Day 01: Arrive Paro by Druk Air & transfer to Thimphu
In clear weather, Druk Air’s flight to Bhutan provides a wonderful view of the mighty Himalayas. Whether flying along the Himalayan range from Kathmandu or over the foothills from Kolkata, it is a fascinating journey, culminating in an exciting descent over forested hills into the kingdom. On arrival at Paro airport, you will be met by our representative after completion of airport formalities.
Drive to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan, along the winding highway passing interesting temples and traditional houses among paddy fields. In the evening, visit Tashichhodzong, the beautiful medieval fortress/monastery that houses some government offices and His Majesty the King’s Throne Room. It is also the summer residence of the Je Khenpo, the Chief Abbot of the monastic body. Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.
Day 02: Thimphu – Paro (55 km, 2 hours drive)
Thimphu is the seat of government and perhaps, one of the most unique cities in the world owing to its blend of the traditional and modern. This bustling city is home to Bhutan’s Royal family, the civil servants and international development and diplomatic representatives in Bhutan. It is the most populated city in the country.
Morning: Visit Buddha Dordenma located atop a hill in Kuenselphodrang Nature Park overlooking the southern entrance to the Thimphu Valley. The statue fulfills an ancient prophecy dating back to the 8th century A.D that was discovered by Terton Pema Lingpa (Religious Treasure Discoverer) and is said to emanate an aura of peace and happiness to the entire world. This massive statue of Shakyamuni is 51.5 m tall, making it one of the largest statues of Buddha in the world. The statue is made of bronze and is gilded in gold. 125,000 smaller Buddha statues have been placed within the Buddha Dordenma statue- 100,000 statues of 8 inches and 25,000 statues of 12 inches. Each of these Buddhas have also been cast in bronze and gilded. The throne that the Buddha Dordenma sits upon is a large meditation hall.
Visit the National Memorial Chorten. The building of this landmark was envisaged by Bhutan’s third King, His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuk (“the Father of modern Bhutan”) who wished to erect a monument to promote world peace and prosperity. Completed in 1974 after his untimely death, it serves both as a memorial to the Late King and as a monument to peace. It has now become a vibrant centre of spiritual practice and religious events.
Visit the Folk Heritage Museum and the Royal Textile Academy museum, fascinating testimonies of Bhutan’s living traditions. Later, drive back to Paro.
Visit Ta Dzong, once a watchtower, built to defend Rinpung Dzong during inter-valley wars of the 17th century. It was inaugurated as Bhutan’s National Museum in 1968.
Afterwards, walk down a hillside trail to visit Rinpung Dzong, which has a long and captivating history.
In the evening, take a stroll around Paro town. Overnight at the hotel in Paro.
Day 03: Depart Paro
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for final departure.