Druk Path Trek integrates an experience of the Bhutanese culture, traditions, age-old artifacts, and mesmerizing landscape in the heart of Bhutan from Paro to Thimphu. The 8-day itinerary ensures a glimpse of the remarkable landmarks in Bhutan with their spiritual values and beliefs.
The small landlocked country inclined mostly towards Buddhism is home to numerous Monasteries with complex designs and patterns that all tourists admire. The architecture of the Tiger’s Nest Monastery, serenity of the Janetsho Lake, and the view of Mt. Gangkar Pnensum are just some of the reasons that tourists wish to relish in the mystical country of Bhutan.
The trek leading deep into the rural scenery gives a glimpse of the lifestyle of the nomadic yak herders. The Druk Path Trek inculcates a sense of happiness as you watch the smiling faces of the lovely Bhutanese people throughout the trail. It also gives a chance to savor the views of the peaceful valleys nestled amidst the high standing snowcapped mountains.
In essence, the trek brings you a little closer to the people, culture, and natural beauty of Bhutan, from the rural scene in Jimilangtsho to the modern city of Thimphu.
|Day 1||Arrival in Paro (2,280m/7,480ft)|
|Day 2||Sightseeing and Acclimatization Hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery (3,180m/10,433ft) – 5 km, 4-5 hours|
|Day 3||Drive to Ta Dzong (2,487m/8,159ft) and trek to Jele Dzong (3400m)- 10 km, 4-5 ours|
|Day 4||Trek from Jele Dzong (3,400m/11,154ft) to Jangchulakha (3,650m/11,975ft) – 10 km, 3 to 4 hours|
|Day 5||Trek from Jangchulakha (3,650m/11,975ft) to Jimilangtsho (3,870m/12,696ft) – 11 km, 4 hours|
|Day 6||Trek from Jimilangtsho (3,870m/12,696ft) to Simkotra Tsho (4110m/13,484ft) – 11 km, 4 hours|
|Day 7||Trek from Simkotra Tsho (4,110m/13,484ft) to Thimphu via Phajodhing – 14 km, 5 hours|
|Day 8||Drive from Thimphu to Paro and Departure|
The Druk Path Trek is a one-of-a-kind trek in the Land of the Druk; Bhutan, that opens up to mystical Buddhist monasteries, temples, and lush green landscape. The trek begins with a picturesque flight to the Paro International Airport which lands in the mesmerizing Paro valley. Paro gives you a first-hand insight into the warm and welcoming people of Bhutan.
Bhutan boasts the enchanting Tiger’s Nest Monastery sitting at the edge of a cliff. On the second day of your trip, you’ll get a chance to take a short hike to this monastery. Visiting the monastery will be more than you expected as you get to learn about the myth of Guru Rinpoche and why the monastery is regarded as a pilgrimage for Buddhists.
After the acclimatization and sightseeing hike to the Tiger’s Nest, the actual trekking starts on the third day. Following a drive to Ta Dzong, the National Museum of Bhutan, you get ready for the trek. From Ta Dzong, the trail leads to Jele Dzong through a gravel path amidst green pastures, on this day. The peaceful Paro Valley can be seen on the horizon with Mt. Jumolhari on the backdrop. On the fourth day of your trek, the silent trail will take you through lush alpine and rhododendron forest towards Jele La. With the sweet sound of Monal peasant singing, you reach your campsite at Jangchulakha.
The classic trek then reaches Jimilangtsho Lakes on the fifth day. Jimilangtsho is known primarily for the giant Trout fishes found there. Views of snow-capped mountains – Jichu Drake and Gangkar Puensum can be seen throughout the day. The trek offers a walk through the rhododendron forest to Janetsho Lake on the sixth day. Our campsite is near to the undeniably beautiful Simkotra Tsho Lake which is another highlight of the Druk Path Trek.
As the trek comes to an end on the seventh day, there is a change in the scenery from Simkotra Tsho to Thimphu. Views of Mt. Gangkar Puensum in the backdrop never leave your sight as the trail leads through the age-old Phajodhing Monastery into the city area of Thimphu. You can enjoy your evening by strolling around the streets of Thimphu looking for a souvenir to take back home and also rejoice in the culmination of this successful trek.
The eighth day marks an end to your wonderful Druk Path Trek as you head to the Paro International Airport for departure.
The tour begins with a scenic flight to Paro which is the valley town, just west of Thimphu - the capital of Bhutan. As you look down from your window, you will witness the stunning views of Paro Dzong and the surrounding Himalayas. Upon your landing in Paro, our representative from Third Rock Adventures will come to welcome you and escort you to your hotel. After some rest and refreshment, you will be briefed on the trek itinerary.
During the evening, you can stroll out in the town of Paro. As you pass the main streets, you can observe many traditional buildings. After returning to the hotel, you will prepare for the next day’s hike.
Overnight stay at hotel in Paro.
Early in the morning after having breakfast, you will hike to the Tiger’s Nest Monastery. The hike takes a 900m steep ascend and about four to five hours to reach the monastery. On the way to the monastery, you will be enchanted by the pine forest and the calming sound of the player flag fluttering with the swift wind. You’ll even walk past temples and a sacred pool.
The mesmerizing monastery, seemingly sitting on the edge of a cliff, is perhaps the most famous in Bhutan. It is also known as Paro Taktsang or Taktsang Palphug Monastery. As per the mystical legend surrounding it, Guru Rimpoche/Padmasambhava flew to this very location on the back of a tigress after identifying it as a secret place to meditate for 3 months thereafter. Guru Rimpoche is known to be tantric who brought Buddhism to Bhutan. It is in this cave of the monastery that he practiced Vajrayana - tantra teaching. It was built in 1684 by the Penlop of Paro and has now become a place of worship and tourism.
Return to Paro and overnight stay at hotel.
This day marks the commencement of your remarkable trekking journey. After breakfast, early in the morning, you will take a ride to Ta Dzong where you will meet our trekking guides. Ta Dzong is a watchtower built in 1967 which has now become the National Museum of Bhutan. The museum holds some rare artifacts of high value. From Ta Dzong, the trekking trail begins with an ascent to the camp near Jele. For about 30 minutes the trail follows a gravel path among farms and then ahead through lovely blue pine and fir forests. The trail eventually leads to Damche Gom. After a quick descent from the ridge below Jele Dzong, you reach the camp site.
On a clear day, the peaceful Paro Valley can be seen vividly, with Mt. Jumolhari (7314m) on the backdrop. The other snow-capped mountains look equally beautiful almost like a wonderful landscape painting. Jele Dzong is of equal prominence to the Bhutanese as it was the residing place of Ngawang Chhogye, the cousin of Lama Drukpa Kunley.
Overnight at Camp.
Today the trek begins with a steep climb for an hour and a half followed by a gradual ascent along the ridge. The silent trail through the thick alpine forest and rhododendron takes you to a place of solitude. Upon crossing Jele La at 3,490m/11,450ft, you begin to see yak herders around the campsite.
Mt. Jomolhari among other peaks never leaves your sight. During the day, you may be lucky enough to hear sweet callings of the Monal peasants which will make you wonder whether you are in paradise. After the pleasant trek, you will rest in your camp for an overnight stay.
Overnight at Camp.
The true beauty of Bhutan will slowly sink-in as you begin your trek on this day. Your trail follows the ridge with panoramic views of mountains and valleys. After descending on the trail, you will arrive at the camp.
Close to the camp, you cannot miss out on the wonderous Jimilangtsho Lakes. As mesmerizing as it is, Jimilangtsho is also popular for giant Trout fishes found there. As you sit by camp in the evening, you will slowly watch the sunset with striking views of Jichu Drake (6,989m/22,929ft) and Gangkar Puensum (7,497m/24,596ft). Both the peaks have their unique point of popularity; while Jichu Drake is known to represent the protective deity of Parom, Gangkar Puensum is the highest mountain in Bhutan.
Overnight at Camp.
From our camp in Jimilangtsho, we move through the trail that ascends from the lower end of the lake. After crossing the side of the ridge, the route descends to a single stone shelter followed by an ascent to the summit at 4,050m/13,287ft. The walk takes you through the rhododendron forest and passes Janetsho Lake. You get a sense of a remote nomadic life as you come across yak herder’s camp. Being introduced to this kind of picturesque scene is something out of a dream.
You will spot your campsite close to Simkotra Tsho Lake. Enjoying the lovely views and serenity, you will rest at the camp for the night.
Overnight at Camp.
After a heavy breakfast, you will head towards Thimphu. The trail starts with a steady climb and enticing views of Mt. Gangkar Puensum in the backdrop. Then a downhill hike takes you to Phajodhing. From Phajodhing Monastery, Thimphu is visible. You continue taking a downhill trail and walk through pine forest to reach the road above Takin Sanctuary. Your trek ends here as you hop on the ride with the driver towards the hotel.
After the long trek, you would want to jump in the shower and take some rest at the hotel. You can spend the rest of the evening strolling around the town of Thimphu. Thimphu, the largest city and the capital of Bhutan is home to the nation’s royal family. Unlike the rest of the places throughout your trek, Thimphu is a modern city with hustle and bustle. You can roam the night streets to buy some souvenirs to take back home.
Overnight stay at hotel.
On this day, you will be driven to Paro as it houses the only international airport in Bhutan; the Paro International Airport. After the amazing Druk Path Trek with Third Rock Adventures, we will bid you farewell. As you board the plane to your homeland, you will reminisce the exciting time you had and the amazing places you visited in the Land of the Thunder Dragon; Bhutan.