This is a rather fast paced program which enables you to have glimpse of some of the well-known cultural sites of Bhutan even with this limited time-frame but keeps you on the move.
Day 1: Arrival in Paro & drive to Thimphu
Day 2: Visit Thimphu & drive to Punakha in the afternoon
Day 3: Drive Punakha to Paro
Day 4: Visit Paro (Taktsang monastery)
Day 5: Departure
Day 1: Arrive at Paro International Airport & drive to Thimphu (approximately 1 ½ hours): You will be met by our representatives who will greet you in traditional fashion and then escort you to your private vehicle to begin the journey to Thimphu. The drive to Thimphu is about 55km and takes approximately 1 ½ hours through beautiful countryside and spectacular monasteries. Also, you have the option of visiting Tamchoe Lhakhang, a privately owned temple, where you can admire and cross one of the loveliest suspension bridges in Bhutan.
Afternoon is free for exploring, sightseeing, or simply relaxing. Some of the sights in Thimphu include the Weekend Market, the National Institute for Zorig Chusum (Painting School), Folk Heritage Museum, National Library, Textile Museum, Mothitang Takin Preserve, the National Institute of Traditional Medicine, Simtokha Dzong, Trashi Chhoe Dzong, National Memorial Chorten, Changangkha Lhakhang, and Zilukha Nunnery.
Day 2: Morning touring in Thimphu with afternoon drive to Punakha. After breakfast at your hotel, finish up any last minute sightseeing in Thimphu before beginning the hike to either of the Tango or Cheri Goembas. Enjoy a pack lunch en route and later continue to Punakha (approx. 3 hours), which takes you over the breathtaking Dochu La Pass and past the 108 Dochu La hortens. At over 10,000 feet, on a clear day you get an amazing view of the eastern Himalayan mountain range. Explore Punakha as time allows and then enjoy a relaxing dinner at your hotel.
Day 3: Drive Punakha to Paro (approximately 4 ½ hours): Awake at your leisure for your morning bike ride through the Punakha valley. Take an easy ride through the back roads of Punakha alongside the river and through traditional villages. En route enjoy tea and snacks at a local farmhouse and later visit the Punakha Dzong. Often considered one of the most beautiful Dzongs in Bhutan, it was originally built by the first Shabdrung in 1637 and lies between 2 rivers. Enjoy a picnic lunch in the afternoon before returning to Paro for your overnight stay.
Day 4: Visit Paro: after an early breakfast at your hotel, hike to Taktsang Monastery or “Tiger’s Nest” (approximately 4 hours roundtrip). The monastery is perched on a rocky ledge with a
sheer drop of nearly 3,000 feet and overlooks the Paro valley. It is one of the most venerated pilgrim sites in the Himalayan world and houses 13 holy places. If you aren’t up for hiking, horses are available to take you part of the way to a teahouse which offers amazing views of the temple. The afternoon is free for activities as you choose: continue sightseeing as time permits with optional stops at the Paro Dzong and National Museum, Kichu Lhakhang, and Drugyel Dzong, explore Paro town, or retreat to your hotel.
Day 5: Departure: Wake up early for breakfast then transfer to the airport for your onward flight. Your guide and driver will bid you farewell after assuring all flight formalities are complete.