Bhutan > Bhutan Tour Packages > Thunder Dragon
thunder-dragon

Overview

Archaeological evidence suggests Bhutan was inhabited possibly as early as 2000 BC. Buddhism was probably introduced in the 2nd century although traditionally its introduction is credited to the first visit of Guru Rinpoche in the 8th century. Guru Rinpoche is one of the most important figures in Bhutan 's history, regarded as the second Buddha.

Before the 16th century, numerous clans and noble families ruled in different valleys throughout Bhutan , quarrelling among them and with Tibet . This changed in 1616 with the arrival of Ngawang Namgyal, a monk of the Drukpa Kagyu school of Buddhism from Tibet . He taught throughout the region and soon established himself as the religious ruler of Bhutan with the title Shabdrung Rinpoche. He repelled attacks from rival lamas and Tibetan forces and transformed the southern valleys into a unified country called Druk Yul (Land of the Thunder Dragon). While the political system he established lasted until the beginning of the 20th century, the announcement of the Shabdrung's death in 1705 was followed by 200 years of internal conflict and political infighting.

Instability lasted until 1907 when Ugyen Wangchuck was elected, by a unanimous vote of Bhutan 's chiefs and principal lamas, as hereditary ruler of Bhutan . Thus the first king was crowned and the Wangchuck dynasty began. Over the following four decades, he and his heir, King Jigme Wangchuck, brought the entire country under the monarchy's direct control. Upon independence in 1947, India recognized Bhutan as a sovereign country.

The present monarch, Jigme Singye Wangchuck, has continued the policy of controlled development with particular focus on the preservation of the environment and Bhutan 's unique culture. Among his ideals is economic self-reliance and what has now become widely known as 'Gross National Happiness'. His coronation on 2 June 1974 was the first time the international media were allowed to enter the Kingdom, and marked Bhutan 's debut appearance on the world stage. The first group of paying tourists arrived later that year. In major political reform in June 1998, the king dissolved the Council of Ministers and announced that ministers formerly appointed by him would need to stand for open election. A rotating chairman fronts the resultant cabinet. In 1999 television and Internet were first introduced to Bhutan .

Details Itinerary

Day 01: Kathmandu - Paro
We will transfer you the Kathmandu airport to take the flight to Paro. On arrive at Paro Airport and after going through the immigration formalities, you will be received and transfer to the Resort. If time permits we will bring you for a short sightseeing Tour.
Overnight at hotel.

Day 02: Paro
After breakfast we will bring you to visit the ruined fortress of Drugyel dzong which still attracts visitors due to the strategic location of the fort. The fort defended the Paro valley from the Tibetan invasion from the north in the early 17th century. On clear weather Mount Chomolhari (7320m) can be seen towering over the dzong. Proceed through the beautiful valley to the watch tower or locally known as Ta-Dzong. It was housed into the National museum in the 1960s by the third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck. The seven floors museum highlights various aspects of Bhutanese culture and history dating back to the 7th century. We will take a short walk downhill to the Rinpung Dzong which serves as the administrative center and school for monks. We will walk further down crossing the traditional bridge into Paro Town . Stroll around the market and return to the resort.
Overnight at hotel.

Day 03: Paro - Thimpu
After breakfast we will drive to Thimphu (2 hours) upon arrival, we will check in to a hotel. In the afternoon we will visit the Memorial chorten built in the memory of the late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, 15 century Changangkha monastery, Motithang mini zoo to see the rare "Takin" national animal of Bhutan and drive further down with good view of the Thimphu valley. We will visit the new Drupthob nunnery temple and spent free time in the market.

Day 04: Thimpu - Wangduephodrang
In the morning we will visit the Painting school, National library, Royal goldsmith workshop and Handicraft centers. In the afternoon, we will drive 3 hours to Wangduephodrang, crossing the Dochula pass (3100m) from where on a fine weather day you will see the eastern Himalayan ranges including the highest mountain in Bhutan Mt. Gangar Punsum (7520m). We will further drive from the pass all the way downhill to the lower and warmer valleys of lobesa. We will visit the Dzong from outside and the market area.
Overnight at hotel.

Day 05: Wangduephodrang
We will bring you for a day excursion to the Gangtey Gompa valley (2800m), the only Nyingmapa monastery in western Bhutan . This beautiful valley is also home to the rare Black Necked Cranes migrating from the Tibetan plateau to escape the harsh winter. Currently there are 200 to 300 cranes residing in this valley and the Royal Society for Protection of Nature (RSPN) is taking every measure to ensure the safety of the Cranes. While the cranes reside in the winter valley for 4/5 months the village folks are not allowed to make loud noises or fish in the river that runs through the valley. We will explore the fascinating glacier valley and return to the Resort.
Overnight at hotel.

Day 06: Wangduephodrang - Thimpu - Paro
In the morning we will drive 45 minutes to Punakha and visit the Punakha Dzong, which serves as an old capital of Bhutan . This remarkable fortress is built between two rivers and has survived many glacial floods and fire. Every year during the month of February a procession, known as the Punakha Serda, takes place to commemorate the victory over the Tibetans. We will return drive to Thimpu (3 hours). After lunch we will further drive to Paro (2 hours) visiting the oldest building in Bhutan , the Simtokha Dzong. It now serves as a Buddhist university.
Overnight at hotel

Day 07:Paro - Kathmandu
After breakfast we will transfer you to the airport to catch flight back to Kathmandu .

Price Cover

Price includes:
Accommodation with meals, transfers and sightseeing with English Speaking Guide in non-ac vehicle & airfare Kathmandu - Paro - kathmandu.

Price does not include:
Airport departure taxes & Bar bill

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