Hold your eyes as you drive into the eastern valley, where the locals of the beautiful valley with unique culture and tradition offer you a glass of Ara (local wine) in a wooden cup. you will see drastic changes in landscapes and lifestyles when you enter and exit from India and different regions of Bhutan.

Drive into the beautiful happiness country on earth through India as the Eastern mountains of Bhutan and the smiling faces of Drukpas invite you to their unique life style.

 

DAY01: Guwahati - India – SamdrupJongkhar

On the arrival you will be greeted by the representative of Atlas Tour and Travel. Drive to the SamdrupJongkhar, South-eastern part of Bhutan bordering the Indian states of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh. Overnight at hotel.

DAY02: SamdrupJongkhar – Tashigang

After breakfast drive to Tashigang, passing through several villages. En-route visit hand loom (weaving center) in Khaling and then visit blind School. Continue drive to Tashigang, Vividly colored handloom cloth and end silk spun from cocoons bred from castor oils plants are local specialties. The dominant language of the region is Sharchop instead of Dzongkha. Tashigang Dzong Trashigang is used as the market place for the hill people from Merak & Sakteng, who are known for their exceptional features and for their costume made of Sheep skin and Yak wool. The hat they wear is unusual but has a significance of its own. We might be able to meet a few of these people. Visit Trashigang Dzong, which stands, on the hill slope below the main street. The Dzong built in the mid-17th century, serves as the administrative seat for the district, as well as school for the monk. Overnight at hotel.

DAY03: Trashigang – Merak

After breakfast drive up to Jigmeling approximately 3 and half hour. The hike up to Merak village takes 1 hour. Lunch at Merak . In the afternoon visit Merak village and mingle with the locals. Evening dine with the people of Merak followed by native dances of Merak and Sakteng – Achulamoa Cham and folk dances which is worth witnessing. Overnight at local guesthouse.

DAY04:Merak – Rangjung

On the way back visit Phongme village and drive to Radhi for lunch. After lunch drive to Rangjung and visit Rangjung Woesel Chholing Monastery-this was founded by Garab Rinpochhe in 1990. Evening stroll around Rangjung town. Overnight at hotel.

DAY05:Rangjung – Trashiyangtse - Trashigang

Early in the morning drive to Tashiyangtse and on the way we can visit GomKora temple and continue drive to Yangtse. The main attractions in this valley, is a great stupa, ChortenKora built in 1940 and modeled on the style of the Boudhnath stupa in Nepal. After lunch visit the Trashiyangtse town is small but very beautiful with traditional designs and colors of the houses. This place is also famous for wooden products like dapa (wooden plate), phob (cup) and others. One of the traditional painting schools is located in Tashiyangtse. Drive back to Tashigang. Overnight at hotel.

DAY06:Trashigang – Mongar

After breakfast drive to Mongar. En route stop to visit Drametse monastery- founded by Ani Choten Zangmo, Pema Lingpa’s granddaughter, who fled from Bumthang to escape a proposal of marriage from the local king. She fled east and when she found a place ideally suited for meditation and practice she named it ‘Drametse’ which literally means ‘the peak where there are no enemies’. Ani Choeten Zangmo’s kudung (remains) is preserved to this day in the monastery as the most important relic. Continue drive to Monger. After lunch visit Mongar Dzong which is built in keeping with traditional by not using any drawings or nails and then visit Yaggang Lhakhang . Overnight at hotel.

DAY07:Mongar – Luentshi – Mongar

After early breakfast drive to Lhuntse. The steepness of the region lends itself to some spectacular views, with rushing waterfalls and sheer drops. Lhuntse district is one of the most rural and isolated districts in Bhutan. The landscape is spectacular with stark cliffs and gorges, beautiful conifer and pine forests, and remote villages. The Kurtoe region of Lhuntse is the ancestral home of Bhutan’s Royal family. And also consider being the best for Kishu Tharates tiles. Visit Lhuntse Dzong and weaving village. Drive back to Mongar. Overnight at hotel.

DAY08:Mongar – Bumthang

After breakfast drive to Bumthang and you would notice a change in the weather condition and that the place becomes cooler. Stop at Sengor where you would get to see the locals there. On the way there are a few places where we will stop. After reaching Bumthang we can go to the small town and mingle with the locals there. Overnight at hotel.

DAY09: Bumthang – Sightseeing

  • Jambay Lhakhang - Is a sacred monastery built in the 7th century by the Tibetan king, Songtsen- Gampo. It is one of the 108 monasteries built by him to subdue evil spirits in the Himalayan region.
  • Chakhar Lhakhang - Besides the main road, a short distance beyond Jambay Temple is Chamkhar (Iron Castle). It is the site of the palace of the Indian King Sendha Gyab also known as Sindhu Raja.
  • Kurjey Lhakhang (Kurjey means, “Body imprint”) - The temple to the right was built by Minjur Tempa in 1652. It was built around the cave in which Guru Rinpoche meditated and left his body imprint.
  • Tamshing Lhakhang - This temple is also known as Tamshing Lhendrup Chholing (Temple of the Good Message).
  • Jakar Dzong - The fortress is now used as an administrative center of the valley and summer residence of monks. Overnight at hotel.

DAY10:Bumthang – Phonjikha

After Breakfast drive to Phobjikha via Pele la Pass at the altitude of 3,150 meters, a wonderful opportunity for photographs. En-route stops at Chum- my village to visit Yathra weaving central. Yathra are made into colorful scarves, bags, blankets and sweater. Continue drive to Phobjikha a bowl- shape valley on the western slopes of Black Mountain; visit Gantey Goenpa as it is a major attraction with an old monastery date back to the 16-century. Later walk around the valley which is also the winter home to the rare black-necked cranes, which migrate, from remote parts of Tibet, China and Siberia during winter to this valley. Over night at hotel.

DAY11:Phobjikha – Punakha

After breakfast drive to Punakha. On the way visit Chhimi Lhakhang - this was founded in 15 Century by Lama Dukpa Kinley also known as divine mad man. It is half hour walk across a local village and rice field. After lunch visit Punakha Dzong- built in 1637 by Zhabdrung. It is one of the most beautiful Dzong in the country. Later walk around Punakha and Khuruthang town. Overnight at hotel.

DAY12: Punakha – Thimphu

After breakfast, drive to Thimphu-approximately 3-hour drive through picturesque valleys and mountain slopes dotted with typical Bhutanese villages. From the Dochula pass, at over 10,000ft, vast panoramic views of the high snowcapped peaks of the Bhutanese Himalaya can be enjoyed on a clear day. Lunch will be served at Dochula cafeteria. And you even have an opportunity take a picture of Dochula, 108 stupas. Continue drive to Thimphu. Visit memorial chorten. Overnight at hotel.

DAY13:Thimphu - Sightseeing

  • Buddha Point/ Kuensel Phodang - Is the largest Buddha statue in the country, from there you can get a good view of the Thimphu valley.
  • Changangkha Lhakhang - it is right above Thimphu Valley, this temple and a monastic school was established in the 12th century on a site chosen by Lama Phajo Drugom Shigpo.
  • Motithang Takin Preserve – houses the rare national animal of Bhutan. Takin is listed by international conservation agencies as a vulnerable species and it is a rare animal found only in Bhutan, Nepal and Burma.
  • Traditional Medicine Institute - In Bhutan, equal emphasis is given to both allopathic and traditional medicines. The rich herbal medicines made up from medicinal plants are prepared and dispensed here.
  • National Institute for Zorig Chusum – or the school of Arts and crafts is an institute where student under- takes a six-year course on the 13 traditional arts and crafts of Bhutan.
  • Folk Heritage Museum - the house replicates a traditional farmhouse and is furnished as it would have been about a century ago.
  • Weaving center, Changzamtog
  • Bhutanese Paper factory and Overnight at hotel.

DAY14: Thimphu – Paro

After early breakfast drive to Paro and check in the hotel. Later drive up the Pa Chu to Drukgyel Dzong, the ruined Fort (destroyed by fire in 1950.) which once defended this valley from the Tibetan invasion. From here one can have the view of sacred Mt. Jhomolhari on clear days. Drive back to visit Ta Dzong former Watch Tower which now houses the National Museum and then visit Rinpung Dzong which houses the monastic school and the office of the civil administration walk down passing close by the Paro Dzong, crossing the Bhutanese typical wooden roofed bridge. Lunch will be served in the hotel. Later in the afternoon walk stroll around Paro town. Overnight at hotel.

DAY15:Paro - Excursion to Taktsang

After breakfast drive up to the Ramthangka (base camp) of Taktsang and then hike up to the most famous monastery Taktsang, the Tiger’s Lair. This magical monastery clings to the vertical granite cliff of 3,000 m above the valley floor. It is believed that Guru meditated here in the 8th century. The disciples of Guru built the temple, which was later enlarged by Zhabdrung in the 17th century. After lunch walk back down. Drive to hotel for overnight at hotel.

DAY16:Departure

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