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Bhutan Ancient Trail Trek

offered by supplier M21657 (read about supplier)

Key Information:
Tour Duration: 12 day(s)
Group Size: 2 - 12 people
Destination(s): Bhutan  
Specialty Categories: Hiking & Trekking  
Season: January - December
Airfare Included: No
Tour Customizable: Yes
Minimum Per Person Price: 2475 US Dollar (USD)
Maximum Per Person Price: 2475 US Dollar (USD)

This trekking tour first gives you an insight into Yak herder’s life, their Yak hair tent and Yaks, while at the same time offering the opportunity to visit some ancient monasteries, Dzongs (fortress) and villages.

The Druk Path Trek is also a fairly easy trek introducing one to the high altitude into the major Himalayas, wilderness and raw beauty of Bhutan Himalaya. The distances between camps are fairly short, the trail takes you through forests of fir, blue pine and dwarf rhododendrons at altitudes ranging between 2400-4200 m. On the third day hikers will arrive at Jigmelang Tsho Lake, whose crystal clear waters are home to gigantic brown trout.

This trek also offers hikers stunning views of Mt. Gangkar Puensum, the highest unscaled peak in the world. The best times to embark on the Druk Path Trek are between March-June and September-November.

Itinerary:
Day 1: Delhi – Paro.
Fly into Himalayas with Royal Bhutan Airline, the green walls of the hills known as Duars or gateways, into Bhutan from the plains of India rise ever higher as the plane flies north towards the Tibetan border. Silvery rivers rush along the valleys, waterfalls plunge down the forested mountainsides, and to the north, the great snowcapped peaks of the inner Himalayas rise up to the heavens. Farm houses dot the hillsides on either side of the plane.

As the aircraft enters the Paro valley, look down and you will see the Paro Dzong on the hillside overlooking Paro Chu (river) with Ta Dzong, formerly a watchtower and now the National Museum, above it. Received by our representative at the airport.

Overnight at the hotel in Paro

Day 2: Paro.
Then take a hike to Taktsang Monastery to acclimatize, the most famous of Bhutanese monasteries. It is said that Guru Rinpoche arrived here on the back of a tigress and meditated at this monastery hence it is called "Tiger&'s Nest". The excursion to monastery takes about 5 hours for round trip. While return to Paro town visit en route Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest and most sacred shrines of the Kingdom.

Overnight at the hotel in Paro

Day 3: Paro - Jili Dzong.
Distance 7 km, 4-5 hours, 800 m ascent, camp altitude 3,480 m. The first day can be quite arduous as you have to climb more than 800 m elevation. You start from hamlet above the Ta Dzong (National Museum) in Paro. The trek follows a gravel road past a few farms for about 30 minutes and then climbs up a steep ridge before leading through blue pine and fir forests to Damche Gom. Once you reach the ridge below Jili Dzong you descend about 100 m to the campsite below the Dzong.

Day 4: Jili Dzong – Jangchulakha.
Distance 10 km, 4-5 hours, 310 m ascent, 50 m descent, camp altitude 3,770 m. You begin with a steep climb for about an hour and a half, then the slope evens a bit and the ascent is more gradual. The trail takes you through thick alpine forests and dwarf rhododendron tress. You may see herders and their yaks around your campsite.

Day 5: Jangchulakha – Jigmelang Tsho.
Distance 11 km, 4 hours, 230 m descent, 330 m ascent, camp altitude 3,870 m. The trail follows a ridge and on a clear day the view of the mountains and valley are simply stunning. The campsite is close to the Jimgelang Tsho Lake. This lake is known for its giant sized trout.

Day 6: Jimgelang Tsho – Simkotra Tsho.
Distance 11 km, 4 hours, 820 m ascent, 400 m descent, camp altitude 4,110 m. The trail takes you through dwarf rhododendron trees and past Janetso Lake. You may come across some yak herder camps where you will have the opportunity to get a glimpse of a nomad’s life. The campsite is close to Simkotra Tsho Lake.

Day 7: Simkotra Tsho – Phajoding.
Distance 10 km, 3-4 hours, 130 m ascent, 680 m descent, camp altitude 3,750 m. The day begins with a gradual climb. If the weather permits, you will have a spectacular view of Mount Gangkar Puensum, the highest mountain in Bhutan and several other Himalayan peaks. From this pass, the trek takes you downhill towards Phajodhing where you will halt for the night. The camp is located just above Phadjoding Monastery.

Day 8: Phajodhing – Mothitang.
Distance 4-5 km, 3 hours, 1,130 m descent. After passing Phadjoding monastery, the trek to Thimphu (Mothitang) is downhill through a forested area of mostly blue pine. The walk, at a leisurely pace, takes about three hours.

Day 9: Thimphu.
After breakfast, sightseeing in Thimphu valley including visit to the following: the National Library, housing an extensive collection of priceless Buddhist manuscripts; the Institute for Zorig Chusum (commonly known as the Painting School) where students undergo a 6-year training course in Bhutan's 13 traditional arts and crafts. Later visit Textile and Folk Heritage Museum, a fascinating testimony of the Bhutanese material culture and living traditions.

After lunch, visit King's Memorial Chorten continuously circumambulated by people, murmuring mantras and spinning their prayer wheels. Construction of this landmark was the idea of Bhutan's third king, His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuk ("the father of modern Bhutan") who has wished to erect monument to world peace and prosperity. Completed in 1974 after his untimely death, it serves both as a memorial to the Late King and as a monument to peace.

Then, visit the government-run Handicrafts Emporium and local crafts shops, to browse through example of Bhutan's fine traditional arts. Here you can buy hand-woven textiles, thangkha paintings, masks, ceramics, slate and wood carvings, jewelry, interesting items made from local materials.

Evening drive past Trashichhoedzong, "fortress of the glorious religion". This is the center of government and religion, site of monarch&' throne room and seat of Je Khenpo or Chief Abbot. Built in 1641 by the political and religious unifier of Bhutan, Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, it was reconstructed in 1960s in traditional Bhutanese manner, without nails or architectural plans.

Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.

Day 10: Thimphu – Punnkha.
After early breakfast, drive up to Dochu-la pass (3,088 m/ 10,130 ft) stopping briefly here to take in the view and admire the chorten, mani wall, and prayer flags which decorate the highest point on the road. If skies are clear, the following peaks can be seen from this pass (left to right): Masagang (7,158 m), Tsendagang (6,960 m), Terigang (7,060 m), Jejegangphugang (7,158 m), Kangphugang (7,170 m), Zongphugang (7, 060 m), a table mountain that dominates the isolated region of Lunana - finally Gangkar puensum, the highest peak in Bhutan at 7,497 m.

Later visit to Punakha Dzong, Built strategically at the junction of Pho Chhu and Mo Chhu rivers in 1637 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal to serve as the religious and administrative centre of the region, Punakha Dzong has played an important role in Bhutan's history. Damaged by four catastrophic fires and an earthquake, the Dzong has been fully restored by the present King.

Overnight at the hotel in Punakha.

Day 11: Punkaha – Paro.
After breakfast you depart to Thimphu taking the same road that you came, en-route make a hike to the Chhimi Lakahang, the temple dedicated to Drukpa Kuenley “Divin Madman”. Then carry on with your journey, if time permits stop to walk in the Botanical garden to look at some of the flowers that may be in bloom. This garden harbors 29 kinds of Rhododendrons out of 46 species in the whole of Bhutan and from April 18 – 20 this garden hosts a Rhododendron Festival. Stop at the Dochula pass for tea or lunch on your way to Paro as per your convenience.

Overnight hotel in Paro.

Day 12: Paro – Delhi.
The Guide and the Driver will drive you to the airport and bid you fair well. End of the trip.

Supplemental Tour Information:
Price Includes:
- airport transfers and tour transportation,
- twin sharing hotel rooms,
- local guide,
- camping tent,
- trekking cook,
- support crew,
- animal transport,
- 3 meals,
- evening tea & snacks,
- sightseeing,
- entrance fees and permits.

Member discount:
10% discount for InfoHub customer. Request a free gift certificate.

Notes:
Airfare is not included in the tour price.

About This Supplier
Location: Bhutan
Joined InfoHub: Mar 2017

M21657 welcomes to the Land of Thunder Dragon, a magical kingdom whose greatest wealth is its stunning bio-diversity and unique culture heritage. The nearest encounter with Shangri-la you will experience on Earth! M21657 a grassroots Bhutanese Eco & culture tour operator with strong appreciation and...

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