Inspiration Itinerary - Bhutan

Bhutan Heartland

Exploring an ancient way of life

The Land of Happiness

The tiny kingdom of Bhutan is truly a land lost in time.  Without doubt one of the most extraordinary destinations anywhere on earth, Bhutan is has barely changed in the last 500 years.

Against a backdrop of towering snow capped mountains this journey will take you deep into the heart of a fascinating culture steeped in myth and legend.  Travel from Paro, the gateway into this pristine environment, to Thimpu and the valleys of Gangtey, Bumthang and Punakha.  Mingle with local villagers as you cross the country, discovering their daily rituals and beliefs, visiting elaborate temples,  enormous dzongs and sublime monasteries.

Trek to Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup Lhakhang Nunnery – one of the few nunneries in all of Bhutan, before making the hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery – Bhutan’s most revered, you will feel uplifted and gratified.

The panoramic mountains, the endless flutterling prayer flags, the genuine smiles and heart felt warmth of the people will ensure that this is truly the journey of a lifetime.

You will love

  • Absolutely spectacular landscapes
  • Time with the happiest people on earth
  • Triumphant hike to Tiger’s Nest
  • Unique cultural experiences
  • Truly breathing fresh air



On arrival in Paro, the gateway to Bhutan, you will be collected and transferred to Thimpu stopping at the confluence of two rivers – the Paro & the Thimpu Rivers – enroute. Considered an auspicious site three white stupas, in three different styles (Bhutanese, Nepalese and Tibetan), have been built to ward off evil. It is also the location Tachogang Lhakhang Bridge – possibly the most photographed bridge in all of Bhutan! Arrive in Thimpu and settle into your hotel.


VIsit the Changangkha Lhakhang, a fortress-like temple with unmissable views of the Thimphu Valley, before visiting the National Folk Heritage Museum where you can watch artisans as they work on traditional paintings and sculptures. The National Textile Museum displays traditional Bhutanes textiles and clothing and a women’s collective often is weaving whilst you are there. After lunch visit the mpressive Tashicho Dzong, a 350-year-old monastery fortress that is currently the administrative centre of Bhutan.


This morning visit the Memorial Chorten, built in memory of the third king of Bhutan. Photographers will love the array of wizened faces & traditionally dressed worshippers who come to circumambulate the memorial every morning. Drive to the oldest fortress in Thimphu, the Simtokha Dzong, famed for beautiful frescoes and slate carvings before ending your day with a hike to view the Great Buddha Dordenma – a gigantic gold Shakyamuni Buddha statue atop a hill overloooking the Thimpu Valley.


Road transfer to Gangtey, home of the rare black-necked cranes.(approx 5.5 hours), driving through across Dochu La Pass offering magnificent views of the Himalayas. On arrival explore the Gangtey Goemba Monastery, which boasts spectacular views of the entire Phobjikha Valley and visit Shedra, the monastic school where 300 devout monks chant prayers every evening.


Road transfer to Bumthang (approx 5.5 hours), visiting Chendebji Chorten enroute. Patterned on Kathmandu’s Swayambhunath Stupa, with eyes painted at the four cardinal points, this Stupa was built in the 18th century to cover the remains of an evil spirit that was subdued at this spot. Later visit the Trongsa Dzong, the most impressive Dzong in the Kingdom built on the only trail between eastern and western Bhutan.


Bumthang, the religious heartland of Bhutan is the home of some oldest Buddhist temples and monasteries. The area comprises four picturesque mountain valleys – Ura, Chumme, Tang and Choekor. Today you will visit Jakar Dzong constructed in 1549 and the seat for the first ever king of Bhutan and hike (if you wish) to Thangbi Goemba housing two remarkable paintings of Guru Rinpoche’s heaven, and the Buddha Amitabha’s heaven.


Take a walking tour today and explore the 16th Century Palace Tang Ugyen Choeling, now and eco-musuem. The palace remains a sacred point of interest for Tibetan Buddhists, but under the Ogyen Choling Foundation’s care, the building also provides a fascinating insight into historical Bhutanese life. Also visit the Mebartsho, ‘the flaming lake’, small fresh water lake is a sacred pilgrimage site for Bhutanese with bright multicolored prayer flags surrounding it.


A relatively long, but scenic road transfer to Punakha today (approx 8 hours) passing through quaint villages and breathtaking valleys. Evening at leisure on arrival in Punakha – one of the most fascinating destinations in Bhutan and well worth the drive.


Traverse the Punakha countryside, crossing picturesque rice fields and walking through the village of Sopsokha (famous for its murals) to Chimi Lhakhang Temple – the temple of the ‘Divine Madman’. Continue to the Sangchhen Dorji Lhendrup Lhakhang Nunnery where you can engage with the nuns before exploring the Ta Dzong displaying a magnificent collection of art, relics and religious thangkha paintings.


Return to Paro by road, across the Dochu La Pass arriving in time to spend the afternoon wandering the stores that line the main street. Filled with treasures from traditional locks and books to incense, ceramics, woollen carpets and kiras (traditional women’s dresses).


A big day awaits! Hike to the iconic Taktsang Monastery and marvel at the beauty of your surroundings. Slow and steady you will reach Tiger’s Nest, one of the most hallowed of all Buddhist sights in the world. The ‘average’ hike time is 5 hours, but there is no rush and the scenery will have you stopping every 5 minutes to take a photograph! Return to your hotel for a traditional hot stone bath to celebrate your success. For those that do not wish to hike there are tea houses to visit, shopping in town, you may wish to indulge in a spa treatment of simply relax with stunning views laid at your feet.


Your journey ends after breakfast today with a transfer to the airport for your return journey home, or an onward adventure!


This itinerary provides the perfect framework for a spectacular opportunity to spend time with the happiest people on our planet, however it can be designed to suit your preferred pace, price and pursuits. Contact us for a tailormade journey.


For the ultimate in luxury we recommend

COMO UMA Paro – Paro Valley, Bhutan

COMO Uma Paro embraces Bhutan’s sense of untouched tranquility, perching proudly on a Himalayan mountainside, flanked by thick pine forest and showcasing breathtaking views. It is a sanctuary where you can truly relax and be at one with the enormity and serenity of nature whilst indulging in a little luxury. Read More

Amankora Thimphu – Thimphu Valley, Bhutan

Amankora Thimphu sits in a blue pine forest in the upper reaches of the Motithang area of the Thimphu Valley. The valley is at an altitude of 2,350m surrounded by richly forested mountains dotted with ancient monasteries and temples. It remains a quiet retreat away from the hustle and bustle of the Kingdom’s main commercial centre. Read More

Amankora Gangtey – Gangtey Valley, Bhutan

Amankora Gangtey is located in the Phobjikha Valley. The valley is part of the Black Mountains National Park, one of Bhutan’s most important wildlife sanctuaries and in winter home to a flock of 300 rare and endangered black-necked cranes which arrive from Tibet. Numerous nature walks and treks are offered throughout the valley. Read More

Amankora Bumthang – Bumthang Valley

Amankora Bumthang is nestled in the Choekhor Valley, adjacent to the first King of Bhutan’s royal palace. The region is often referred to as the religious heartland of Bhutan and is home to some of its oldest temples and monasteries. Immerse yourself in Bhutanese culture at this remote hideaway in one of Bhutan’s least visited corners. Read More

COMO UMA Punakha – Punakha Valley

Located at the far western end of the beautiful Punakha Valley on a bend in the Mo Chu river, lies Uma by COMO, Punakha.  Here you can find luxury accommodation where every room enjoys sweeping views across the Valley. Uma Punakha is a perfect base to explore nearby incredible historic landmarks. Read More




Please enquire for pricing based on your preferred style of accommodation

Please enquire for pricing based on your preferred style of accommodation

START: Paro, Bhutan*     |     Finish: Paro, Bhutan*

Recommended Routings to Paro | Qantas to Bangkok or Singapore Airlines to Delhi + Bhutan Airlines to Paro*

This itinerary provides the perfect inspiration for a spectacular journey  through the Kingdom of Bhutan & can be tailored to suit your style, pace, preferences and budget.  Elements of this trip may vary based on your chosen season & dates of travel which may also present the opportunity to see & do even more!

*please note that flights to and from Paro MUST BE BOOKED inconjunction with land arrangements in Bhutan – this is a stipulation in order to obtain a Tourist Entry Visa.  Flights into Paro are available from Bangkok, Delhi or Kathmandu. Please talk to us about the best access point for you as we can provide competitive airfare quotes and, if necessary, stopover packages.

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