley is one of the most beautiful glacial valleys in the Himalayas. It lies on the western slopes of the Black Mountains. The valley is a designated conversation area and borders the Black Mountain National Park of Bhutan. This is also an important place for Bhutan as it is the winter roosting place for the endangered Blacknecked Cranes.

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 7. Gangtey – Punakha

Driving Distance: 78 Kms, Driving Time: 2.5 – 3 Hrs, Altitude of Punakha: 1310 M

After breakfast, drive to Punakha and then visit the Punakha Dzong.

Punakha Dzong: This Dzong was built by the Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in 1637. It is built at the junction the Pho Chu and Mo Chu Rivers. The annual Punakha Tsechhu( Festival ) is held here. The monk body resides in this dzong in winter.

Then take a short excursion to visit the Chhimi Lhakhang.

Chhimi Lhakhang: This temple is located on the way to Punakha. This temple is also known as the temple of fertility and was built by Lama Drukpa Kuenley in the 15 century. Lama drukpa Kuenley is also known as the Divine Madman.

After Lunch, excursion to Khamsum Yulley Monastery.

Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten:  This chorten is built on a ridge above the Punakha valley. It took around nine years to built the chorten. over a period of 9 years. It is said that the Bhutanese craftsmen consulted holy scriptures to construct this 4 storey temple. The temple was built by Her Majesty, the Queen Mother Ashi Tshering Yangdon Wangchuck

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 8. Punakha – Paro

Driving Distance: 136 km, Driving time: 4-5 Hrs

After breakfast, drive to Paro. On the way visit the Royal Botanical Park.

Royal Botanical Park – Situated at an altitude range of 2100 meters – 3800 meters, the park covers an area of 47 square kilometers and is located between Thimphu and Punakha. The park contains a rich biodiversity of flora and fauna and features a huge species of plants and animals including endangered species such as Himalayan yew, native Rhododendron, Royal Bengal Tiger, , Musk Deer, Red Panda, Blood pheasants and Himalayan Monal. You can also find Tetracentron (an ancient relict angiosperm with no vessel in its trunk) in the park. The park has 14.5 km of trails for eco trek for cycling and walking and one of the main attractions is the rhododendron garden including a picnic spot with children’s play ground.

After lunch, visit;

Rinpung Dzong:  Meaning “fortress of the heap of jewels”. The dzong now serves as the administrative and judicial seat of Paro district and residence for around 200 monks of Paro and was built at the same time of Drukgyel Dzong.The famous Paro tshechhu ( festival) is held here in spring.

Ta Dzong: It overlooks the Rimpung Dzong and was built in 1951 as a watch tower. This dzong is Round, more like parts of an European castle. The Dzong was established as the National Museum of Bhutan since 1967 and holds fascinating collection of arts, relics, religious thangkha,etc.

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 9. Paro

After breakfast Excursion to Taktshang.

Start your day with a hike to the abode of gods and monks would be a pretty good start. It shall be taken care of that the time shall be yours for the hike, no hurries and no worries.

Reaching the top shall be worth the climb; the touch of the Himalayan breeze and views of the valley below and temple on the rocky cliff shall be fascinating and shall let you feel the real freedom of mind and happiness.

Taktshang Monastery; The primary lhakhang was built surrounding Guru Rimpoche’s Meditation cave in the 1684 by Gyaltse Tenzin Rabgay.  This incredible monastery clings to the edge of a sheer Rock cliff that plunges 900 meters into the valley below. Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava flew here on the back of a tigress. It is a two to three hours excursion uphill; however, one feels truly blessed reaching the monastery.

After lunch, visit,

Drukgyel Dzong: This dzong is in ruins now. The Dzong was destroyed by fire in 1951 and is now preserved as heritage site. The Dzong is situated in Drukgyal, overlooking the beautiful village with Mount Chomolhari in the background. The dzong was built in 1646 by Zhabdrung Nawang Namgyal to commemorate victory over the Tibetan invaders led by Mongolion warlord, Gushri Khan.

Then,  drive to a Bhutanese farm house and relax in traditional hotstone bath 

Hot stone bath: The traditional Bhutanese hot stone bath, known as Dotsho in local language has been practiced in Bhutan for centuries as a medicinal soak. Many Bhutanese believe that the bath helps in curing joint pains, helps in relaxing and other medical problems. River stones are heated and then put in water to heat the water; sometime medicinal herbs are added to the water before it is ready for the soak.

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 10. Departure

After breakfast, drive to Airport and farewell.

Important Notes

The comfort, convenience and interest of the travelers is very important to us. We are flexible with the itinerary. Sightseeing can be done as per the convenience and interests of the guests. If it is of interest to the guest, they may choose to visit places that may not be in the itinerary, except for the change of overnight destination.

We reserve the right to change the itinerary or hotels anytime as may be required to, in case of unforeseen contingencies (natural/man made) or unavailability of hotels.

Some of the sites to be visited may be closed on government holidays or during breaks. In such cases we shall do other sightseeing in its place.

This itinerary can be tailor made for any duration or within any destination and can be combined with any kind of activities such as trekking, rafting, walking tour, cycling , etc.

It is advisable to book Bhutan Tour with Thimphu Tshechu at least 6 months prior to the travel date because of limited Bhutan tourism infrastructures and inventories.