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Bhutan Cultural Odyssey


  • Snow capped mountain in Jomolhari - Lumle holidays
  • The Tashichhoedzong in the city of Thimpu in Bhutan
  • Monks - Lumle holidays
  • Masked man dancing on a Tsechus - Lumle holidays

Bhutan Cultural Odyssey

 Bhutan

14 days from £4499 pp  Including Int'l flight

Join us on this memorable thirteen-day guaranteed departure that will stay with you for a lifetime!.

At a Glance

  • Enjoy Bhutanese culture
  • Explore monasteries
  • Enjoy hike to Tiger's Nest
  • Explore great villages Punakha & Bumthang
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Join us on this memorable journey to Bhutan that will stay with you for a lifetime!. Explore Bhutan’s ancient monasteries and shrines of historical and archaeological interests in the heartland of three major towns of the Dragon Kingdom; Thimphu, Punakha, and Paro. Hike across the spectacular mountain scenery of Tiger’s Nest, a backdrop to pristine forests and picturesque valleys, and discover Bumthang, the spiritual heartland of Bhutan.

Short Itinerary

Day 01 : Departure London Heathrow
Day 02 : Arrival Kathmandu
Day 03 : Kathmandu – Paro (By Flight) – Thimphu
Day 04 : Thimphu
Day 05 : Thimphu – Gangtey
Day 06 : Explore Phobjikha Valley
Day 07 : Gangtey to Bumthang
Day 08 : Explore Bumthang
Day 09 : Bumthang to Punakha
Day 10 : Punakha to Paro
Day 11 : Paro
Day 12 : Paro – Kathmadu by flight 
Day 13 : Kathmandu 
Day 14 : Kathmandu Depart

Tour Ends

 Day 01 : Departure London Heathrow

Today you start your journey by boarding your international outbound flight to Kathmandu 

Overnight in the plane.
 Day 02 : Arrival Kathmandu

Upon arrival in Kathmandu airport, you will be met by a Lumle airport representative. You will be escorted to your hotel. You will have some time to relax and recover from the flight.

Overnight in Kathmandu
 Day 03 : Kathmandu to Paro (By Flight) to Thimphu

Today drive to Kathmandu airport to take a short one-and-a-half-hour Himalayan flight to Paro, Bhutan. After landing at Paro International Airport, a tour representative will meet and greet you before guiding you to your transfer to the capital city of Bhutan, Thimphu. En route stop at Chuzom, the confluence of Thimphu and Paro rivers. Shortly before reaching Chuzom, you will see on your left the Tschogang Lhakhang, “the temple of the excellent horse”. On arrival at Thimphu, check-into the hotel. The remainder of the day is free at leisure for you to enjoy on your own an exploratory walk around Thimphu’s Main Street and market area. Also, visit the local Crafts Bazaar and browse through some of Bhutan’s fine traditional arts. Here you can buy hand-woven textiles, thangkha paintings, masks, ceramics, slate and wood carvings, jewellery and many interesting items made from local materials.

Overnight in Thimphu
 Day 04 : Explore Thimphu

Thimphu sightseeing. Start your day by visiting the huge statue of Buddha Dordenma, which commands a tremendous view of Thimphu valley. The huge 3-storey throne holds several chapels and the body itself is filled with 125,000 smaller statues of Buddha. Then hike from Kuensel Phodrang nature park to Changangkha Temple. A hike of around one hour or so through beautiful blue pine and rhododendron forest, which also gives a fantastic view of Thimphu valley. Then you can visit the School of Traditional Arts to watch students at work and to get an introduction to the 13 traditional arts, including painting, embroidery, woodcarving, mask-making and statue-making. You can also visit the Takin Reserve showcasing the unique national animal, the Takin. You may browse the striking collection of intricate textiles at the National Textile Museum or the weekly market.

In the afternoon, drive about 30 minutes to Pangri Zampa, Bhutan’s most important college for Tradi tional Astrology, founded in the 16th century. The college institute releases the official Bhutanese calendar annually and has the responsibility of deciding on dates for any important national events in Bhutan. Astrologers are available for private readings (for a fee). Later if you wish you can go and see some archery at the national ground. You may also like to visit the newly opened postal museum, detailing the history of Bhutan’s postal system and showcasing Bhutan’s rich assortment of interesting stamps. If you would like to view or buy Bhutanese handicrafts you may like to visit the new market opposite Taj Tashi hotel which has an array of stalls run by local handicraft shops selling purely homemade articles with no imports. Tell your guide what takes your interest. 

Overnight in Thimphu.
 Day 05 : Thimphu to Gangtey

Thimphu to Gangtey. Today we drive approximately 5 hours to Gangtey via Dochu La pass at 3050 metres, where we will stop for a hot drink and enjoy spectacular panoramic views of the Eastern Himalaya ranges. Continue to Gangtey at 2900 metres. Enjoy the views of the immense and remote Phobjikha valley and the black mountain ranges. Visit Gangtey Gompa (one of Bhutan’s oldest monasteries and recently extensively renovated) and explore the valley where the villagers continue to live a traditional Bhutanese rural lifestyle. This is the site where black-necked cranes visit in their hundreds in November each year after spending the summer in Tibet.

Overnight in Gangtey
 Day 06 : Explore Phobjikha Valley

Today you can do a day walk around the Phobjikha Valley. You can start your walk at the Dewachen hotel and walk from here to the Black-Necked Crane Information Centre, which has lots of information on the valley and its famous migrating birds. From here you can walk to Beta Village, then continue to Gangtey Gompa from where you can walk along the Gangtey Nature Trail, past Semchubara village, through forests of blue pine trees covered with lichen (known as old man’s beard) and where you can hopefully see some birds.  Continue on from the end of the nature trail to Kingathang village where you can visit a temple built by the Queen Mother.  From Kingathang, you can walk via Yusa village back to your hotel. Total distance  12  to  13  Km  (6  to  7  hrs).

Overnight in Gangtey
 Day 07 : Gangtey to Bumthang

Gangtey to Bumthang. Drive approximately 3 hours to Trongsa, the gateway to central Bhutan at 2180 metres. Just before reaching Trongsa you may like to visit Tsangkha Tashicholing monastery where there is an arts and crafts training institute with around 45 young monks learning traditional skills of woodcarving, sculpture, painting and embroidery. Then continue on your way. Set amidst spectacular scenery, Trongsa Dzong, the ancestral home of Bhutan’s royal family, commands the eye from miles away.

You can also visit Ta Dzong, the museum in the watchtower dedicated to the Wangchuk dynasty, which tells the stories of the Dzong and the valley it has watched over for centuries and features personal belongings of the Kings and Queens of Bhutan. Continue a further 2.5 hours through some of Bhutan’s most beautiful landscapes to Bumthang, an area of high valleys at 2580 to 3100 metres.

Overnight in Bumthang
 Day 08 : Explore Bumthang

Sightseeing in Bumthang, the spiritual heartland of Bhutan, with its many legendary monasteries, temples and palaces. Bumthang is the collective name for an area of 4 valleys - Chokhor, Tang, Ura and Chumey. Your guide will take you on a fascinating walking and/or driving tour of a variety of sacred sites including Jamba Lhakhang, Kurjey Lhakhang and Tamshing Lhakhang. In the afternoon, drive to Tang valley, the most remote of Bumthang's valleys, at 2700 metres. The road climbs past the trail to Membar  Tsho  (the  “burning  lake”), which is one  of Bhutan’s mostbimportant pilgrimage sites.

Then on to Drangchel, Pema Lingpa's birthplace. You will also see some picturesque villages and temples and can walk up to visit Ugyenchholing Palace, which is now a museum and gives an interesting insight into life in an aristocratic family in the last century. Return to Bumthang for the night.

Overnight in Bumthang
 Day 09 : Bumthang to Punakha

Bumthang to Punakha. In the morning drive approximately 7 hours to the old capital, Punakha. You will notice the change of climate and vegetation as we approach low-lying Punakha at 1250 metres. Late afternoon, visit the imposing Punakha Dzong, “Palace of Great Happiness”. Built in 1637, it is strategically placed at the confluence of two rivers, the Po Chu and the Mo Chu. If there is time take a pleasant walk for an hour or so across the terraced fields of Sopsokha village to Chimi Lhakhang (Temple of Fertility) built in the 15th century by the ‘Divine Madman’ (Lama Drukpa Kuenley).

Overnight in Punakha
 Day 10 : Punakha to Paro

We return to Paro, a drive of approximately 4 hours. In the afternoon visit the National Museum located in the Ta Dzong (watch tower) which was built on top of the hill above Rinpung Dzong to defend Rinpung Dzong and the Paro valley during times of war, in an unusual circular construction resembling a conch shell. The Ta Dzong houses a magnificent collection of Bhutanese artefacts – costumes, religious paintings, arms, textiles and a fascinating collection of Bhutan stamps. From here it is a short drive to see the impressive Paro Rinpung Dzong, one of the finest examples of Bhutanese architecture. Late afternoon, stroll around Paro town.

Overnight in Paro
 Day 11 : Paro

Take a day walk to the ‘Tiger's Nest’, the sacred Taktshang monastery which clings to the rock face 900 metres above the valley floor. Guru Rinpoche is said to have flown to the site riding on a tigress. He subsequently meditated here for three months. It is one of Bhutan’s most holy sites and draws pilgrims not only from Bhutan but also from neighbouring Buddhist countries. You can have lunch at the Taktshang cafeteria from where you get a spectacular view of the monastery. Afterwards you may also have time to visit Dumtse Lhakhang, a temple built by Thangtong Gyalpo, the iron bridge builder. Late afternoon, you could visit a local farmhouse and take the opportunity to try the restorative properties of a hot stone bath to feel relaxed after the hike. If you prefer your creature comforts, you can take tea or dinner with the family and then return to your hotel.

Overnight in Paro
 Day 12 : Paro to Kathmandu by flight
Today drive to Paro airport to take a short one-and-a-half-hour Himalayan flight to Kathmandu, Nepal. Upon arrival at Kathmandu airport, you will be met by a Lumle airport representative. You will be escorted to your hotel. Remaining time at your leisure for rest & relax.

Overnight at the hotel.

 Day 13 : Kathmandu

We start of exploration of Nepal from Kathmandu, a mystical mix of religion, culture and everything in between.

We explore Kathmandu Durbar Square where most of the temples and palaces dating back to 17th and 18th century. Our time in Kathmandu also includes a visit to Boudhanath, the largest Buddhist Stupa in Nepal. You can walk around the Stupa spinning the prayer wheels engraved with chants and offer a traditional butter lamp to Lord Buddha. We than explore nearby is the Swayambhunath is an ancient religious architecture in the Kathmandu valley.

Throughout the trip, you will be accompanied by a driver and an English-speaking guide who will explain the historical and cultural importance of each spot.

Overnight at the hotel.
 Day 14 : Final Departure
Today you will be driven to Kathmandu airport to board your inbound flight back home or extend your journey.

What's included

  • Return economy flight from London Heathrow
  • Kathmandu – Paro – Kathmandu economy flights
  • Accommodation in Nepal based on bed & breakfast basis 
  • Operated with English- speaking guide
  • All Meals in Bhutan
  • Transportation for all the transfer and sightseeing as per the itinerary 
  • Entrances fees for the sightseeing mentioned in the itinerary 
  • Meet and greet services at the airport

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Visa for Nepal [USD30 approx] subject to change
  • Visa for Bhutan [USD40 approx] subject to change
  • Meals in Kathmandu
  • Any beverages, airport tax (where applicable), tips
  • Any expenses of personal nature
  • Anything not mentioned in "What's Included?"

ACCOMMODATION  [ 03 star or similar ] 

Kathmandu : Norbulinka Boutique or similar
Paro : Rema Resort or similar
Thimphu : Pelyang Boutique or similar
Gangtey: Dewachen or similar
Bumthang: Hotel Ugyenling or similar 
Punakha: Khuru Resort or similar

Check-in : 15:00 hours
Check-out : Until 12:00 hours
Room occupancy : Maximum 2 adults 

Single Room Supplement: £550

Solo Travellers cost: from £4899 [ please contact one of our team member for the exact price as the price vary depending on travel date.

Offer is based on Twin share so 2 people must book to complete the offer. So valid with 2 full paying adults:

Hotels : If the hotels mentioned in the itinerary are unavailable you will stay in hotels of a similar standard

Internet Access : Free access to Wi-Fi at all hotels (in lounge or public area)

Wheelchair access : The hotels and tour are not suitable for wheelchair users.

Mobile number : Please be sure to fill in mobile number when booking. This is so that the driver can get in touch with you.

Flight Documents : Once your final payment has been processed, we will send you an email confirmation. You will receive all travel documentation required for your flights and accommodation shortly afterwards.

Flight Times : Please note that flights may be subject to change, delay or postponement by the provider and that flight times are provisional. We search for the best times for you and will do our utmost to provide you with the flights detailed above. However, please note that flight times are subject to availability and may be amended.

Visa : If you are travelling to Nepal, you will require Nepalese visa. Please check with the Nepal Embassy in the country of your residence. For more details please visit http://www.nepembassy.org.uk/ For Bhutan we will arrange visa approval letter for you (at the cost $40pp) of to carry and your passport will be stamped at the airport upon arrival.

Vaccination : If you are travelling to Nepal & Bhutan, you may need to be vaccinated against Hepatitis A, Tetanus and Typhoid. For the most up-to-date health advice, you should visit your local doctor/GP or visit www.gov.uk.

Cancellation Conditions : This offer cannot be cancelled or modified

Important : Please be informed that the detailed itinerary for Bhutan may be changed due to unfavourable climatic conditions, National holidays & special events. We maintain the rights to alter the itinerary since tours are prepared in advance and unforeseen circumstances may arise during travel that mandate changes. Itinerary changes are made to improve your overall travel experience in Bhutan. Also note that since hotels are pre-booked and paid for, any change in itinerary will cost cancellation / re-booking charges eventually.

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Start Date End Date Price In GBP (£) Note AVAILABILITY Booking
Sun, 10 Mar, 24 Sat, 23 Mar, 24 GBP £4499 from LHR GUARANTEED Book Now
Tue, 16 Apr, 24 Mon, 29 Apr, 24 GBP £4699 from LHR GUARANTEED Book Now
Wed, 15 May, 24 Tue, 28 May, 24 GBP £4499 from LHR GUARANTEED Book Now
Mon, 3 Jun, 24 Sun, 16 Jun, 24 GBP £4599 from LHR GUARANTEED Book Now
Sun, 8 Sep, 24 Sat, 21 Sep, 24 GBP £4599 from LHR GUARANTEED Book Now
Fri, 11 Oct, 24 Thu, 24 Oct, 24 GBP £4799 from LHR GUARANTEED Book Now
Wed, 20 Nov, 24 Tue, 3 Dec, 24 GBP £4799 from LHR GUARANTEED Book Now
Tue, 3 Dec, 24 Mon, 16 Dec, 24 GBP £4899 from LHR GUARANTEED Book Now
If you wish to travel on any other date than dates above or have any other queries please call our office at 0203 006 2722 or email to sales@lumle.com

A private departures on any day all around the year can be arranged for this trek/tour, for more details and dates E-mail sales@lumle.com

AVAILABILITY OPTIONS

OPENED: This date is available and open for bookings.
LIMITED: There are very limited number of available places on this departure. Immediate booking.
GUARANTEED: We have reached minimum numbers and this trip is guaranteed to depart.
CLOSED: This date is currently unavailable. Please contact us, if you are interested in travelling on this date.

Your Program Duration = 14 Days
All the Prices are in GBP (£) Per Person.

Beyond Bumthang Highlights ...

  • Panoramic Annapurna range trek should not be missed
  • Meet the wildlife in Chitwan
  • Water rafting in Nepal’s wild rivers
  • Flying to India for amazing holidays

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Tailormade suggestions are...

  • Extend your Bhutan stay
  • Explore Bhutan trekking

Travel Info

    • Flight time 12 hours (via Delhi, Calcutta or Kathmandu)
    • Timezone GMT+6 hours
    • Recommended airlines Druk Airways, Tashi Airways
    • Best season mid-Mar to mid-Jul and Sep to mid-Jan

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