7 Nights / 8 Days Package Tour to Bhutan
Shangrila Highlight Tour
Discover and experience the best of Bhutan with our 8 Days Package Tour to Bhutan and explore all the sacred Buddhist monasteries and monuments of the eastern Himalayas and traverse across the beautiful landscapes of lush valleys, snow peaked high mountains and pristine countryside villages of this ancient kingdom which was never ever conquered or colonized by any foreign power.
Druk – Yul, The Land of The Thunder Dragon beckons the traveler in you to visit this mystical hidden country
Sketch Itinerary: 7 Nights / 8 Days Package Tour to Bhutan
Day 1. Arrive Paro (Altitude 2280 m) – Thimphu (2320 m) (Distance: 54 km, 1 hr drive).
Day 2. Thimphu Sightseeing.
Day 3. Thimphu – Punakha (Altitude 1310 m, 76 Km, 3 hrs drive).
Day 4. Punakha – Gangtey (Altitude 3120 m) (66 km, 3 hrs).
Day 5. Gangtey – Thimphu: (Altitude 2320 m) (143 km – 6 hrs.)
Day 6. Thimphu – Paro Sightseeing: (Altitude 2280 m).
Day 7. Paro sightseeing (Tiger’s Nest).
Day 8. Departure: (Altitude 2280 m).
View 8 Days Package Tour to Bhutan in Google Map.
Detail Itinerary for 8 Days Package Tour to Bhutan
Day 01. Arrive Paro (Altitude 2280 m) (By Druk Air) – Thimphu (2320 m) (Distance: 54 km, 1 hr drive):
Our Guide from Yak Holidays will receive you at the Airport and drive you to Thimphu city. On the way, you will view the 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 02. Thimphu Sightseeing: (Altitude 2320 m)
Your day will begin with a visit to the National Memorial Chorten (1974) built in honour of our 3rd King, late His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuk (The Father of Modern Bhutan), the Statue of Buddha Dordenma, the ancient Changangkha Lhakhang, the Takin Preserve at Motithang, Sangaygang view point, and the Dupthop Lhakhang one of the few surviving nunneries in Bhutan.
After lunch, visit the National Postal Museum, which is worth a visit for you can get impromptu pictures of your own on Bhutanese stamp right then and there. Get a photo clicked or give a photo of your dear ones and you will get personalized stamps in minutes followed by a visit to the Painting School where traditional art is still kept alive through instructions in the art of painting Thangkas (sacred Buddhist religious scrolls) and Folk Heritage Museum. In the evening, visit to the Tashichho Dzong, seat of the national government and the Central Monastic Body, including the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (the Chief Abbot of Bhutan) and finally visit the Handicrafts Emporium followed by shopping at the various souvenir shops of Thimphu city. Dinner and overnight in Hotel Migmar or similar.
Day 03. Thimphu – Punakha: (Altitude 1310 m) (76 Km, 3 hrs drive).
After breakfast, drive to Punakha via Dochula pass. Stop for a while at Dochula pass to see 9weather permitting) an entire range of the Higher Himalayas. Drive further down and visit the Royal Botanical Garden at Lamperi.
- The Royal Botanical park, also known as the Rhododendron Garden at Lamperi is about half and hour drive towards Punakha/Wangdue. With your spirits still high from the visit to the awesome sites of Dochula Pass with its 108 stupas and the beautifully arranged Himalayan mountain ranges, you will descend down to Rhododendron Botanical Garden, a nature reserve rich in flora and fauna and beautiful in itself. The recorded species are the monal pheasants, blood pheasants, musk deer, tiger, leopard, red panda and the leopard cat. A Rhododendron garden with 46 species of the plant is the theme of the botanical garden. Located 30 KMS from capital, the park has numerous view points, a lake and a canteen. At this park, you can indulge yourself amongst these rich biodiversity.
Drive further to Punakha. On the way, see the Chimi Lhakhang, which was built by Lama Drukpa Kuenley (Popularly known as “The Divine Madman”, in the year 1499. He subdued the demons of Dochula Pass with his “Magical Thunder bolt” and built the temple on top of a hillock. 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 the magnificent Punakha Dzong built in 1637 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal and is situated at the confluence of the Pho Chu (Male River) and the 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 Rinpoche, 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 Zhabdrung ordered the architect, Zowe Palep, to sleep in front of the statue, while Palep was sleeping; the Zhabdrung took him in his dreams to Zangtopelri and showed him the palace of Guru Rinpoche. 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.
In the evening, excursion to the Khamsung Yulley Namgyal Choling Monastery. Dinner and overnight in Punatshangchhu Cottages or similar.
Day 04. Punakha – Gangtey (Altitude 3120 m) (66 km, 3 hrs):
After breakfast, drive to Gangtey. Enroute sightseeing in the valley of Wangdiphodrang includes visit to the Wangdiphodrang Dzong (razed by fire in 2012), & under construction (from outside) built in 1638. Legend relates that as the people were searching for the site of the Dzong; four ravens were seen flying away in four directions. This was considered an auspicious sign, representing the spread of Buddhist religion to all directions. The Dzong is situated at the confluence of Mo Chu and Tang Chu rivers. Drive further to Gangtey.
While in Gangtey, visit Gangtey Gompa., founded in 1613, The present Abbot, Kunzang Pema Namgyal is the ninth re-incarnation of Pema Lingpa, a chosrn confidante of Guru Rinpoche. It is a Nyingma monastery and is affiliated to other Nyingma monasteries including Tamshing in Bumthang.
After lunch, explore Phobjikha valley, the roosting ground of the Rare Black necked Cranes in winter and visit the Crane Information center. Dinner and overnight in Theckchen Phodrang Guest house or similar.
Day 05. Gangtey – Thimphu: (Altitude 2320 m) (143 km – 6 hrs.)
After breakfast, drive back to Thimphu city. Lunch, will be served on the way.
Time permitting, witness an archery match in Changlimithang. In the evening, free for shopping and photography in the town. Dinner and overnight in Hotel Migmar or similar.
Day 06. Thimphu – Paro: (Altitude 2280 m, Distance 58 km, Drive Time 1 hour):
After breakfast, drive to Paro and visit the Ta Dzong (built in1656 and renovated in 1968), an ancient watchtower, which now houses the National Museum. Below the museum is the Paro Rinpung Dzong (literally meaning “Heap of Jewels”, built in 1646 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the centre of administrativel and religious authority of the district. A short walk takes you to the base of the Dzong across a traditional cantilevered, covered bridge.
After lunch, visit to the ruins of the Drugyal Dzong 16 km up the valley built in 1647 by the great Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, father and unifier of medieval Bhutan, the Dzong was destroyed by an accidental fire and left in ruins. It was built to commemorate as an evocative reminder of the great war victories aginst the Tibetans. Explore the ramparts of the fort 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 part 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.
Dinner and overnight in Tashi Namgay Resort or similar.
Day 07. Paro Sightseeing: (Altitude 2280 m).
After breakfast, drive to the base camp and hike to Taktsang Monastery: a short drive will take us to Satsam Chorten, and from there a relentless 2 hour walk till the viewpoint point of the monastery. The trail leads thru beautiful pine forests, many of the trees festooned with Spanish moss, and an occasional grove of fluttering prayer flags. We stop for a rest for light refreshments at the Taktsang Jakhang ( a cafeteria) and then walk a short distance until we clearly see the wonderful Taktsang monastery. The primary Lhakhang (temple) was built around Guru Rimpoche’s meditation cave in the 1684 by the Penlop (Governor) of Paro, Gyaltse Tenzin Rabgay. This incredible monastery clings to the edge of a sheer rock cliff 900 meters above the valley. Legend has it that Guru Rinpoche, the tantric mystic saint who introduced Buddhism to Bhutan, flew here on the back of a flying tiger, Dorji Drolo, said to be his favorite consort.
NB: You can hoist prayer flags near the Tiger’s Nest, and offer prayers inside the monastery. You can also request the lamas to pray for you and your near and dear ones..
Hot stone bath: One of the best ways to unwind after a long tiring day in Bhutan is a hot stone bath. It is not only practiced as a comforting leisure but also a treatment for various ailments. Soaking in Menchu ( Bhutanese term for water with medicinal properties) is a major draw for Bhutanese, especially during the winters. The cost for one bath is US$10.
Dinner and overnight in Tashi Namgay Resort or similar
Day 08. Departure: (Altitude 2280 m) Early morning, drive to the 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.
How does one get to Bhutan as a tourist? What are the visa procedures?
All visitors require a passport, valid for at least 6 months longer than their journey and an entry visa for Bhutan which must be pre-approved prior to your arrival. Your Bhutan visa will be arranged by your tour operator and all they usually need is a quality scan (or photo) of your passport photo page. Please be sure you carry the same passport that you submitted for your Bhutan visa or you will be denied entry.
Bhutan visas generally cost USD 40 but are sometimes built into your travel package. A visa authority letter is issued after prepayment for your travel arrangements and the actual visa is entered into your passport on arrival at Paro Int’l Airport.
Indians, Bangladeshis and Maldivians don’t need visas to enter Bhutan but a travel permit.
Paro International airport is connected to Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Bagdogra, Buddhagaya, Guwahati, Kathmandu, Dhaka, Bangkok and Singapore.
The three land border crossings of Phuentsholing, Gelephu and Samdrup Jongkhar from where you can travel overland are along the Indian border in the south.
When you check in at the airport starting in Bangkok, Singapore, Delhi, or Kathmandu you must show your approved visa authority letter for Bhutan (that has been sent to you via email). When you arrive at Paro Int’l airport, all visitors are now required to provide fingerprints and a facial image. It’s a smooth process and you’ll get through quickly.