Day 01. Arrive Paro (Altitude 2,280m)
Your guide from Bhutan Kaze Tours & Treks will receive you at the airport and take you the to the hotel. After lunch, visit the ruins of Drukgyal Dzong. It is 16 km northward from Paro proper.
The dzong was built in 1647 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the father and unifier of medieval Bhutan. The dzong was destroyed by fire and left in ruins. It was built to commemorate victories over Tibetan invasions.
On a clear day, you can see magnificent Mt. Jhomolhari (7,314m). On the way back, visit Kichu Lhakhang. It was built in 659 A.D by the Tibetan King Songtsen Gempo.
Dinner and overnight at Hotel.
Day 02. Paro – Thimphu, Excursion to Taktsang Monastery (Altitude 2320 m, 54 kms)
A special day with an excursion to the spectacular Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) monastery.
After breakfast, a short drive takes us to Satsam Choeten. From there, it takes 2 hours by foot to reach the viewpoint of the monastery. 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 to rest and for a light refreshment at the Taktsang Jakhang (cafeteria) and then walk a short distance until we see the clear view of the Taktsang monastery. The main Lhakhang at the monastery was built around Guru Rimpoche’s meditation cave in 1684 by Gyaltse Tenzin Rabgye.
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, flew here on the back of a flying tigress said to be his favorite consort.
After Lunch, visit Ta Dzong (built in 1656 and renovated in 1968), an ancient watchtower, which now houses the National Museum. Below the museum is the Paro Rimpung Dzong (literally meaning “Heap of Jewels,”). It was built in 1646 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel. A short walk takes you to the base of the dzong across a traditional cantilever bridge.
In the evening, drive to Thimphu. Dinner and overnight in Hotel.
Day 03. Thimphu Sightseeing (Altitude 2320 m)
The day begins with a visit to the National Memorial Choeten (built in 1974) in honor of the late third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk and the Dupthop Lhakhang, a nunnery. We then visit the National Library stocked with ancient Buddhist scriptures and the National Institute of Zorigchusum. It is here where Bhutan’s 13 arts and crafts are kept alive.
After lunch, we drive to the National Institute of Traditional Medicine where medicines are prepared according to ancient practices and to Lungtenzampa to observe the silver smiths at work and Bhutanese paper factory.
Other highlights include a visit to Tashichho Dzong. The dzong houses the office of His Majesty the king and is the seat of the national government and the central monastic body. The dzong also serves as the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot of Bhutan). Finally, visit the Handicrafts Emporium followed by shopping for souvenirs in the capital city.
Over night in Hotel.
Day 4. Departure: After breakfast, drive to the airport and farewell.