Trek

Bhutan Gentle Walk Tour in Bumthang Valley

Country: Bhutan Region: Bumthang Valley

Bhutan Gentle Walk Tour in Bumthang Valley

£2195

12
DAYS

Book

Overview

  • Amazing journey to the heart of the Bhutanese Kingdom
  • 3 days gentle trek in the Bhumang Valley
  • Visit the Jambay Lhakhang Monstery
  • Outstanding cultural experince during the trip

Bhumtang is considered to be the cultural heart of Bhutan, and there is certainly plenty of culture to be explored and discovered during this trek. As well as ancient temples and monasteries dating back centuries, you will also pass through a number of remote villages that will give you a real insight into traditional Bhutanese culture. This trek features a number of gradual climbs that will still give you fantastic views of the valleys below you, but without being too strenuous. The rivers in this area are full of trout, and as you walk along the parts of the trail that takes you alongside these stretches of water, you will be able to watch these trout swimming in the crystal clear waters. This trek has a very relaxed feel about it, there are no difficult inclines to climb and you will spend the whole of the trek immersed in the history and nature that makes this region what it is. You will also have the opportunity to visit Ogyencholing Palace which is the only museum in Bhutan that is privately owned. There are a wealth of traditional artefacts that are on display at this museum and it is a very pleasant way to spend a few hours of your time.

Domkhar Festival:  this festival is one of the most popular festivals among the locals in Bumthang. It marks the birthday of Guru Rinpoche, the Indian Buddhist saint who visited Bhutan in the 8th century.

Jambay Lhakhang Festival: One of the most spectacular festivals in the country. The highlight of the festival is the fire ritual that is held in the evening where crowds gather to witness the ritualistic naked dance.

Itinerary

DAY

1

Arrive Kathmandu

Upon your arrival a representative from FrozenGround will be waiting outside the airport to take you to the hotel. Depending on time of arrival, plans will be made for a briefing meeting once you have settled in.

Accommodation: Hotel

DAY

2

Arrive Paro, explore the city

After breakfast fly to Bhutan. Our representative will welcome you at the airport and transfer to the hotel.  After lunch drive to the ruins of Drukgyel Dzong. Explore the ramparts and on a clear day experience an unforgettable view of Mt. Jumolhari. Drive back to visit Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the holiest and oldest monasteries in Bhutan. Later visit a traditional Bhutanese Farm House.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation:  Hotel

DAY

3

Paro sightseeing, hike to Takshang Monastery

We visit the spectacular Takshang Monastery; Takshang’ literally means Tiger’s Nest. Lunch at Takshang Cafeteria. Later visit Rimpong Dzong. It is the venue for the famous Paro Tsechu festival held annually in the spring. Continue to walk down through the traditional cantilever wooden bridge to Paro town Visit Kyichu Lhakhang one of the holiest and oldest monasteries in Bhutan. Finally, Taa Dzong, formerly a watch tower but now houses the National Museum.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Hotel

Walk: 2-3 hours

DAY

4

Thimphu sightseeing and transfer to Punakha

Full day sightseeing of Thimphu: Memorial Chorten, Changangkha Monastery, Zilukha Nunnery, National Library, Folk Heritage Museum, Zorig Chosum (Painting School), Post & Telegraph Office, Takkin (national animal) Preservation Center, Sangyegang view point, Buddha’s Point, Handicrafts Emporium, Bhutanese handmade paper factory and Tashichhodzong.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Hotel

DAY

5

Punakha sightseeing and transfer to Bumthang

Side trip to Everest view point.

After early breakfast we make our way to Punakha Dzong, which looks like a ship between two rivers, than visit Khamsum Yule Monastery. Continue sightseeing in the afternoon; Chimmi Lhakhang, a temple of fertility which is regarded as a pilgrimage site for barren couple. Drive further to Wangduephodrang to visit town and drive to Bumthang.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Hotel

DAY

6

Bumthang sightseeing and Jambay Lhakhang/Domkhar Festival

Full day sightseeing: Jakar Dzong, Jambay Lhakhang Monastery, Kurjee

Lhakhang Monastery, Thamsing and Kencho Sum Lhakhan Monastery, Swiss Farm, Bumthang sheep farm, Dairy farm & Juice factory.

 

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Hotel

DAY

7

Trek start to Ngang Lhakhang

Our trek begins at Duer Chhu. Crossing suspension bridge and a carving of Lord Buddha on the rock beyond the bridge and pass through Bumthang Chhu(River) along government animal husbandry office and Thankabi Goemba. Follow the left bank of Bumthang Chhu over Tibetan-style Chorten surrounded by prayer flags and a further steep climb, you will reach Ngang Lhakhang. There are two water-driven prayer wheels around the camp site. Distance is 12 km.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Camp

Walk: 4-5 hours

DAY

8

Trek to Tahung

Beyond Ngang Lhankhang the trail takes you through more level area and thick forest of bamboo, forming sunless and cold. After several climbing and descending you will reach the camping site at Tahung. Distance is 16 km.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Camp

Walk: 6 hours

DAY

9

Trek finish to Mesithang

The trekking route leads downstream next to the river, sometime on the road, and sometime on the footpath, to reach Tang Valley at an altitude of 2640 meters. We move down to Mesithang, which is 2 km south of Tang. Distance is 16 km. Your vehicle will be at Mesithang to receive you and drive to the hotel.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation:  Hotel

Walk: 5-6 hours

DAY

10

Transfer to Thimphu

Early breakfast and drive back to Thimphu. Rest of the day is free.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Hotel

DAY

11

Departure to Kathmandu, explore the city

Fly back to Kathmandu. Afternoon we start exploring the city including the 2,000 years old Buddhist shrine of Swyambhunath known as “Monkey Temple” because there’s a ton of monkeys around there; the colourful Durbar Square; Patan city – which is the most iconic place in the Buddhist history.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Hotel

DAY

12

Fly back home, taking with you the memory of a lifetime

Meals: Breakfast

Additional Nights and Extensions

Tour Facts

Trip Cost Includes

  • Accommodation on twin sharing basis in standard hotel in Bhutan
  • Accommodation on twin sharing basis in standard hotel in Kathmandu with breakfast
  • Kathmandu-Paro-Kathmandu flight with taxes
  • All meals and mineral water in Bhutan
  • Airport transfers and land transportation by private vehicle
  • English speaking guide
  • Entry fees for sightseeing
  • Government royalty and all applicable taxes
  • Visa fee in Bhutan
  • On trek full service with support crew, tents with mat on twin sharing basis, pack animal with the crew to carry your personal equipment

Trip Cost Doesn't Include

  • International flight ticket
  • Riding horse during trek
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Laundry, telephone or anything of personal nature
  • Visa fee in Nepal
  • Travel insurance
  • Emergency evacuation cost
  • Tips for trekking crew, guide and driver
  • Sleeping bag on trek

Meals

We provide full board in Bhutan, breakfast in Kathmandu

Meals available are most palatable to the taste of western tourists; a varieties of Continental, Indian, Chinese, and local cuisine are available. Set meals for travellers tend to be on the bland side, because local food is heavily seasoned with red chillies and can be quite hot.

On trek cooking crew provide high carbohydrate meals. The breakfast consists of porridge/cereals, fresh fruits, sausages/bacon, toast, butter and jam, eggs, juice and tea/coffee. Lunch is normally hot meal which is a choice of vegetable cutlet/sandwich/boiled potato, chicken roast/beef roast, boiled eggs, noodle, choice of fresh fruits, soft drink. We provide 3 course meals for dinner, starting with soup and finishing with sweet with tea/coffee.

In cities we have our meals at restaurant or hotel chosen by tour leader.

There are usually Continental, Indian, Chinese and Bhutanese dishes. The food in hotels is often the best in town, but in main towns now there are few restaurants increasingly becoming popular. Both vegetarian and non- vegetarian dishes are available all over the places. Most popular being pork, beef, chicken, fish and local seasonal vegetables.

Even though the locals drink water straight from the tap, we suggest visitors to drink only bottled water. On trek, we provide boiled and filtered water.

Accommodation

One of the most essential components of a great holiday is accommodation. At FrozenGround, we make it a top priority to use quality and character accommodation whenever it is possible. Accommodation can vary by destination and the types of holidays.

Hotel

We are accommodating in 3 & 4-star category hotels.  Standard of all accommodations that we use for our guests are approved for tourist stay by the Tourism Council of Bhutan. All hotels and lodges are built in traditional architectural style and are offered with traditional Bhutanese food with a mix of western cuisines.

Tent

This trip includes accommodation in tent, for which we will provide the necessary equipment’s, such as two-person tents; however, you will need to bring your own sleeping bag. You also will not have to cook on any of our tours.

Single supplement

Our holidays are operated on a twin-share basis. That means that cost is based on either sharing the accommodation with other member of the group of same sex or people who book together. However single supplement and private trip are available. Please note that some remote area single supplement not possible. Please contact us for further details.

Date and Price

Available Tour Dates

If these dates don’t suit you get in touch and we arrange your own departure.

General Info

Equipment/Gears

The following is fairly exhaustive list of what you should pack for the trip: trekking trousers, waterproof and windproof over trousers/rain pants, thermal base layer shirts, casual shirt and/or T-shirts, fleece jacket, waterproof and windproof jacket, warm jacket (down), sunhat, warm hat, sunglasses, warm gloves or mittens, head torch with spare batteries, sun protector, toiletries, antibacterial hand wash, small towel, shampoo.

For trekkers comfortable high altitude tents of good quality standards are provided with foam mats. You should bring your sleeping bags which should be 4-seasons down bags as the temperature will decrease especially at 4,000 m camp sites.

Trekking pole is not essential, but can be useful on the challenging ascent and descent. Good pair of boots are one of the most important on the gear list. You need to make sure that your boots are braked in before trek.

What you Carry

While you are trekking you only have to carry a backpack with water, snacks, extra socks, waterproof light jacket and your camera. After you have packed for your trek, you can leave the rest of your belongings with our representative. This must be maximum 15 kg which will be moved by yak or horse.

What to Wear

Due to wide range of temperature and climatic conditions, it is advisable to bring appropriate clothing. For protection against cold, layered clothing is better than a few thick ones. Warm clothing is recommended; and except for summer months, down jackets and woollen sweaters and socks, raincoat are suggested. In summer, heavy cottons and lightweight woollens will be acceptable.

While visiting temples and other religious institutions shoulders must be covered. Longer length skirts are more appropriate for women and slacks are more appropriate for men. Shoes must be removed when entering temples.

First Aid

A medical kit will accompany each group. You should also bring your own personal first aid kit, which should include the following: broad spectrum antibiotic, antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, Diamox (altitude), diarrhoea treatment (Imodium) painkillers, plasters and blister treatment, Insect repellent (DEET), and re-hydration salts (Dioralyte).

Vaccinations

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements to enter Nepal or Bhutan. However, you may at your own concern, wish to take immunisation against certain preventable diseases which are the following: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A and Malaria.

Altitude

Most of our trips to Himalaya go to high altitudes where there is a risk of being affected by Acute Mountain Sickness. Our itineraries are designed for good acclimatization as we are following the “climb high, sleep low” rule. It is important that you familiarise yourself with the signs and symptoms of altitude sickness and that you report any illness to your guide immediately. However, you don’t need to scare of travelling to high altitudes if you are following the simple rules and procedure of preventing altitude sickness.

If you would like to find out more about the effects of altitude and the best preventative measures, then please visit:

http://www .altitude.org/altitude_sickness.php

Visa

You will need visas for Bhutan and Nepal. Make sure your passport valid for at least 6 months at the time of entry into these counties.

Nepal

You can get a tourist visa upon arrival at the airport in Kathmandu. You must fill in an application form and provide two passport photographs at the customs. Nepal entry Visa fee (US$ 40 for 30 days and US$ 25 for 15 days) must be paid in cash at the custom.

Bhutan

FrozenGround will arrange your visa which has to be processed through our registered Bhutanese agent before travelling to Bhutan. A copy of visa clearance letter will be issued and forwarded to you through email; you will be able to board the flight to Bhutan with this clearance letter from your respective airport. The actual visa is stamped on arrival in Bhutan. You must carry the visa approval letter with you and you will be required to show this when checking in for your DRUK flight into Paro. Your passport must have at least 2 unused pages for visa stamp. We recommend taking 4 passport photos with you.

Weather

Bhutan is a rather small land mass to have such a varied climate, as well as four distinctly separate seasons, and that is generally due to its wide geographical variations. Bhutan’s entire southern region is tropical. In the west, the valleys of Wangduephodrang and Punakha have more of a semi-tropical climate and the winters tend to be cooler. The valleys of Lhuntse, Trashigang and Mongar in the east also share that same semi-tropical weather pattern. However, in Bumthang, Paro, Trongsa, and Thimpu, the climate is substantially harsher. They get torrential summer rain and heavy snowfall during the winters there. Winter in Bhutan starts around mid-November and can hang around until around mid-March. During that time, the weather is quite dry with temperatures during the day of about 16 to 18 degrees C and night-time temperatures way below zero. By mid-June, the monsoons generally arrive, bringing downpours mostly during the afternoon and evening. By the end of September, autumn starts, bringing pleasant weather for just about everybody until mid-November. This is an excellent time for trekking the deeper Himalayas.

Tour Leaders

All our tours are escorted by well trained, knowledgeable and English spoken guides who are certified by Tourism Council of Royal Government of Bhutan.

Group size

This holiday is guaranteed to run with minimum of 2 persons. The maximum group size is restricted to just 8 travellers which means clients not only get personalised service and support but also the opportunity to make some great new friends. Smaller group size also mean we minimise the impact on the environment we are exploring.

Vehicle and Safety

Comfortable surface transport is available in Bhutan, making journey in this mountainous terrain really pleasant. Latest model Japanese Toyota Cars, Land Cruisers, Hiace Buses and Coaster Buses are offered to our tourists depending upon the group size. Our experienced, courteous drivers are well trained and licensed by Department of Tourism and the Department of Motor Vehicles in safety and driving on mountainous terrain. Tourists are at ease riding in Bhutan Mountains. The transport and guide accompany the tourist right from arrival until departure.

Preparing Yourself Physically

Being properly physically prepared for trekking and its serious physical challenges is very important. First, assessing your own individual physical condition and training accordingly is a significant must. Basically, handling a rigorous trek will be much easier the more fit you are at the onset. For a training program that is well-rounded, be sure to include aerobic cross-fit training, hiking (at high altitudes if possible) and strength training.

Preparing Yourself Mentally

Making the hardest portions of your trek achievable could simply come down to mental stamina. Many trekkers tend to make the mistake of overlooking their mental preparation. Keeping a positive mind-set and never ignoring your body’s signals are significant considerations on your trek.

Additional Nights and Extensions