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Welcome to Bhutan and the start of your incredible adventure with On the Go Tours! Upon your arrival into Paro's international airport you will be met by our local representative and transferred to your hotel for check in. After some tea and snacks visit the 7th century Kitchu Lhakhang (the oldest temple in the Kingdom) built by the Tibetan King Songtsen Gompo. Drive on to Paro Dzong the seat of the local Monk Body, the Civil Administration and the Judiciary.
Taktshang Pelphung monastery, or Tiger's Nest as it is often referred to, is one of the most venerated and famous of Bhutan's monasteries. It is located on the face of a sheer 900m cliff above the floor of Paro valley. Today take a scenic hike to view this spectacular and unmissable sight! The monastery is only accessible on foot or you can ride a pony part of the way (this must be arranged in advance by your guide). After a full day exploring the monastery and the surrounding area, return back to Paro for overnight.
It is rather an easy hike today for you to acclimatize to the altitude and the terrain of Druk Path. Distance covered will be about 7 KM and Jele Dzong is at about 9500 feet. Camping area will be in the beautiful meadows. It is the last part of the year to do camping in the mountains amongst so much of wild alpine flowers. Within a few days all the flowers will be destroyed by frost.
The trek today takes you through thick alpine and rhododendron forests. Distance covered today will be about 10 km and will remain almost on the same altitude of 9500 feet. On the route and around your camp you might meet up with yak herder camps.
It is a beautiful trail along the ridge and if it is a clear day, one will get to view all the high snow capped mountains of Bhutan. Distance covered today will be about 12km and your camp will be at about 11000 feet. The camp is usually near the Jemi Langtsho (“tsho” means lake/ocean/sea) The Bhutanese people believe that this lake is a very holy site. One will get to see some trout in the lake.
The trail climbs from the lake to the ridge which is about 13,000 feet. You will pass the Janey Tsho to camp at Simkota Tso at around 13,300 feet. Today's distance covered will be about 11km.
Today's route is one of the best views one get on the Bhutanese Himalayas, but we will need to start early as we would be walking and extra 1 hour for skipping the Phajoding camp. From the peak it is all downhill to Motithang. It is only about 1 ½ hour walk down hill. You will be picked up at Motithang by our transport. Check into Hotel Phuntsho Pelri in the city centre. After time to freshen up after your trek you can either stroll into the city or go do some site seeing. Evening at Hotel Phuntsho Pelri.
Today will be spent in the courtyards of the Tashichhoe Dzong where you can witness the mask dances, popularly known as Cham dances, that are performed during the four-day Tsechu Festival. It is a religious folk dance form of Drukpa Buddhism, which was established in 1670. Tsechus are a series of dances performed by monks and also trained dance troupes to honour the deeds of Padmasambahva alias Guru Rinpoche. They are also social events when people turn up in their best attire, with women particularly bejeweled, and large numbers witness the ritual dances and also absorb the religious teachings on Buddhism.
Today’s full day of sightseeing in Thimphu valley includes the National Library which has a vast collection of ancient Buddhist texts and manuscripts, and the Thimpu Painting School, famous for traditional thangkha paintings. The Traditional Medicine Institute is where the rich herbal medicines abundant in the Kingdom are prepared. Memorial Chorten is the beautiful stupa built in the memory of Bhutan’s third King. The paintings and statues inside the monument provide a deep insight into Buddhist philosophy. Trashichhodzong, the beautiful fortress/monastery, which houses the Secretariate building, is also the summer residence of Chief Abbot. To see a wide assortment of beautifully hand-woven and crafted products, visit the Handicrafts Emporium.
Departing Thimphu this morning we make our way back to Paro with a stop at the Simtokha Dzong, the oldest fortress of the Kingdom which now houses the School for religious and cultural studies. Upon arrival into Paro, check in to your hotel with the remainder of the evening at leisure.
Today marks the end of your adventure with On the Go Tours. After breakfast and hotel check out we will transfer you to the airport for your onward departure flight. End of services.