Dance of the Dragon – Thimphu Tsechu Tour

One of the biggest festivals in the country is the Thimphu tshechu.

Venue: Tashichho Dzong, Thimphu

One of the biggest festivals in the country is the Thimphu tshechu. This festival is held in the capital city for three days. The Tshechu is witnessed by thousands of people, both local and tourists. The actual Tshechu is preceded by days and nights of prayer and rituals to invoke the gods. Mask dances like the Guru Tshengye (Eight Manifestations of Guru Rinpoche), Shaw Shachi (dance of the stags) and many more are performed.

Itinerary

Day 01. Arrive Paro (Altitude 2280 m) (By Druk Air / Bhutan Airlines flight):

Your Guide will receive you at the airport and drive you to the Hotel.

After lunch, visit to:

  • Ta Dzong – National Museum (built in1656 and renovated in 1968)
  • Rimpung Dzong (literally meaning “Heap of Jewels”) – built in 1646 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the first spiritual and temporal ruler of Bhutan.

Dinner and overnight in Hotel.

Optional activities you can choose:

  • Hike to Dzongdrakha Monastery.
  • Hike to Nunnery.
  • Village walk.
  • Mountain biking around Paro valley.
  • Drive to Chelila pass to view Higher Himalayas bordering Tibet including Mt. Jumolhari

Day 02. Paro – Thimphu (Altitude 2320 m, 54 km) Excursion to Taktsang Monastery: 

After breakfast, visit to:

  • Taktsang Monastery(Tiger’s Nest) – one of the most famous of Bhutan’s monasteries, perched on the side of a cliff 900m above the Paro valley floor.
  • Drukgyel dzong – built in 1646 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal to commemorate his victory over the Tibetan invaders.
  • Kyichu Lhakhang – the oldest and most sacred shrines of the Kingdom dating back to 7th century (the other is Jambay Lhakhang in Bumthang).

After lunch, drive to Thimphu. On the way, view:

  • Tamchog Lhakhang – dedicated to the 13th century to Thangthong Gyalpo, the bridge builder. This is a private temple however tourists are allowed to visit if they are given permission.

Dinner and overnight in Hotel.

Day 03. Thimphu Sightseeing: (Altitude 2320 m). After breakfast, visit to:

  • National Library – The history of Bhutan lies imprinted in archaic texts, which are preserved at the National Library.
  • Painting School- Commonly known as Arts & Crafts School or Painting School, the Institute offers a six-year course on the 13 traditional arts and crafts of Bhutan.
  • National Memorial Chorten – built in 1974 in the memory of Bhutan’s third King, His Late Majesty, King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk, who is popularly regarded as Father of modern Bhutan.

After lunch, visit to:

  • Buddha Point – visitors can get a good overview of the Thimphu valley from the Buddha point (Kuensel Phodrang).
  • Visit Royal Textile Museum.

Dinner and overnight in Hotel.

Optional Activities you can choose:

  • Weekend Market
  • Talk on Gross National Happiness / Buddhism.
  • Hike to Cheri Monastery / Tango Monastery / Phajoding Monastery.
  • Village walk at Kabisa.
  • Mountain biking around Thimphu

Day 04.  Thimphu Tshechu (Festival) Day 1: Attend a half day of Thimphu Tshechu, which is held in Tendrelthang (courtyard) of Tashichhodzong, which houses some ministries, the office and throne room of His Majesty the King and the central monk body.

After lunch, visit

  • Takin Preserve centre – The Takin is the national animal of Bhutan, and looks like a cross between a cow and a goat.
  • Nunnery – Zilukha nunnery. You can see many nuns chanting prayers and turning prayer wheels in Zilukha nunnery.

Dinner and O/N in Hotel.

Day 05. Thimphu Tshechu Day 2: Attend Thimphu Festival for the whole day. Your guide will explain you the significance of the festival.

Dinner and overnight in Hotel.

Day 06. Thimphu – Punakha: (Altitude 1310 m) (76 Km, 3 hrs drive). After breakfast, drive to Punakha via Dochula Pass (3116 m)

  • Dochula Pass –If the weather is clear, you can see the higher Eastern Himalayas and also known for Druk Wangyal Chortens- the construction of these108 chortens was commissioned by the eldest Queen Mother, Her Majesty Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuk.
  • Chhimi Lhakhang – dedicated to Lama Drukpa Kuenley, who used humour, songs and outrageous behavior to dramatise his teachings and due to this also known as “Divine Madman”.
  • Punakha Dzong – Built in 1637, by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal to serve as the religious and administrative centre of the region.

Dinner and overnight in Hotel.

Day 07. Punakha – Gangtey: (Altitude 3120 m) (67 km, 3 hrs drive).

After breakfast visit to:

  • Wangdiphodrang Dzong razed by fire in 2012, (from outside) built in 1638.
  • Gangtey Gompa – Gyaltse Pema Thinley, the grandson and mind reincarnation of Pema Lingpa founded the Temple in 1613, and Tenzin Legpai Dhendup, the second re-incarnation, built the temple.
  • Explore Phobjikha valley, famous for the Black Necked Cranes during winter.

Optional activities you can choose:

  • Gangtey Natural Trail (Gangtey)

Day 08. Gangtey – Paro (Altitude: 2280 m) (Distance: 126 km, 6-7 hrs): After breakfast, drive to Wangdi . Lunch will be served on the way. We drive further to Paro.

Free to stroll in the town for shopping and souvenirs in the town. Dinner and overnight in Hotel.

Day 09. Paro – Departure: Early morning transfer to Paro Airport for on toward flight and farewell.

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$250 per person

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