|Arrival by plane to Paro or crossing border from India in Phuntsholing/Jaigon and drive to Paro. Sightseeing subject to the arrival time.
|Paro – Gunitsawa
|Morning visit of Kyichu lhakhang, the temple built in 8th century by Tibetan king Songtsen Gampo. Climb to Taktsang gompa (Tiger's Nest), most venerated and holy place in Bhutan overlooking valley from the steep cliff. After lunch drive to Drukyel dzong. This used to be a place where the trek started before. See ruins of the old dzong (castle) and continue further to military camp of Gunitsawa on the new built road. Possibility to make detour to Lhadi Gompa just before military camp. First night camping just above military camp at the elevation of 2890 m.
|Trek: Gunitsawa – Thangthangkha
|Distance 16 km, 7-8 hours, 770 m ascent, 10 m descent, camp altitude 3,610 m. On this long day there is a lot of up and downs, mostly through the forest along the Paro chhu river. Finally, you will reach to large chorten on the junction, where you will need take trail to the left. After about half hour, you will reach to Thangthangtha campsite. The place is equipped with dilapidated toilets, kitchen house and caretaker's dwelling. If weather permits, you might glimpse the first great view of Jomolhari, best photographed right from the toilets. Camp is cold and it gets dark early.
|Trek: Thangthangkha – Jangothang
|Distance 10 km, 5-6 hours, 480 m ascent, camp altitude 4,080 m. If you did not see Jomolhari peak in the evening, you still have a chance to get a great view this morning. The trek continues up the Paro chhu valley which widens into patches of alpine meadow and scanty growths of forest. You will cross an army checkpoint along the way and enjoy a spectacular view of high mountain ridges and snow-capped peaks. In this area yaks and their herder’s homes become a regular feature of the landscape. Passing the villages Soe, Takethang and Dangochang is another asset on this day. After reaching Jangothang, one of the most beautiful campsites of the Himalayas, you can enjoy most spectacular view of Jomolhari over the ruins of ancient temple or fortress.
|Today we will make beautiful acclimatization hike to Tshophu lakes in 4450 m altitude. Start going from camp further north along the few hamlets and then turn to the steep ascend towards the east. Finally, you will reach long deep valley hidden from below and see the two spectacular ice lakes hidden at it's bottom. Walk to the first or even second lake since it offers great views back towards the summits of Jomolhari I, Jomolhari II, and Jichu Drakye. Herds of blue sheep are also common sight. If you are strong, you can even continue to the Bonte-la pass (4850m) but not further. The trail ultimately leads back to Gunitsawa after two days trekking (is so called Jomolhari Yaksa trek). After enjoying the views around the lakes, descend back to Jangothang and have a good rest, making yourself ready for the next day.
|Trek: Jangothang – Lingshi
|Distance 13 km, 6-7 hours, 840 m ascent, 870 m descent, camp altitude 4,010 m. This is one of the longest days of the trek. A short distance from the camp the trail begins climbing rapidly for about half an hour and then becomes a gradual ascent to the Nyilila pass at 4870 m. Enjoy the beautiful surroundings, while climbing. You might see herds of blue sheep grazing on the slopes. From the pass, you will have spectacular views of Jomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tsherim Kang peaks. It's a gradual and long descent to the camp. On clear days, you will be welcomed with the spectacular view of the Lingshi Dzong on the heap of the hill. Finally, descend to the valley. There few suitable campsites here and your staff will select the most suitable given the actual conditions.
|Trek: Lingshi – Shodu
|Distance 22 km, 7-8 hours, 940 m ascent, 870 m descent, camp altitude 4,080 m. This will be quite long difficult day, crossing Yale-la pass in elevation of 4,990 meters. Luckily, the trail is well marked as it’s main route for people of Lingshi to reach Thimphu. Camp in Shodu after crossing sandy slope.
|Trek: Shodu – Barshong
|Distance 14 km, 4-5 hours, 130 m ascent, 360 m descent, camp altitude 3,720 m. Cross deserted military camp and continue through the limestone valley with meditation caves. There will be nice view of waterfalls coming. Finally you will climb to the ruins of Barshong dzong below which you will set today’s camp.
|Trek: Barshong – Dolam Kencho, drive to Thimphu
|Distance 15 km, 4 hours, 430 m descent, camp altitude 3,290 m. Last day of trekking will be going through the river valley with lot’s of up and downs finally reaching rough road on Dolam Kencho where the cars will be waiting to take you to Thimphu. Enjoy the night in comfortable hotel after 8 days trekking!
|Early morning drive to Buddha Dordenma, the gigantic statue of Buddha overlooking the valley and walk to striking city viewpoint. Walk in Norzin lam street and see the traffic police signaling in junctions. Thimphu is only capital in the world without the traffic lights. Finish walk at handicraft market where many interesting Bhutanese souvenirs can be seen and bought for reasonable price. Continue with visit to Folk Heritage Museum with the exhibition on traditional village life in Bhutan (closed on Sunday, alternatively visit Simply Bhutan museum). Drive to Changlimithang stadium to see archery match, traditional sport of Bhutan (depends on luck if the game is going on). From Friday to Sunday you can also visit to Centenary market where local people go to shop for food supplies. Market also has interesting handicraft section. Otherwise, you can enjoy some free time in the town, exploring it on your own. Evening visit of Tashichho dzong, the castle, which serves as seat of the king and government.
|Thimphu – Paro
|Early morning drive to Dochu-la pass with interesting 108 stupas and royal Chapel dedicated to Bhutan’s fourth king. Form pass we will start 4-5 hours round hike to the Lungchusey gompa with 360° mountains panorama viewpoint. Descend to Tashigang gompa and reaching back to road in Hontsho. Drive to Paro and evening in leisure.
|Departure from Bhutan
Tour variants, extensions and combinations:
- Halt in Lingshi (+1 day): Lingshi is small but interesting village located below the ancient castle. It’s good idea to visit local farmhouses and interact with welcoming people. You should also visit the castle which serves as Buddhist monastery. Finally the demanding but rewarding hike will lead you to stunning view point from which you can clearly see Tserming Kang, Jichu Drakye and other surrounding peaks.