Bumthang Cultural Trek

Trip Facts

Bumthang Cultural Trek
Length :  11 Days - 10 Nights
Start : Paro
Finish : Paro
Trip Style : Trekking Tour
Discounts : Applicable on this trip
Group Size : Maximum 12, Avg 5
Group Leader : Certified Tour Leader from The DBT.
Transport : New Model Toyota Hiace /Coaster bus/Land Cruiser not more than 3 years old.
Trip Rating by Popularity :
Physical Demand Rating :
Can it be Tailored? : Yes

Trip Overview

The Bumthang Cultural Trek explores the highlights of the Bumthang valley, the religious heartland of Bhutan, and home to some of the oldest Buddhist temples and monasteries. This gentle three-day trek passes through several villages on its route through Bumthang’s countryside of meadows, blue pine forests and mountains of scrub bamboo. It is perfect for the average trekker who wants to enjoy breathtaking mountainous views, visit remote sacred sites and meet with locals. It is especially recommended for lovers of nature.

Season: From March to May and September to November.

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE BUMTHANG CULTURAL TREK

 

  • Explore Bhutan’s central valleys, rich with ancient historical and sacred Buddhist sites
  • Discover some of the most sacred Buddhist monasteries and temples in the Himalaya
  • Experience Bhutan’s unique culture up-close with farmhouse visits and village excursions
  • Drive over high mountain passes affording sensational views of the Himalayan peaks
  • Many cultural attractions including medieval fortresses (Dzongs), markets and museums
  • Hike up to the famous Taktsang Monastery, perched on a cliff 900m above the valley floor
  • Marvel at the elaborate and ancient wall paintings and carvings in Dzongs and temples

Outline Iteinerary

DAY 01: ARRIVE PARO – THIMPHU

  • After lunch, sightseeing around Paro including a trip to the Ta Dzong Museum, housing many religious relics, works of art and handicrafts offering an orientation into Bhutan’s historical, cultural, and religious past. Then of course move on to Rinpung Dzong, just downhill, to see the painting of the great saint Milarepa, considered as the master of meditation by the Bhutanese and believed to have attained enlightenment in a lifetime.
  • Drive to the capital, Thimphu

DAY 02: THIMPHU

  • A full day of sightseeing in the nation’s bustling capital, including a visit to the National Memorial Chorten, a memorial stupa dedicated to the Third King, revered as the father of modern Bhutan, who passed away in 1972. Continue on to 12th century Changangkha Temple and Drubthob monastery housing the Zilukha Nunnery.
  • Other sites to visit include: The National Institute of Zorig Chusum, where students are taught the 13 types of Bhutanese arts and crafts, The National Library housing the collection of Bhutanese scriptures, Traditional Paper-making Factory displaying the Bhutanese paper making process, and a fascinating replica of a medieval farmhouse at the Folk Heritage Museum.
  • If there is time, visit Takin Preserve to see takin, the national animal of Bhutan. It was started as a shelter for takins straying into Thimphu and later turned into a zoo with almost natural surroundings.
  • Tashichho Dzong, ‘the fortress of the glorious religion,’ the most important landmark in the capital, houses His Majesty, the king’s secretariat, government ministries, and the central monk body and other important government offices.

DAY 03: THIMPHU – TRONGSA

  • Drive from Thimphu to Trongsa (7-8 hrs) over Dochu-La pass (3,100m) and Pele La pass (3,420m) on the Black Mountain range.
  • Enroute visit beautiful Chendebji Chorten. The Chorten was erected in the 18th century. The imposing Trongsa Dzong can be viewed across a deep canyon to signal your approach to the town around a curving road. Trongsa is the ancestral home of Bhutan’s ruling dynasty.

DAY 04: TRONGSA – BUMTHANG

  • Visit Trongsa Dzong, the largest Dzong in Bhutan and the Ta Dzong museum housing a collection of historical artifacts of the Royal Family.
  • Proceed towards Bumthang (2.5 hrs), the spiritual heart of the kingdom. Bumthang is home to some of Bhutan’s oldest palaces, Buddhist temples and monasteries. On arrival, visit Jakar Dzong (Dzong of the White Bird) and 16th century Tamshing Lhakhang containing ancient Buddhist wall paintings.
  • After lunch visit Kurje Lhakhang, one of the most sacred monasteries in the kingdom. ‘Kurje’ means the body print of Guru Padma Sambhava which he had left in one of the caves while meditating there around which a temple was built. Today there are three temples.
  • The 7th century Jambay Lhakhang, one of the two temples built by King Srongtsen Gampo of Tibet along with Kyitchu Lhakhang in Paro to subdue a demon.

DAY 05: BUMTHANG – NGANG LHAKHANG (Distance: 14km, Duration: 3 to 4 hours)

  • The trek begins today. The route following Chamkhar Chu (river) takes us through meadows, forests of blue pine and scrub bamboo, and passing many villages and temples. Camp altitude: 2900m.

DAY 06: NANG LHAKHANG – UGYENCHOLING (19km, 7 to 8 hours)

  • The trail ascends gradually through juniper forests towards Phephe La Pass (3360m), from where it descends to Tang valley, finally arriving at Ugyencholing village (2850m). Camp overnight by the side of the river near the village. Altitude 2670m.

DAY 07: UGYENCHOLING – BUMTHANG (11km, 4 hours)

  • In the morning, walk up to 16th century Tang Ugyencholing Palace, a beautiful private mansion which also houses a small museum containing an excellent overview of traditional rural life in Bhutan.
  • On the way back, visit the Mebartso (the burning lake). Terton Pemalingpa (founder of the Nyingma sect) is said to have found treasure here in the 15th century hidden by Guru Rinpoche. He retrieved the treasure carrying a lamp which continued to burn even in the freezing water. Legend says the key to Shangrila will be found here someday. This lake is very sacred, and on auspicious days many Bhutanese people go there to make butter lamp offering.

DAY 08: BUMTHANG – PUNAKHA

  • After breakfast, depart for Punakha, the ancient capital of Bhutan

DAY 09: PUNAKHA – PARO

  • Visit Punakha Dzong, built in 1637 by the Shabdrung, situated at the confluence of the Mo Chu and Pho Chu (Mother and Father Rivers) and is the winter headquarters of the Je Khenpo and monks of the central monastic body. Bhutan’s first king was crowned here in 1907.
  • Drive to Thimphu and visit handicraft and souvenir stores. Afterwards proceed to Paro.

DAY 10: PARO

  • Hike to Taktsang Monastery. The walk of approximately 1.5 to 2 hours uphill takes you almost a kilometre above the Paro valley floor. (Horses shall be arranged for those who cannot hike up to the cafeteria). The view of Taktsang Monastery built on a sheer cliff face 900 metres above the valley floor is a spectacular sight. The Monastery is an important pilgrimage site for the Buddhists. Guru Rinpoche is said to have flown here on the back of a tigress when he brought the teachings of the Buddhist Dharma to Bhutan in the 8th He meditated for three months in a cave around which the monastery was built.
  • In the afternoon drive to the ruins of the 17th century Drukgyel Dzong, built to commemorate a victory against invading Tibetans in 1644. In fine weather the towering peak of the sacred Mount Jomolhari (7314m) appears as a stunning backdrop.
  • Drive back to Paro and visit 7th century Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the 108 temples constructed by the Tibetan king Songtsen Gampo.
  • Or another alternative programme would be to go on a day trip to the Haa Valley, one of the most picturesque districts in Bhutan, characterized by its surrounding rugged and mountainous terrain.

 

DAY 11: DEPART PARO

  • Breakfast and drive to the airport for flight to your onward destination.

Date and Departure Information

Fix Departure Dates are yet to be announced. If you are interested for this trip, please click the button below for the further inquiry

Price Details

The Tourism Council of Bhutan (TCB), Tourism Business regulating agency of the Royal Government of Bhutan, fixes the Tourist Tariff rate. This rate is valid for all the inclusive tour packages. The tariffs for tourists visiting in a group of 3 persons or more are as follows:

Peak Season Rate: (March, April, May, September, October and November) Cultural Tour /Trekking – US$ 250/per person per night halt.

Low Season Rate:(January, February, June, July, August and December) Cultural Tour /Trekking- US$ 200/per person per night halt.

Price Inclusions

  • Bhutan Royalty ($65 per person per day).
  • Visa Fees ($40 per person).
  • All necessary permit fees.
  • All transfers and sightseeing with entrance fees.
  • All meals including evening tea.
  • All accommodation in our partner hotels, which are some of the best in the country on twin sharing basis.
  • All trekking equipments and logistics including cooks, camp personnel, horsemen and ponies.
  • English-speaking tour leader, guide and driver.
  • Trekking Insurance (Our value-added service).
  • Cultural Performance (our value-added service).

Price Exclusion

  • Airfare for flights into and out of Bhutan.
  • All personal expenses like laundry, telephone, tips, shopping expenses.
  • Meals and Beverages other than the ones mentioned above (see inclusions).
  • Spa Charges.
  • Travel and Medical insurance.

Route map

Bumthang Cultural Trek
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KH Zaman
Buffalo, New York



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