A good 5 day trek between Paro and Thimphu.
Bhutan is reputed to be the last traditional Himalayan Buddhist Kingdom and there can be fewer ways of exploring this unique country than combining a short trek with some sightseeing.
This 12 day trip combines the beautiful 5-day Druk Path trek with touring Paro, Thimphu and Punakha. We recommend our itinerary of using Kathmandu as the access point in Bhutan as the flight into Paro flies straight past Mt Everest!
Having arrived and explored some of Paro, you depart on trek the following morning. The trek gets above 3000m straight away affording wonderful views of Paro as it follows a ridge before dropping down to some remote mountain lakes. You will see isolated Monasteries, classic vertical fluttering prayer flags, roaming yak and blue sheep and traditional mountain burial sites. This horseshoe shaped route brings you high above Thimphu before you descend.
Thimphu is an excellent place to spend relaxing post trek and just exploring the town and markets at a leisurely pace; so much to see (huge Dzong, Library, numerous craft shops and the Takin Reserve (Bhutan’s National animal). Allowing the vehicle to take the strain, we visit Punakha and Wangdue (very lush valley) before returning over the Doche La Pass (3000m) and back towards Paro to visit the iconic Tigers Nest.
Your return journey is back to Kathmandu and onto to London.
- Paro’s colourful and grand festival
- Tour western Bhutan, including Thimphu
- Experience Bhutan’s unique culture
- Fly straight past Mt Everest from Kathmandu
Clothing and Equipment – No specialist equipment is required. Please refer to our Kit List webpage.
Date and Prices Content
Min number to guarantee the trek’s departure – 1
If Sole Occupation is requested – £140 (includes 4 nights hotel in Bhutan and 2 nights hotel in Kathmandu)
The above prices are the based on the relevant travel months and an overall min group size of 3. If the overall group size is less than 3, the price will be adjusted; ask for a quote.
International flights are from London to Kathmandu and subsequently into Bhutan. Adjustments can be made for flights into Bhutan from other cities such as Delhi and Bangkok for example; ask for details.
Meet In Country prices (Land Only), exclude any flights.
Low Season months: Jan, Feb, Jun, Jul, Aug, Dec
High Season months: Mar, Apr, May, Sep, Oct, Nov
Quick links to: Kit Lists, Travel Insurance, Travel Health, High Altitude Trekking
When we guarantee a trip and you book it, we guarantee that:
- The trip will not be cancelled
- The trip will run on the dates as advertised
- You will not be surcharged
What the Price Includes
- International flights London to Bhutan, via Kathmandu, if flight inclusive
- 2 x overnight hotel stays in Kathmandu (twin share, B&B basis), including airport transfers, if applicable
- Guide, dedicated vehicle and driver in Bhutan
- All hotel accommodation in Bhutan
- All meals in Bhutan
- All camping services: sleeping tents, sleeping mats, kitchen, dining tent, toilet tent, ponies to carry supplies (own sleeping bag required)
- All entrance fees to local sights, Monasteries and the Festival
- Tourist visa for Bhutan
What the Price Does Not Include
- Travel Insurance
- Nepalese visa
- Tips for Guide and driver
- Personal spending
Tailor Made Option
We can tailor make this trip to suit you; dates, extensions, reductions, adjusted trek itinerary, just about anything. Additional charges only apply when additional services or time are added.
This itinerary uses Kathmandu as the access point into Paro, Bhutan. It is possible to adjust this, OR you can choose Land Only.
For Land Only, we meet you on arrival at the airport in Bhutan; you organise your own flights.
Day 1 – Depart UK, fly to Kathmandu
Day 2 – Arrive Kathmandu (Nepal), Transfer to hotel
On arrival in Kathmandu, you will be collected from the airport and transferred to your hotel for an overnight stay at the comfortable Manang Hotel (3*).
Day 3 – Fly Kathmandu to Paro, transfer to hotel
Transfer to the airport for your flight to Paro, Bhutan. This amazing 1 hr flight goes straight past Mt Everest (sit on the left hand side of the aircraft).
Your Guide and driver will meet you on arrival and will escort you throughout your time in Bhutan.Transfer to your hotel in Paro and potentially sightsee Paro, which will include the imposing Rinpung Dzong, a huge Monastery that overlooks Paro and is typical of Bhutan.
Your Guide will brief you on the coming days. Overnight Paro, BLD
Days 4 – Begin Trekking – Paro – Jili Dzong (3500m)
The start of the trek is conveniently located by the National Museum in Paro itself.
A great first day slowly ascending up through the Juniper forest to reach the wonderfully isolated 15th century Jili Dzong Monastery (held down by steel cables due to the wind!). Monks do live here. It is a 1000m climb but doesn’t feel like it. Continue on to a more shltered campsite.
About 5 hrs, BLD
Day 5 – Jili Dzong – Rabana (3890m)
A shortish day along a delightful ridge. There is plenty of time to visit the Monastery before you head off for the day and also for lunch en route with good views over Paro. The campsite is great in spring as it is surrounded by blooming rhododendrons.
About 4hrs. BLD
Day 6 – Rabana – Jimilang Tsho (3900m)
More excellent views today as you clear 4000m for the first time (over a ridge). Good views of the lakes too as you descend towards them through the rhododendrons.
About 4 hrs. BLD
Day 7 – Jimilang Tsho – Phadjoding (3600m)
A much longer day, passing some more mountain lakes and also some high Passes to cross, notably the Labana La (4235m) with some ‘sky burial’ sites close by. Ask your Guide about these.
Towards the end of the day, Thimphu will come into sight. There are also some meditation centres built into all sorts of places!
A vey rewarding day; about 8hrs, BLD
Day 8 – Phadjoding – Motithang – Thimphu
This final descent will take about 2 – 3 hrs depending on your knees!
There are some great views of Thimphu as you descend through varying terrain from open morland, to Bamboo to forest.
Your vehicle will be waiting for you and it is here that you say goodbye to your trek crew (less your Guide). You will be whisked away to your hotel in Thimphu although maybe via the Radio Tower or Takin Reserve (national animal). Depending on how you feel, you can use the rest of the day to explore Thimphu.
2 – 3 hrs, overnight Thimphu. BLD
Day 9 – Thimphu – Punakha
It’s time for the wheels to take the strain! This is a nice drive over the Doche La (3000m) and down into the warmer Punahka Valley. The Dzong is very impressive. You will have time to see Wangdue too, just 30 mins away.
Overnight Punahka or Wangdue, BLD
Day 10 – Thimphu – Paro (Tigers Nest)
Finish off anything in Thimphu this morning but be sure to be in Paro for lunch to enable you to get up to the Tigers Nest in the afternoon. It is a stiff 90min – 2 hrs ascent to the Monastery but well worth it.
If you have any time left, use it to explore any parts of Paro that you missed on your way in. Overnight Paro, BLD
Day 11 – Fly Paro to Kathmandu
Your Guide and driver will escort you to the airport for your flight to Kathmandu. You will be met at the airport and transferred to the hotel for your overnight stay. It is possible to fly to London this evening but please read the warning box (bottom left). B
Day 12 – Depart Kathmandu for London
A morning flight, arriving London same day. B
Note – B: Breakfast L: Lunch D: Dinner