IndiaTour - India with Bhutan Tour
Day 1: Arrive Delhi
Arrive Delhi, the capital city of India. After a traditional Indian welcome by Our Representattive , you will be escorted to your hotel for overnight stay.
Day 2: Fly from Delhi to Bagdogra / Drive to Darjeeling (95km / 3 hours) Darjeeling altitude: 2,225m
This morning, you will be transferred to the airport to board your flight to Bagdogra. Upon arrival at Bagdogra, drive to Darjeeling, often called ‘Queen of the Hills’, famous for its breathtaking views of snow-capped mountain peaks. Enjoy an evening at leisure at this picturesque town in the foothills of Eastern Himalayas.
Day 3: Day in Darjeeling
Today, enjoy an early morning excursion to Tiger Hill to view the spectacular sunrise over Mt. Kanchenjunga. The viewing tower here also provides unparalleled 360˚ views of the Himalayan panorama, Mt. Everest.
Return to hotel for breakfast. Then, board the century Old Toy Train to visit the Ghoom Monastery, located at the highest railway station of the world (subject to operation of the train & availability of the seats). This afternoon visit tea plantations in the foothills of Himalayas and Tibetan Refugee Centre (subject to seasonality and time availability).
Day 4: Darjeeling to Gangtok (100 km / 4 hours) Gangtok altitude: 1,500m
After breakfast, embark on a leisurely drive to Gangtok. Afternoon visit the Enchey monastery with its collection of exquisite images and religious objects.
Day 5: Day in Gangtok
After breakfast, proceed for a city tour of Gangtok which includes a visit to Cottage Industries Institute (showcasing the beautiful Sikkim souvenirs like carpets, hand carved tables and traditional handcrafts), Research Institute of Tibetology (internationally acclaimed centre of Tibetan Studies & Research houses a vast collection of rare Buddhist books, manuscripts and over 200 Buddhist icons) and Do-Drul Chorten (Stupa).
Later, take a short drive to Rumtek Dharma Chakra Centre and nearby Rumtek Monastery. Also enjoy magnificent view of Mt. Kanchenjunga, 3rd highest mountain peak in the world.
Day 6: Gangtok to Kalimpong (80 km / 3 hours) Kalimpong altitude: 1,250m
After breakfast, embark on a drive to Kalimpong, the beautiful hill town, which is a meeting point of the ‘three closed lands’ and was once on the trade route between Tibet, Nepal and Bhutan.
This afternoon enjoy a sightseeing tour of the town, including a visit to St. Theresa’s Church, Deola viewpoint & Lake, and the Kalimpong Bazaar. Kalimpong is known for its traditional handicrafts, woodcarvings, Thangkas paintings, metal crafts, Tibetan jewellery, wooden masks, etc.
Day 7: Kalimpong to Phuentsholing (185 km / 6 hours) Phuentsholing altitude: 250m
Today, enjoy a scenic cross border drive from India to Bhutan. Phuentsholing is a thriving commercial centre lying at the base of the Himalayan foothills in Bhutan. The town portrays a fascination mixture of Indian and Bhutanese people and cultures.
This evening, visit Zangtho Pelri Lhakhang, a small temple built in the centre in town. Later take a stroll around the town’s market area.
Day 8: Phuentsholing to Thimphu (180 km / 7 hours) Thimphu altitude: 2,400m
After breakfast, embark on a scenic drive to Thimphu. En-route, visit Kharbandi Gompa, the beautiful monastery situated in a garden of tropical plants and flowers. The monastery contains paintings depicting scenes from the life of Buddha and statues of Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal and Guru Rimpoche. Proceed further to Thimphu. This entire drive is very pleasant with numerious scenic spots on the way.
Day 9: Day in Thimphu
Today, enjoy discovering the serene and beautiful city of Thimphu, world’s only capital city without traffic lights. Visit Tashichho Dzong, the beautiful medieval fortress which houses most of the Government offices and the King’s throne room. Then visit the Folk Heritage and National Textile Museum and Bhutanese traditional handmade paper factory. Also visit the National Library, which houses a wonderful collection of Buddhist text and manuscripts. After lunch visit Handicrafts Emporium which offer a wide assortment of beautifully handcrafted products, including the splendid Thangkas paintings and exquisitely woven textiles for which Bhutan is famous. Also visit Arts & Crafts School, famous for traditional thangka paintings.
Day 10: Thimphu to Punakha (75 km / 3 hours) Punakha altitude: 1,350m
This morning embark on a short drive to Punakha, the erstwhile winter capital of Bhutan.
Enjoy the scenic drive through Dochu-la pass (3,140M) that heralds the most enchanting views of Bhutan. This afternoon visit Punakha Dzong dating back to the 17th century and the newly built Khamsum Yulley Namgyel Chorten.
Day 11: Punakha to Wangdue to Paro (145 km / 5 hours) Paro altitude: 2,250m
This morning, visit the magnificent structures of Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup Lhakhang (temple), perched on a ridge and overlooking valleys of Pinakha and Wangdue. The temple houses large statues crafted by local Bhutanese artisans and a permanent higher learning and meditation centre for nuns where, apart from religious trainings, skills training such as tailoring, embroidery, statue making, thangka painting is also provided. En-route, stop for a short visit to beautiful town of Wangdue (Wangdiphodrang), where we get the opportunity to visit local market. Later, continue drive to Paro, en-route viewing Simtokha Dzong, the oldest fortress in the Kingdom.
Day 12: Day in Paro
Early this morning, hike to Taktshang Monastery, popularly known as Tiger’s Nest, perched on a cliff, overlooking Paro Valley. Return trip hike takes approximately 5 hours; alternatively, you may ride a pony. This is one of the most sacred sites of Bhutan, visited by all Buddhists at least once in their lifetime. The climb is steep, so en-route you may stop for refreshments at a local cafeteria, located halfway up the trail overlooking ‘Tiger’s Nest’. Once we reach the Tiger’s Nest, enjoy the beautiful views and waterfall along with a visit to the monastery.
Then, we visit the ruins of Drukgyel Dzong, built in the 17th century to commemorate the Bhutanese victory over Tibetans. Nearby visit a traditional Bhutanese farm house which offers an insight into the everyday lifestyle of local people. Drive on to visit the temple of Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest and most sacred shrines of Bhutanm, built in the 7th century.
Day 13: Depart Paro
This morning, transfer to Paro airport, to catch your flight for onward destination.