Our Bhutan heritage Tour lets you discover the best of Bhutan, a Himalayan kingdom. Journey across western and central Bhutan, the country’s chief tourism hotspots. Explore centuries old dzongs (traditional fortresses) and lakhangs (Buddhist temples) built by Bhutanese kings and spiritual leaders. Step inside monasteries that are the centre of important religious and social ceremonies. Walk through the bustling local markets and shop for souvenirs. This is one of the best tours in Bhutan (Bhutan holiday Packages) which will let you to experience the rich culture and heritage of the Bhutanese.
Visit ancient cities and drive past the picturesque Bhutanese countryside to sparsely populated small towns. Your itinerary includes tours to the oldest surviving Buddhist temple and palace in the country - Kichu Lhakhang and Simtokha Dzong. Drive to the highest motorable pass in Bhutan Chelela Pass(3988m) and hike up to the Sky Burial ground, where Bhutanese bring their dead. This Bhutan holiday package also takes you to Phobjika (Gangtey Valley), the roosting site of the endangered black-necked cranes that migrate to Bhutan from Tibet during winter. Learn more about Bhutanese lifestyle by spending a night at a traditional Bhutanese home. Walk through paddy fields and enjoy a relaxing soak at a traditional hot stone bath. Your trip to Bhutan finally ends with an adventurous hike to the clifftop Taktsang Monastery (Tiger’s Nest) in Paro. If you want to experience the cultural highlights of both Bhutan and Nepal then you can book our Nepal and Bhutan Cultural Tour. If you are on a short holiday you can book our 5-day Bhutan Tour.
The best seasons to take this trip are Spring, Autumn and early Winter. During these seasons the days are pleasant and temperatures are just right - neither too hot nor cold. It may turn a little chilly during the early mornings and evenings in Autumn and early Winter. In springtime, the flowers bloom and it is a delight to visit the Bhutanese countryside.
*TOURS DEPART EVERYDAY OF THE YEAR
In Paro your address will be the fine-looking Tashi Namgyal Resort overlooking the Pa Chu River. The resort lies near the international airport and offers comfortable deluxe rooms, cottages and executive sites with attached bathrooms. At Thimpu your address is the Namgay Heritage Hotel. This hotels offer luxurious deluxe rooms and premium suites. At Gangtey you will accommodated at Hotel Dewachen and in Punakha at Drubbchu Resort.
Featured amenities at all the above mentioned establishments include en suite bathrooms, free Wi-Fi, multi cuisine restaurant, bar, spa, fitness centre etc.
In Paro you will be spending one night with a local family at a traditional Bhutanese home. You will be dining with the family and sleeping in their guest room. If you don’t want a local homestay, accommodation can be arranged at a hotel. Just let us know when you book this trip.
Most Bhutanese restaurants serve continental, Indian and Bhutanese dishes. Traditional Bhutanese dishes include yak cheese, chilies, meat, mushrooms, red rice and buck wheat. All meals are included in the trip price.
You get to spend 3 nights at Naksel Boutique in Paro, 1 night at Terma Linca Resort & Spa in Thimphu, and 1 night at RKPO Green Resort Punakha. All these hotels are 4-star establishments and feature traditional design and architecture, comfortable rooms with en suite bathrooms, restaurant, bar, spa and wellness center etc. These properties are located in scenic locations and each room offers wonderful views of majestic mountains, verdant hillsides or paddy fields.
All meals are included in the trip price. You will have breakfast and dinner at your hotel, while lunch will be taken outside at a tourist standard restaurant. Most Bhutanese restaurants serve continental, Indian and Bhutanese dishes. Traditional Bhutanese dishes include yak cheese, chilies, meat, mushrooms, red rice and buck wheat.
Your vacation is an important investment. While planning a holiday, you have to research and make some major decisions. You need to decide, where and how you will spend your money. To avoid the stress, many opt for the services of a tour company and leave it to the experts to plan their holiday. By choosing to book with an agency, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that everything has been taken care of by professionals. In order to cater to the needs of different types of travelers, we have on offer two packages – Standard and Deluxe. A Standard Package cost a little less and is ideal for that traveler who is traveling within a budget. The Deluxe Package is for those looking for a higher level of service and facilities. If you have already decided to book this tour, do select the package that best suits your budget and the kind of experiences you want to explore, and secure your spot.
Take an international flight to Paro. Bhutan has only one international airport located in Paro. The airport lies at a scenic location surrounded by rolling green hills. Enjoy the sight of the verdant mountains before the plane lands at the runway. Your guide will be waiting for you at the airport’s terminal. Head to a restaurant for lunch/refreshment. Later visit two of Paro’s historic landmarks - Rinpung Dzong and Kichu Lhakhang. Rinpung or Paro Dzong is an ancient fortress built in the 17th century on the foundation of a monastery built by Padmasambhava or Guru Rinpoche. The fortress is also known as the ‘Fortress on a Heap of Jewels’. It now houses a government office and a monastery. Some portion of the Hollywood movie ‘Little Buddha’ was shot in at Rinpung Dzong. Kichu Lhakhang is one of the oldest Buddhist temples in Bhutan. Built by the Tibetan emperor Songtsen Gampo, the temple dates back to the 7th century. Kichu Lhakhang houses some of Bhutan’s oldest and priceless religious relics. After your sightseeing tour, head to your hotel. Overnight in Paro.
Have an early start and drive to Thimphu. A short drive from Paro of brings you to the capital city. Your sightseeing tour commences as soon as you reach the city. Visit the Memorial Chorten (built in memory of the third King of Bhutan, Jigme Dorje Wangchuk) and a Buddhist nunnery, Thangton Dewachen Nunnery. Later head to Changangkha Lakhang, an ancient Buddhist temple dating back to 12th century. The temple sits atop a hill overlooking the city. Parents of newly born babies come here to have their babies blessed and named by the monks residing at the temple. Also visit Simtokha Dzong, the oldest surviving traditional palace and fortress in Bhutan built by Zabdrung Ngawang Namgyal( the ruler who unified Bhutan). Amble through the colourful Crafts Bazaar and shop for souvenirs. You can buy Bhutanese textiles; bamboo, traditional paper and wooden items; traditional Bhutanese jewelry; thankha (traditional scroll painting) etc.
In this Bhutan Holiday Package tour, your visit to Thimphu is incomplete without a trip to Taschichho Dzong. Step inside this impressive building and witness the regal splendor of the palace. The dzong houses the government’s secretariat and the king’s throne room. Wind up your sightseeing tour with a short drive to the hilltop vantage point where a large statue of Buddha watches over the valley. The statue known as Buddha Dordenma is 51 metres tall and is built on the ruins of an old palace Changri Kuensel Phodrang. After the sightseeing tour you will be driven to your hotel. Take a well-deserved rest. Overnight in Thimphu.
Start of early and drive to Gangtey Valley, the nesting site of the endangered Black-Necked Cranes. Your drive takes you past the picturesque Dochula Pass from where you can enjoy a 360-degree panorama of the Himalayan peaks. The pass is decorated with chortens or Buddhist memorials dedicated to the Bhutanese army-men who lost their lives in the line of duty. Drive downhill to Wangduephodrang, a sleepy town filled with terraced farms and few houses. Phobjika is a glacial valley located in central Bhutan. Every winter hordes of black-necked cranes (an endangered bird species) fly into this valley from Tibet. These birds are sacred to the Bhutanese who regard them as the symbol of longevity. According to local legend the first of these birds which enter Bhutan during their annual migration circle the Gangtey Monastery thrice before heading to the marshlands. After reaching Gangtey head to your hotel, freshen up and take rest. Afternoon, take a stroll down the village. Afterwards head back to your hotel for a well-deserved rest. Overnight in Gangtey
Wake up early and head to Gangtey Monastery. The monastery, built in traditional Bhutanese style of architecture is located atop a hill. The beautiful monastery is a photographer’s delight. The artful façade, ornamental balconies and multi-tiered roof appear splendid. The monastery lie surrounded by a traditional village inhabited by Gomchens, caretakers of the monastery. Each winter the monastery’s courtyard becomes the venue of the Black-Necked Crane Festival. The festival held annually is observed to celebrate the arrival of the black-necked cranes from Tibet. The monastery was built in the 17th century and is the biggest Nyingmapa monastery in Bhutan. Visit the inner shrine and interact with the little monks. Afterwards take a couple of hours drive to Punakha. The drive takes you past verdant forests of birch and pine and pristine rivers snaking down past the green hills. Your Bhutan Tour itinerary also includes a visit to one of the most sacred temple dedicated to the ‘Divine Madman’. Head to Chimi Lakhang, a temple dedicated to Drukpa Kuenley (the Divine Madman), a 14th century Buddhist saint known to bless women with fertility. As Drukpa Kuenley is regarded as the patron saint of Bhutan this is one of the most important pilgrimage sites in Bhutan. Overnight in Punakha
Visit the famous Punakha Dzong before driving towards Paro. The traditional fortress lies at the confluence of Po(Father) Chhu and the Mo(Mother) Chhu rivers. To reach the dzong one has to cross the wooden cantilever bridge. The fortress houses government offices, sacred Buddhist relics and temples. Punakha Dzong serves as the winter capital and the country’s religious head and his assistants reside at the dzong during the winter months. After the sightseeing tour take a scenic drive to Paro. Once you are in Paro you will be driven to a local farm. Meet your host family and interact with them. Tonight you will be enjoying a local ‘home-stay’. Spending time with a local family in a traditional home offers you an authentic experience of Bhutanese lifestyle and culture. Overnight in Paro.
Take a day trip to the sky burial ground at Haa via one of the highest motorable high mountain pass in Bhutan, the Chele La Pass. Visit the sky burial ground, a place where the Bhutanese leave the dead. According to Buddhist (Vajrayana) belief the corpse is an empty vessel and should be disposed off in a way that benefits the other living creatures. The dead body fulfills a need when the scavengers (vultures and wild beasts) feed on it. Enjoy panoramic vistas of Jomolhari and other Himalayan peaks from Chele La Pass and the burial ground. Afterwards hike down to Kila Gomba, an ancient nunnery. Meet the Anis(Buddhist nuns) living there before finally descending to the highway. Board the vehicle and drive back to Paro. Once in Paro head to a hotel where you will be staying overnight. Overnight in Paro.
Wake up early in the morning and drive to the trail head that leads to Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) Monastery. Perched high on the side of a rocky cliff, the monastery is an iconic Bhutanese landmark. It is believed that Padmasambhava or Guru Rinpoche (known as the Second Buddha in the Himalayas) flew on the back of a tiger to the site where this monastery now stands. The trail follows a steep incline. If you wish you can ride on a pony. But please be informed ponies are not allowed beyond the halfway point and you may have to walk the rest of the way to the monastery. Once you reach the top, the awe-inspiring views of the monastery as well as the surrounding mountains will make you forget all your aches and pains. Explore the monastery. Take photographs and selfies and hike down to the highway where your vehicle will be waiting for you. Head to a local farmhouse and enjoy a relaxing soak at the traditional hot stone bath. Overnight in Paro.
Your incredible Bhutanese adventure ends today. Bid goodbye to this beautiful country and the people you have befriended. You will be driven to the international airport on time to catch your flight.
Click this tab for a detailed Trip Note containing essential information about this trip, including gear and equipment lists and practical information.Essential Trip Information
We did the 8-day Bhutan Heritage Tour with Third Rock Adventures. Overall we had a fantastic experience. It was a huge relief to know that the agency would handle all the hassles related to visa and permits before the start of our tour. We just booked the holiday and made our way to Bhutan. The journey through this wonderful country was a treat to our senses. Though this is the 21st century, it is good to know that the Bhutanese continue to preserve their culture and traditions. We visited sleepy villages with grand traditional houses and walked through paddy fields. The old monuments and monasteries were magnificent. The most memorable part of our trip was the hike to Tiger’s Nest monastery. It was mind blowing! Thanks to our guide, Tashi, and driver Ugyen, we had a wonderful time. They were humble, knowledgeable, caring, and went out of their way to ensure that we had a great time. We highly recommend this trip to anyone looking for a different experience!
Yes, Bhutanese government has made it illegal to sell cigarettes or tabacco and has imposed a ban on smoking in public. But one can smoke in private. If you are a smoker you can bring in your own cigarretes when you come to Bhutan. Upto 200 sticks is allowed, provided that you pay an import and sales tax of 200%. You have to pay this at the airport or the border entry point when you arrive in Bhutan.