Kingdom in The Himalayan – MNB - 1002

Duration: 08 Nights / 09 Days:

Destination covered: Kathmandu – Nagarkot – Paro – Thimphu – Punaka – Kathmandu

memorial chorten BhutanMemorial Chorten, Bhutan

Day 01: Arrival Kathmandu (D)
Arrive Kathmandu. Meet & greet upon arrival and transfer to hotel. Overnight in hotel.

Day 02: At Kathumandu (B L D)
After breakfast in hotel, we will proceed for Kathmandu City - Durbar Square complex of palaces, courtyards and temples, built between the 12th and 18th centuries, used to be the seat of the ancient Malla kings of Kathmandu. An intriguing piece here is the 17th century stone inscription set into the wall of the palace with writings in 15 la nguages. The Durbar Square, protected as a UNESCO as a world heritage site, is the social, religious and urban focal point of the city. There are also museums inside the palace building. Pashupatinath temple - One of the most sacred hindu shrines in the world, pashupatinath lies 5 Km east of the city center . The richly-ornamented pagoda houses the sacred linga, or phallic symbol, of Lord Shiva. Chronical indicates the temple's existence prior to 400 AD. Devotees can be seen taking ritual dips in the holy Bagmati river flowing beside the temple, also a World heritage site. Boudnath Stupa: lies about 6 km to the east of downtown Kathmandu and is the largest stupa in the valley. It looms 36 meters high and presenta one of the most fascinating specimens of stupa design. Boudhnath a world heritage, is also known as Khasti. There are more than 45 Buddhist monasteries in the area. Lunch and dinner serve in hotel. Overnight in hotel.

Day 03: Kathmandu - Nagarkot via tour of Bhaktapur(BLD)
Morning visit Bungamati and Khokana is two beautiful little Newar villages that still have their age-old character intact. The compact villages consist of rows of brick houses with intricately carved wooden windows lining the quaint streets which are paved with flagstones. The residents of Bungamati socialize in the streets, using the pavements to winnow grain or dry their laundry. People sit in the sun outside their doorways to massage their babies, weave mats out of straw or spin wool.

Bungamati is where Red Machhendranath, the God of Rain, spends his winter months before being brought to Patan for the choriot festival in summer. The diety is also known as Bunga-dya, or the God of Bunga. The diety is carried on a palanquin to his winter residence, a tradition that has been countinuing since the 16th century. But once every 12 years, he is pulled in a chariot all the way to Bungamati across the Nakhu rive rfrom Patan. The shrine is a large open square with a 10m shikara temple in the middle.

Khokana is a smaller village with a wide main street which was built after the earthquake of 1934. In the middle of the main street is Silali Mai, Khokana's local mother goddess. Khokana has long been famous as an oil pressing center where mustard seeds are pressed using traditional methods

After Lunch drive to Nagarkot via Tour of Bhaktapur City - As you walk in you cannot but be over come by a feeling of inner harmony. Such is the art and architecture and the special layout here. The 15th century palace of 55 windows, situated to the left as you enter through the city gate, inspire admiration. The National Art gallery is also housed inside. The Palace entrance, the golden gateis a masterpiece in repousse art. In front of the palace building is a medley of temples of various designs. Arrive N agarkot, check in to the hotel.

Nagarkot : Nagarkot is a hill resort 32 Km east of Kathmandu. The road passes through terraced fields and strutted houses. This route is also fun for mountain biking too. Nagarkot (altitude 2175m) is by far the most popular. Nagarkot has developed into favorite weekend getaway among these seeking mountain views in comfort and quiet. At sunrise, the Himalayan range, stretching from Daulagiri in the west all the way past Everest to Kanchenjunga in the east, emerges from the darkness to greet the happy visitor with its awe - inspiring majesty and beauty. Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Day 04: Nagarkot – Kathmandu (B L D)
After breakfast drive back to Kathmandu. Arrive Kathmandu and check in to the hotel and proceed for lunch. Afternoon proceed for sightseeing visit Patan City - Like its coun terpart in Kathmandu, is an enchanting mélange of palace buildings, artistic courtyard and former Royal palace complex is the center of Patan's religious and social life, and houses a museum containing an array of bronze statues and religious objects. One remarkable monument h ere is a 16th century temple dedicated to the Hindu go Krishna, built entirely of stone.and Swoyambhunath Stupa: watches over the valley from the top of a hillock on its western side. The stupa is one of the holiest Buddhist sites in Nepal and its establishment is linked to the creation of the Kahtmandu Valley out of a primordial lake. Swoyambhu is also known as Sengu and is listed as a World heritage site. Lunch & dinner serve in hotel. Overnight in at hotel.

Day 05: Kathmandu - Paro - Thimpu (B/L/D) By Flight
After breakfast transfer to airport to catch flight for Druk Air flight to Paro - paro is one of the most spectacular of all mountain flights. Whether flying along the Himalayan range from Kathmandu or over the foothills, each flight is a mesmerizing feat and offers exciting descent into the Kingdom. On arrival at the airport received by our representative and transfer to Thimphu (55 km, 2 hours), the modern capital town of Bhutan.

Afternoon, proceed to visit National Memorial Chorten: a monument for world peace and prosperity. The paintings and statues inside the monument provide a deep insight into Buddhist philosophy. Later visit Trashichhoedzong (opens until 4 pm): This impressive fortress/monastery houses Secretariat building, the throne room of His Majesty, the King and various government offices. It is also the summer residence of Chief Abbot and central monk body. Afterwards, drive to Buddha Point (Kuenselphodrang). You can pay your obeisance and offer prayers to the Buddha, the largest statue in the country and then walk around and take a glimpse of the valley. Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu (Altitude 2400m).

Day 06: Thimphu
Morning after breakfast, proceed for sightseeing visit National Library, which holds a vast collection of ancient Buddhist texts and manuscripts, some dating back several hundred years, as well as modern academic books mainly on Himalayan culture and religion: ( Closed on Weekends). Also visit nearby Institute for Zorig Chusum: Commonly known as Arts & Crafts School or Painting School (closed on Sat, Sun & Government Holidays), the Institute offers a six-year course on the 13 traditional arts and crafts of Bhutan. On a visit, one can see students learning the various skills taught at the school. Textile Museum: With the opening of Textile Museum, Bhutanese textile have reached new heights as one of the most visible distinct art form. ( Closed on Sundays)

In the afternoon in Thimphu visit Changangkha Lhakhang : It is a fortress like temple and monastic school perched on a ridge above Thimphu, south of Motithang. The temple was established in 12th century on a site chosen by Lama Phajo Drugom Shigpo, who came from Tibet. The central statue here is Chenrezig in a manifestation with 11 heads. From temple courtyard, there is fascinating view of Thimphu valley. Takin Sanctuary : The Takin is the national animal of Bhutan, and looks like a cross between a cow and a goat. Legend has it that the animal was created by the great Buddhist yogi, Drupa Kunley, and it can be found only in Bhutan and nearby areas. Taxonomists place the animal in a category of its own as it is not similar enough to any other animal to fit established categories.

Then, visit the government-run Handicrafts Emporium and local crafts bazaar, to browse through example of Bhutan's fine traditional arts. Here you can buy hand-woven textiles, thangkha paintings, masks, ceramics, slate and wood carvings, jewelry, interesting items made from local materials. Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu (Altitude 2400m).

Day 07: Thimphu / Paro (125 km, approx 4 hours drive)
Morning after breakfast drive to Paro: en route visit Simtokha Dzong. This dzong, built in 1627 is the oldest in Bhutan. It now houses the Institute for Language and Culture Studies. Upon arrival in Paro , check in at the Hotel .

In the afternoon in Paro visit Ta Dzong (CLOSED ON GOVT HOLIDAYS): once a watchtower, built to defend Rinpung Dzong during inter-valley wars of the 17th century, Ta Dzong was inaugurated as Bhutan's National Museum in 1968. It holds fascinating collection of art, relics, religious thangkha paintings and Bhutan's exquisite postage stamps. The museum circular shape augments its varied collection displayed over several floors

Afterwards, walk down a hillside trail to visit Rinpung Dzong, which has a long and fascinating history. Built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal , the first spiritual and temporal ruler of Bhutan, the Dzong houses the monastic body of Paro, the office of the Dzongda (district administrative head) and Thrimpon (judge) of Paro district. The approach to the Dzong is through a traditional covered bridge called Nemi Zam. A walk through the bridge, over a stone inlaid path, offers a good view of the architectural wonder of the Dzong as well as life around it. It is also the venue of Paro Tshechu, held once a year in the spring. Overnight at the hotel in Paro. (Altitude 2200m)

Day 08: Paro
Morning excursion to Taktshang Lhakhang ( approx 5 hrs walking excursion) : perched on the side of a cliff 900m above the Paro Valley floor , it is undoubtedly one of the most famous of Bhutan's monasteries. Lore has it that Guru Rinpoche arrived here on the back of a tigress and meditated at this monastery thus the name 'Tiger's Nest'. This site has been recognized as a most sacred place and visited by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal in 1646 and now visited by all Bhutanese at least once in their lifetime. On 19 April, 1998, a fire severely damaged the main structure of building but now this Bhutanese jewel has been restored to its original splendor.

On the drive towards Paro town en route visiting Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest monasteries of the Kingdom reflecting introduction of Buddhism in Bhutan. Dinner and Overnight at the hotel in Paro.

Day 08 : Depart Paro
After early breakfast at the hotel, drive to the airport for flight to your onward destination. Our representative will help you with exit formalities and then bid you farewell.

Book this tour