4 Day/3 Night Sample Itinerary

Itinerary Highlights

  • Taktsang Monastery (Tiger’s Nest)
  • Historic monasteries & dzongs
  • Takin Preserve center
  • Great Buddha Dordenma statue
  • Enjoy delicious Bhutanese food
  • Exploration of Bhutan’s culture and arts
Cost [based on standard three-star hotel]: $899

Cost [based on four-star hotel]: $1099

Cost [based on five-star accommodation]: Please contact us for details

These per-person costs are based on private groups of 3 people are more; single or couple travelers will incur a small added fee. Please see Pricing page for details. 

The Tour Cost Includes…

  • All Meals [Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner], tea, and coffee
  • Accommodation [twin/double share]
  • All private transportation within the country, including airport transfers.
  • Royalty & Government taxes
  • Entrance fees for Museums and Monuments
  • English speaking Local guide
  • Sightseeing

The Tour Cost Does Not Include…

  • Flights to and from Bhutan
  • Visa fee ($40 USD)
  • Travel Insurance 
  • Payments for services provided on a personal basis
  • Personal expense items (laundry, bottled water and soft drinks, camera charges at sites, etc)
  • Incidentals, tips to hotel staff, driver, & guide [see FAQ for suggested amounts]
  • Bank transfer fee from USA to Bhutan ($45 USD)



Day 1: Arrive at Paro*

Welcome to Paro! You will be received by the Representative at the airport and drive to Thimphu (~1 hour drive, 7610 feet/2320m). On the way, view Tamchog Monastery built by Thangthong Gyalpo in the 15th century. He built 108 bridges across Tibet and Bhutan, out of which 8 were built in Bhutan. His only surviving bridge is in Duksum (Tashi Yangtse in Eastern Bhutan).

After lunch, visit Memorial Chorten, a monument dedicated to the Third King of Bhutan, the late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck. The paintings and statues here provide a very rare insight into Buddhist Philosophy. Other highlights include the Changangkha Monastery, Takin Preserve center and Sangay Gang viewpoint, and Tashichho Dzong.

Dinner and overnight in Hotel Sernya or similar. www.hotelsernya.com  

*Activities on this day are dependent on an on-time morning arrival to Paro airport.


Day 2:  Thimphu to Paro

After breakfast, you’ll visit one of the largest Buddha statues in the world, the Buddha Dordenma, an impressive 169 feet (52 meters), perched high on a hill over Thimpu. You’ll also explore the National Library, which holds a vast collection of ancient Buddhist manuscripts. We’ll follow that up with a visit to a painting school and the Folk Heritage Museum. We’ll take a 1-hour drive back to Paro and eat lunch there.

After lunch, visit the Ta Dzong, an ancient watchtower and the national museum of Bhutan. We’ll then explore Rimpung Dzong (Paro Dzong) built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. The Dzong presently houses administrative offices. In the evening you can visit a traditional Bhutanese farmhouse.

Dinner and overnight in Tashi Namgay Resort or similar. www.tashinamgayresort.com


Day 3: Paro

After an early breakfast, we’ll visit the Drukgyel Dzong, now in ruins. This dzong was built by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal to commemorate the victory over the Tibetan invaders in 1644; the dzong name’s means indeed “ victorious Druk.” Afterward, we’ll discover Kyichu Lhakhang, one of Bhutan’s oldest and most sacred monasteries dating from the introduction of Buddhism in the 8th century. This monastery is said to hold the left knee of an Ogress down to the earth, pinned in by a total of 108 temples (6 of which are in Bhutan).

From there we’ll visit one of the most iconic scenes of Bhutan: Tiger’s Nest. You’ll enjoy a visit to Taktsang Monastery, also known as Tiger’s Nest Monastery. A short drive from town takes us to the trail, which climbs through a beautiful pine forest. We’ll stop for a rest and light refreshments at the Taktsang Jakhang (cafeteria) and then walk a short distance until we see, clearly and seemingly within reach, Taktsang monastery. This incredible monastery clings to the edge of a sheer rock cliff that plunges 900 meters into the valley below. Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava, the tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan in 747 AD, flew here on the back of a flying tiger. Unfortunately, we don’t have any flying tigers for rent today!

Dinner and overnight in Tashi Namgay Resort or similar. www.tashinamgayresort.com

Day 4. Departure

Bid farewell to Bhutan and start recounting your fond memories of this magical country! Today you’ll get an early start and take a short drive to the Paro Airport. We’ll see you next time!

What is a Takin?

The takin is the national animal of Bhutan. Although more closely related to the goat, it is more similar physically to the muskox. On this tour you'll visit the Motithang Takin Preserve in Thimpu to see these gorgeous beasts in person!

The takin has a rich Bhutanese mythology dating to the 15th century.  A Tibetan saint by the name Drukpa Kunley (aka, “The Divine Madman”) is credited with creating the takin with unique features.  The people of Bhutan requested that Drukpa Kunley perform a miracle before them. The saint agreed to do so provided he was fed for lunch: a whole cow and a whole goat. Once served, he devoured the food of both animals and left out the bones. He then took out the head of the goat and fixed it to the skeleton of the cow—with a snap, he created a live animal!

Traditional Dress

One of the most distinctive features of the Bhutanese is their traditional dress. Men wear the Gho, a knee-length robe somewhat resembling a kimono that is tied at the waist by a traditional belt known as Kera. The pouch which forms at the front traditionally was used for carrying food bowls and a small dagger. The modern Bhutanese man tends to use it these days for his cell phone and wallet!

Women wear the Kira, a long, ankle-length dress accompanied by a light outer jacket known as a Tego, with an inner layer known as a Wonju. Both styles are modeled above by His Majesty King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Queen Jetsun Pema.

(photo courtesy of the Queen's Facebook page)