Bhutan Cultural Tour offers you to traverse the major Dzong and Monasteries in Bhutan. This 8 days Bhutan tour also includes the major sightseeing and exploration of culturally significant places. It covers the visit through various monasteries in different festive seasons. Some of the famous monasteries are Paro Dzong, Punakha Dzong, Tiger’s Nest Monastery, etc. This package also provides you with a visit to the beautiful Gangtey valley and Gangtey monastery.
Bhutan cultural tour is specially designed for those travellers who are willing to learn in-depth about the traditions as well as the culture of this Buddhist country. Although the majority of the population here follows Buddhism, you can also notice high numbers of Hindus also in this land of mystery. Bhutan is a hidden gem for those cultural seeker tourists and can really enjoy learning and witnessing the amazing culture of this land.
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Highlights of Bhutan Cultural Tour
- Punakha, the old capital town of Bhutan.
- Drukgyel Dzong (Bhutan victory fort), Chime Lhakhang.
- Tiger Nest Monastery, most famous monastery of Bhutan.
- Traditional paper factory, School of traditional painting arts and crafts.
- Numerous Monasteries like Paro Rinpung Dzong, Tashichho Dzong, etc.
- Different museums like the National Textile Museum, The Folk Heritage Museum, etc.
During your Cultural tour to Bhutan, you will travel to different cultural sites and interact with Monks at Monasteries. The ancient wall paintings and carvings in Dzongs and temples are magnificent. This Bhutan Cultural tour gives you exploration of cultural attractions including a medieval fortress, markets and museums.
Facts of Bhutan Cultural Tour
Name of Trip
Bhutan Cultural Tour
7 Nights and 8 Days
Trip Starting and Ending Point
Culture, Nature and Historical Tours
Type of Trip
Hiking and Sightseeing
Places to Visit
Bhutan is a serene country where one can explore ancient cultures, beautiful landscapes and magnificent architecture. You will run through its mystical valleys. It is a country of happiness. Also, The major religion here is Buddhism. One can find the dzong and monasteries in almost every city of Bhutan. However, A mixture of ancient and modern Buddhists traditions makes the entire country a great place.
Also, One can experience Bhutanese hospitality and immerse oneself in Bhutan’s rich Buddhists culture. To promote and preserve this religion, residence support by conducting different rituals. Though the country is technologically growing, the cultural traditions here are not influenced. Hence, Bhutan is the ultimate tourist destination for cultural tours, spiritual awakenings. They are certainly the beautiful aspects of the country.
Bhutan Cultural Tour
One of the most popular places of south asia Bhutan is recently owned land for the foreigners. Before the 1990s it was a forbidden land. Because of that it is away from the western culture and tradition. The people traveling to Bhutan can experience the authentic tradition as well as the culture of Bhutan. This buddhist based country is one of the most unique places on earth and you can witness some of the most different cultures and traditions that can’t be seen all over the world.
Upon arrival at Bhutan you will take a drive to the capital city Thimphu. You will spend two nights here at Thimphu and explore some of the most popular places as well as the dzongs during your stay. The next day you will drive to Punaka to witness the Punakha dzong including other vintage sites. Besides that, you can also witness the marvellous views of the highest virgin mountain of the world from the Dochula pass. Dochula pass lies at an elevation of 3,100 meters above sea level and you will stop over her during the drive to Punakha.
Chimi Lhakhang is the most popular place to visit at Trongsa. Meanwhile, the next day you will move towards Gangtey. It is one of the major places of Bhutan to witness some of the unseen traditions and cultures. Gangtey Monastery and Trongsa Dzong are the main highlights of this place. During your two nights in Paro, you will explore Simtokha Dzong, Taktsang Monastery and Rinpung dzong along with other popular places.
Best Time for Bhutan Cultural Tour
May and June are the most favourable time of the year for the Bhutan Cultural tour. These two months of the year are suitable for every traveler. There is very less chances of rainfall during these months of the year. Meanwhile, due to high visibility some of the marvellous views of the mountain ranges as well as the landscape can be seen during these two months of the year.
Another best time for the Bhutan cultural tour is during the months of October and November. The mornings and evenings are chilly during these months. But the weather is clear and you can also witness the snow capped mountain ranges from the Dochula pass during your way to Punakha.
Arrival in Paro, Drive to Thimphu
After arriving & visa formalities and collecting baggage, you will be welcomed by our tour representative who will be your tour guide during your entire trip in Bhutan.
Check into your hotel in Thimphu. Free until lunchtime for some rest from early morning flight, refreshment and lunch.
Afternoon, you can choose to visit any or all of the following places:-
Tachogang Lhakhang is located in Paro district, on the way to Thimphu. It was founded by ThankthongGyelpo after he experienced a vision of Guru Rinpoche, Amitabha and Avalokiteshvara near the site. The caretakers today are said to be descendants of Thangtong Gyalpo. Inside the temple, one can see the master's relics, including his walking stick.
The Tashichho Dzong is a Buddhist monastery cum fortress at the northern edge of capital Thimphu. The Dzong was built on the western bank of the river Wang Chu. This has historically served as the seat of the DrukDesi or the Dharma Raja of Bhutan’s government. After the king assumed power in 1907, this post was combined with that of the king and Thimphu served as the summer capital of the kingdom onwards.
After early morning breakfast, a choice to visit the following places:-
Bhutan’s National Library was established in 1967. Its mission is to preserve the literary treasures of the nation. These constitute a significant element of Bhutan’s rich and vibrant cultural heritage. The library was established with a small collection of precious texts. A national library was housed in the central tower of the Tashichho Dzong. The collection then moved to its present building located in the Changangkha area of Thimphu. The building is traditionally constructed as a four-storeyed eight cornered building. It is a homage to the central tower temple located in Bhutanese Dzongs.
Motithang Takin preserve
The Motithang Takin Preserve is also known as the Thimphu Zoo. It is a small natural preserve for the Takin, Bhutan’s national animal. It was originally a mini zoo, but it was converted into Takin preserve area later. The mini zoo contains a small number of Takin. The King of Bhutan later decreed that it was improper for a Buddhist nation to keep an animal in captivity.
The preserve is a forested preserve area that mimics the Takin’s natural habitat. In addition, there are a few musk deer and barking deer that live inside the preserve. There are plans to expand the preserve collection to include other rarely seen animals that live in Bhutan. Currently, the preserve plans to add the Red Panda and the Himalayan Serow.
Drive to Punakha
After your breakfast at the hotel you will drive to Punakha and visit the following places in options:
Post early breakfast, you will drive towards Punakha via Dochula Pass. We will stopover for tea at Dochula (3,100 m). From here, you can get stunning views of the Himalayan ranges on a sunny day. The Dochula Pass is probably the best-known mountain pass in Bhutan. It is located at an altitude of 3150 meters above sea level. The Dochula Pass is about 30 kilometres away from the capital city Thimphu and the road to Punakha.
On a clear day, the pass offers visitors a spectacular view of the majestic eastern Himalayan Ranges. Then we will drive towards Punakha.
The Punakha Dzong or the Pungtang Dechen Phortang Dzong is located at the confluence of the Mo Chhu and the Po Chhu River. They combine to form the Puna Tsang Chu which in turn is a tributary of the mighty Brahmaputra River. The Dzhong was constructed by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel Wangchuck in 1638. It was built on the exact spot as prophesied by Guru Rinpoche around 800 years ago.
Punakha Dzong is the second largest and the second oldest Dzong in Bhutan. The Punakha Dzong plays host to the annual Punakha Tshechu Festival. It is very popular with locals and tourists alike.
Talo Sanga Choling
Talo Sanga Choling is located in the Talo valley in the district of Punakha. To reach the Talo Sanga Choling, you should take a diversion off the main road towards a secondary road before Kuruthang.
The Monastery was founded by Kongtrul Jigme Singye, the 4th reincarnation of Gyalse Tenzin Rabgye. The temple underwent a renovation and expansion under the 14th Rabjung and the 3rd mind reincarnation of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, Jigme Dakpa. Jigme Dakpa also laid the foundation of a monastic order to the temple.
Drive to Trongas
After an early breakfast, we will be driving down to Trongsa. Admire the view en route the valley of Wangdiphodrang. We will drive to:
The ChimiLhakang is a Buddhist monastery located in the Punakha District of Bhutan. The monastery stands on a small hill close to the village of Lobesa. It was constructed in 1499 by Ngawang Chogyel, the 14th Druk paheirarch.
The temple houses have a number of wooden phalluses that the Lama had brought with him from Tibet. The stupa, meditation hall, was constructed by the “Divine Madman,” the eccentric Yogi and saint Drukpa Kunley, who blessed the entire grounds. The monastery is renowned throughout Bhutan as a fertility inducing magnet, pledging that all who wish to conceive will find guidance at the temple. Pilgrims who visit the monastery receive the blessing by being struck on the head with a ten-inch wooden Phallus. This symbol is said to ward off evil.
Chendebji Chorten is a large Buddhist Stupa. It is located 2 kilometres away from the village of Chendebji. It is a large white structure built in likeness to the famous Boudhanath Stupa located in Kathmandu, Nepal.
The chorten was constructed by Lama Shinda from Tibet in the 19th century AD. The Stupa is believed to have been constructed at a spot where an evil spirit was subdued by the Lama. The eyes painted at the four cardinal points of the temple is another striking feature.
Drive to Gangtey
After breakfast you will visit Trongsa Dzong:-
The Trongsa Dzong or the Choekhor Rabdentse is one of the largest and most impressive Dzong of Bhutan. The Dzong is located on a cliff overlooking the Mangde Chhu river gorge. It was built at the site of a temple that was constructed in 1543, by a Drukpa Lama. This huge multi-level fortress comprises a series of courtyards and passageways that are built along the topography of the ridge.
A five day long Trongsa Tshechu is organized in the northern courtyard of the Dzhong each year during the month of December or January. The festival celebrates the triumph of Buddhism over the evil forces. The most striking feature of the festival is the masked dancers and the unveiling of a huge Thangka painting of the Guru Rinpoche and other sacred deities.
Later you will be driven to Gangtey where you will visit Gangtey Goemba.
The Gangtey Monastery is an important monastery associated with the Nyingma school of Buddhists. It is located in the Wangdue Phodrang Dzongkhag in central Bhutan. It is situated in the picturesque Phobjikha Valley. The monastery was established in 1613 by Peling Gyalse Rinpoche, the grandson of the great treasurer discoverer, Trenton Pema Lingpa.
According to a story during a visit to the Phobjikha Valley, Trenton Pema Lingpa foretold the people that one day his descendants will construct a monastery on the hills surrounding the valley and make it the seat of the Peling Tradition. The present ruling dynasty of Bhutan is a descendant of the great Trenton Pema Lingpa.
The Phobjikha is a wide glacial valley located close to the Gangtey Monastery. The valley is also renowned for being the winter home of the rare Tibetan Black Necked Cranes. They migrate from Tibet from the arid plains of Tibet to roost in the more comfortable climate of the Phobjikha Valley. The valley is at an altitude of 2900 meters above sea level and experiences a much lighter winter as compared to the harsh extremes of Tibet. A part of the valley lies in the Black Mountain National Park. There are 2 rivers that flow through this valley called the Nakay Chu and the Gay Chu.
Eventually, the serpent lost and till date rice is not grown in the Phobjikha Valley. While visiting the Phobjikha Valley, one must take time out to visit the Black Necked Crane Information Centre. The centre is located at the edge of the main forest along the road. It is easily accessible. The centre has an observation deck that is equipped with a high power telescope that gives visitors a chance to spot some cranes.
Drive to Paro
After early morning breakfast, you will drive to Paro and on the way, we will visit:
The Simtokha Dzong is a small Dzong located approximately 5 kilometres south of Thimphu. It is officially called the SangakZabhonPhodrang which roughly translates to the “Palace of the Profound Meaning of Secret Mantras”. It is said that it is the first fortress built by the legendary Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in Bhutan, constructed in 1629. Some suggest that Dzong is the oldest surviving complete Dzong in Bhutan. It is currently home to the “Institute for Languages and Cultural Studies” which is attended by monks and common people alike.
The site of the Dzong is said to have been built over a site where a demon had disappeared into the rocks nearby. It is located very strategically at a point from where the Dzong can protect the Thimphu Valley. The valley leads to the Dochula pass and onwards to Eastern Bhutan.
After early morning breakfast, we will take you for a morning hike up to:
It is also known as ‘Tiger’s Nest Monastery’. It hangs precariously and magically from a rather steep cliff. The Taktsang monastery is a monument of genuine pride and spiritual significance in Bhutan. It defies architectural principles to the core and amazes tourists from around the world. Its history is deeply associated with the visit of Guru Padmasambhava, the revered Indian saint who came to Bhutan in the 8th century AD. The cave was named Taktshang after Guru Rinpoche flew into the cave from Kurtoe Singye Dzong in eastern Bhutan while riding on a tigress.
The Paro Dzong is probably Bhutan’s best known and most iconic Dzong. This is the first building you will notice when you land at Paro International Airport. It will probably be your first memory of Bhutan. The imposing Dzong is perhaps the finest example of Dzong architecture existing in the world today. The massive buttered walls of the fortress dominate over the valley.
The approach toward the Dzong is through a traditional covered bridge called the Nemizaram. A paved stone path runs alongside the imposing outer walls of the structure.
Later we will visit Kyichu Lhakhang. The Jowo Temple of Kyichu is one of the oldest temples in Bhutan. The temple was built by the Tibetan King Songtsen Gampo in the 7th Century AD. It is one of the 108 temples constructed by him to subdue a demon that was terrorizing the people of the Himalayas. It is believed that Guru Rinpoche had visited the temple in the 8th Century during his visit to the Paro Valley. Lam Khanga and the Phajo Drugom Zhigpo also visited this temple.
In the evening, we will visit the local market of Paro.
In the morning after an early breakfast, we will see you off at the Paro Airport for your onward destinations.
- Airport pick-up and drop-off on a private basis.
- Private vehicle with A/C for all mentioned transportation and sightseeing.
- All hotel accommodation based on double sharing deluxe rooms.
- Sightseeing entrance fees.
- Daily Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner at the hotel.
- All government and local tourism taxes.
- Driver’s allowance, salary, fuel cost and toll taxes.
- Nature of personal expenses.
- Tips (not required but recommended).
- Bhutan Visa fee. (USD 50)
- Flight from Kathmandu/ Delhi/ Calcutta / Bangkok.