Thimphu, as the capital, is a unique blend of the modern and the ancient. The bustling modern town is surrounded by ancient temples and the Tashichhodzong, the seat of the government and the monastic order.
The Tsechu / festival are a religious festival in honor of Guru Rinpoche, who brought the Buddhism to this country in 8th century. The Bhutanese dressed in their finest clothes, come from all over for the festivities of the Thimphu Tsechu. It is believed one who witnesses the festival/the tsechu will bestow with much luck, they gain merits and their wishes are realized. The tsechu is also a yearly social gathering where people rejoice together.
The Thimphu Tsechu or Thimphu festival is held in the courtyard of the Tashichho dzong. Since every year number of visitors, both tourist and Bhutanese are increasing very much, where all the people can not accommodate in the courtyard and the dance place is being constructed outside where more people can witness and enjoy the Thimphu Tsechu luxury. Most dances in the program have religious significance. Folk dance by the Royal Academy of Performing Arts is interspersed with religious or mask dance.
The Thimphu Tsechu was established by the 4th temporal ruler, Tenzin Rabgye in 1670 on the 8th month of Bhutanese calendar to commemorate the birth of Guru Rinpoche.
Day 01 : Arrival in Paro to Thimphu (1.2 Hrs)
On arrival in Paro international airport you will be received by our representative and drive to Thimphu by private car/bus. Check into your hotel. Afternoon we proceed to visit memorial chorten, stupa build in the memory of our late 3rd king. Further we will proceed to Buddha viewpoint, from where we can see entire Thimphu city.
Overnight at Thimphu | Altitude: 2300m
Day 02 : Thimphu Festival
We will spend whole day in the festival which will accompany with various mask dances and folk dancers along with jokers actions in the crowd.
Overnight at Thimphu
Day 03 : Thimphu Festival
Whole day in the interesting Thimphu festival or in the afternoon we can proceed for other sightseeing like visiting Changangkha Lhakhang, the oldest temple in the valley. Visit takin’s preservation center. Evening, we will visit textile museum and government handicraft emporium. Overnight in Thimphu
Day 04 : Thimphu – Punaka (2.5 Hrs)
After breakfast, visit the School of Arts and crafts where students learn 13 different arts used predominantly in Bhutan, Folk Heritage Museum and the National Library. Drive to the Zilukha nunnery to meet the nuns and interact with them. Lunch in the town and thereafter, proceed to drive two and a half hour for Punakha crossing Dochula pass (3200 mts).
If the weather permits one can enjoy a spectacular snowcap view of the Eastern Himalayan as well as the the highest mountains of Bhutan that stretches almost 180 degrees. Walk around the 108 stupas and continue to sub tropical valley of Punakha.
Overnight at Punakha | Altitude: 1350m
Day 05 : Punakha halt
Morning visit Punakha Dzong (fortress), which houses the most elaborated temple in the country. This is a fine example of Bhutanese rich Art and Architecture. Visit a farm house to see the kind of house that Bhutanese live in. After lunch, proceed for an hour hike to the temple of Khamsum Yuelley Namgyel Chorten which is perched on a hill from where you’ll see the Punakha valley. Along the walk, we’ll pass through the villages and the locals in their daily lives. Return to hotel for overnight in Punakha.
Overnight at Punakha
Day 06 : Punakha – Paro (3.5 Hrs)
Morning visit Gangtey Gompa, the largest and the only monastery of the Nyingmapa sect in western Bhutan before continuing your drive back to Paro for approximately 6 hours. Visit the 17th century Paro Dzong (Fortress) on foot and continue walking through the oldest wooden bridge still in use. Evening stroll around the old Paro town and peep into some local handicrafts stores and to see the lifestyle of the Bhutanese people.
Overnight at Paro | Altitude 2200m
Day 07 : Paro – Haa – Paro (6 Hrs)
Visit the temples of Dzongdrakha on foot which studs the rock cliff. Continue driving to Haa over the Chelela Pass, your highest point of the trip at 3800m. When the weather permits one can view the most scared mountain in the country Mt. Jomolhari (7314m). Visit the quiet, timeless Haa valley with a picnic lunch.
Overnight at Paro
Day 08 : Paro sightseeing
Early morning drive to the base for the hike up to Tiger’s Nest Monastery, the most revered temple in the country that literally hangs on a granite cliff overlooking the Paro valley. It is said to be where the legendary Indian saint, Guru Padmasambhava, flew from eastern Bhutan on the back of a tiger to overcome the demons of Paro region who were opposing the spread of Buddhism. Lunch in the cafeteria. Most of the day will go on the hike as you ascend gradually taking in the breathtaking views along the way.
Overnight at Paro
Day 09 : Departure:
Morning transfer to the airport(15 mins) for your departure flight. Our tour staff will bid you farewell at the airport.