Bhutan is not an ordinary place, it has been the most loved country by tourists. Be its colorful culture or enigmatic mountain, the tourist places in Bhutan has always attracted tourists from across the world. The country of rolling hills and charming culture always exudes the charm that cannot be missed. Delightful people, dense forest, gigantic mountains and exclusive cuisine, always give a delightful experience
|PLACES COVERED||Paro – Thimphu – Punakha – Trongsa – Bumthang – Gangtey – Paro|
|DURATION OF TRIP||9 NIGHTS/10 DAYS|
|MINIMUM REQUIRED||2 PAX|
|ACCOMMODATION||BUDGET ACCOMMODATION/Premium On Demand|
|DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION||PICKUP Paro/DROP Paro|
|RETURN TIME||Approximately 6:30 PM/Depends on onward Journey|
|WEAR||Comfortable athletic clothing, sunscreen.|
DAY - 01 : Arrive Paro – Thimphu
On arrival at Paro airport, our tour representative will meet you to pick you up and transfer to your hotel. Check into your hotel in Thimphu. Free until lunchtime for some rest from early morning flight, refreshment and lunch. Afternoon, you can choose to visit any or all of the following places:-
Tachogang Lhakhang:- Tachogang Lhakhang is located in Paro district, on the way to Thimphu. It was founded by Thankthong Gyelpo after he experienced a vision of Guru Rimpochhe, Amitaba, and Avalokiteshvara near site. The caretakers today are said to be descendants of Thangtong Gyelpo. Inside the temple, one can see the masters relics, including his walking stick.
Tashichho Dzong:- The Tashichho Dzong is a Buddhist monastery cum fortress at the northern edge of Thimpu the capital city of Bhutan. The Dzong was built on the western bank of the river Wang Chu and has historically served at the seat of the DrukDesi or the Dharma Raja of Bhutan’s government. After the kings assumed power in 1907 this post was combined with that of the king and Thimphu severed as the summer capital of the kingdom before becoming the full-time capital of Bhutan.
Overnight at Thimphu.
DAY - 02 : Thimphu
After the breakfast we will drive to the following places:
Kuensel Phodrang:- The Kuensel Phodrang or the Buddha point is the world’s largest sitting Buddha statue, the statue is 167 feet high. The statue is situated on top of a hill overlooking the city of Thimphu, it can be accessed by road and is about 15 minutes away from the city’s center. The word Kuensel means everything is clear and from this place, you will surely enjoy a great view of the Thimphu Valley on both sides. The statute will house a temple inside it, the statue and its adjoining car park and recreational center.
National Memorial Chorten:- The National Memorial was built by Bhutan’s third king, H.M. Jigme Dorji Wangchuck who is also known as the “father of modern Bhutan.” He wanted to erect a monument carrying the message of world peace and prosperity. However, he was unable to give shape to his idea in his lifetime due to pressures of state and other regal responsibilities.
Motithang Takin Preserve:- The Motithang Takin Preserve also known as the Thimphu Zoo by many is a small natural preserve for the Takin Bhutan’s national animal. It was originally a mini zoo, but it was converted in a preserve later on as the Takin. The mini zoo contained a small number of Takin but the King of Bhutan later decreed that it was improper for a Buddhist nation to keep an animal in captivity.
Overnight in a hotel in Thimphu.
DAY 03 :- DAY - 03 : Thimphu – Punakha
Post early breakfast, you will drive towards Punakha via Dochula Pass.
Dochula Pass:- We will stop over for tea at Dochula (3,100 m), where on a sunny day, you can get stunning views of the Himalayan ranges. The Dochu La Pass is probably the best-known mountain pass in Bhutan. Located at an altitude of 3150 meters above sea level, the Dochu La Pass is about 30 kilometers away from the capital city Thimphu and the road to Punakha. On a clear day, the pass offers visitors a spectacular view of the majestic eastern Himalayan Ranges.
Punakha Dzong:- The Punakha Dzong or the Pungtang Dechen Phortang Dzong is located at the confluence of the Mo Chhu and the Po Chhu River, combine to form the Puna Tsang Chu which in turn is a tributary of the mighty Brahmaputra River. The Dzhong was constructed by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal Wangchuck in 1638.
Overnight in a hotel in Punakha.
DAY 04 :- Punakha - Trongsa
After an early breakfast, we will be driving down to Trongsa. Admire the view en route the valley of Wangdiphodrang. We will drive to:
ChimmiLhakhang to start with. The ChimiLhakang or theChimelLhakang is a Buddhist monastery located in the Punakha District of Bhutan. The monastery stands on a small hill close to the village of Lobesa and was constructed in 1499 by NgawangChoegyel, the 14thDrukpaheirarch. You might be shocked to see that the temple houses a number of wooden phalluses that the Lama had brought with him from Tibet. Pilgrims who visit the monastery receive the blessing by being struck on the head with a ten inch wooden Phallus (erect penis). The symbol of an erect penis is said to ward off evil.
Chendebji Chorten:- Located 2 kilometers away from the village of Chendebji is the ChendebjiChorten, a large Buddhist Stupa. The ChendebjiChorten is a large white structure built in likeness to the famous BodhunathStupa located in Kathmandu in Nepal.
The Chorten was constructed by Lama Shinda from Tibet in the 19th century AD. The Stupa is believed to have been constructed at a spot where an evil spirit was subdued by the Lama.
Trongsa Dzong:-The Trongsa Dzong or the Cheokhor Rabdentse is one of the largest and most impressive Dzong in Bhutan. The Dzong is located on a cliff overlooking the Mangde Chu river gorge. The Dzong was built at the site of a temple that was constructed in 1543, by a Drukpa Lama. This huge multi-level fortress comprises of a series of courtyards and passageways that are built along the topography of the ridge.
Overnight in a hotel in Trongsa.
DAY 05 :- Trongsa – Bumthang
After morning breakfast, we will drive towards Bumthang and visit:
Jakar Dzong:- The Jakar Dzong is situated above the Jakar village in the Chamkhar valley of Bumthang. The Dzhong was originally a site of a monastery that was being constructed at the time of Lama Ngagi Wangchuck’s visit to Bhutan. According to legend during the construction of the Dzong, a white bird emerged from the structure and perched itself on the site. In Bhutanese culture, a white bird is considered to be auspicious.
Jambay Lhakhang:- Jambay Lhakhang was built by King Srongsen Gampo of Tibet in 659 AD. The temple was blessed by Guru Rimpoche during his visit to Bumthang. It is said that Guru Rimpoche was the one who brought Buddhism to Bhutan. It was renovated by Sindhu Raja after Guru Rimpoche restored his life with his magical powers. Many believe that there is a natural lake under the temple in which Guru Rimpoche took refuge on several occasions.
Kurjey Lhakhang:- The Kurjey Lhakhang is a monastery located in the Bumthang Valley of Bhutan. The Kurjey Lhakhang Temple Complex is a 30-minute hike from the Jambay Lhakhang temple. According to legend Sandhu Raja, the King of Bumthang was very ill and invited Guru Rinpoche the founder of Buddhism in Bhutan to give him a cure for his ailment.
Namkhe nyingpo goemba:- Namkhe Nyingpo Goemba is located on a hill just east of the town of Jakar, the administrative center of the Bumthang district. The monastery was established in 1970 and is home to about 300 monks who are learning about the Nyingampa Buddhism.
Overnight in a hotel in Bumthang.
DAY 06 :- Bumthang – Gangtey
After breakfast, you will drive to Gangtey and visit Gangtey Goemba.
The Gangtey Monastery or the Gangtey Goempa:- is an important monastery/temple associated with the Nyingmapa school of Buddhism. The Monastery is Located in the Wandue Phodrang Dzhongkhag in central Bhutan. The Gangtey Monastery is situated in the picturesque Phobjikha Valley, which is also renowned for being the winter home of the rare Tibetan Black Necked Cranes. The monastery was established in 1613 by Peling Gyalse Rinpoche, the grandson of Trenton Pema Lingpa the great treasurer discoverer.
Phobjikha valley:- The Phobjikha is a wide glacial valley located close to the Gangtey Monastery. The Phobjikha valley is the winter home of the rare Black Necked Cranes that migrate from Tibet from the arid plains of Tibet to roost in the more comfortable climate of the Phobjikha Valley. The valley is at an altitude of 2900 meters above sea level and experiences a much lighter winter as compared to the harsh extremes of Tibet.
Overnight in a hotel in Gangtey.
DAY 07 :- Gangtay - Paro
After early morning breakfast, you will drive to Paro and on the way, we will visit:-
Simtokha Dzong:- The Simtokha Dzong is a small Dzong located approximately 5 kilometers south of Thimphu. The Dzong is officially called the Sangak Zabhon Phodrang which roughly translates to the Palace of the Profound Meaning of Secret Mantras. The Simthoka Dzong is said to be the first fortress to have been built by the legendary Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in Bhutan. Later drive to Paro, and after lunch,h we will visit.
Overnight in a hotel in Paro
DAY 08 :- Paro
After early morning breakfast, we will take you for a morning hike up to
Taktsang Monastery: Taktsang Monastery is also known as ‘Tiger’s Nest’. Hanging precariously and magically from a rather steep cliff, the Taktshang monastery is a monument of genuine pride for the Bhutanese nation. It defies architectural principles to the core and amazes tourists from around the world. It is a sight to behold.
Kyichu Lhakhang:- The Jowo Temple of Kyichu is one of the oldest temples in Bhutan. The temple was built by the Tibetan King Songsten Gampo in the 7th Century AD. The Kyichu Lhakhang was one of the 108 temples constructed by him to subdue a demon that was terrorizing the people of the Himalayas.
The Lhakhang underwent many extensions during the ages with the last one being carried out in 1965 by the Queen Mother Ashi Kezang Choden Wangchuck.
DAY 09 :- Paro
After a breakfast we will visit the following places:
Dumtse lhakang:- The Dumtse Lhakhang Temple is located just north of the city of Paro. The Dumtse Lhakhang temple is very unique in its design as it’s designed like a Chorten (Stupa), which is highly unlike any guide other Lhakhang / temple in Bhutan. The Temple was built in the 1443 AD by Thantong Gyalpo, known as the iron bridge builder in Bhutanese legend. The Dumatse Lhakhang is built over 3 levels that represent the 3 spiritual realms of earth i.e. Hell, Earth and Heaven. The walls of the Dumtse Lhakhang are decorated in beautiful hand-painted murals that depict these 3 realms of earth.
To visit the Dumtse Lhakhang tourists require a special permit that has to be obtained in advance, we recommend that you ask your Bhutan Travel Agent to apply for the same if you wish to visit the temple before you depart from your home country. Another thing that BhutanTravelAgency.com recommends is that you must carry a flashlight with you while visiting the temple. The inner reaches of the temple are very dark and only illuminated by a few butter lamps and the odd small window.
Rimpung Dzhong:-The Paro Dzhong is probably Bhutan’s best known and most iconic Dzhong. This is probably the first building you will notice when you land at Paro International Airport and will probably be your first memory of Bhutan.
The imposing Dzhong is perhaps the finest example of Dzhong architecture existing the world today, the massive buttered walls of the fortress dominate over the valley. The Rinpung Dzhong’s names translate to the ” Fortress on a heap of Jewels “.
In evening we will visit the local market of Paro and overnight in a hotel in Paro.
DAY 10 :- Paro
In the morning after early breakfast, we will see you off at the Paro Airport for your onward destinations.
PRICES BASED ON BUDGET ACCOMMODATION FOR UPGRADE PLEASE EMAIL
Services are included in the price:-
- A safe and comfortable air-conditioned Car with driver, all-inclusive. (Fuel, road and state taxes, toll fees, parking fees, Insurance for Customer & Driver and driver’s food and lodging).
- The car will be with you from your arrival to departure with as many stops to sight see as you want.
- A Driver with excellent skills and record, a good knowledge of the area you are visiting and sufficient English to communicate.
- Transfers and land transportation according to the itinerary.
- Accommodation Double or Twin rooms with Bed and Breakfast at all hotels.
- Sightseeing Tours in All Cities as per the above tour plan.
PRICES BASED ON BUDGET ACCOMMODATION FOR UPGRADE PLEASE EMAIL
Services are not included in the prices:-
- Tips, laundry, telephone bills, luggage handling and Beverages.
- Meals unless specified: Lunch or dinner
- Entrances tickets to Monuments
All foreign nationals entering India are required to possess a valid international travel document in the form of a national passport with a valid visa obtained from an Indian Mission or Post abroad.
All Individual visa seekers are requested to apply for the Indian Visa through Online application link , in order to make an application for getting the Indian visa.
The duly signed physical copy of the application form completed in all respect and submitted successfully, is to be submitted at the concerned Indian Visa Application Center (IVAC) or directly to Indian Mission/ Post, on the scheduled date of interview along with the requisite supporting documents. The instructions for filling the form and scheduling the appointment can be seen at Instructions for Online Visa Application. Important technical information for filling online Indian visa application can be referred at Technical Instructions.
The applicants are also requested to visit website of the Indian Mission concerned for detailed information about Indian visa.
ONLINE VISA APPLICATION
All Individual visa seekers are requested to apply for the Indian Visa through online application link. Or can apply by typing the URL: http://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/ in the address bar of web browser, in order to make an application for getting the Indian visa. In either case, no hand written application form will be accepted by any of the Indian Mission/ Post, where-ever online Visa facility has been implemented. The application form completed in all respect and submitted succesfully, is to be submitted at the concerned Indian Visa Application Center (IVAC) or directly to Indian Mission/ Post in absence of IVAC, on the scheduled date of interview along with the requisite supporting documents. The instructions for filling the form and scheduling the appointment can be refered at Instructions for Online Visa Application. Important technical information for filling online Indian visa application can be referred at Technical Instructions. If you have already applied online for Indian Visa online and want to know the status of your application,
Government of India issues the following visas: Business Visa, Conference Visa, Diplomatic Visa, Employment Visa, Emergency Visa, Entry Visa, Journalist Visa, Medical Visa, Missionaries Visa, Permit to re-enter within 2 months, Research Visa, Student Visa, Tourist Visa, Transit Visa. Please follow the link for details on Visa Provision and supporting documents
VISA PROCESSING TIME
Upon receipt of the Visa Application through Indian Visa Application Center or directly, the Indian Mission/ Post requires a minimum of three working days to process the case and issue a visa depending upon the nationality and excluding special cases.
Online India Visa Application allows the Applicant to upload a digital photograph of self to complete the online visa application.
Guidelines/procedure to upload a digital photograph
The digital photograph to be uploaded along with the Visa application should meet the following requirements:
Format – JPEG
Minimum 10 KB
Maximum 300 KB
The height and width of the Photo must be equal.
Photo should present Full face, front view, eyes open.
Center head within frame and present full head from top of hair to bottom of chin.
Background should be plain light colored or white background.
No shadows on the face or on the background.
Make sure that photo presents full head from top of hair to bottom of chin. Head should measure 1 inch to 1-3/8 inches (25mm to 35mm). Make sure eye height is between 1-1/8 inches to 1-3.
FEE FOR INDIAN VISA
The visa fee depends upon the type of applied for and duration of visa. Visa fee is divided into various types depending upon the case viz; Basic fee, special fee, processing fee by out-sourcing agency. During the online registration process, at the end of the process the basic fee shall be displayed. However, this fee shall be indicative only and final fee shall be charged while submitting the application at the respective counters Fee once received are non-refundable even if the visa application is withdrawn, the visa is not granted, or if visa issued is of shorter duration of period than applied for or otherwise issued or returned at a time or on terms and conditions that may vary from those sought by the applicant. For further information on this, please check with local embassy office or Indian Visa Application center office or websites for information on applicable fee and payment methods.
|Sl. No.||Type of Visa||Period for which granted||Entry – Single (S), Multiple (M), Double||Documents required with application||Extendable in India|
|2||Transit||15 days||S/ Double||Return/ onward journey ticket||No|
|3||Business||5 years||M||Documents to prove bonafide purpose (Company’s letter etc.)||Yes|
|4||Employment||1 year/ period of contract||M||Proof of employment (appointment document), terms and conditions||Yes|
|5||Student||Period of course/ 5 years||M||Proof of admission in Indian Institution||Yes|
|6||Foreigners of Indian Origin||5 years||M||Proof of being of Indian Origin||Yes|
- Online application form:
This application form is meant for those foreigners who are applying for visa from outside India.
Each online application form is meant for one person only. Separate application has to be filed for each applicant.
Furnish information exactly in the manner asked for in the forms, especially the names, address and date of birth.
Applicants are required to verify the application details before submitting the online application. They have an option to save the online application form, in case it is not to be submitted.
Once the online application form is submitted by the applicant, then further modifications are not allowed. Hence applicants are requested to check and validate the details before submitting the online application form.
Applicants are requested to keep the Application Id (generated automatically after the submission of online form) for further communications.
- Appointment Scheduling:
Applicant can schedule the appointment as per his/ her convenience with the concerned Indian Mission.
Each applicant to schedule a separate appointment with the Indian Mission
- Process for filling up online application form:
Applicant shall access the Visa Application system online through the following link: http://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/.
Applicant visits the above mentioned web link and selects the Indian Mission from where he intends to apply for the Visa from the tab “Select Mission”.
Applicant fills the application on-line as per the forms standardized by the Ministry.
After filling the form and submitting it, the system shall automatically generate a Application Id. Applicants are requested to keep this Application Id for further communications with the concerned Indian Mission.
System will automatically ask the Applicant for the following confirmation: “Select ‘Yes’ if the applicant want to seek appointment and make payment online or ‘No’ if the applicant just want to print the submitted application form.”
If the applicant response is “No”, then it is requested by the applicant to take the print out of the submitted online application form and approach the concerned Indian Mission for submission of the online form along with supporting documents.
If the response from applicant is “yes” then the system automatically takes the link to perform the following:
Selection of Date and Time of appointment at the concerned Indian Mission
Calculation of Visa fee, service charge, VAT etc. as applicable according to the Visa type
E Payment using service provider’s payment system
In case the facility of Appointment Scheduling and e-Payment is not available for the concerned Indian mission, then applicant has to take the printout of the online application form and visit the concerned Indian Mission to submit the same along with supporting documents and make the payment.
Indian Culture: Traditions and Customs of India
India’s culture is among the world,s oldest; civilization in India began about 4,500 years ago. Many sources describe it as “Sa Prathama Sanskrati Vishvavara” — the first and the supreme culture in the world, according to the All World Gayatri Pariwar (AWGP) organization.
Western societies did not always see the culture of India very favorably, according to Christina De Rossi, an anthropologist at Barnet and Southgate College in London. Early anthropologists once considered culture as an evolutionary process, and ”every aspect of human development was seen as driven by evolution,” she told Live Science. “In this view, societies outside of Europe or North America, or societies that did not follow the European or Western way of life, were considered primitive and culturally inferior. Essentially this included all the colonized countries and people, such as African countries, India, and the Far East.”.
However, Indians made significant advances in architecture (Taj Mahal), mathematics (the invention of zero) and medicine (Ayurveda). Today, India is a very diverse country, with more than 1.2 billion people, according to the CIA World Factbook, making it the second most populous nation after China. Different regions have their own distinct cultures. Language, religion, food and the arts are just some of the various aspects of Indian culture. Here is a brief overview of the culture of India.
India has 28 states and seven territories, according to the World Health Organization. There is no official language in India, according to a Gujarat High Court ruling in 2010. Many people living in India also write in Devanagari script. In fact, it is a misconception that the majority of people in India speak Hindi. Though many people speak Hindi in India, 59 percent of India residents speak something other than Hindi, according to The Times of India. Bengali, Telugu, Marathi, Tamil and Urdu are some other languages spoken in the country.
India is identified as the birthplace of Hinduism and Buddhism, the third and fourth largest religions. About 84 percent of the population identifies as Hindu, according to the “Handbook of Research on Development and Religion” Edited by Matthew Clarke (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2013). There are many variations of Hinduism, and four predominant sects — Shaiva, Vaishnava, Shakteya and Smarta.
About 13 percent of Indians are Muslim, making it one of the largest Islamic nations in the world. Christians and Sikhs make up a small percentage of the population, and there are even fewer Buddhists and Jains, according to the “Handbook.”
When the Moghul Empire invaded during the sixteenth century, they left a significant mark on the Indian cuisine, according to Texas A&M University. Indian cuisine is also influenced by many other countries. It is known for its large assortment of dishes and its liberal use of herbs and spices. Cooking styles vary from region to region.
Wheat, Basmati rice and pulses with chana (Bengal gram) are important staples of the Indian diet. The food is rich with curries and spices, including ginger, coriander, cardamom, turmeric, dried hot peppers, and cinnamon, among others. Chutneys — thick condiments and spreads made from assorted fruits and vegetables such as tamarind and tomatoes and mint, cilantro and other herbs — are used generously in Indian cooking.
Many Hindus are vegetarians, but lamb and chicken are common in main dishes for non-vegetarians. The Guardian reports that between 20 percent and 40 percent of India’s population is vegetarian.
Much of Indian food is eaten with fingers or bread used as utensils. There is a wide array of breads served with meals, including naan, a leavened, oven-baked flatbread, and bhatoora, a fried, fluffy flatbread common in North India and eaten with chickpea curry.
Architecture and art
The most well-known example of Indian architecture is the Taj Mahal, built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan to honor his third wife, Mumtaz Mahal. It combines elements from Islamic, Persian, Ottoman Turkish and Indian architectural styles. India also has many ancient temples.
India is well known for its film industry, which is often referred to as Bollywood. The country’s movie history began in 1896 when the Lumière brothers demonstrated the art of cinema in Mumbai, according to the Golden Globes. Today, the films are known for their elaborate singing and dancing.
Indian dance, music and theater traditions span back more than 2,000 years, according to Nilima Bhadbhade, author of “Contract Law in India” (Kluwer Law International, 2010). The major classical dance traditions — Bharata Natyam, Kathak, Odissi, Manipuri, Kuchipudi, Mohiniattam and Kathakali — draw on themes from mythology and literature and have rigid presentation rules.
Indian clothing is closely identified with the colorful silk saris worn by many of the country’s women. The traditional clothing for men is the dhoti, an unstitched piece of cloth that is tied around the waist and legs. Men also wear a kurta, a loose shirt that is worn about knee-length. For special occasions, men wear a sherwani, which is a long coat that is buttoned up to the collar and down to the knees. The Nehru jacket is a shorter version of a sherwani.
Customs and celebrations
The country celebrates Republic Day (Jan. 26), Independence Day (Aug. 15) and Mahatma Gandhi’s Birthday (Oct. 2). Diwali is the largest and most important holiday to India, according to National Geographic. It is a five-day festival known as the festival of lights because of the lights lit during the celebration to symbolize the inner light that protects them from spiritual darkness. Holi, the festival of colors, also called the festival of love, is popular in the spring.
India is situated in Southern Asia, bordering the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal, between Burma and Pakistan.
The climate in India varies from a tropical monsoon climate in the south to a temperate climate in the north. If you are thinking of Visiting Delhi (the capital of India) then best to visit it in October, November, February and March. That’s when the nights are cool and the days are filled with a little sunshine. May, June and July are very hot with temperatures over 45 degrees (113 Fahrenheit). It is a dry heat and is sometimes accompanied by dusty desert winds. Most of the rain falls between July and September but they are not the tropical rains you’ll experience in India’s coastal cities.