Punakha Winter Trek

Day 1: Arrive Paro

Your journey to Bhutan will be wonderful with exciting scenery of foothills, green vegetation, landscape and Himalayan mountains covered by snow. With an exciting journey, you will finally reach to your much awaited destination, Bhutan. On arrival at Paro airport, you will be met by our representative and transfer to the hotel.

If time permit, visit Ta Dzong, the National Museum. The museum collection includes ancient Bhutanese art and artifacts, weapons and country’s exquisite postage stamps. Then walk down the trail to visit Rinpung Dzong situated at commanding height, overlooking Paro valley. This Dzong is symbolic as the religious and secular centre of all affairs of the valley. In the evening, visit Paro market and town. Overnight at the hotel in Paro.

Day 2: Paro

Begin this day with a short drive to the ruined fortress of Drugyel dzong which still attracts visitors due to the strategic location of the fort. From this fort Bhutanese repelled several invasions by Tibetan armies. Nearby visit traditional Bhutanese Farm House which offers good insight into lifestyle of local people. Then take an excursion to Taktsang Monastery, the spot where Guru Rinpoche arrived on the back of a tigress and meditated. The temple is perched on a sheer rock face. The excursion to monastery’s view point takes about 5 hours for round trip. While return to Paro town visit enroute Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest and most sacred shrines of the Kingdom. In the evening visit local market and overnight at the hotel in Paro.

Day 3: Paro – Thimphu

Drive to Thimphu. En-route visit Simtokha Dzong, one of the oldest fortresses in Bhutan built in 1629 A.D. Thimphu sightseeing includes visit to The Largest and Tallest Statue of Buddha in the world, Buddha Point; Changangkha Lhakhang, one of the oldest temple; the traditional Hand Made Paper Mill; Zilukha nunnery to meet the nuns and interact with them.

Evening toll around local town. Dinner and overnight at hotel in Thimphu.

Day 4: Thimphu

After breakfast visit Trashichhodzong, the beautiful medieval fortress/monastery which houses most of the Government’s office and King’s Throne room. Then visit National Library which holds a vast collection of ancient Buddhist texts and manuscripts. After that visit Painting School, famous for traditional thangkha paintings. Also visit to Traditional Medicine Institute is worthwhile where centuries old healing arts still practiced. Later visit, Textile and Folk Heritage Museum, a fascinating testimony of the Bhutanese material culture and living traditions.

After that, visit the Handicrafts Emporium and local shops for souvenirs ranging from Bhutan’s fine traditional arts, textiles, thangkha paintings, masks, ceramics, slate and woodcarvings, jewelers to other interesting items made from local materials. Then drive to Memorial Chorten, the stupa built in the memory of Bhutan’s Third King who is popularly regarded as Father of modern Bhutan. Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.

Day 5: Thimphu – Shong Pang

After breakfast drive towards Dechencholing. The transport will reach you up to Pangrizam, the last motor point. From here the trek starts towards Shong Pang, which takes about 4/5 hours through villages. The camp will be just above Chamina village.

Day 6: Shong Pang – Dopshing Pang

The trek trail ascends gradually up till you reach the Sinchula. From this point, if the weather is clear, one can see Phajoding monastery. After 2 kms, you can view Thinleygang village, the Talo monastery and motor highway towards the ancient capital of Bhutan. The trek drops gradually from the pass till you reach the campsite.

Day 7: Dopshing Pang – Chorten Ningpo

The trek to Chorten Ningpo goes through thick forests, villages and rice fields. The camp site is at an alt. of 2700 m.

Day 8: Chorten Ningpo – Zomlingthang – Punakha

The trek will be through several villages till you reach a motor road. Our Transport will meet you here and we drive to Punakha, which is the ancient capital of Bhutan.

Day 9: Punakha – Limukha

We follow the road to Punakha Dzong, and then cross the Pho Chu (river) which drains the remote Lunana region. After walking through rice fields for about 15 minutes, we start climbing gradually through scattered chirpine forest, and after about 3 hours enter deciduous forest. Further along the trail we will also enjoy a wonderful view of Punakha valley and Dzong, and if the weather is clear we will also see some of the snow-capped mountain peaks to the north. The campsite is near Limukha village at alt. 2,250m.

Day 10: Limukha – Chungsaka/Wangdiphodrang

The trek will be through the thick forest of oak species and rhododendrons till you reach a pass called Dochula pass. Then descend through thick forest leading to a small monastery dedicated to Drukpa Kuenley (popularly known as the Divine Madman). From Chungsaka one can look across the valley to Samtengang on the ridge to the south. Walk downhill till you reach the motor road and then drive for about half an hour to Wangdiphodrang. Overnight in Wangdiphodrang Guest House.

Day 11: Wangdiphodrang – Thimphu

After breakfast, visit Wangdi Dzong and local market. After that drive to Punakha, the old capital town of Bhutan. Visit sacred Punakha Dzong, the superb example of Bhutanese architecture.

After lunch, drive to Paro. On the way, stop at Dochula (Dochula Pass), which is 3000 metres above sea level. The pass offers a majestic view of the Himalayan range with snow-capped mountains. Enjoy tea at the refreshment and explore the 108 holy chortens built by Her Majesty the Queen Mother Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuk.  Overnight at the hotel in Paro.

Day 12: Thimphu – Paro Depart

After early breakfast, drive to the Paro International Airport for flight to onward destination. Our representative will bid you farewell.

The best seasons for this trek are March to May and September to November. But due to the low altitudes, the trek is possible throughout the whole winter. The trek is the old walking route from Thimphu to Punakha.

Total cost includes:

  • Standard Hotel (3 star hotel) twin sharing accommodations; camping on treks
  • Full Board – All meals at local restaurants/ standard hotels/on treks (buffet system)
  • All internal Transport/ Transfers in luxury vehicle
  • Camping Equipment, Ponies & Assistants for treks
  • Airport Transfers
  • Services of Licensed English Speaking Guide
  • Sightseeing
  • Entrances fees to museums, monuments and cultural sites
  • Evening tea/ coffee with snacks
  • Mineral water in car while traveling as complementary
  • All internal taxes and charges
  • Government royalty (US$65 per night per person)
  • FIT Surcharge of US$ 40 per night per person for single person and US$ 30 per night per person for 2 pax
  • Bhutan Visa fee: US$ 40 per person (one time only)
  • Tourism Development Fee: US$ 10 per person (one time only)
  • Bank Transfer Charge


But Total cost does not include:

  • Travel Insurance
  • Laundry bill, phone bill, bar bill and other bills of personal nature
  • Tipping
  • Single room supplement (If number of pax in odd number): For, peak season = US$ 30/ per single room per night and for, other season = US$25/ per single room per night
  • Single tent supplement US$ 30 per tent per night
  • Use of Sleeping bag US$ 15 per night per person.
  • Air Fare for both Drukair/ Bhutan Airline and International flight [Please note that the cost of any domestic airfare for the guide must be paid by the clients/agents].
  • Luxury star hotels and resorts available at an additional cost
  • Luxury camping/trekking can be arranged at an additional cost
  • Specialized guides (Foreign Language, Photography, Bird Watching, Buddhism, Flora and Fauna) available at an additional cost.
  • Extra expenses due to the unavoidable circumstance beyond our control.

Note: Night stay in tents during treks (no lodges) includes trek chef, assistant, horses/mules, tents with mattresses, all meals.

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