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Chomolhari Trek-12 days

A distant view of Lingshi Dzong amidst amazing Bhutanese landscape A distant view of Lingshi Dzong amidst amazing Bhutanese landscape Mt. Chomolhari Mt. Chomolhari Mt. Jichu Drake Mt. Jichu Drake

Trip Introduction

Chomolhari Trek is one of the most popular high altitude treks of Bhutan. The trek begins and ends in Paro where we also visit the famous Taktsang(Tiger’s Nest) Monastery. While trekking in the beautiful Bhutanese countryside, we get to enjoy the amazing Bhutanese landscape and get acquainted with its rich culture. During our trek, we also cross a few passes and are rewarded with amazing views of the Himalayas including Jichu Drake (6,989m) and Chomolhari (7,513m). Finally, we tour Thimpu, the capital city and end our trip with a drive to Paro.

Important Note :
Your safety is of paramount concern while traveling with Himalayan Glacier. Please note that your leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Every effort will be made to keep to the above itinerary; however, since this adventure entails travelling in remote mountainous regions, we cannot guarantee that we will not deviate from it. Weather conditions, health condition of a group member, unexpected natural disasters, etc., can all contribute to changes in the itinerary. The leader will try to ensure that the trip runs according to plan, but please be prepared to be flexible if required.

Trip Cost

1-2 people: USD 4070 per person

3-12 people: USD 3520 per person

What Is Included

  • Bhutanese visa fee
  • Pickup and drops from airport and hotel
  • All meals, tea and snacks
  • Government approved A and B category hotels on twin-sharing basis
  • Full board camping
  • English-speaking, trained and experienced guide and local staff
  • All tours as per the itinerary
  • All necessary government taxes and permits
  • Porter and pack animals for the trekking
  • Trekking equipments like 2-men sleeping tents, dining tents, kitchen tents, toilet tents, and sleeping mats

What Is Not Included

  • Airfare for international flights to and from Bhutan
  • Items of personal nature (personal gear, telephone calls, beverages, internet, laundry, etc.)
  • Trip cancellation and medical/evacuation insurance
  • Tips for staff

Accommodations

Hotels in Bhutan are approved and classified by the government as grade A, B and C. These government approved hotels are equivalent to 3-4 star hotels elsewhere. Based on availability at the time of booking, A grade hotels will be provided in Paro and Thimphu. We use Hotel Tashi Namgay Resort in Paro , Hotel Migmar in Thimpu and tent/camping during the trekking. All accommodations are on a twin-shared basis. Single supplement will be served on request and will cost USD 210.

Meals

All meals (full board) will be made available on the trip. A variety of meals are available in most hotels – the most popular being Indian, Chinese, and the more common continental food. Non-vegetarian dishes are generally available in most parts of Bhutan - pork, beef, chicken, and fish. The best advice is to ask the hotel and restaurant to recommend what is fresh and in season.

Altitude Chart

Day to Day Itinerary

Day 01:  Arrival and Sightseeing in Paro (2,250m/7,382ft)

As our flight nears Bhutan we can enjoy amazing views of the Himalayas including the sacred Jumolhari and Jichu Drake peaks. At the airport, we will be greeted by a representative from Himalayan Glacier who will take us to our hotel. Today, we will visit Rinpung Dzong which was built in 1646 and now houses the district Monastic Body and government administrative offices of Paro Dzongkhag. We will also visit Kichu Lhakhang, the oldest temple in the country and Drugyal Dzong, built in 1646 to commemorate Bhutan's victory over Tibetan invaders during the 1600s. Overnight in Paro. 

Day 02:  Hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery (3,180m/10,433ft) then return to Paro

After breakfast, we hike for around 2 hours to Taktsang (Tiger's Nest) Monastery, which is Bhutan's most famous monastery. Guru Rinpoche (spiritual master) is said to have flown on the back of a tigress to meditate in a cave where Taktsang Monastery now stands. Lunch will be served in the Cafeteria Restaurant, located about halfway up on the mountain. The monastery is perched on the edge of a steep cliff, about 900 meters above Paro Valley. After having explored the monastery, we hike down to the valley floor. Overnight in paro.

Day 03:  Trek starts Paro to Shana (2,850m/9,348ft): 15 km, 5 - 6 hours

The trek starts from Drugyal Dzong at 2,580m with a downhill walk on a wide trail. We then climb gently through well-maintained rice terraces and fields of millet. The route later enters an area of apple orchards and forests. Soon the valley widens and we reach the army post of Gunitsawa at 2,810m. This is the last stop before Tibet. At 2,870m, just beyond Shana Zampa, there are several good camping places in meadows surrounded by trees. Camp at an altitude of 2,850m.

Day 04:  Shana to Sio Thangthangkha (3,750m/12,300 ft): 20 km, 7 - 8 hours 

The trail follows Pa Chhu (Paro River), ascending and descending through pine, oak and spruce forests. Hot lunch will be served after crossing a bridge towards the left side of the river. After lunch, we follow the river, climb up through rhododendron forests and finally cross another bridge and reach our campsite at an altitude of 3,750m.

Day 05:  Sio Thangthangkha to Jangothang (4,040m/13,250 ft): 19 km, 7 - 8 hours

Our path ascends for a while until the army camp. Then, it follows the river above the tree line where we get to enjoy stunning views of the surrounding peaks. Hot lunch will be served inside a yak herder's camp. A short walk into the valley will take us to the camp at Jangothang at an altitude of 4,040m. From here, the views of Mt. Chomolhari and Jichu Drake are superb.

Day 06:  Rest day at Jangothang Base Camp

Today, we rest and acclimatize for next day's trek. After breakfast, we take a 4-hour trip to the northern side of our camp from where we get beautiful view of the Jichu Drake Peak. We have a picnic lunch on the way. This trip will help us with acclimatization and if we are lucky we may even encounter grazing yaks and blue sheeps which makes this trip all the more amazing.

Day 07:  Jangothang to Lingshi (4,000m/13,120ft): 18 km, 7 - 8 hours

The trail follows a stream for half an hour and crosses the bridge to the right. We ascend a ridge and acquire breathtaking views of Chomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tshering Gang from the top. Then we walk towards the valley, almost flat for a while, until the climb to the Ngye La pass (4,870m/15,970ft). After crossing the pass, it is a gradual descent to the Lingshi camp. Along the way, we enjoy panoramic view of the peaks and Lingshi Dzong. Camp at an altitude of 4,000m.

Day 08:  Lingshi to Shodu  (4,100m/13,450ft): 22km, 8 - 9 hours

The Laya Gasa route leaves the Chomolhari trek here. Instead, the route climbs towards a small white Chorten on a ridge above the camp, then turns south up the deep Mo Chhu valley. The trail stays on the west side of the largely treeless valley, climbing steadily a short distance above Mo Chhu. It then crosses the river, and climbs steeply for two hours to Yeli La pass (4,820m/15,810ft). From the pass, we see Chomolhari, Gangchen Ta, Tshering Gang and Masang Gang. We then descend alongside a stream to a shelter, and then further downstream to camp at Shodu (4,100m).

Day 09:  Shodu to Barshong  (3,600m/11,810ft): 16km, 6 - 7 hours

Our trail follows the Thimpu River, descending through rhododendron, juniper and other alpine forests. The view of the cliff-facing rocks and waterfalls is stunning. Hot lunches will be served by the riverside. After lunch we continue with our walk as the trail gradually ascends to the ruins of Barshong Dzong. Finally, we end today’s walk by camping at an altitude of 3,600m.

Day 10:  Barshong to Dolam Kencho (3,600m/11,810ft): 15km, 5 - 6 hours

The trail descends gently through dense rhododendron, birch and conifer forests. We then descend on a steep trail to meet Thimphu Chhu River. Our trail stays on the left side of the river, climbing over ridges and descending to side streams. We then cross a steep cliff to Dolam Kencho, a camp located beautifully amidst pasturelands at an altitude of 3,600m.

Day 11:  Dolam Kencho to Dodena toThimphu (2,350m /7,710ft): 8km, 3 - 4 hours: Trek ends

We walk from Dolam Kencho to Dodena then drive to Thimpu. Today, we ascend around 500m and descend around 930m. Our trail passes through forests, winding up and down through a small pass. After continuing in the southern direction we reach Dodena. From here we drive to Thimpu. In the evening, we may stroll through the streets of the capital city and get acquainted with the local lifestyle. Overnight in Thimphu.

Day 12:  Final Departure

Druk Air generally departs in the early morning to avoid adverse weather conditions. Therefore, we will be driven to the airport in Paro after breakfast.

Health and Experience Requirements

Trekking in Bhutan is physically demanding because of the distance and abrupt changes in elevation. Depending on the day of the trek, you will have to walk for an average of 3-5 hours covering a distance of around 10-15 kilometers daily to reach the campsites. Most of the climbs run through deep forests on rocky trails and sometimes the trails traverses through wet mud where you need agility to hop between round river stones. But if you have experience walking long distances with a back pack and you do not have history of knee pains on descents, it should not be difficult for you.

Travel Insurance

It is a condition upon joining any of Himalayan Glacier's trips that all clients be insured for comprehensive expenses that might incur due to medical issues or accidents (this includes air ambulance, helicopter rescue, and treatment costs). Please note that we don't arrange or sell insurance.For more information

Equipment and Packing List

While packing for Chomolhari Trek certain equipments are essential. Please Click here for this trip's comprehensive checklist.

Best Season

Spring (April and May) and autumn (October to November) are the best time to visit Bhutan.

Trip Start Dates and Price

Check available trip start dates and price for Chomolhari Trek

Additional Information

Our website contains as much information as possible about this trip. However, if you wish to discuss any aspect of this trip or your suitability for it please contact us.
Trip Facts

Price From

$ 4070 USD

Trip Code

HGTBT-081
  • Activities: Trekking and Hiking
  • Trip Duration:12 Days
  • Trip Grade:Moderate 
  • Altitude:4,820m/15,810 ft
  • Accommodation: Standard hotels and camps
  • Meals:All meals
  • Transportation: Private vehicles
  • Group Size: Maximum of 12 people
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