Date: 1-3 March, 2023
Punakha Tsechu is one of the popular festivals. It's held right after Punakha Drubchen. The main attraction of this festival is the unfurling of the largest Thongdrol(Large Applique) in the country. It is 83 by 93 feet and it took 2 years to complete by 51 artists.
This trip will cover popular districts in western Bhutan. Will have 2 nights in Paro, 2 Nights in Thimphu and 2 Nights in Punakha. Its also a mix of cultural and historical sights that will include National Museum and Ringpung Dzong in Paro, Tashichodzong, Memorial chorten, big buddha in Thimphu. In Punakha will visit Majestic Punakha Dzong and Temple of fertility. Will also have hike to the most popular Tigers Nest Monastery in Paro, also hike to Khamsum Yuelley Namgyel Chorten in Punakha.
Will spend a day or half according to your interest at the festival place.
You will be received by our people at the airport. Then will drive to Ta Dzong (watch tower) which was converted to National Museum in 1969 by the third king. And also from there will have a view of Paro Rinpung Dzong. which serves as Paro district head office as well as a monastic community.
After that will drive to Thimphu. On way will stop at Tamcho to see 15th Century Iron Chain Bridge. Evening can stroll in Thimphu market.
Night Halt: Thimphu
After breakfast will visit National Memorial Chorten which was built by Her majesty Ashi Phuntsho Choden in memory of her late son His majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuk ("the father of modern Bhutan") the third king of Bhutan. Then will drive to Kuenselphodrang to see Buddha Statue which is one of the biggest sitting Buddha in the world measuring 169 feet tall. After that will do a short Chang-Sel hike which starts from buddha point and ends in Changankha. Its an easy hike and will take 2 hours plus. Then will visit Takin Preserve where you will find Takin, the National animal of Bhutan and it is native to only Himalayas and also the endangered species. Followed by Royal Textile Academy, Textile Museum. Followed by Bhutan Post if you want to make some personalize stamps. Then will visit Tashicho Dzongthe beautiful fortress which houses most of the Government's office and King's Throne room. It is also the summer residence of Central Monastic Bsody and Je Khenpo, the Chief Abbot of monastic body. Evening we can stroll around in Thimphu town.
Night Halt: Thimphu
After breakfast will drive to Punakha. Will stop at Dochula Pass to see 108 stupa and also you will be able to see eastern Himalayas if weather is good including the highest peak in the country Mt. Gangkar Puensum (7,541 m). On reaching Punakha will drive to Kabesa and then will hike to Khamsum Yuelley Namgyel Chorten which was constructed by Her Majesty Queen Mother Ashi Tshering Yangden which is dedicated to world Peace.
Night Halt: Punakha
After breakfast will visit Punakha Dzong which is one of the most majestic fortresses in the country which is located between 2 rivers, Mo chu(Female river) and Pho Chu (Male river). Today it is the winter residence of the Central monastic body and also serves as the administrative center of the Punakha district. Its here the festival will take place. Will participate in the festival with the locals. There will be various mask dances and cultural programs.After that if you want can walk to Suspension Bridge spend some time.
Night Halt: Punakha
After breakfast will drive to Sangchen Dorji Lhundrup Nunnery it's the place where the nuns study and from there you will have a beautiful view of Tobesa village. Then will drive to Chimi Lhakhangwhich was blessed by Lam Drukpa Kuenley who is also known as Devine Madman for his philosophy of "Salvation Through Sex". And its also known as Temple of Fertility.
After that will drive to Paro. On reaching Paro will check-in into a hotel and have rest.
Today after breakfast will drive to Taktshang Base and then will hike to Taktshang (Tiger's Nest) which is one of the most popular tourist site. Its the place blessed by Guru Padmasambhava in the 8th century, though the monastery was only constructed in 1692 by Desi Tenzin Rabgay. The hike will take on average 5 to 6 hours up and down.
In the evening will go for Farm Dinner and also if you want can try Traditional Hot Stone Bath.
Night Halt: Paro
Depending on the flight time will reach you to airport and seeoff.