Cultural Heartlands Bhutan Tour 9 Nights 10 Days

Duration: 10 Days

Cultural Heartlands Bhutan Tour begins in Paro where we enjoy the cultural wonders. The Kingdom of Bhutan, nestled high in the tranquil Himalayas is a haven to rich bio-diversity, vibrant religion, unique arts, rich history, cultural splendor, heritage, and scenic grandeur. It is a fascinating land where time had stood still and preserved the exquisite beauty of this mystical country. After spending quality time in Paro we then drove to Thimphu, where we enjoy the capital city’s many cultural wonders like the Tashichhodzong, mini zoo, Memorial Chorten and others.

Our next stop will be Bumthang, also believed to be the religious heartland of Bhutan and home to some of its oldest Buddhist temples and monasteries. One of the must-see landmarks of the region is the Jambey Lhakhang, a temple built in 659 A.D. by the Tibetan king Songtsen Gampo. In Wangdue we appreciate the beauty of Phobjikha Valley and the beautiful slate and stone carvings of the area. We drive via Dochu La pass to Paro and end our Cultural Heartlands of Bhutan tour with a hike to the much revered Tiger’s Nest Monastery the next day.

Trip Highlights:

  • Sightseeing in and around Paro and Thimphu
  • Panoramic views of the Himalayan mountains
  • Chimi Lhakhang Temple
  • Shopping in Bumthang village
  • Visit Trongsa Dzong fortress
  • Visit the Swiss farm
  • Taktsang Monastery (The Tiger’s Nest)

Outline Itinerary:

  • Day 01: Arrival in Paro then transfer to Thimphu (2,320m/7,610ft): 54 km, 1 hour
  • Day 02: Sightseeing in Thimphu
  • Day 03: Thimphu to Punakha (1,250m/4,100ft): 76 km, 2 - 3 hours
  • Day 04: Sightseeing in Punakha
  • Day 05: Punakha to Bumthang (2,850m/9,350ft): 214 km, 7 hours
  • Day 06: Sightseeing in Bumthang
  • Day 07: Bumthang to Wangdue (1,240m/4,068ft): 197 km, 6 hours
  • Day 08: Wangdue to Paro: 124 km, 3 - 4 hours
  • Day 09: Hike to Tiger Nest Monastery (3180m/10,430 ft)
  • Day 10: Final Departure
  • Day 01: Arrival in Paro then transfer to Thimphu (2,320m/7,610ft): 54 km, 1 hour

  • Day 02: Sightseeing in Thimphu

  • Day 03: Thimphu to Punakha (1,250m/4,100ft): 76 km, 2 - 3 hours

  • Day 04: Sightseeing in Punakha

  • Day 05: Punakha to Bumthang (2,850m/9,350ft): 214 km, 7 hours

  • Day 06: Sightseeing in Bumthang

  • Day 07: Bumthang to Wangdue (1,240m/4,068ft): 197 km, 6 hours

  • Day 08: Wangdue to Paro: 124 km, 3 - 4 hours

  • Day 09: Hike to Tiger Nest Monastery (3180m/10,430 ft)

  • Day 10: Final Departure

Cost Includes

  • Bhutan visa fees and processing assistance
  • Pickups and drops from hotels and airports
  • Government-approved A and B category hotels on a twin- shared basis
  • Full board meals with tea/coffee (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) during the tour
  • Safe drinking water will be supplied during the tour
  • Transportation in a comfortable private vehicle(s)
  • English speaking, trained and experienced local guide and staff
  • All entrance and permit fees for visits to monuments and museums
  • Company services and all required Bhutanese government taxes/royalties

Cost Excludes

  • Entry Visa fees - at present $30 for 15 days, US$ 50 for 30 days
  • Airfare for international flights to and from Bhutan
  • Items of a personal nature (personal gear, telephone calls, bar bills, internet, laundry)
  • Travel and Medical/Evacuation Insurance
  • Tips and gratitude provided to staff.

Bhutan Travel FAQS

1. When is the best time to visit Bhutan?

Every season has its own charm. But, the most popular time to visit Bhutan is autumn and spring seasons which fall on the month from September -November, and March-May respectively. The weather is warmer and skies are clearer on this season and many of the dramatic festivals fall on this period.

2. Do I need a visa for Bhutan? How can I obtain a visa for Bhutan?

Bhutan Visa is essential for every foreigner who is planning to enter Bhutan. The visa has to be processed by local tour operators, such as our company Adventure Club Trek. No foreign mission or embassy abroad grants a tourist visa. For the visa, a passport is required which must be valid for at least 6 months after you leave Bhutan. The Druk Air allows boarding only if it has got your visa clearance from the Bhutan Government.

3. What documents will you provide that I have to take with me to Bhutan?

Visa confirmation letter: We will organize your visa for Bhutan prior to the start of your trip. For the visa procedure, you have to send us two passport size color photographs and a color copy of your passport.

Itinerary: Please take a copy of your tour itinerary with you.

4. How to enter Bhutan?

There are a number of airports where you can fly into Bhutan from.  At present two carriers operate to Bhutan, Drukair and Bhutan Airlines.

By Air the Entry Points are:

Bangkok to Paro.

Dhaka to Paro.

Katmandu to Paro.

Kolkata to Paro.

Delhi to Paro.

Singapore to Paro.

By Land, the Entry Points are:

Also, there are three land border crossings in which you can travel into the kingdom overland.  All crossings are along the Indian border only - Phuentsholing, Gelephu and Samdrup Jongkhar.

Bagdogra to Phuntsholing.

Bagdogra to Gelephu.

Guwahati to Samdrup Jongkhar.

Note: Exit can also be done through the same Entry Points.

5. Can I have a private tour?

Sure. We can arrange a private tour. We also organize private tours as per the demand. We have been flexible as per the wish of our customer and will be in the coming days also.

6. How much does the visa cost?

The visa fee for foreign travelers is US$ 40. The fee can be paid in advance to your tour operator or travel agent. For Indian Passport (or VIC) holders, Bangladeshi nationals and people from the Maldives, there is no cost incurred.

7. Is it safe to drink tap water in Bhutan?

Tap water is not considered safe for drinking and also ice cubes should be avoided. Mineral water is easily available throughout the country (but make sure that seal is not broken). At the same time, it is better to go with a trusted brand rather than picking the local brands.

8. Do I have to worry about altitude sickness in Bhutan?

The altitude in Bhutan is higher than many people are habituated to. Although many people might not have any problem adjusting, altitude sickness may be a problem for a few ones. If visitors do some simple preparations before leaving for Bhutan, most of the symptoms of altitude sickness can be avoided. Being healthy and in good shape, before you arrive in Bhutan will help greatly. It is also recommended that you talk to your local doctor about AMS and medicines in case of an emergency.

9. Can I use my credit cards in Bhutan?

Credit cards are not accepted in Bhutan generally. But, there is some handicraft shop that accepts credit cards while purchasing goods.

10. Are there ATM s counter in Bhutan?

ATM facility has recently been opened in Bhutan, but it is available for the local people only for the time being.

11. What’s the food like in Bhutan?

The most unique feature of Bhutanese cuisine is its sharp taste. Chillis are an important ingredient of nearly every plate and are considered so essential that most Bhutanese people would not enjoy a meal that was not spicy. Rice forms the main body of most Bhutanese meals. It comes with one or two side dishes consisting of meat or vegetables. Beef, Pork, and Chicken are the meats that are taken most frequently. A wide range of western and Indian cuisine is also accessible in many of the restaurants across the country.

12. What are the accommodations like?

Hotels in Bhutan are approved and classified by the government as grade A, B, and C. These government approved hotels are equivalent to 3-4 star hotels located throughout the globe. Western Bhutan (Thimpu, Paro, Wangdue and Punakha)has the best hotels but as you head to eastern and central regions, the quality decreases a little bit. All the hotels/lodges/guest houses in western Bhutan have pretty good electrical heating systems. While the hotels in the central and eastern part of Bhutan have wood-stoves for heating.

13. What is the electricity supply in Bhutan and what plugs are used?

240 volts AC – Flat round 2-pin plugs are most common and a universal adapter is an important travel item. Power cuts are quite frequent in central and eastern Bhutan while western Bhutan has a stable power supply.

14. Are there internet facilities for foreign travelers?

Bhutan's main and only Internet Service Provider (ISP) is Druknet, owned by Bhutan Telecom. It provides a dial-up service, at a reasonable cost. There are several internet cafes and communication centers in the Thimphu and other various parts of the country. Tourists only need to find a place they are most comfortable with to use the facilities to keep in touch with home. E-mail and Internet services are also offered by hotels.

15. Can we smoke in Bhutan?

The sale of tobacco products is banned throughout the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan. However, smoking in Bhutan is not banned but acting without an import receipt issued by the Department of Revenue and Customs is banned. Therefore, if you wish to smoke in Bhutan you can carry cigarettes up to 200 pieces with you but duty has to be paid for them and also can smoke only on private zones like room or residence. It is recommended to smoke only on claimed zone otherwise it will be considered a crime if you smoke on prohibited areas like public places and offices and may even have to go jail for 3months also.

16. What currency shall I carry?

Bhutanese currency is known as the Ngultrum. Most currencies are exchanged by banks here. The most commonly accepted currencies are Ngultrum, US dollars, and Indian rupees. However Indian notes in 500 and 1000 denominations are not acceptable. Most handicraft shops accept the US dollar. You can even exchange currencies in some local shops. They give you a better exchange rate than the banks.

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Trip Facts

  • Trip Code ACTE-156
  • Trip Duration 10 Days
  • Destination Bhutan
  • Trip Difficulty Leisure Holidays
  • Trip Style Hotel
  • Accomodation Standard Hotels
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