Arrive in Phuentsholing and halt at The Orchid Hotel
Depart For Paro. ETA: 5 Hrs, Distance: 168Km. Halt at Hotel Holiday Home, Paro
Sightseeing at Paro
Guru Padmasambhava, popularly known as Guru Rinpoche, visited and sanctified Bhutan in the 8th century when evil spirits abounded and harmed people.Legend has it that Guru Rinpoche flew to this site on a tigress' back to subdue a local demon. Thereafter, he meditated here for three months.
Taktshang Goemba or Tiger's Nest Monastery was blessed and sanctified as one of Bhutans most sacred religious sites. It hangs on a cliff and stands above a beautiful forest of blue pine and rhododendrons.
You have to register with the security at the entrance and deposit your bags and cameras. Camera and Photography is not allowed inside the monastery.
The Ruined 17th century dzong(fortress) was built by Zhabdrung in 1646 after he won the invading battle from North. On a clear day, you can also see the view of the Mt. Jomolhari. The 2 hours journey to this place will be on the horse.
TAs its name, 'Ta Dzong', suggests La Ngonpa Tenzin Drugda accompanied by Chogyal Minjur Tenpa built the Ta Dzong as a watchtower to protect the dzong. In 1968 this was inaugurated as a National Museum and now holds a fascinating Relic, art, Thangkhas etc
Kyichu Lhakhang is a Buddhist temple in Paro. It is one of the oldest monasteries in the country built in the 7th century by the Tibetan King Songsten Gampo. The story goes that a giant demoness lay across the whole area of Tibet and the Himalayas and was preventing the spread of Buddhism.To overcome her, King Songtsen Gampo decided to build 108 temples, which would be placed on all the points of her body. Of these 108 temples, 12 were built in accordance with precise plans. After restoring peace in the place the king gave the name according to it.
Thus, it happened that in about the year 638 AD the temple of Jokhang in Lhasa was built over the very heart of the demoness. This is one of the oldest monasteries in Paro district. There's a belief that the two orange trees here in Kyichu Lakhang bears fruit throughout the year.
Depart for Thimphu after breakfast. ETA: 1hr, Distance: 52Kms. Halt at Jomolhari Hotel, Thimphu
Sightseeing after lunch
The construction of the biggest Buddha has been almost completed located left side of the Thimphu Town. It is the main tourist visiting point as they can see almost whole view of the Thimphu Town. It would roughly take 5 to 10 Minutes by drive and is a good area for walk at dawn and dusk as gentle breeze blows.
This point is a must visit sight for the tourist as they can enjoy the whole view of the Thimphu Town. It is above the main town and would take about 8 to 10 minutes by car. It is located on way to the BBS tower, famous for seeing the bird view of the main town. "The national animal of Bhutan", Takin could be seen in the zoo. It is one of the main places in the capital town to be visited by all the tourists. Most of the people say the tour is incomplete having not visited the zoo.
The Memorial Chorten, also known as the Thimphu Chorten, is a chorten in Thimphu, Bhutan, located on Doeboom Lam in the southern-central part of the city near the main roundabout and Indian military hospital. The chorten, built in 1974 to honor the 3rd King of Bhutan, Jigme Dorji Wangchuck (1928–1972), is a prominent landmark in the city with its golden spires and bells. In 2008, it underwent extensive renovation. It is popularly known as "the most visible religious landmark in Bhutan". It was consecrated by Dudjom Rinpoche.
This chorten is unlike others as it does not enshrine the mortal remains of the King. Only the King's photo in a ceremonial dress adorns a hall in the ground floor. The King when he was alive wanted to build "a chorten to represent the mind of the Buddha".
The Memorial Chorten of Thimphu was conceived by Dungse Rinpoche (1904 - 1987), according to the Nyingmapa tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. It was erected in 1974 in memory of the 3rd king, Jigme Dorji Wangchuck who had died in 1972. It was built by the King’s mother, Her Majesty the Queen Ashi Phuntsho Choden Wangchuck. This is the place where you can see all levels and ranges of Bhutanese reciting prayers and chanting mantras as Bhutan being the Buddhist Country. You can see lots of people during evening and morning as people go to work at their respective offices during the day.
One of the biggest structures in Bhutan, Centenary Farmers Market was built in 2008 to mark the coronation of fifth king of Bhutan and 100 years of monarchy. 458 stalls for sale of vegetables, fruits, meat and other farm produces are accommodated in this huge two storied building. It also houses cafeteria and separate stalls for non wood forest products. Vendors from throughout the country come here to sell their farm produces. The market is open on weekend, from Friday to Sunday. Most of the vegetables are pure organic and healthy. This is also the best place for you to do shopping like Handy craft items, antiques, etc.
Depart for Punakha via Wangdi Phoedrang. ETA: 2.5hrs, Distance: 78Kms. Halt at Hotel Dragon Nest, Punakha
The Punakha Dzong, also known as Pungtang Dechen Phodrang Dzong (meaning "the palace of great happiness or bliss") is the administrative centre of Punakha dzongkhag in Punakha, Bhutan. Constructed by Zhabdrung (Shabdrung) Ngawang Namgyal in 1637 - 38, it is the second oldest and second largest dzong in Bhutan and one of the most majestic structures.
The Dzong is located at the confluence of the Pho Chhu (father) and Mo Chhu (mother) rivers in the Punakha - valley. The source of the Mo chu river is in the northern hills of Lighsi and Laya in Bhutan, and in Tibet. The Po Chu River is fed by glaciers in the Lunana region of the Punakha valley. After the confluence of these two rivers, the main river is known as Puna Tsang chu or Sunkosh River and flows down through Wangdiphodrang, crosses the Bhutan - India border at Kalikhola and eventually meets the Brahmaputra River. In view of the healthy climate in the region, Punakha is the winter capital of Bhutan. The head of the clergy of Bhutan with his entourage of monks spend the winter in this dzong. Lilac coloured jacaranda trees grow around the dzong during the spring season
Chimi Lhakhang, also known as Chime Lhakhang or Monastery or temple, is a Buddhist monastery in Punakha District, Bhutan. Located near Lobesa, it stands on a round hillock and was built in 1499 by the 14th Drukpa hierarch, Ngawang Choegyel, after the site was blessed by the "Divine Madman" the maverick saint Drukpa Kinley (1455 - 1529) who built a chorten on the site. The monastery is the repository of the original wooden symbol of phallus that Kunley brought from Tibet. This wooden phallus is decorated with a silver handle and is used to bless people who visit the monastery on pilgrimage, particularly women seeking blessings to beget children. The tradition at the monastery is to strike pilgrims on the head with a 10 inch (25 cm) wooden phallus (erect penis). Traditionally symbols of an erect penis in Bhutan have been intended to drive away the evil eye and malicious gossip.
This fascinating Temple was built by the queen mother of the 5th king to bring universal peace in this world. The best thing of this Temple is to study the symbolic meanings from frescoes and sculptures. Khamsum Yuley Temple is the new addition to Bhutan's countless temples but has the finest of the spiritual artworks painted on the inner walls. The temple also exhibits the painting of the Buddhist teachers and tutelary deities of Bhutan. There is no temple in Bhutan built so elaborately as this one. The temple was built by the Queen Mother to bring universal peace in this world and for the sound health and long life of the then Crown Prince Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuk-who is now the 5th king of Bhutan.This is a great temple to study the symbolic meanings from frescoes and sculptures.
The monastery is situated on top of a hillock and is accessible by 1 hour pleasant hiking. Once on the top, the hikers will enjoy the panoramic views of the valley. Hikers can backtrack or descend from other side and combine the trip with Punakha Dzong.
Depart for Phuentholing after breakfast. ETA: 7hrs, Distance: 255Kms. Halt at The Orchid Hotel