Day 1: Arrive at Paro
Visit Paro Dzong and Ta Dzong (National Museum), and Kyichu Lhakhang.
Overnight in Paro.
Day 2: Hike to Taktshang (Tiger’s Nest)
Hike to one of the holiest and sacred place in Bhutan.
Overnight in Paro.
Day 3: Paro – Thimphu (sightseeing)
Drive to Thimphu. On the way, visit Tachogang Lhakhang. In Thimphu, visit National Memoriel Chorten, Buddha Dordenma, Mini Takin Zoo, Arts & Crafts Institute and take a view of Tashichho Dzong.
Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 4: Thimphu – Punakha
Drive to Punakha. On the way, stop at Dochula pass for photographs and visit Chimi Lhakhang. Visit Punakha Dzong in the afternoon.
Overnight at Punakha.
Day 5: Punakha – Gangtey – Bumthang (2600m)
Drive to Gangtey valley (69 kms – 2 hrs drive). This valley is one of the broadest and most beautiful valleys in Bhutan, and it is also famous for the endangered Black Necked Cranes which visit mostly during winter. We will visit monastery in Gangtey. Gyalse Pema Thinley, the grandson and mind reincarnation of Pema Lingpa founded the temple in 1613, and Tenzin Legpai Dhendup, the second reincarnation, built the temple.
The present Abbot, Kunzang Pema Nmgyal is the 9th reincarnation. It is a Nyingmapa Monastery and is affiliated to other Nyingmapa monasteries including Tamzhing in Bumthang.
After lunch, drive to Bumthang via Pelela pass.
Overnight at Bumthang.
Day 6: Bumthang – Sightseeing
A spectacular Bumthang valley is the spiritual heartland of Bhutan and home to its most ancient and Buddhist place. The tales of Guru Rinpoche and his reincarnation known as Lingpas is still evident and linger in every nook and corners of Bumthang and now considered a sacred place.
In a day’s tour, you will visit some of the most significant and holiest places in Bhutan. In the morning, you will visit Kurje Monastery and Jambey Lhakhang.
The history of Kurje Monastery is associated with Sindhu Raja (King) and the visit of Guru Rinpoche to Bumthang in 746 AD. Sindhu Raja visited Guru Rinpoche from Yangleyshey (meditation cave of Guru Rinpoche) in Nepal to Bhutan. The reason behind the invitation was to subdue the evil spirits and demons harming the people and especially to get back the King’s soul from the guardian deity named Shelging Karpo who had cursed the King with a terrible illness. Upon this invitation, Guru Rinpoche came to Bumthang and meditated there in a cave named Dragmar Dorji Tsegpa, meaning red coloured cave that resembles a pile of Vajras (Dorjis). After subduing the evil spirits and demons and having restored the soul of the King, imprints of the Guru Rinpoche’s body remained. Thereafter, the name came to be known as Kurje (meaning imprint of the body). The present place of the lhakhang remains as a blessed and historical site. There are three main temples at Kurje.
In front of the three temples are stupas dedicated to the first three Kings of Bhutan. There are 108 stupas around the three temples that symbolize Buddha’s victory over the evil spirits. The cypress tree near the entrance is said to be the off shoot of Guru Rinpoche’s walking stick.
The drupchu (holy water), about one hundred meters above the temple is said to have been created by the Guru Rinpoche.
The Jambey Lhakhang was built in the 7th century by the King Songtsen Gampo of Tibet. Its architectural appearance dates from the early 20th century.
The Jambey Lhakhang Drup festival in central Bhutan is the most amazing festivals. Here, you will get an opportunity to witness the late-night sacred naked dance which is one of the Tshechu highlights and one which serves to draw many spectators. In addition to time at the magnificent Jambey Lhakhang Drup, we will arrange short hikes, walking tours and sightseeing to visit your particular interest.
Mebar Tsho is considered one of the most sacred sites in the region as it related to the renowned treasure reveler, Terton Pema Linga, incarnated disciple of Guru Padmasambhava populary known as Guru Rinpoche who discovered treasure from the lake somewhere around late 15th century.
It is believed that Terton Pema Lingpa had a vision about hidden treasures to be ground at the foot of Tang Valley which is indicated by Guru Rinpoche many centuries before. Since the people of Tang and the local ruler was cynical about it, he held a butter lamp in his hand, he jumped into the lake, remained under water for a long time, and he re-emerged holding a chest and a scroll of paper in his hand still burning bright. Thereafter, the lake came to be known as Mebar Tsho (the burning lake).
Pema Lingpa The terton (treasure finder) Pema Lingpa (1450-1521) was born in Tang valley, Bumthang. He was one of the five great tertons of Nyingma Budhhism and most important terton in Bhutan. He is also considered to be a reincarnation of Guru Rinpoche. As a boy he learned the craft of blacksmithing from his grandfather; indeed, two of the chainmail he forged are still on display at Tamshing and Thangbi Goemba. During his life he found a total of 34 statues, scrolls and sacred relics in Bhutan and as far as Samye in Tibet. Many of the treasures discovered are preserved in lhakhang throughout Bhutan. The best known statue of Pema Lingpa was made by himself and is kept at Kuenzangdrak Goemba, Bumthang. Usually depicted in the vajra position, Pema Lingpa holds a bumpa (vase symbolizing long life) in his hands and wearing a hat similar to that worn by Guru Rinpoche, with the notable addition of two vajras crossed at the front of it.
Many tourist visit the site to observe spectacular beauty of the place and it is also an important site for historians.
Tamshing Lhakhang is located across the river from Kurje Lhakhang. This temple was founded in 1501 by Terton Pema Lingpa. The monastery has very ancient religious paintings like 1,000 Buddhas and 21 Taras (female form of Buddhisatava).
Overnight at Bumthang
Day 7: Bumthang – Trongsa – Wangdue.
On the way, stop at Yutongla Pass for photograph. Visit Trongsa Dzong, the most impressive Dzong in Bhutan, built in its present form in 1644 by Chogyal Minjur Tempa, the official who was sent by Zhabdrung to unify eastern Bhutan. It was enlarged at the end of the 17th century by Desi Tenzin Rabgay. Trongsa Dzong is the ancestral home of the present Royal Family and the first two hereditary kings ruled Bhutan from this Dzong.
Then visit Ta Dzong, an ancient watch tower. The chapel inside the Ta Dzong is said to be dedicated tto the Trongsa Penlop Jigme Namgyal.
Trongsa Dzong and Ta-Dzong (top right corner)
Overnight at Wangdue.
Day 8: Wangdue – Thimphu – Paro
Drive back to Thimphu. After lunch, spend some time in Thimphu for souvenir shopping. After wards, drive to Paro.
Overnight at Paro.
Day 9: Paro – Departure
Transfer to Paro International Airport and your guide from the Tall Pines Bhutan will accompany you to bid farewell as you embark on your onward journey.
*NOTE: Our tour packages are not limited and can be entirely customized around your needs and preferences.