1. Bhutan
  2. Thimphu

Bhutan: 10-Day Discover the Happiness of Bhutan Private Tour

Product ID: 266807
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Embark on an extended journey through a true Himalayan paradise. Extensively explore Western and Central Bhutan, as well as the country's spiritual heartland.
About this activity
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Duration: 10 days
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Live tour guide
English
Booklets
English
Wheelchair accessible

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Experience

Highlights
  • Embark on a private spiritual journey across Bhutan
  • Meet locals across the country for an authentic cultural experience
  • Discover the mountainous splendor of the ancient Himalayan Kingdom
  • Admire breathtaking mountain landscapes and centuries-old religious sites
  • Explore Bhutan's most famous cities and landmarks
Full description
Day 1: Paro Sights and Thimphu Acclimatization Day
After flying in to the Paro Airport, your guide will greet you with a Tashi Khada, or traditional Bhutanese scarf. Head straight for your hotel in Thimpu for a quick rest and to drop-off your belongings. You’ll begin your excursion by visiting 2 stunning Buddhist temples, Kichu Lhakhang and Rinpung Dzong, before heading to the Ta Dzong Museum in the evening to see a collection of Bhutanese antiquities. Afterwards, drive to your hotel in Thimphu to spend your first night in the kingdom of the Himalayas.

Day 2: Discovering Punakha and Wangdue
Jump straight into exploration of the region with a 3-hour drive along the Dochula Pass, a Himalayan mountain road rising over 10,000 feet above sea level. Afterwards, head to the Druk Wangyel royal temple, and continue the day by hiking up to the 15th-century fertility temple, Chimi Lhakhang. You’ll spend your 2nd night in the valley community of Punakha and Wangdue.

Day 3: Trongsa and Bumthang’s Landscape Tour
Leaving Punakha and Wangdue, drive over 120 miles through the country’s Himalayan mountain passes. Make a stop nearly 11,000 feet above sea level at the Pele La Pass before driving through the Rukubji Valley and Chendebji Chorten Stupa. Gaze out over the vast scenery beneath you from 11,200 feet above sea level as you cross the Yotong La Pass. Pass through the Yathra weaving center and Kharchu Draktsang, the largest Buddhist college in the kingdom, before ending your 7-to-8-hour drive at your hotel in Bumthang.

Day 4: Bumthang Spiritual Sightseeing
Spend your morning exploring some of the country’s most spiritual locales, starting with Jakar Dzong, known as the Fortress of the White Bird. After lunch, you’ll hike to vast and ornate temples such as Jambay Lhakhang, Kurjey Lhakhang, Pema Sambha Lhakhang, and Tamshing Lhakhang. Continue hiking to Mebar Tsho, a lush pool formed by a rushing river that is one of Bhutan’s most sacred water features, and Wangdichholing Palace, the first palace of the present Wangchuk dynasty. In the evening, enjoy free time to wander the valleys before staying another night in Bumthang.

Day 5: Gangtey Rural Expedition
Depart from Bumthang in the morning for a 5-to-6-hour drive to the glacial valley of Phobjikha. Visit the largest and perhaps most spectacular fortress in Bhutan, the Trongsa Dzong, before continuing on to a 1.5-hour hike through blue-pine forests to Kwewa Village. Head to the Crane Info Center to gain insight into the migratory birds that play an essential role in Bhutanese culture. Afterwards, you’ll head to your hotel in Phobjikha.

Day 6: Phobjikha and Thimphu Happiness Tour
After breakfast, you’ll take a 4-to-5-hour drive to Thimphu through more stunning mountain vistas. Visit the 169-foot-tall Buddha Dordenma statue, one of the largest in the world, which contains 125,000 8-to-12-inch buddha statues within it. Come evening, you’ve got some free time to relax — enjoy dinner at a local Bhutanese restaurant before calling it a day at your hotel in Thimphu.

Day 7: Thimphu Cultural Tour 
Start your day by heading to the Royal Takin Preserve, a conservation area for Bhutan’s unique national animal. Visit the General Post Office, where you can create custom stamps, before heading to a craft bazaar for authentic local handicrafts and souvenirs. You’ll also stop at the Farmers Weekend Market to marvel at a cornucopia of local produce, and then witness an archery match. Afterwards, head back to your hotel in Thimphu.

Day 8: Getaway to Kila Gomba and Paro Sojourn
After breakfast, head straightaway on a 2-to-3-hour drive up the Chelela Pass, 12,500 feet above sea level, stopping for views of the stunning Mt. Chomolhari, which rises 23,400 feet above sea level. Take an easy walk to the Kila Nunnery temple, and then drive up to the monastery (optional). After a picnic lunch overlooking vast mountain chasms, you’ll head back into the Paro Valley. Visit the remote Dzongdakha Monastery, built along sheer rock faces overlooking vast forests beneath. Afterwards, you’ll head to Paro to your hotel.

Day 9: Excursion to Taktsang Monastery
Begin your day with a hike up to the Taktsang Monastery, one of Bhutan’s most iconic sights. Built directly into the cliffs, 3000 feet above the valley floor, the vast complex of monasteries is truly a sight to behold. Sit together inside the speech room just above the cave where Guru Rimpoche, one of Bhutan’s most important religious figures, meditated in the 8th century. Have lunch at the hillside cafe, gazing at the stunning views. You’ll finish your trip off with a farewell dinner at a farmhouse with ara, a traditional local liquor, followed by an optional hot stone bath. Head back to your hotel for your last night in Paro.

Day 10: Departure from Paro International Airport
Your tour guide will bid you farewell at the Airport, ending the blissful excursion across the diverse, other-worldly, and altogether spectacular sights and culture of Bhutan.
Includes
  • Visa for Bhutan
  • Accommodation in 3- and 4-star hotels across the entire trip
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner across all 10 days
  • Tea, coffee, snacks, and mineral water
  • Transportation in air-conditioned vehicles
  • Entrance fees to museums and temples
  • Professional English-speaking guide and driver
  • All taxes and fees
  • Optional meditation session
  • Optional Gho and Kira (traditional Bhutanese clothing to wear during the tour)
What’s Not Included
  • International airfare
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal expenses
  • Alcohol and beverages
  • Tips for the guide, driver, and porters

Prepare for the activity

Meeting point

Paro International Airport

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Important information
What to bring
  • Passport
Know before you go
• Shorts and sleeveless shirts are not allowed in the temples
• No smoking is allowed in public places

From US$ 2,637 per person