Bhutan Nepal Tibet Tour lets you experience the cultural highlights of these Himalayan destinations. These three Himalayan destinations are known throughout the world for their fascinating culture, rich history and Buddhist spiritualism. Visit these lands high up in the mountains inhabited by mountain communities with fascinating cultures. Explore hills and valleys and get mesmerized by the awe-inspiring Himalayan scenery.
Begin your Himalayan adventure from the ‘Land of Thunder Dragon’, Bhutan. Discover some of Bhutan’s popular destinations - Paro, Punakha and Thimphu. Take a ride across verdant Bhutanese countryside and drive through a high mountain pass, Do Chula pass. Step into ancient fortresses (dzongs) and hike up to sacred mountainside monasteries, including Taktsang Monastery, perched on the side of a cliff. The next highlight on your itinerary, is the Nepal to Tibet tour. Head to the vibrant capital of Nepal, Kathmandu. Explore two medieval kingdoms built by Malla kings - Patan and Bhaktapur. Discover Pokhara, a picturesque city located beside the serene Phewa Lake. Hike to Naudanda and walk through traditional villages and terraced fields. Get amazed by the jaw dropping views of Himalayan peaks. Experience a magical Himalayan sunrise from Sarangkot.
Finally fly over to the Tibetan plateau and spend three delightful days in Lhasa, discovering its ancient cultural treasures. Stand beneath the iconic Potala Palace. Complete a kora around the sacred Barkhor Square. Step inside the sacred halls of Ganden, Drepung and Sera monasteries. After experiencing the highlights of the city, your memorable Tibet Nepal Bhutan Tour ends in Lhasa. Throughout your trip you will be accompanied by an experienced local guide. He will give you an insight about the local customs as well as the significance of the places you visit.
Best seasons for this trip are Spring, Summer and Autumn. Days remain pleasant while mornings and evenings may be a bit chilly.
Nepal: Stay at the cozy and comfortable Oasis Kathmandu Hotel in Kathmandu and at the posh Hotel Pokhara Batika, in Pokhara. These hotels offer air conditioned rooms, attached bathrooms, hot and cold water etc. Other amenities include restaurant, bar, coffee shop and a travel desk. You can enjoy free Wi-Fi at all these establishments.
Bhutan: You stay at the charming Tashi Namgyal Resort in Paro. At Thimphu, your address is the modern Namgay Heritage Hotel while in Punakha you stay at Drubbchu Resort. These hotels offer luxurious deluxe rooms and premium suites. Featured amenities include free Wi-Fi (at public areas), multi cuisine restaurant, bar, spa, fitness centre etc.
Tibet: In Lhasa your rooms will be booked at the Doodgu Hotel, an establishment renowned for its traditional Tibetan hospitality. The hotel lies close to two of the city’s most popular landmarks- Potala Palace and Barkhor Square. Rooms are traditionally decorated with en suite bathrooms. Amenities include free Wi-Fi, restaurant, laundry service etc.
Nepal: During your Bhutan Nepal Tibet Luxury Tour, you will be accommodated at the prestigious Shanker Hotel, a majestic Rana palace now converted into a four star hotel with modern amenities. In Pokhara you stay at the beautiful Temple Tree Resort. These plush establishments feature luxuriously decorated rooms with en suite bathrooms. Amenities include free Wi-Fi, swimming pool, spa, fitness center, restaurant and bar.
Bhutan: In Paro you will be staying at the classy Naksel Boutique Paro, while your address in Thimphu is the magnificent Hotel Druk Thimphu. At Punakha you will be accommodated at the splendid RKPO Green Resort Punakha. All these hotels come under the four star category and offer well-appointed rooms coupled with warm traditional Bhutanese hospitality and ambience. Featured amenities include restaurant, bar, spa, wellness centre etc.
Tibet: Your address in Lhasa is the grand Shangri-La Hotel. A four star establishment, the hotel lies close to all the major attractions in the city. The hotel has well-appointed, comfortable rooms with majestic views of the surrounding hills. There are three restaurants, a bar, indoor swimming pool, sauna and massage parlour. The hotel’s modern and well-equipped oxygen lounge offers a safe haven for those guests who have difficulties breathing in the rarefied air.
In Kathmandu you can find high-end as well as mid-range and budget restaurants and eateries serving cuisines from round the world (continental, Indian, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Italian, Middle-Eastern, Thai, Vietnamese etc.). Breakfast, welcome dinner and farewell dinner will be complimentary in Kathmandu. Only breakfast is complimentary in Pokhara. You will find plenty of restaurants and eateries around lakeside serving good-quality food.
In Bhutan, restaurants and eateries serve continental, Indian and Bhutanese dishes. Bhutanese dishes are usually made with chilies, cheese, meat, mushrooms, red rice and buck wheat. All meals are included in the trip price.
While traveling in Tibet, only breakfast is included in your package. Restaurants in Lhasa serve hearty Tibetan dishes, plus Chinese, continental and Indian too.
The flight to Paro is nothing short of spectacular. You fly above the mountains and enter into a valley surrounded by green hills. At the airport terminal meet your guide and drive to your hotel. Check in and have lunch before your sightseeing tour begins. Later hop onto a private vehicle and begin your sightseeing tour. Head to Ta Dzong – an ancient watchtower which now houses the National Museum. Buddhist scroll paintings (Thangkas) dating back to several hundreds of years, armours of Bhutanese warriors, masks used by monks during festivals etc. are displayed at the museum. Fun fact - ‘Little Buddha’ a Hollywood movie by Bernardo Bertolucci was filmed here. Next make your way Rinpung Dzong. Also known as the ‘Fortress of the Heap of Jewels’, this impressive dzong was used to defend Paro from Tibetan invaders. The wide courtyard of the dzong comes alive during Paro Tsechu when the monastic community perform masked dances and skits.
Later head to Kichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest Buddhist temples in Bhutan. The temple was built by the Tibetan emperor Songtsen Gampo and dates back to the 7th century. Kichu Lhakhang houses some of Bhutan’s oldest and priceless religious relics. After your sightseeing tour, return to your hotel. Overnight in Paro.
Start early and hit the trailhead well before it becomes crowded. It is an uphill ascent on a rough track, filled with pine trees. If you are a brisk walker you can complete the hike (climb up and walk down) in around five hours. If you are not used to walking uphill it is better to keep it slow and walk at your own pace. Ponies are available for hire till the cafeteria. Please note the cost of pony ride is not included in the package and you may have to pay extra if you wish to book a ride. The cafeteria offers mesmerizing views of the monastery and the Paro Valley. To reach the monastery from the cafeteria, you need to walk down a steep staircase on the side of the cliff and then take an uphill ascent. Hanging precariously on a rocky cliff 3000 feet above Paro valley, Taktsang Monastery is among the 13 monasteries or ‘tiger’s lairs’ (Taktsangs) where Padmasambhava or Guru Rinpoche (Second Buddha) meditated. According to local legend Padmasambhava flew to this place to meditate on the back of a tigress, that’s why it’s called ‘Tiger’s Nest’. Though the hike may be tough, you are rewarded with panoramic views of the Paro valley and mountains. Blessed by Padmasambhava or Guru Rinpoche, this dramatic landmark is one of the most sacred Buddhist sites in Bhutan. Later head back to the cafeteria and walk down the hillside covered with colourful prayer flags and drive to Thimphu, the country’s capital. Overnight in Thimphu
Drive to the base of a hill (BBS Tower) and take the trail to Wangditse Gompa. After walking for about one hour you reach the gompa. The monastery houses the statues of Bhutan’s guardian deities- Yeshey Goenpo, Tsheringma and Palden Lhamo. From the monastery’s ground savour amazing views of Samtenling Palace, Tashicho Dzong and a meditation retreat. Walk down to the highway and return to Thimphu. Stop en route at the mini zoo and meet the ‘Takin’, Bhutan’s national animal.
Once you arrive in Thimphu your sightseeing tour begins. Visit the King’s Memorial Chorten. This large white chorten was built in honor of the third Bhutanese king, Jigme Dorji Wangchuk. Later head to Tashichho Dzong, an ancient traditional fortress that houses the secretariat of the Bhutan royal government. This grand building also houses the king’s throne room. Also visit the National Textile Museum and Handicraft Emporium. If you are not too tired you can explore the local market and buy souvenirs (Thanka paintings, traditional textiles or wooden items). Just ask your guide where you can get the best bargains for local handicraft items. Overnight in Thimphu.
From Thimphu drive to Punakha. En route stops at a high mountain pass (Dochu La Pass) and enjoy panoramic views of mountains and pine forests. The pass is decorated with 108 traditional chortens built by the Queen Mother in memory of slain Bhutanese soldiers. From Dochu La, take the trail to Lungchutse Monastery. Hike up a forested trail filled with rhododendron and pine trees. From the top, you can enjoy amazing views of Himalayan peaks and a green valley. Hike down to the highway and resume your journey towards Punakha. Once you arrive at Punakha check into your hotel and take rest. Overnight in Punakha.
After having a hearty breakfast, drive to Punakha Dzong, an old fortress dating back to the 17th century. This grand structure lies at the confluence of the Mo Chhu (silent mother) and Pho Chhu (noisy father) rivers. Walk across a quaint traditional wooden cantilever bridge to enter the dzong. An iconic landmark, the Punakha Dzong houses a monastery and a government office. The coronation ceremonies of all the Bhutanese kings were held here. After exploring the dzong, take a drive to Paro past a picturesque countryside. En route stop at the bottom of a hill and follow the trail to Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten.The hike to Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chortentakes around an hour. Walk past a verdant trail snaking past paddy fields and pine and rhododendron trees. The magnificent Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten sits on top of a ridge. Built by the Queen Mother to ward off negative forces, the three-storied chorten is a fine example of Bhutanese architecture. One can enjoy majestic views of Punakha Valley and surrounding mountains from the ridge. Later descend to the highway and continue your journey to Paro. On reaching Paro head to your hotel and check in. Take rest because you have a long day tomorrow. Overnight in Paro.
Your guide will drive you to the airport on time to catch your flight to Kathmandu. Bid farewell to Bhutan and say hello to another wonderful Himalayan destination, Nepal. The flight from Paro to Kathmandu offers mesmerizing aerial views of Himalayan peaks. Feast your eyes on the majestic views of Mount Everest, Kanchenjunga, Cho Oyu and other Himalayan giants sprawling across the horizon. After flying for about an hour and a half, you land at Tribhuvan International Airport. Make your way to the airport terminal where you meet your guide. Board a vehicle and visit some of the city’s ancient UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Drive to Patan, one of the three medieval cities in Kathmandu. This city is also called Lalitpur - the 'City of Artisans'. Explore Patan Durbar Square, a palace square built by the Malla kings. This medieval palace square is dotted with ancient pagoda-roofed temples and a royal palace now converted into a museum. Golden Temple, Kumbeshwar Temple, Krishna Temple and Patan Palace Museum are some of the cultural gems adorning this beautiful square.
Later head to Bhaktapur or the ‘City of Devotees’. A medieval city, Bhaktapur is one of the best preserved heritage site in Kathmandu Valley. In order to preserve the old buildings no heavy vehicles are allowed inside the old city. The nine-storied Nyatapole Temple, Palace of 55 Windows, Datteraya Temple, Golden Gate and Bhiravnath Temple are some of the architectural wonders of this medieval kingdom. Spend sometime at Potter’s Square observing the local potters moulding artifacts from lumps of clay. Before leaving Bhaktapur don’t forget to have Juju Dhau (‘King’s Curd’, yoghurt made from buffalo milk and honey). Later drive back to your hotel in Kathmandu. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Take an early flight to Pokhara. Set beside the serene Phewa Lake and surrounded by snowy Himalayan peaks, beautiful Pokhara is sure to take your breath away. Drive to your hotel and check-in. Get refreshed and afterward begin your sightseeing tour. Take a boat ride across the Phewa Lake to the island temple of Tal Barahi. Dating back to the 18th century, this temple is dedicated to the Hindu goddess Durga, ‘mother of the universe’. Next head to Davis Falls and witness one of the natural wonders of Pokhara. This place is locally known as Patale Chango meaning ‘underground waterfall’. Walk to the Gupteshwar Mahadev Cave and explore the cave. If you climb down to the bottom of the cave you will see a portion of the Davis Falls from a crack of the cave’s wall. Drive to the International Mountain Museum and view some of the original gear used by the first expedition groups to the Nepal Himalaya. The museum also has information about the culture, history, flora and fauna of the region. After your sightseeing tour, return to your hotel. Overnight in Pokhara.
Have breakfast at your hotel and drive to Phedi. From Phedi begin your hike to Naudanda, a hilltop Gurung village offering panoramic views of Himalayan peaks. Take a gentle ascent past paddy fields and rural homesteads. Once you reach Naudanda, enjoy amazing views of Himalayan peaks – Annapurna Massif, Lamjung Himal and Hiunchuli. Later follow an up and down the trail and arrive at Sarangkot, another popular vantage point. Enjoy 360-degree views of Pokhara valley and surrounding mountains. Walk down to the highway and drive back to your hotel. Overnight in Pokhara.
Wake up early and head to Sarangkot Hill. It takes a little more than 30 minutes from lakeside to drive to the hill. Witness a glorious Himalayan sunrise. Watch the sun rising from behind white snowy peaks colouring the hillside in golden hues. Later, return to your hotel, have breakfast and fly to Kathmandu. Once you arrive in Kathmandu, prepare for your Tibet trip and take rest. There is no program planned for today. Evening, enjoy complimentary farewell dinner at an authentic Nepalese restaurant. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Take an early flight to Lhasa. This is a spectacular journey. From the comfort of your plane, you can savour incredible views of the Himalayan peaks. The flight lasts for about an hour and a half. Once you reach Lhasa Gonggar International Airport, your guide will meet you at the terminal. From the airport, it takes another hour and a half to reach the centre of Lhasa. Drive to your hotel and take rest. No activities have been planned for the day as it is advisable to let your body get used to the rarefied air. Remember you are now at an altitude of 3,656 metres. It is important that you let your body rest and get used to the thin Lhasa air. Drink lots of water and keep your body hydrated as the body gets easily dehydrated at high altitude. Overnight in Lhasa.
Commence your Tibetan journey today by visiting some of Lhasa’s popular sites- Potala Palace and Norbulingka Palace. Located over a high ridge overlooking Lhasa, Potala Palace looks magnificent. This grand palace was once the winter residence of Dalai Lama and the seat of Tibetan government. Inside the palace are several chapels, memorials of the former Dalai Lamas, living quarters of the 13th and 14th Dalai Lamas etc. The palace is a protected UNESCO World Heritage Site. Also visit Norbulingka, the Summer Palace of the Dalai Lama. Built in the eighteenth century, the palace is surrounded by beautiful gardens and chapels. Later head to Tibetan Traditional Hospital or Mentsekhang, as the locals call it. This is one of the oldest traditional hospitals in Tibet. Established in 1916 to train doctors and astrologers, this hospital is known as one of the important research centres for Tibetan Traditional Medicine. Patients are treated here using traditional methods, with Tibetan herbs and medicine. Overnight in Lhasa.
Leave the city of Lhasa and head towards Ganden Monastery. The monastery lies about 50 km from the city centre, on top of the Wangbur mountain (3800m). Ganden Monastery is one of the three important Gelugpa Monasteries in Tibet (the other two are Drepung and Sera). The monastery was established by Tsongkapa, the founder of the Gelugpa (Yellow Hat) order, in 1409 AD. Explore the large assembly halls and debating courtyards. The monastery has a vast collection of Buddhist relics and paintings. Many monks residing at this monastery receive higher education from learned monks. Later hike to the Drayerpa Cave. A sacred pilgrimage site for Tibetan Buddhists, this cave is located on a hillside. Padmasambhava or Guru Rimpoche and Emperor Songsten Gampo are said to have meditated at this cave. Overnight in Lhasa.
Step inside two of the most sacred and active monasteries in Lhasa, Drepung and Sera monasteries. Drepung Monastery is the largest monastery in Tibet. In the distant past it was the largest Buddhist monastery in the world. Explore its large prayer halls and shrines. This monastery was built in 1416 and was the residence of the Dalai Lamas before Potala Palace was built. Afterwards, head to Sera Monastery. Sera’ means ‘rose’ in Tibetan. The monastery was so named because of the abundance of rose bushes on the hillside adjoining the monastery. Observe the monks debating at the monastery grounds. The debates are part of their training sessions to become senior monks. Also visit the sacred Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Square in downtown Lhasa. Jokhang Temple is one of the oldest and most important Buddhist temples in Tibet. The temple was built by Tibetan emperor Songsten Gampo to house an idol of Buddha brought by his Nepalese queen Bhrikuti. Later another Buddha statue (Jowo Sakyamuni) brought by the emperor’s Chinese queen Wenchen was placed at the altar. This is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Walk around the busy Barkhor Square and observe Tibetan locals trading their wares and pilgrims walking around the temple. You can also shop for souvenirs at many of the souvenir shops lining the square. Overnight in Lhasa.
Your travel to Nepal, Tibet and Bhutan officially ends here. Our representative will drive you to the airport well on time to catch your international flight.
Tibet Visa Fee, Tibet Travel Permit and Bhutan Visa Fee
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
I took the cross country trip to Nepal, Bhutan and Tibet with third Rock Adventures and boy was it fun. It was the best decision of my life. If you are a lover of the Himalayas, you must visit these three countries. they are absolutely marvellous. I especially enjoyed Bhutan because they have actually convinced me that there is no other happiness more important than human happiness. Will definately be back for more.
My friends and I decided to book the Bhutan Nepal Tibet tour with Third Rock Adventures after several email exchanges. We believe we were offered a very good price and the perfect itinerary. The team was ready to tailor the itinerary to suit our needs. Everything went smoothly and we had a rich and colorful cultural experience. Bhutan was fascinating and so was Tibet. We felt we were in another era while visiting the monasteries and castles. Kathmandu was chaotic but we loved the heritage sites in Patan and Bhaktapur. Pokhara was beautiful and we wished we could have stayed some more time taking in the sights. But there’s always a next time and we hope to be back soon. The guides very knowledgeable and friendly. The hotels where our rooms were booked were all very comfortable and clean. Thanks to the Third Rock team for a fabulous trip. Definitely recommending this company to anyone who is planning to travel to these countries.
You can fly into Nepal from any of the world’s major cities. There is one only international airport in the country, viz Tribhuvan International Airport at Kathmandu. You can also enter the country through any of the overland entry points – Kakkarvitta, Birgunj, Bhairahwa, Mahendranagar etc.