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10-DAY WONDERS OF BHUTAN
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DAY 01 : SINGAPORE – PARO – THIMPHU (-/L/D)
After experiencing a memorable flight along skies offering you views of the Himalayan Treasures
such as Mount Everest, Kanchenjunga, Bhutan’s Jomolhari and Jitchu Drake, your flight gradually
descend, yet again enchanting you with Paro Valley’s beauty from above.

After clearing customs and immigration, you will be greeted by your English-speaking guide and
driver and transfer to Bhutan’s capital Thimphu, travelling through the spectacular countryside enroute.
All the houses and buildings in the Kingdom are painted and constructed in traditional
Bhutanese style.

On arrival into Thimphu check-in to your hotel.

Thimphu has lots to offer. The Memorial Chorten, one of Bhutan’s most beautiful stupas, built in
memory of the Third King, Late His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, known as the Father of Modern
Bhutan. A short drive from there will take you to Buddha Point – the Buddha statue of the Present
Buddha (Buddha Dodenma / Buddha of the Thunder Ball).

From there we will move to the Handicraft’s Emporium, Weaving Centre and Changangkha
monastery, one built in the 12th century. There will also be visits to the Takin Zoo, Sangaygang, which
offers a view point of Thimphu valley and a Nunnery.

Lunch will be served at a local restaurant, after which we visit the National Library where ancient
manuscripts are preserved and the Wood Craft and Painting school.

In the evening, we will visit Tashichho Dzong, the main secretariat building. This massive structure
houses part of the government Ministries, the office of the King and the Throne Room. It also houses
the State Monastic Body and the living quarters of the Chief Abbot and the senior monks.

Overnight in Thimphu.

DAY 02 : THIMPHU (B/L/D)
Drive along the Thimphu River for around 45-minute to Tango (meaning horse head) Monastery. Be
prepared for a steep climb from the open car park and 20-minute hike through the blue pine and
oak forest to reach the monastery which was founded in the 12th Century by Lama Gyalwa Lhananpa.
Phajo Drugom Shigpo also meditated and saw the vision of God Tandin (God with Horse Head).

Visit Zorichusum (13 arts and crafts) which is popular called the painting school. Students in this
school learn traditional arts and crafts like painting, sculpture, wood carving, weaving and
embroidery.

Visit the National Library which consists of 2 buildings. On the ground floor of the old building is the
largest book in the world and religious books on the upper floor. English books are kept on the
ground floor in the new building.

Overnight in Thimphu.

DAY 03 : THIMPHU – PUNAKHA (B/L/D)
Drive to Punakha, old capital of Bhutan (about 3-hour drive)

Stopover at the enchanting Dochula Pass (3,040m above sea level). On a clear day once can see
panoramic view of the Eastern Himalayas mountain ranges. Visit the Druk Wangyel Temple located
near by the pass. Arrive at Punakha Valley (1300m above sea level), a fertile valley where farmers
grow two crops in a year.

Sitting at the fork of two rivers, Punakha Dzong is considered one of the most beautiful spots in
Bhutan. With spectacular displays of Bhutanese architecture, it stands like a medieval city
surrounded by lavender Jacaranda trees. Built in 1637, the six-storey structure is the second oldest
and second largest dzong in Bhutan. It still serves as the winter home of the Je Khenpo, Chief Abbott
of the clergy. In 2011, it hosted the royal wedding of King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and
Queen Jetsun Pema.

Next visit to Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten. It is a one-of-a-kind example of Bhutanese art and
architecture, built by the third Queen Mother, Ashi Tshering Yangdon Wangchuck. This beautifully
designed chorten took nine years to build, using only religious scriptures to construct the four-storey
temple. Accessible only by foot, the one-hour walk crosses over a suspended footbridge that is
adorned with colourful prayer flags.

Overnight in Punakha.

DAY 04 : PUNAKHA – BUMTHANG (B/L/D)
After breakfast, we will drive towards Bumthang, crossing Yotongla, another pass and enter
Bumthang. Bumthang Valley is known as the heartland of Buddhism in Bhutan. At Bumthang, you
will be received in the traditional Bumthang way the hotel. After checking in, we will have lunch and
then begin exploring Bumthang valley.

Bumthang is a mythical valley and Bhutan’s most sanctified district, wotted with stupas and temples
all over. We will visit Jamphel Lhakhang, also built by King Songsten Goempo of Tibet in the 7th
century.

The others are Kurje Lhakhang where the Great Indian Saint and Buddhist Master Guru
Padsambhava subdued a local demon and left his body imprint on a rock. Jakar Dzong (Castle of the
white bird) built in 1501 by Lama Nagi Wangchuk (great great grandfather of Lama Zhandrung
Rimpoche). Kunchosum Lhakhang and Membertsho (the Burning Lake) are the other places. Legend
has it that Pema Lingpa discovered several religious texts from the lake.

In the evening you will be entertained by Bhutanese traditional dances and song.

Overnight in Bumthang.

DAY 05 : BUMTHANG (B/L/D)
Different from all other valleys in Bhutan, Bumthang is very spacious and open ranging in altitude
from 2,600m to 4,000m. Bumthang is a heaven for hikers and trekkers, not to mention the
numerous beautiful and important Buddhist monasteries and pilgrimage sites, making it the Cultural
and Historic centre of Bhutan.

One could spend months exploring this fascinating valley. Almost every little valley or hill has a
background of interesting myths and legends about Kings, Buddhist masters and Serpents.
Bumthang consists of four main valleys, Chumey, Tang, Ura and Choskhor (Jakar). Commonly known
as Jakar valley where you can see a little bit of modern touch and with Swiss influences.

Overnight in Bumthang.

DAY 06 : BUMTHANG – GANGTEY (B/L/D)
After breakfast, we drive to Gangtey. On our way, we will pass through Trongsa, the ancestral home
of Bhutan’s Royal Family. Trongsa Dzong, one of the largest in the country was first built in 1648 and
later enlarged many times.

Up the mountain sits the Taa Dzong, a watchtower built in 1652 to ward off attacks of the town
below. It now serves as home to the Royal Heritage Museum, highlighting the history of the area and
the Wangchuk dynasty. Featuring Buddhist art, royal memorabilia, a 500-year-old jacket of Ngagi
Wangchuck, and Padma Kathang’s personal copy of the handwritten biography of Guru Rinpoche.
You can read more about the history and importance of the Taa Dzong in the book, Tower of
Trongsa by Christian Schicklgruber.

Overnight in Gangtey.

DAY 07 : GANGTEY (B/L/D)
Today we travel to Phobjikha (Gangtey) Valley. Known as the winter home of the black-necked
cranes (Gus nigricollis), you can see 600 of these elegant, shy birds that migrate here from Tibet
between November and March. This bowl-shaped valley is also a wildlife preserve, so you might also
see the other native animals to Bhutan, including muntjac, sambar, serow, or yak.

Gantey Goemba is a 17th-century monastery that sits on a hill, overlooking the entire valley. An
excellent example of Tibetan architecture, the prayer hall (tshokhang), features eight great pillars. In
the 15th-century, the Buddhist saint Pema Lingpa foretold that a temple would be built there, so his
teachings could be spread. In 1613, his grandson, and reincarnation of Pema Lingpa, fulfilled the
prophecy by building a Nyingma temple at the location. Kuenzang Chholing, the long white building
nearby, is where monks go to meditate for three years, three months, and three days.

Overnight in Gangtey.

DAY 08 : GANGTEY - PARO (B/-/-)
After breakfast we head back to scenic Paro Valley, home to many of Bhutan’s oldest monasteries
and the country’s only airport. This mixture of old and new makes Paro an important part of
Bhutan’s past, present and future.

The valley is home to Chomolhari (Jomolhari) Mountain, located on the northwestern border of
Bhutan and Tibet. Often called the wife of Kangchenjunga, the world’s third highest mountain,
Chomolhari is Bhutan’s third tallest mountain at 24,035 feet. The glacier waters flowing from the
mountain feed the rivers of the Paro Valley.

Paro (Rinpung) Dzong means Fortress on Jewels because it was built using stones rather than clay. It
is an excellent example of 15th-century architecture and one of the most impressive dzong in Bhutan.
It currently serves as the government center of Paro. A cantilever bridge that crossed the river was
damaged by fire in 1907 and later washed away by floods, so the original construction was lost.

Located on a hill above Paro Dzong is Ta Dzong. This cylindrical watchtower was built in 1649 and
converted into the National Museum of Bhutan in 1968. The spiral-shaped building holds antiques,
art, textiles, weapons, and household items that tell the history of Bhutan.

Overnight in Paro.

DAY 09 : PARO – SINGAPORE (B/-/-)
After breakfast hike up to Taktsang Monastery commonly known as ‘The Tiger’s Nest’. The trail is
broad and the ascent of approximately 2 hours takes you almost a kilometre above the Paro valley
floor. The view of Taktsang Monastery built on a sheer cliff face 900 metres above the valley floor is
spectacular sight. The Monastery is also an important pilgrimage site for the Buddhists. The great
Guru Rimpoche 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 Century.

In the afternoon short drive to the ruins of the 17th Century Drukgyel Dzong, an historic monument
built by the Shabdrung to commemorate his victory against invading Tibetans in 1644. In fine
weather the towering peak of the sacred Mount Jomolhari (7,314m) appears as a stunning backdrop.
On the return drive to Paro, visit 7th Century Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the 108 temples constructed
by the Tibetan King Songtsen Gampo. Kyichu is built in a manner similar to the Jokhang in Lhasa.
Inside there is a great golden image of Buddha Shakyamuni.

Overnight in Paro.

DAY 10 : PARO – SINGAPORE (B/-/-)
Early morning transfer to the airport for your departure flight to Singapore.
End of tour.


Inclusions

  • Return economy airfare between Singapore and Paro on Drukair (Royal Bhutanese Airlines): SIN/PBH/SIN
  • All airport taxes including fuel and insurance surcharges
  • Bhutan Visa and visa application fee
  • All royalties and government taxes, and small group surcharges, if any is payable
  • All transfers and transportation in a Private vehicle with an experienced driver
  • 03/06/09 nights accommodation in twin-share room in selected local hotels/lodges
  • All meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner), excluding beverages
  • Services of licensed English-speaking Bhutanese guide
  • Private guided touring with entrance fees to sights & monuments
  • Drinking water for the duration of tour (but not during meal times) 

Exclusions

  • Travel insurance
  • Personal expenditure such as telephone charges, laundry, all soft/hard beverages, etc.
  • Other options or expenses not mentioned in the inclusions above
  • Tips and gratuities for guide and driver

Flight Detail

KB501   SIN/PBH   0630/1050 (VIA CCU)
KB500   PBH/SIN   0750/1610 (VIA CCU)