Drive through the winding road to Drugyel Dzong, ruin fortress that once defended the valley from Tibetan invaders. On a clear day, one can get a good view of Mount Chhomolhari, Mountain of Goddess (Alt 24,000ft). Visit Ta Dzong, which houses the National Museum and the courtyard of Kichu Lhakhang which is one of the oldest monasteries in Bhutan - dated 7th century AD.
Spend a full day hike to Taktshang, the Tiger's Nest. This magical monastery clings to a vertical granite cliff 3,000 ft above the valley floor. The monastery unfortunately got burnt in 1998 and has recently been reconstructed.
Drive to Drugyel Dzong where the road ends and the trek begins. The path follows the river uphill through a narrowing agricultural valley. The camp made of stone shelter is in a meadow. Altitude - 9,500ft / 2,800 m. Distance - 17 km. (approx. 5 - 6 hours.)
The Shana - Soi Thangthangkha path goes uphill through the river valley and along the river drainage. The trail passes through conifer and rhododendron forests. On the way, there is a great view of Mount Chhomolhari. Camp will be set up in a meadow with stone shelter. Altitude - 12,664 ft / 3,860 m. Distance - 19 km. (approx. 6 -7 hours).
This Soi Thangthangkha - Jangothang path goes past a small army post where the valley begins to widen again. From this point one can get views of snow capped peaks and high mountain ridges. One should also be able to see some yaks and yak herders. Camp is beneath a ruined fortress at the base of Mt Chhomolhari. Altitude - 13,255 ft / 4,040m. Distance - 19 km. (approx. 5 - 6 hours.)
The Jangothang - Lingshi trail climbs gradually to Nyilila Pass (Alt. 15354 ft / 4,680 m). Wide yak pastures can be seen all along the trail. If the weather is clear, one can get a great view of the Lingshi Dzong as one descends into the Lingshi basin. Tserim Kang and its descending glaciers can be seen at the north end of the valley. Camp is in a stone shelter. Altitude - 12,844 ft / 3,915 m. Distance - 19 km. (approx. 5 - 6 hours.)
The Chebisa - Shomuthang trail goes through wild pastures where one will meet few yak herders & yaks. Cross Gobula Pass (Alt. 14,268ft / 4,350 m) and on to Shomuthang. The camp here is near a river, a tributary to the Mo Chhu which comes out below the Gasa Tshachu (Hot Spring). Altitude - 13,976 ft / 4,260 m. Distance - 15 km. (approx. 6 hours).
After passing the Jarela Pass (Alt. 15,088ft / 4,600 m) one will arrive at Tsharijathang, the valley where herds of Takin, Bhutan’s national animal is normally seen. Altitude - 14,400 ft / 4,250 m. Distance - 18 km. (approx. 6 - 7 hours.)
After Shingela Pass (Alt. 16,072ft / 4,870 m) the path descends and then goes through the valley. Lemithang is in the Laya district and it is here one will begin to see people in their unique attire and hats. Camp is at Kang Che Da beneath Gang Chen Ta, the Great Tiger Mountain. Altitude - 13,567 ft / 4,090 m. Distance - 19 km. (approx. 6 - 7 hours).
The Lemithang - Laya path goes downhill along a winding river valley and one enters the east end of Laya village. Overnight at camp. Altitude - 12,680 ft / 3,820 m. Distance - 10 km. ( approx 4 - 5 hours).
Visit some houses and local people.
The Laya - Koena trail goes along the river valley and one will get a breathtaking view of the vibrant rivers, feeder streams and waterfalls. Altitude - 11,582 ft / 3,510 m. Distance - 19 km. (approx. 7 hours).
Enroute cross Balela Pass (Alt. 12,342 ft / 3,740 m). After the pass, the trail goes downhill to the camp. The camp is near to Gasa Dzong. Altitude - 9,250 ft / 2,900 m. Distance - 14 km. (approx 6 - 7 hours).
Trek to Gasa Tsachu (Hot spring). After lunch relax at the hot spring. The hot spring is believed to be very effective in curing many ailments and joint aches and many Bhutanese families visit the hot spring every winter.
The Gasa Taschu - Geon Damji trail winds through rolling hillsides with vistas of fields, villages and oak and pine forests. Altitude - 7,480 ft / 2,280 m. Distance - 15 kms. (approx. 5 - 6 hours).
The Geon Damji - Thashithang trail descends from the high agricultural benches above the Mo Chhu into the lush semi tropical gorge filled with banana trees, creepers and animals. Altitude - 5,600 ft / 1,696 m. Distance - 17 kms. (approx. 5 - 6 hours).
Drive down through Punakha valley. One will get a good view of Punakha Dzong, one of the most spectacular Dzongs built in the junction of two rivers - the Pho Chhu (male river) and the Mo Chhu (female river). The remains of Shabdrug Ngawang Namgyal, unifier of Bhutan in the 17th century is preserved in this Dzong. This is also the winter residence of the Central Monastic Body. Drive on to Wangdue Phodrang. Overnight in hotel.
Visit the Wangdue town. The drive to Thimphu goes over Dochula Pass (Alt. 10,000ft). If the weather is clear one can get the view of the majestic Himalayan ranges and will also be able to see Gasa Dzong at a distance. Drive on to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan.
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