Sightseeing, Trekking and Biking Tour in Bhutan - 13 Days

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Bike through scenic valleys, hike to Buddhist monasteries and immerse into the rich Bhutanese culture
Destination: Bhutan Trip Cost: $4520 USD
Group size: 1-12 people Max-Altitude: 3,770m/12,365ft
Fitness Level: Easy
Arrival on: Paro, Bhutan Departure from: Paro, Bhutan
Meals: All meals
Accommodation: Standard hotels and camping (tents)

Trip Introduction

The 'Sightseeing, Trekking and Biking Tour in Bhutan' is an adventure that takes us through rich coniferous forests, glacial lakes and beautiful passes up to the dizzying heights offering amazing views of snow-capped mountains. Experience the remarkable Bhutanese countryside via hiking, trekking and mountain biking all at one go. This tour also covers must-see cultural heartlands of Paro, Thimphu, Punakha,Trongsa and the widest valley of Bumthang. We visit Rinpung Dzong, Kichu Lhakhang temple and the National Museum in Paro then hike to the famous Taktsang (Tiger's Nest) Monastery the next day. On our 12-day Sightseeing, Trekking and Biking Tour in Bhutan we also tour Jele Dzong, Tashichho Dzong and others.

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. Overnight in Paro.
Day 02: Hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery then return to Paro
After breakfast, we hike for 4 -5 hours to Taktsang (Tiger's Nest) Monastery, which is Bhutan's most famous monastery situated at 3,180 meters. 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 the mountain. After having explored the monastery, we hike down to the valley floor and drive back to Paro. Overnight in Paro.
Day 03: Trek begins: Paro to Jele Dzong(3,480m/11,415ft): 10 km, 4-5 hours
First we will drive to the start of our trek to Jele Dzong. From there, we hike for a short while (around an hour) to the Dzong.  The trail ascends gently through a forest before reaching our campsite. Above the camp on top of the hill is Jele Dzong. From here, the Paro valley can be seen with snow-capped mountains as its back drop.  Built in the 15th century, Jele Dzong is mostly in ruins but there is a Lhakhang (Buddhist temple) with the statute of Buddha Sakyamuni.  Overnight camping.
Day 04: Jele Dzong to Jangchulakha (3,770m/12,365ft): 10 km, 3-4 hours
Today we embark on about 2 hours of trekking. We begin with a gradual ascent (310m) then descend (50m). The trail passes through thick alpine and rhododendron forests and reaches Jangchulakha.  We still walk for some time and arrive at the campsite, which offers scenic views of the amazing landscape below. Overnight camping.
Day 05: Jangchulakha to Jimilangtsho, then to Langrithang (3500m/ 11482ft): 15km, 4-5 hours
After a short climb, our trail follows a ridge. On a clear day, the views of Mt. Chomolhari and other Himalayan ranges are sensational. Our trail climbs further up for a little while before reaching the Jimilangtsho Lake at 3700m where we have lunch. Then we descend through fir and rhododendron forests and reach Langrithang where we spend the night. Overnight camping.
Day 06: Trek to Tsaluna, drive to Thimphu (2,320m/7,610ft), Trek ends: 11km, 4 hours trek
We walk through fir and rhododendrons forests following a stream and arrive at Tsaluna Monastery (sacred site of Guru Rinpoche from 8th century).  Further down, we reach Tsaluna Village, where we can see beautiful farms. We continue walking for a while then drive to Thimphu. In the evening, we can stroll through the streets of Thimphu and get acquainted with the local lifestyle. Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 07: Thimphu to Punakha (1,250m/4,100ft): 76 km, 2-3 hours

After breakfast, we enjoy the scenic drive to Punakha with a stop for tea at Dochu La Pass (3,100 meters), where on a clear day we get spectacular views of the Himalayas. From the pass, we drive downhill through rhododendron, fir and hemlock forests. We then pass through rice fields along river banks and reach Punakha. After lunch, we visit Punakha Dzong. Built between 1637-1638, it is the second oldest and the second largest dzong in Bhutan. Overnight in Punakha.

Biking Option: Downhill from Dochula Pass to Punakha valley and round Punakha valley including to and fro 12 km north till Gasa-Damji road head.
Day 08: Punakha to Trongsa (2180m/7150ft): 146Km, 4 hours

Our plan today is to reach Trongsa, the ancestral home of the royal family. The route is along a spectacular winding road, crossing 3,300-meter-high Pele La pass. On the way we get to admire grazing yaks and the general splendor of the Bhutanese landscape. Lunch will be served at Chendebji which has a Chorten built in the Nepalese style with eyes painted at four cardinal points. We check-in to our hotel on arrival. In the evening, we can browse through the Trongsa shops and town. Overnight in Trongsa.

Biking option: The drop from Pele La Pass to Trongsa, a distance of 70km is said to be the longest downhill stretch in the world.
Day 09: Trongsa to Bumthang (2580m/8465ft): 68km, 2 hours

In the morning we visit Trongsa Dzong, a masterpiece of Bhutanese architecture. We also tour the Ta Dzong which is a watchtower built to defend this Dzong. We then proceed to Bumthang, the religious heartland of Bhutan. It is a beautiful town with lush valleys and forests. Along the way we stop at a yathra (textile weaving) factory at Chumey, where the yathras are designed with patterns unique to Bumthang. Here, we can even watch some of the weavers at their looms. Check-in to our hotel on arrival. In the afternoon, we can spend the time as per our wish. Overnight hotel in Bumthang. 

Biking option: Ride downhill from Yotong La Pass (3,425m) to Getsa. From Getsa we can bike along the valley till Jakar.
Day 10: Sightseeing in Bumthang

Today's sightseeing includes Jakar Dzong, the administrative center of the valley; Jambey Lhakhang, one of the oldest monasteries in Bhutan, dating back to the introduction of Buddhism in Bhutan; and Kurje Lhakhang, a sacred place where Guru Rinpoche is believed to have left his body imprint on the cave when he was meditating.  After the tour, we have lunch then visit Tamshing Lhakhang, a treasure house of interesting religious Buddhist paintings. In the evening, we can visit local shops. Overnight in Bumthang.

Biking option: Bumthang is the largest valley in Bhutan whose wide landscape offers very good opportunity for biking in Bhutan.You can bike in and around Bumthang.
Day 11: Bumthang to Phobjikha Valley (3,000m/9,840ft): 129km, 5-6 hours

We begin the day by driving to Gangtey with a stop for lunch at Chendebji.  After lunch, we continue our drive through dense forests of oak trees and rhododendrons and arrive at Gangtey village, the highest glacial valley in Bhutan. We visit Gangtey Monastery, the only Nyingmapa monastery in western Bhutan. It is located on a hill overlooking the entire Phobjikha valley, the winter habitat of the black-necked cranes, who migrate from the Tibetan plateau to escape harsh winter conditions. Overnight camping.

Biking option: Downhill from Yotong La Pass to Trongsa and Pele La Pass to Gangtey.
Day 12: Phobjikha Valley to Thimphu (2,320m/7,610ft): 127 km, 4-5 hours

This morning, we return to Thimphu. We stop at Wangdue for lunch. On the way, we also visit the new Druk Wangyal Monastery, which is a unique with elaborate paintings depicting the lineage of the present monarchy and their visionary works. In the evening, we explore the streets of Thimpu. Overnight in Thimpu.

Biking option: Downhill from Lawa La Pass to Wangdue and Dochula La Pass to Thimphu.
Day 13: Final departure
Today we bid farewell to the tiny Himalayan Kingdom and her friendly people. After early breakfast, we leave Thimpu for Paro airport. Druk Air generally departs in the early morning to avoid adverse weather conditions. Therefore, after taking breakfast, we will be taken to the airport in the morning for final departure.

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.

Included in the Cost

  • Bhutanese visa fee
  • Pickups and drops from hotels and airports
  • Government approved A and B category hotels in the cities and camping(tents) during trekking on twin- shared basis
  • All meals, tea and snacks
  • Transportation in comfortable private vehicle(s)
  • English speaking, trained and experienced local guide and staff
  • All entrance and permit fees for visits to monuments and museums
  • Mountain Bike
  • Porter services for trekking
  • Tents and Kitchen utensils for trekking
  • Company services and all required Bhutanese government taxes/royalties

Not Included in the Cost

  • Airfare for International flights to and from Bhutan
  • Items of a personal nature (personal gear, telephone calls, beverages, internet, laundry, etc.)
  • Personal camping gears (sleeping bag, torch etc)
  • Trip cancellation and medical/evacuation insurance
  • Tips for staff/guide
  • Travel Insurance

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.


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 and B grade hotels will be provided. We use Hotel Tashi Namgay Resort in Paro, Hotel Migmar in Thimpu, Meri Puensum Resort in Punakha, Hotel Peling or similar in Bumthang, Hotel Dewechen or similar in Phobjikha Valley and camping (tent) during trekking. All accommodations are on a twin-shared basis. Single supplement will be served on request and will cost USD 693.


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. For the actual trekking days, our company will send a wide assortment of food. We will be provided 3 meals a day breakfast, hot picnic lunch on the way, and dinner at the campsites with evening tea and snacks.

Best Time to Travel

Spring (March to May) and autumn (September and October) are the best time for touring and trekking in Bhutan. The months of April and May offer the natural grandeur of rhododendron blooms whereas Bhutan observes its biggest festivals during spring.

Equipments & Packing List

The packing list has been created with the objective of getting maximum comfort with minimum possible weight. Please bring only what is necessary, as this will be helpful to you and the field staff.

Luggage Weight Restrictions

Druk Air has a 44 pound (20 kg) weight limit for checked luggage and another 11 pound weight limit for carry-on luggage on their flights. Your carry-on bags are restricted to one piece, and the size should not exceed 17" x 13" x 8".

Official Papers
  • Passport with minimum validity of 6 months
  • Copy of the first page of your passport
  • Airline tickets
  • Visa approval for Bhutan (to be brought with you)
Packing List for Cultural /City Tours
  • 2 pairs of lightweight long pants
  • 2 pairs of dress pants / dresses for evening
  • 2 pairs of shorts
  • 4 short-sleeved shirts/blouses
  • 1 long-sleeved shirt for sun protection (also while visiting dzongs, temples and monasteries).
  • Underwear
  • Socks
  • Sleepers
  • Warm jackets (if trip falls in Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec, Jan & Feb)
  • 1 sweater or light weight jacket
  • 1 pair of comfortable walking shoes
Personal toiletries
  • Insect repellent
  • Spare nylon duffel bag for purchase
  • Sunscreen rated 20 SPF or higher
  • Lip balm
  • Sunglasses, prescription glasses
  • 1 visor/sun hat
  • Daypack/Hip pack for day trips
  • Prescription medications
  • Essential drugs such as diarrhea, headache pills and also pills for cold and cough
  • Anti bacterial wipes or lotion (for face and hands)
Packing List for Trek

Be advised that there are no trekking stores in Bhutan. Therefore, sleeping bag and daypack should be bought with you beforehand as they are two indispensable items for trekking. However, Himalayan Glacier does provide a few trekking equipments including tents, stoves, fuels, sleeping pads, cooking and eating utensils and first aid kit (which will be with your Trek Leader).

  • Duffel bag for storing gear(s) (if not weatherproof, bring lg. plastic bags)�
  • Warm sleeping bag (negative 8-10 degrees centigrade)�
  • SM first aid kit (blister kit with specifically 2nd skin, aspirin &/or ibu, cough drops, tape)�
  • Headlamp�
  • Camera and extra batteries�
  • 2-liter water bottles (if you bring a camelback, bring a nalgene, also)�
  • Water purification tablets (iodine or chlorine to carry in daypack)�
  • Insulated drinking mug�
  • Lightweight toiletries (travel size shampoo, soap is best for trekking)�
  • Sunscreen and lip screen�
  • Small towel
Suggested clothing list
  • Down parka�
  • Gore-Tex shell and pants�
  • Warm fleece jacket�
  • Comfy trekking boots (we like lowa)�
  • Lightweight shoes�
  • 4 pair of trekking socks�
  • 2 long sleeve capilene shirts�
  • 2 capilene bottoms (mid and heavy weight)�
  • 2 trekking shirts (non-cotton is best)�
  • Trekking pants (zip off shorts are better)�
  • 1 pair of shorts�
  • 1 bandana�
  • 1 pair of winter gloves (ie: ski)�
  • 1 pair of lightweight gloves (ie: fleece)�
  • Flip flops
  • Warm hat�
  • Sun hat�
  • 2 pairs of sunglasses
Miscellaneous Items
  • Anti bacterial wipes or lotion (for face and hands)�
  • 10 or so energy bars (we do provide 3 meals per day on the trek!)�
  • Prescription medications�
  • Over the counter drugs for diarrhea, headaches and cold
For Biking
  • Biking shoes
  • Biking gloves
  • Clients can come with their own pedals or bikes in Bhutan also have clips
  • Mountain bike and helmets are provided by us
  • Optional filed gears
  • Camera, memory cards and spare batteries
  • Electronics/battery charger
  • Down or synthetic-fill pants (recommended for the Fall trek)
  • Down booties (recommended for the Fall trek around camp)
  • Knee supports
  • Spare contact lenses or glasses
  • Reading and writing materials
  • Passport pouch or money pouch
  • Motion sickness remedies

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 by email. If you want to talk to us directly feel free to call us at: 00977-98510-55684