Bhutan Thimpu Drepchen Festival Tour

10 Days from US$ 2580pp*

Trip Code: HDBF01

Trip Grade
  • Activities: Cultural Tours
  • Max. Altitude: 3,420m / 11,220ft
  • Group Size: 01- 18
  • Trip Seasons: Sept-Oct

This itinerary is designed to give you a hint of what is possible. We can adjust this trip to suit your specific requirements.

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Trip Highlights

  • Offering incredible opportunities for cultural interactions, the Thimpu Drepchen Festival
  • An intriguing ancient festival seen by only few foreign eyes
  • The tour covers excursions through forests, mountain passes and stream-laced valleys of rugged austere beauty
  • You will cross into once-forbidden parts of this Himalayan country. Our trails lead you through timeless villages lying on the shadow of the sacred Mount Jhomolhari.
  • Along the way, we sample savory regional cuisine, with its Himalayan influences, and enjoy wonderful cultural encounters

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Bhutan Thimpu Drepchen Festival Tour
We have crafted a trip that weaves together visits to this compelling cultural event. This journey will let you discover the magic of most far-flung destinations of Bhutan as it has been for many centuries as we enter the fabled realm of the Tashichho Dzong for a festival dedicated to the deity of death and time, Yeshe Gonpo. Spectacular sights and warm hospitality of its residents, we ask you to take this trip as a cultural crash course where you can also feast your eyes on phenomenal scenery visiting ancient sites that few travelers ever see.

Day by Day

  • Day 01 Arrive in Paro (7,000ft/2,134m) hrs.

    • During 1 and half hour dramatic flight from Kathmandu to small township of Paro, you will capture panoramic view of Great Himalaya in the north including Everest, Kanchanjungza and southern plains. As we slowly move Nepal and soon after we see Chomolhari and Jichudrake in Bhutan. After exciting approach through Bhutanese foothills we land at the tiny airstrip in the beautiful Paro Valley [we recommend you to take left hand side seat of the plane for the most spectacular views]. In Paro you will meet your Bhutanese Guide and transfer to the Hotel. You can visit to the Queen Mother’s Winter Palace, walk up to look at the Dzong, visit National museum. Overnight stay at Thimphu.
  • Day 02 Day 2: Drive to Thimpu (7,611ft/2,320m) Attend: THIMPU DRUPCHEN FESTIVAL, 1.5 hrs.

    • During the scenic drive, we will occasionally stop for beautiful sights on the way. Attend the Thimphu Tshechu festival for the entire day. The venue of the festival is the courtyard of Tashichhodzong (a fortress). This festival is observed in the honour of Guru Rinpoche (Saint Padmasambhava), the saint who brought Buddhism to Bhutan.Today marks the first day of the Tsechu. You will see the Sha Chham (dance of the four stages), Pelage Gingsum (dance of the three kinds of Ging), Pachham (dance of the heroes), Shawo Shachi (dance of the stags and hounds) and Dranyen Chham (dance with the guitar). You can also dress in a traditional Bhutanese attire. You will take off sometime from the festival to visit Tashichhodzong, a fortress of the glorious religion. Built in 1641 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel, it houses the secretariat building, the throne room and the office of the King, and the central monk body. Overnight stay at Thimphu.
  • Day 03 Day 3: Attend: Thimpu Drupchen Festival, Sightseeing

    • This is the second day of Thimphu Tsechu which you will witness. You will get to see the Shana Chham (the black hat dance), Shanga Ngachham (dance of the 21 black hats with drums), Pholey Moley (dance of the nobleman and ladies) and Shawa Shachi (dance of the stag and hounds). ?After the festival you will visit the following: ?Watch Archery match: Bhutan’s national game?Memorial Chorten: it was built in the honor of the Third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, also known as “The Father of Modern Bhutan”.?Kuenselphodrang: A place for refreshing with a huge statue of Buddha on the top of the Kuenselphodrang. The area also gives a very good view of the Thimphu valley from the west. Overnight at a hotel in Thimphu.
  • Day 04 Drive to Punakha (4,300ft/ 1,310m), 2.5 to 3 hours

    • Right after breakfast, you will visit the Centenary Farmers’ Market which is situated at the banks of Thimphu Chu river. This will give you an opportunity to mingle with the locals. After lunch, you will drive to Punakha. The drive takes you to Dochula pass (3,100m) which is perhaps the only stopover in the entire Himalayan region that affords a stunning view of the mighty and impregnable mountains on the roof of the world. We then begin a gradual descent through roadsides filled with rhododendrons, bamboo groves, other alpine flowers of all shades and hues, besides birds and numerous other fauna species along the way.

      Overnight stay in Punakha.
  • Day 05 Sightseeing in Punakha

    • Today, we will visit the Temple of fertility in Lobesa which is renowned for blessing infertile couples with children, and the 17th century monastery-palace-fortress called Wangduephodrang Dzong that is being rebuilt after destruction by a tragic fire. But our main place of interest for the day is Punakha Dzong, a huge 17th century monastery-fortress plus ancient capital on whose corridors of power walked Bhutan’s ancient leaders who defined much of the Bhutanese history. The monument is spectacularly built between two rivers and appears like a giant ship sailing on a huge mass of water. In the evening you will stroll around Punakha town. Overnight stay in Punakha.
  • Day 06 Drive to Bumthang (9,185ft/2,800m)- 7.5 hours

    • After breakfast, we will take the road to Bumthang one of nature’s most beautiful hotspots. We will head further interior, into the heartlands of medieval power and present-day spirituality. As we gently ascend through sub-tropical forests to the temperate and alpine belts, we reach our highest point at Pelela pass (3,140m) from where we see the Black Mountain range. From there, the gradual descent takes us to Chendebji Stupa where we will stop for lunch. After lunch, we will drive to the massive Trongsa Trong. This castle-fortress is the biggest, built without a single nail, and contains some 30 temples.The drive into Bumthang takes you into Chumey Valley known for its Yathra production. Overnight at Bumthang.
  • Day 07 Sightseeing in Bumthang

    • Bumthang valley is a blend of the abstract and the concrete with innumerable legends surrounding the region. Our first trip will be to Kurje Lhakhang where Guru Padsambhava subdued a local demon and left his body imprint on a rock. Then we see Jamphellhakhang (7th century) built by Songtsen Goembo, the Tibetan Buddhist King, and the 17th century Jakar Dzong (the Castle of the White Bird). Other places to see include Tamshing Lhakhang built in 1501 by Terton Pema Lingpa who is renowned as one of the five king tertons (religious treasure discoverers), and Kenchosum Lhakhang. We also take a short hike to Mebartsho – the Burning Lake – where legend has it that Pema Lingpa took a dive into the depth of the lake with a butter lamp placed on his head and retrieved a religious treasure hidden by Guru Rinpoche.
  • Day 08 Drive to Thimphu, 8 hours

    • On the way back you will visit the Yathra weaving factory in Chumey. Yathra is a hand-woven fabric made from wool of yak and sheep. It is made in vivacious colors giving it a special and gorgeous demeanour. Overnight stay in Thimphu.
  • Day 09 Drive to Paro

    • On our drive back to Paro, we visit Wangsisna Heritage Home, a traditional Bhutanese house home to the 19th Druk Desi (Deb Raja) Druk Tenzin built before the 17th century. In Paro, you will hike up to Taktsang Monastery. This monastery edifice is precariously built on a sheer wall of granite cliff some 1,000 metres above the valley floor. Some say, it was built with the help of celestial nymphs in the 17th century for, otherwise, it is beyond human feat. Overnight stay at Paro.
  • Day 10 Final Departure

    • Transfer to the airport for your onward flight.

Trip Info

  • Airport transfers by private vehicle
  • Accommodations as indicated in standard rooms with breakfast and evening tea daily
  • All ground transportation by private Air-conditioned Toyota Land Cruiser
  • Professionally licensed English-speaking guide throughout tour
  • All meals on the tour
  • Entrance fees/permits for sights as indicated in the itinerary
  • Taxes and services fees
  • International Air Fare
  • Nature of personal expenses (Drinks, phone calls, laundry, etc.,)
  • Bhutan Visa fee
  • Travel Insurance
  • Gratuities

Dates and Price

Currently there are no fixed departure dates for this trip. Please click the button below for the inquiry or you can also book this trip as a private departure with your desired dates.

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