10 Days Home-stay Tour of Bhutan
The 10 Days Home-stay tour of Bhutan will literally take you away from your hectic life to spots of phenomenal excellence and culture, which you will experience in pristine Bhutan. Your guide, will accompany you through out your tour to visit towns and rugged Bhutanese villages and you will experience the day to day life in conventional houses with bare minimum infrastructure and appreciate real Bhutanese cooking from your home-stay host.
Ever dreamt of a Bhutan home stay or a retreat amidst lush Himalayan vegetation with never ending views of breathing natural beauties? Bhutan offers just that and so much more. Blissfully located in a forgotten corner of the world lies a tiny country known for happiness, unarguably offers one of the best home stays experience in the world.
Guests will always have many takeaways from Bhutan: family values, spontaneous hospitality and unadulterated love and care. It will be a total delight to experience the Bhutanese way of life (rice plantations, way of life, cooking, milking, tending life stock etc). It also offers an opportunity to immerse oneself in the depth of a rich cultural heritage.
Sketch Itinerary for Home-stay Tour of Bhutan:
Day 1: Arrive Paro.
Day 2: Paro- Thimphu.
Day 3. Thimphu Sightseeing.
Day 4: Thimphu – Punakha.
Day 5: Punakha – Bumthang.
Day 6: Bumthang Sightseeing.
Day 7: Bumthang- Gangtey.
Day 8: Gangtey –Thimphu.
Day 9: Thimphu sightseeing – Paro.
Day 10: Paro Departure.
View Road travel map of 10 Days Experience Bhutanese Home-stay Tour in Google Map.
Detail Itinerary for 10 Days Bhutan Home-stay Tour
Day 1: Arrive Paro (2280 m): Arrive Paro (Altitude 2280 m) (By Druk Air flight):
Your Guide from Yak Holidays will receive you at the airport and drive you to the Hotel.
After lunch, visit Ta Dzong (built in1656 and renovated in 1968), an ancient watchtower, which now houses the National Museum. Below the museum is the Rimpung Dzong (literally meaning “Heap of Jewels”), the centre of civil and religious authority in this valley, built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal.
Then you will visit one of the clusters of farm houses in Paro Valley. You may visit the vegetable gardens and paddy fields around the farmhouse. You can also try archery (the National Sport of Bhutan) with traditional bow and arrow.
Dinner and overnight at a farmhouse in Paro.
Day 2: Paro- Thimphu (2320m) (54 km, 1 hr): Excursion to Taktsang Monastery:
After early breakfast, we drive to Satsam Chorten, the trail climbs through beautiful pine forest, many of the trees festooned with Spanish moss, and an occasional grove of fluttering prayer flags. We stop for a rest and lunch at the Taktsang Jakhang (cafeteria) and then walk a short distance until we see, clearly and seemingly within reach, Taktsang monastery. The Primary Lhakhang was built around Guru Rimpoche’s meditation cave in 1684 by the Penlop of Paro, Gyaltse Tenzin Rabgay, this incredible monastery clings to the edge of a sheer rock cliff that plunges 900 meters into the valley below. Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava, the tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan in 747 AD, flew here on the back of a flying tiger, Dorji Drolo, said to be his favourite consort.
After lunch, visit to the ruins of the Drukgyal Dzong under construction now, built in 1647 by the great Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, father and unifier of medieval Bhutan, the dzong was destroyed by accidental fire and left in ruins as an evocative reminder of the great victories it was built to commemorate. Explore the ramparts and on a clear day experience an unforgettable view of Mt. Jhomolhari (7,314 m). On the way back, visit Kichu Lhakhang, built in 659 A.D by the Tibetan king Srongsen Gampo.
- Srongsen Gampo: He was a Tibetan king who married a Chinese princess, Wenchen in 641, as a apart of her dowry was a statue called “Jowo” which was an Indian image of Buddha, Sakyamuni as a small boy. In 659, He decided to build 108 Temples in a single day to pin the Ogress to the earth forever and, at the same time, convert the Tibetan people to Buddhism. 6 of these Temples lie in Bhutan, most prominent of them are Jambay Lhakhang in Bumthang and Kichu Lhakhang in Paro. Kichu Lhakhang is said to hold the left foot of the Ogress and Jambay Lhakhang pins the left knee.
In the evening, drive to Thimphu. On the way, visit Tamchog Monastery built by Thangthong Gyalpo (Popularly known as Lama Chazampa, which literally means, the Iron Bridge builder) in the 15th century.
- Thang Thong Gyalpo (1385 – 1464) was a wonder working saint from Tibet who came to Bhutan in 1433 looking for Iron Ore. He built 108 bridges across Tibet and Bhutan, out of which 8 were built in Bhutan. His only surviving bridge is in Duksum (Tashi Yangtse in Eastern Bhutan).
Dinner and overnight in Hotel Migmar or similar.
Day 3. Thimphu Sightseeing (2320 m):
After breakfast, visit to the National Memorial Chorten (1974) built in honour of our late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk and the Dupthop Lhakhang one of the few surviving nunneries in Bhutan. We then visit the largest and the tallest statue of sitting Buddha and the Painting School where traditional art is still kept alive through instructions in the art of painting Thangkas (sacred Buddhist religious scrolls).
After lunch we drive to the Takin Preserve Centre (Takin: the national animal of Bhutan) and to Lungtenzampa to observe the Royal silver smiths and Bhutanese paper factory at work. Other highlights include a visit to the Tashichho Dzong, seat of the national government and the Central Monastic Body, including the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot of Bhutan). Dinner and overnight home stay at a modern Bhutanese family home which is located on the outskirt of Thimphu.
Day 4: Thimphu – Punakha (1310 m) (76 km, 3 hrs):
After breakfast, drive to Punakha via Dochula pass. If the weather is clear, we stop for a while at Dochula pass to view Higher Himalayas. On the way, stop a while to view/visit Chimi Lhakhang, which was built by Lama Drukpa Kuenley in 15th century. He subdued the demons with his “Magical Thunder bolt”. The Temple is also known as “the Temple of Fertility”.
- Lama Drukpa Kuenley (1455 – 1529) was one of the Bhutan’s Favourite Saints who was born in Tibet, trained at Ralung Monastery and was a contemporary and a disciple of Pema Lingpa. He Travelled throughout Bhutan and Tibet as a “Neljorpa” (Yogi) using songs, humour and outrageous behavior to dramatise his teachings of Salvation through sex.
After lunch, visit Punakha Dzong built in 1637 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal and is situated between Pho Chu (Male river) and Mo Chu (Female river). For many years until the time of the second king, it served as the seat of the Government. The construction of the Dzong was foretold by Guru Rimpoche, who predicted, “…a person named Namgyal will arrive at a hill that looks like an elephant”. There was a smaller building here called Dzong Chu (Small Dzong) that housed a statue of Buddha. It is said that Shabdrung ordered the architect, Zowe Palep, to sleep in front of the statue, while Palep was sleeping, the Shabdrung took him in his dreams to Zangtopelri and showed him the palace of Guru Rimpoche. From his vision, the architect conceived the design for the new Dzong, which in keeping with the tradition, was never committed to paper. The Dzong was named Druk Pungthang Dechen Phodrang (Palace of Great Happiness). The war materials captured during the battle with Tibetans are preserved here. Punakha is still the winter residence of Je-Khenpo and King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk convened the First National Assembly here in 1952.
Dinner and overnight at a farmhouse in Lobesa Village in Punakha.
Day 5: Punakha/Wangdue – Trongsa – Bumthang (2800 m) (195 km, 6 hrs):
After breakfast, drive to Trongsa. Visit Trongsa Dzong, the most impressive dzong of Bhutan, built in its present form in 1644 by Chogyal Minjur Tempa, the official who was sent by Shabdrung to unify eastern Bhutan and enlarged at the end of the 17th century by Desi Tenzin Rabgay. Trongsa Dzong is the ancestral home of the present Royal Family and first two hereditary kings ruled Bhutan from this Dzong. Then Visit Ta Dzong, an ancient watch tower. The chapel inside the Ta Dzong is said to be dedicated to the Trongsa Penlop Jigme Namgyal.
After Lunch, drive to Bumthang. On the way, you will come across “Yathra” Weaving Centre at Zugney Village where you will see local weavers weaving Yathra. Yathra is the name for the colorful, hand-woven woolen cloth (often with geometric designs) that is produced in this region and wool used for this type of textile is sheep wool as the sheep is reared in this Bumthang Valley. Yathra is made into jackets or bags, etc.
Then you will be driven further to Bumthang. Dinner and overnight in Hotel Swiss Guest House or similar.
Day 6: Bumthang Sightseeing (2800 m):
After breakfast, visit Jakar Dzong, which literally means “The Castle of White Bird”. The current structure was built in 1667. Visit Jambay Lhakhang, built by King Srongsen Gampo of Tibet in the year 659 on the same day as Kichu Lhakhang in Paro. The temple was visited by Guru Rimpoche during his visit to Bumthang and was renovated by Sindhu Raja after Guru Rimpoche restored his life force. Under the temple is said to be a lake in which Guru Rimpoche hid several Terma. In October one of the most spectacular festival, “Jambay Lhakhang Drup” is staged here.
After lunch, we visit Kurjey Lhakhang that is named after body print of Guru Rimpoche, built in 1652 by Minjur Tempa. Visit Tamshing Lhakhang (Temple of the good message), established in 1501 by Pema Lingpa and is the most important Nyingmapa temple in the kingdom. In the evening, visit Membarstho which literally means, “The burning Lake”.
In the evening walk through a village and you can relax in the Traditional Bhutanese Hot stone bath. Dinner and overnight at a farmhouse in Bumthang.
Day 7: Bumthang – Gangtey (3200m) (140 km, 5 hrs):
After breakfast, drive to Punakha via Phobjikha valley. Driving through the dense forests of the Phobjikha Valley you arrive at Gantey village where you see the Gangtey Monastery and visit the monastery. Phobjikha valley is part of the beautiful Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park ( formerly known as Black Mountains National Park), one of Bhutan’s most important nature sanctuaries. Each winter it is home to a flock of 300 rare and endangered black-necked cranes. The surrounding hills and mountains are home to nomadic shepherds and yak-herders. This is one of the most remote and untouched regions in Bhutan and is only just opening its doors to the outside world.
In the evening, visit the farmhouse where you will have dinner and overnight at the same farmhouse in Phobjikha.
Day 8: Gangtey – Thimphu (2320) (140 km, 6 hrs):
After breakfast, explore the valley and also visit the Black Necked Crane Center.
We then drive to Thimphu. Enroute visit Rinchengang & Lobesa villages where you will take a short walk through the village and have free interaction with the villagers.
Lunch at Dochula Cafeteria.
Free to stroll in the city on your own. Dinner and overnight home stay at a modern Bhutanese family home which is located on the outskirt of Thimphu.
Day 9: Thimphu sightseeing – Paro (2280 m) (54 km, 1 hr driving time):
After breakfast visit Bhutan Post Office Headquarters to get personalized Bhutanese postage stamps with your photo on them. You can bring along your favorite photo to put on the stamps and put these stamps on your postcard to send to your family and friends.
We then visit National Textile Museum which is a good place to see the art of traditional weaving being kept alive and preserved through exhibition and has a good collection of old textiles which are rich in colors and designs. You will also see people weaving with intricate designs.
We head to Simply Bhutan before your lunch– A living museum of rural life which provides visitors and tourists with fascinating insights into the Bhutanese material culture and way of life.
After lunch visit Craft Bazaar where craftsmen and artisans from across the country display and sell their handicrafts followed by a visit to a Government-run Handicrafts Emporium and local crafts shops, to browse through examples of Bhutan’s fine traditional arts. Here you can buy hand-woven textiles, thangkha paintings, masks, ceramics, slate and wood carvings, jewelry, and other interesting items made from local materials.
In the evening drive to Paro.
Dinner and overnight in Tashi Namgay Resort or similar.
Day 10: Paro Departure: After breakfast, drive to airport and farewell.
- Hot stone bath.
- Cycling around Paro valley.
- Practice Archery.
- Bhutanese cooking class.
- Bhutanese cultural show featuring various mask dances and folk dances.
- Talk on Gross National Happiness / Buddhism.
- Consulting an Astrologer.
- Practice Dart.
- Performing religious ceremony.
- Marriage ceremonies.
Please contact us for the price.
Tour Cost Includes:
a. All Meals [Breakfast /Lunch/Dinner]
b. Accommodation [Twin Sharing] Single Room Supplement Extra.
c. All transportation within the country including airport transfers.
d. Royalty & Govt. Taxes.
e. Entrance fees for Museums and Monuments.
f. Visa Fee.
g. English speaking Local guide.
i. Bottled water.
Tour Cost Excludes:
a. Drukair fares.
b. Insurance Premiums
c. Payments for service provided on a personal basis.
d. Cost for any services not mentioned in the “Cost Include head”.
e. Cost incurred due to mishaps, strikes, political unrest etc.
f. Personal expenses such as laundry, soft drinks, Camera Charges, Incidentals, Portage, Bellboy charges tips or any other services.