9D8N Grand Western Bhutan Tour

Package incl: Return economy airfares with taxes and fuel surcharges by Drukair as per itinerary, Airconditioned transport, 8 nights 3-4* accommodations (Twin Sharing), Daily Breakfast, Entrance Fees, English Speaking Guide, Tour & Meals as per itinerary.

*Prices are subject to changes based on travel dates and package requirements

PACKAGE ITINERARY 
DAY 1: SINGAPORE – THIMPHU
HOTEL: Galingkha Hotel or Dorji Elements or similar class

Get ready for your Bhutan Holiday! Your travel journey begins with a flight into this exotic country. Your flight to Paro will provide you a wonderful experience with a view of various high snow capped mountains of Bhutan and Mt. Everest on a clear day. Upon arrival at Paro, our representative will receive you at the Airport. Drive to Thimphu for 1 hour. After checking in at the hotel you could have rest for a while, and later walk around the city to see the life of urban Bhutan or the capital city. Overnight stay in Thimphu.

DAY 2: THIMPHU
HOTEL: Galingkha Hotel or Dorji Elements or similar class

2nd Day of your Bhutan Travel journey. After breakfast drive for half an hour (12 km) towards north of Thimphu valley and then you will have to hike for almost 2 hours to and fro.
Tango Goemba (monastery): Lama Gyalwa Lhanampa founded the monastery in the 12th century. The present building was built in the 15th century by the Divine Mad Man “Drukpa Kuenly”. In 1616 Shabdrung Nawang Namgyel visited Tango Goemba and meditated in a cave nearby. Today Tango is the residence of an important young Trulku (reincarnate lama) who is recognized as the 17th reincarnation of highly respected forth Desi, Gyalse Tenzin Rabgye, whose previous reincarnation passed away in 1830. Also at present the monastery serves as the prestigious Buddhist University for the monks of our state religion. You may also see some birds around this vicinity.
Visit the school of Arts and Crafts which was established to preserve and promote our age old practice. The students here are taught 13 different traditional arts and crafts. Visit the folk Heritage museum, to see the house of living traditions in some of the rural areas or the living house in olden days. Drive to Buddha point to see one of the largest statues of the Buddha in the world. And visit the Takins mini zoo to see the Takins which is the national animal of Bhutan. 
After lunch you can visit the Handicraft emporium for your souvenir shopping. Visit the Memorial stupa which was built in the memory of our beloved 3rd King in1974. Overnight halt at the hotel in Thimphu.

DAY 3: THIMPHU – PUNAKHA
HOTEL: Gongkhar Guest House, Yugarling Hotel, or similar

3rd Day of your Bhutan Tour. After breakfast drive to Punakha for 2 ½ hours with short stop at Dochula pass (3100 meters). If the weather is clear, you could have a superb view of the Bhutan’s Himalayas from the pass. Upon arrival in Punakha, check into the hotel first.  And have lunch in Punakha town and visit beautiful Punakha Dzong built in 1637 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. Based on the prophecy of Guru Padmasambava the dzong is situated between two famous rivers, Pho Chu (Male River) and Mo Chu (Female River). Punakha was also the capital of Bhutan until 1955. In the evening you can take an easy hike to Chhimi Lhakhang, or the Divine Mad Man’s Temple. Overnight halt stay at the hotel in Punakha. 

DAY 4: PUNAKHA – PHOBJIKHA
HOTEL: Dewachen Resort or Gakiling Hotel

4th Day of this Tour Package. After your breakfast drive to beautiful Phobjikha valley (similar to Tibet's Yarlung Valley). Phobjikha valley is a roosting place for the Black Necked Cranes in winter. Upon arrival at Phobjikha, visit the Crane Information Centre to see the cranes and take a leisure walk around the valley which will give you a warm feeling of rural Bhutan and the valley is beautiful because of its serenity. Overnight at the hotel. 

DAY 5: PHOBJIKHA – PARO FARMHOUSE STAY
HOTEL: Paro Farmhouse

5th Day of this Bhutan Trip. Drive back to Paro for 5 ½ hours with your lunch stop en-route. And then check-in at the farm house in Paro. You can take a compliment Hot Stone bath at the farmhouse. A Hot Stone Bath is normally taken for healing backache, joints and muscle pains too as the stone and herbs contains nutrients.  You can taste our traditional Butter tea with local homemade snacks, and taste Ara which is a distilled local wine. And then eat our most typical foods too. Overnight halt stay at the Farmhouse tonight. 

DAY 6: PARO – HAA
HOTEL: Rigsum Lodge or similar

On the 6th Day of this Bhutan Itinerary, we'll drive to Haa for 2 ½ hours with a short hike in and around Panoramic Chelela Pass (3980 meters). This is the highest motor-able mountain pass in Bhutan. You will see some high snow-capped peaks like the Jumolhari and Kanchenjunga in Sikkim as well as Paro and Haa valleys. This scenic Chelea Pass is similar to mountain passes (Gyatso La Pass, Geu La Pass, Dikpa La Pass, Dorma La Pass) in Tibet on the way to Tibet Everest Base Camp and Mount Kailash

You will then continue your drive towards Haa and visit the recently re-built Lhakhang Karpo. Haa Valley was just opened to tourist few years ago. Overnight stay at the hotel in Haa.

DAY 7 : HAA – PARO SIGHTSEEING
HOTEL: Tashi Namgay Resort or Mandala Resort or similar class

7th Day of this Tour Package. After your breakfast, drive back to Paro and check-in at your hotel in Paro. After lunch you will visit the National museum, the museum which houses numerous collections of arts and artifacts. This museum is also rated as one of the best museum in Asia. It was originally built in the 17th Century as a watch tower for the dzong below. So visit the Paro Ringpung dzong built in 1646 and now serves as head of the administration for Paro district.
After lunch, visit Kyichu monastery dating back to the 7th Century. This is one of the oldest monasteries in Bhutan built by Tibetan king Songtshen Gempo to pin down the ogress. You can stroll around the town in the evening for your last minute souvenirs shopping. Overnight stay in Paro.  

DAY 8 : PARO – TAKTSHANG HIKE
HOTEL: Tashi Namgay Resort or Mandala Resort or similar class

8th Day of this Tour. After your breakfast drive till the road end and begin your hike up hill. Walking time will be around 4 ½ hours for a round trip. Taktsang monastery is perched on the face of a cliff 800 Mts, above the Paro valley. It is a memorable spiritual journey. It was here that the great Tantric master, Guru Padmasambhava flew in from Tibet on the back of a flying tigress to propagate his teachings in Bhutan. If you cannot continue your hike inside the monastery, you can stop at the Cafeteria from where you can have a spectacular view of the Tiger’s Nest.  Lunch at the cafeteria or you will be served catering lunch from a restaurant. Overnight stay in Paro. 

DAY 9 : PARO – SINGAPORE

9th Day of this Package. Our guide and driver will drop you at the airport and bid you goodbye for your flight departure.

 

FLIGHT ITINERARY (TBA)
DEPARTURE FLIGHT 
DAY FLIGHT NO SECTOR ETD ETA
Thursday KB501 SINGAPORE (SIN) to KOLKATA (CCU) 0630 0830
Sunday   ******40 Minutes Layover in KOLKATA (CCU)******    
    KOLKATA (CCU) to PARO (PBH) 0910 1050
RETURN FLIGHTS 
DAY FLIGHT NO SECTOR ETD ETA
Wednesday
Saturday
KB500 PARO (PBH) to KOLKATA (CCU) 0750 0830
  ******40 Minutes Layover in KOLKATA (CCU)******  
  KOLKATA (CCU) to SINGAPORE (SIN) 0910 1610
**Flight Itinerary may be subjected to changes and availability.

 

FLIGHT ITINERARY (TBA)
DEPARTURE FLIGHT 
DAY FLIGHT NO SECTOR ETD ETA
Sunday
Tuesday
Thursday
KB501 SINGAPORE (SIN) to KOLKATA (CCU) 0630 0830
  ******40 Minutes Layover in KOLKATA (CCU)******    
  KOLKATA (CCU) to PARO (PBH) 0910 1050
RETURN FLIGHTS 
DAY FLIGHT NO SECTOR ETD ETA
Monday
Wednesday
Saturday
KB500 PARO (PBH) to KOLKATA (CCU) 0750 0830
  ***40 Minutes Layover in KOLKATA (CCU)***    
  KOLKATA (CCU) to SINGAPORE (SIN) 0910 1610
**Flight Itinerary may be subjected to changes and availability.

 

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS
Paro: Kyichu monastery, Taktsang monastery, Paro Ringpung dzong, National Museum
Thimphu: Tango Goemba, Buddha point, School of Arts and Crafts, Folk Heritage museum, Memorial Stupa, Takins Mini Zoo, Handicraft Emporium
Punakha: Dochula pass, Punakha town, Punakha Dzong, Chhimi Lhakhang
Phobjikha: Phobjikha valley, Hot Stone Bath, Farm House Stay
Haa: Chelela Pass, Lhakhang Karpo

 

BHUTAN TRAVEL TIPS
WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO TRAVEL TO BHUTAN??? Spring season starting from March to May is the best time to visit Bhutan. Towards the end of April and May, you will be able to enjoy the beautiful flowers at full bloom all around Bhutan. Take note that this is peak season for the hotels and tours so prices will be relatively higher. Autumn starting from September to November is also popular among tourists as the weather makes it a comfortable and perfect time to visit Bhutan. Festivals are usually ongoing during this season. The Summer months of May to August are considered the low season in Bhutan due to the monsoon season starting in mid-June but this is also the period where you will get the best rates. Take note that this period will be cloudier with higher chances of rainfall although, you could still try your luck with the low tariffs in early June before the monsoon sweeps in. To experience Bhutan winter and avoid the tourist crowd, travelling in the winter season between December and February could be for you. Amidst the cold weather, enjoy the clear blue skies with the Himalayas as the backdrop.
SHOULD I TAKE OUT TRAVEL INSURANCE BEFORE VISITING BHUTAN: We know that a lot of things can happen from the time you book your holiday to the actual travel date.So it would be good precaution to have travel insurance purchased once you have confirmed your travel plans with us. 
Click here to check out our discounted rates for TENET Traveljoy.
Click here to check out our discounted rates for ACE Insurance.
DO I NEED TO USE A TOUR OPERATOR TO BOOK MY TRAVEL? As advised by the Tourism Council of Bhutan, it is a government regulation that you must use a license Bhutanese Tour Operator to book your travel to Bhutan or one of their international partners. At Lokopoko we only source and work with the best and most reliable licensed operators to chaperone our guests.
WHAT TIME WILL I ARRIVE AT THE HOTEL? The flight from Singapore is usually scheduled to arrive in Bhutan in the late morning. However, on the first day, the tour will usually cover several attractions before arriving for check-in at the hotel. Usually, you should arrive at the hotel in the late afternoon / early evening. Of course, the exact arrival time would be subjected to the tour itinerary. As our packages are all based on private arrangement, it would depend on your individual itinerary. You can always request the guide to return back to the hotel earlier, if you have that preference. 
WHAT SHOULD I WEAR? A layered wardrobe would be recommmended for a destination like Bhutan where it could be sunny and rainy at the same moment. Because of the altitude, the UV rays tend to be stronger, hence, do bring along a good pair of sunglasses and generously apply on sun block. Good walking shoes or hiking shoes are a must even if hiking is not on your itinerary. In the Spring and Autumn season, do bring along good selection of warm clothes for layering on as the wind can be rather strong in the evenings. Bring along some mosquito repellent when travelling during the summer.
IS BHUTAN SAFE? Bhutan is one of the most peaceful countries and is perfectly safe to travel to. Crime rate is low and locals are friendly and helpful. Nevertheless, having said that, while travelling, it is always good to practice good travel sense and caution, store your valuables in a safe place and avoid walking alone in dark places.
WHAT KIND OF ELECTRIC OUTLET IS USED IN BHUTAN? Most, if not all, sockets use either 2 pins round plugs, 3 pins round plugs or a standard UK 3 pin flat plugs. The electric current is 220-240 volts. It is recommended to bring along a travel power plug adapter for convenience. 
WHAT FORM OF PAYMENT ARE ACCEPTED? The currency used in Bhutan is Ngultrum (Nu). Since the Ngultrum is pegged to the Indian Rupee, India Rupee is also widely accepted all over Bhutan. However, Indian Rupees in 500 and 1000 denominations are not acceptable. Credit cards can be used in international hotel chains but there is limited acceptability amongst the local market and handicraft establishments. 
DO I NEED A VISA?

All International tourists visiting Bhutan will require a visa. Lokopoko will arrange the visa for you upon confirmation of your booking with our Bhutanese partners. For Indian passport (or VIC) holders, Bangladeshi nationals and persons from the Maldives may obtain a visa on entry.

Tip: The same applies for going to Tibet. You'd need a Tibet Travel Permit on top a Chinese Visa in order to enter Tibet. And this travel permit can only be applied through a local Tibetan tour company (directly or indirectly). Lokopoko can also arrange this on your behalf.  

WHAT IS BHUTANESE FOOD LIKE? Two important ingredients in a Bhutanese meal is Chili and Rice. Chilies are the most essential condiment in a meal and most Bhutanese would not be able to go without having Chili in their meal. Spicy green chili with cheese sauce called emadatese is a National Bhutanese dish. Rice that is usually accompanied with side dishes of meat or vegetables is the staple main body in most meals. For guests that are usually selective with food, we recommend that they do bring along snacks or packed food as some of the meals may be too exotic for your liking. For bookings made with Lokopoko, we usually try to cater Asian style meals for our guests. Nevertheless, there will still be a couple of local meals for the guests to experience local Bhutanese cuisine. If you have a certain dietary restriction or requirement, please do inform us in advance, so that preparation can be done to ensure that your meals are taken care of when you are in Bhutan. 
WHAT HAPPENS UPON ARRIVAL AT THE AIRPORT? You will be met by our airport representative, holding a board with your name on it at the arrival area. They will then assist you with your luggage and escort you to the transportation. 
THINGS TO NOTE? Travellers should be cautious when planning their tours with the local Bhutanese operators as there are many operators out there but few with consistent in-flow of guests throughout the year. Also, beware of operators that are pricing tour packages at low rates of less than US$200 per day (low season) and US$250 per day (high season) as stipulated by the government Minimum Daily Package requirement. These operators usually manage the tour with lower earnings and compromise on the tour quality that they should offer. It is important that you travel with a reliable operator in a destination like Bhutan, as safety may be a cause for concern more often than not.
BHUTAN FACT SHEET Offical Country Name: Royal Kingdom of Bhutan
Capital: Thimphu
Population: 745,153 (2014)
Area: 38,394 sq km
Major Industries: Tourism, Agriculture, Hydro electric Power
Religion: Buddhist 75%, Hinduism 25%
Currency: Ngultrum (Nu) Click HERE for exchange rate.

 

HOTEL UPGRADES 
Please liaise with our consultants for hotel upgrades.
Per pax per night (SGD)
GROUP SIZE –  1 Pax  2 Pax   3 Pax < 
Amanresorts, Bhutan, Suite Room 2571 1210 1210
Uma Resorts, Paro, Superior Room 756 378 378
Taj Tashi Hotel, Thimphu, Deluxe Room 756 378 378
Termalinca Resort, Thimphu, Deluxe Room 454 227 227
Le Meridian, Thimphu, Classic Room 454 227 227
Zhiwaling Hotel, Paro, Junior Suite Room 409 212 182
Nak-Sel Boutique Hotel &Spa, Paro, *Superior Room 212 106 91
SINGAPORE (SIN) to KOLKATA (CCU)

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