Call us: +44(0)1453 844400Email us: info@mountainkingdoms.com

Worldwide Small Group and Tailor Made Adventure Travel

What’s included

  • An English speaking Bhutanese leader
  • Economy class return air fares from the UK & UK Departure Tax (flight inclusive only)
  • Single, timed group airport transfers for international flights on arrival and departure
  • All internal flights and hotel/airport transfers
  • Dwarika’s 5* hotel in Kathmandu, bed & breakfast on twin-share basis
  • All road transport by private vehicles
  • In Bhutan, good standard hotel accommodation in main towns and best available hotels in outlying towns, on full board, twin-share basis.
  • Bhutan Visa
  • Bhutan Departure Tax
  • Sightseeing where specified
  • Carbon offsetting with the Ecoan Tree Planting Project (for clients taking our flight inclusive option)
  • A free Mountain Kingdoms Water-to-Go bottle

Gentle Walking Bhutan Festivals

Walking & Trekking

Bhutan | Walking & Trekking

Gentle Walking Bhutan
Gentle

Suitable for people who enjoy easy-paced walks or exploring the countryside on foot.

Find out more...

Grade: Gentle ? Gentle
Duration:  16 days from the UK  
Walks on: 7 or 8 days
Private Departures Available

Flight inclusive from £3,585,
Land only from £2,885

Book now or call 01453 844400

The best of Bhutan - gentle walks, cultural highlights and comfortable accommodation.

Highlights

  • Explore the cultural highlights of Bhutan including iconic Taktsang Monastery and Punakha Dzong
  • First-rate accommodation in Bhutan using comfortable hotels and lodges
  • Relax at Dwarika’s hotel in Kathmandu – a unique heritage property
  • Excellent and varied programme of gentle walks
  • Join the flamboyant celebrations at a Bhutanese festival

Reviews          

This was a wonderful trip and an experience I will remember for a long time, particularly the climb up to the Tiger's Nest Monastery! We were very lucky to have Tshering as our tour leader, a very experienced guide and a really nice man. Everything went smoothly, thanks to the hard work he put in behind the scenes. Thanks to Mountain Kingdoms for offering such a good trip.
Mrs L T, Oxfordshire

Personally the trip exceeded expectations in terms of accommodation, comfort, food etc and every day was just excellent. Bhutan has been a dream for a long time, and I was just in awe of the scenery, the wonderful people and all the special experiences.
Mrs P, Devon

This trip was well structured to provide a very interesting look at a beautiful country. The balance of culture, hiking and being in nature, culminating in the Paro festival and ascending the Tiger's Nest monastery worked well. The walks were challenging but provided the perfect build up to Tiger's Nest.
Mrs P H, London

A fantastic and memorable experience which exceeded all my expectations, superbly organised with excellent guides and drivers. A holiday of a lifetime, thank you all so very much.
Mr R G, Shropshire

Absolutely perfect introduction to Bhutan with a mix of walks, guided tours of temples and dzongs, and a festival. Hotels were of high standard of comfort. Guide was knowledgeable, personable and really made the trip. Even the driving was a fascinating experience.
Mr R A, Dorset

Bhutan is a magical experience - it surpassed our expectations. Excellent organisation. Superb attention to detail. This is the third time I have travelled with Mountain Kingdoms and every time the trips have been excellent. Mountain Kingdoms are our first choice of company for this type of trip.
Mr & Mrs S, West Sussex

View All

From our many years of experience in Bhutan we have created this outstanding itinerary, our most popular walking holiday with the aim of combining interesting walks, great scenery and comfortable accommodation. We have researched walks to give you the best possible experience, ranging from easy valley walking visiting temples, in effect sightseeing on foot, to more demanding walks offering a bit more of a challenge.

We will visit the main towns of Paro and Thimphu as well as Punakha with its fabulous dzong, and Bumthang, the cultural heart of the kingdom. You will also visit the lovely Gangtey Valley where in the winter months you may see the rare Black-Necked Crane. Finally no holiday to Bhutan would be complete without a visit to iconic Taktsang, the famous Tiger’s Nest Monastery, clinging to a cliff.

This is a holiday that will be enjoyed to the full by those who enjoy weekend walks in the British countryside. As well as the main walk, on certain days a gentler or harder walk may also be possible. On certain days it is also possible to opt out of the walk, enabling you to relax in or around your hotel or lodge. There are also exciting road journeys following twisting mountain roads and crossing high passes in your comfortable mini-coach. By its nature this is an adventure with plenty of varied walking in a place that is only just emerging into the 21st Century. 

Each departure takes in a fabulous festival where you can mingle with the locals as they celebrate and socialise - a real highlight of any visit to Bhutan.

Private Departures

Gentle Walking Bhutan Private Departure

Gentle walking Bhutan Private Departure
We can offer a private departure of this Bhutan walking holiday for a minimum of two people sharing. Contact the office for further details or to book your private departure.


Call 01453 844400 or Email us


At a glance

Grade: Gentle
Gentle

Duration:  16 days from the UK  
Walks on: 7 or 8 days

Max. Altitude: Cheli La Pass, 3,990m/13,090ft, Day 12

Guaranteed to run for a minimum of 4 clients

Maximum group size: 12

Land only joining city: Kathmandu

Accommodation types: Hotels

Festival:

The February departure attends the Punakha Tsechu

The March departure attends the Paro Tsechu

The September departure attends the Thimphu Tsechu

The November departure attends the Black-necked Crane Festival

The December departure attends the Trongsa Tsechu


Meal arrangements: Bed and Breakfast in Kathmandu and full board elsewhere.

Itinerary overview
Day Activity
1-3
(This is the itinerary for our Trongsa Tsechu departure in December. Detailed itineraries for all departures can be downloaded below). Fly to Kathmandu. Fly to Paro and drive to Thimphu.
4
Sightseeing and walk in and around Thimphu.
5
Drive over the Dochu La to Punakha. Visit Chimi Lakhang and village walk.
6
Walk in the Punakha Valley and visit Punakha Dzong. Drive to Gangtey.
7-8
Walk in the Gangtey Valley. Drive to Trongsa. Visit Trongsa Tsechu. Drive to Jakar walk.
9
Walk to Swan Lakhang and also in the Bumthang Valley.
10-11
Fly to Paro. Drive to Haa across the Cheli La. Walks in the Haa Valley. Drive back to Paro.
12-13
Walk to Taktsang Monastery, 3,110m/10,203ft, and sightseeing in the Paro valley.
14-16
Fly to Kathmandu. At leisure. Fly to London.
Leader: Local leader, Bhutan
Local leader, Bhutan

You will have an English speaking Bhutanese guide. Mountain Kingdoms have been working with the same partner in Bhutan since 1986. Their guides are some of the best in the Kingdom. They speak fluent English, as this is taught in all Bhutanese schools, and are fully qualified guides. The Tourism Authority of Bhutan insists that a Bhutanese trek or tour leader must pass his/her guiding exams in Thimphu before accompanying groups of foreign visitors. Guides receive regular ‘top-up’ training and 15 of our regular leaders have completed an extended training course run by Mountain Kingdoms in Bhutan.


  1. Day 1 - Fly London to Kathmandu

    Depart London on your overnight flight to Kathmandu.

    Overnight iconOvernight: In flight
  2. Day 2 - Arrive Kathmandu. Group transfer to hotel.

    You will be met and transferred to the luxurious and stylish Dwarika's Hotel which is filled with Nepalese wooden carvings and statues and has a superb restaurant where you can eat in traditional style. It also has a cool, elegant courtyard and a swimming pool. After the long flight from London there's no better place to relax.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Dwarika's Hotel, Kathmandu
  3. Day 3 - Fly to Paro. Drive to Thimphu.

    Transfer to the airport for the short flight up to Bhutan. On a clear day the panoramic views of the Himalaya are sensational, including Everest and Kangchenjunga, but particularly exciting is the approach through the Bhutanese foothills and the landing, including a few steep turns to land at the tiny airstrip of Paro. Although you are at the mercy of the airline computer, if possible try to sit on the left hand side of the plane for the most spectacular views.

    On arrival you will be met by your guide and driver for the onward journey to Thimphu - a drive of around 1½-2 hours. Thimphu has an attractive valley location and is relatively small for a capital city but has grown greatly in recent years. If time permits, when you arrive in Thimphu you will drive up to see the large Buddha statue, perched above the town, this will give you excellent views and is a good way to orientate yourself to Thimphu and its surrounds.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Phuntso Pelri Hotel or Similar, Thimphu
  4. Day 4 - Walk to Wangditse Monastery. Sightseeing in Thimphu.

    This morning you will drive up to Sangaygang next to the Bhutan First Broadcasting Service tower, located in the North West of Thimphu. It is only about a mile drive up to the tower so if you feel like you would like to burn a bit more energy you can always walk up instead. From the tower you will have great views over Thimphu Dzong and the Thimphu valley as you start your walk contouring the beautiful hills to visit Wangditse Gompa. This walk should take around 1½ hours. You will have time to visit the gompa before you walk down for another 30 minutes to reach Dechen Phodrang Monastery. This monastery houses around 450 student monks enrolled in an 8 year course. The monastery is also home to some fantastic UNESCO monitored 12th century paintings. You will then meet your vehicle and be driven back to Thimphu.

    In the afternoon there will be time to enjoy some sightseeing. There are many places of interest to visit in Thimphu, including the Tashichhodzong (the main government buildings), the Textile Museum, the Heritage Museum, the late King's Memorial Chorten, the National Library, the School of Painting and the silversmiths and pottery workshops. The Government Handicrafts Emporium is possibly the best place to look for local handicrafts. It is interesting to visit the handmade paper workshop to see the paper being made and there are some nice items made from handmade paper for sale there. You could also visit the Post Office to buy some of Bhutan's very attractive stamps, they will even print a valid stamp with your face on it while you wait! They also have good t-shirts on sale. While in Thimphu you might also like to visit the 'zoo'. This is in fact a very large enclosure (several acres) just above the town, containing only Takin, the very rare animal found exclusively in Bhutan and parts of China and possibly one of the most quirky and strangest looking animals you will ever see.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Phuntso Pelri Hotel or Similar, Thimphu
  5. Day 5 - Drive to Punakha, 1,242m/4,075ft - 2½ hours. Visit Chimi Lakhang. Village walk.

    Driving out of Thimphu you climb to cross the Dochu La Pass, 3,048m/10,000ft, a spot marked by 108 chortens. Here, weather permitting you may take in a magnificent mountain vista. On clear days there are fabulous views of the eastern Himalaya from here, but this is a beautiful spot even on misty days. You then drive down through varied forest into the lush Punakha Valley.

    You will firstly visit Chimi Lakhang, a temple built by Drukpa Kunley. Known as the 'The Divine Madman', Drukpa Kunley was a 15th Century Bhutanese Lama and is Bhutan's most popular Saint and one of the most important figures in Bhutanese folklore. Despite the apparent conservatism of the Bhutanese people, Drukpa Kunley with his unconventional views on sex is a great favourite throughout the country - the phallus symbols painted on the outside walls of many houses date back to his teachings. Chimi Lakhang is especially popular with women, who come here to make offerings and to pray for children. This charming lakhang is reached by a short walk across the paddy fields and the short excursion takes about 45 minutes each way.

    Later you will drive up to the charming village of Talo (altitude 2,800m). This attractive village is well known for its pretty girls. First you will drive up to its fine gompa, built above the village and worth a visit for the spectacular views. After visiting the gompa you walk down through the village and will see traditional village life going on. It's all very pretty - the beautiful farm houses of the village have their own well kept flower gardens and corn and vegetables are grown in abundance. There is an air of prosperity and contentment. You come out back onto the road below the village and then you may either walk down through woods and fields, or drive down, to the village of Nobgang, the birthplace of the four girls who in 1979 married King Jigme Singye Wangchuk to become his four queens. After the king's abdication they became Bhutan's Queen Mothers. The gompas in Nobgang are sponsored by their family. The two villages of Talo and Nobgang have a longstanding rivalry in archery. Once your walk is done you will be driven back to your Punakha hotel.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Zhingkham Resort Or Similar, Punakha
  6. Day 6 - Punakha Valley walk and visit to Punakha Dzong. Drive to Gangtey.

    After breakfast you will make the short drive a little further up the valley and start your walk at a pedestrian suspension bridge that crosses the Mo Chu River. You follow up through paddy fields to the base of the hill where Khamsum Yuelley Namgyal Chorten is sited. The climb to the top is then quite steep, but takes only 45 minutes or so. This Chorten was consecrated in December 1999 and contains sacred relics donated from Punakha Dzong. Leaving the grounds of the Chorten via a different gate you descend to join a contouring path which ultimately leads you to the small village of Yabesa and you then follow the Mo Chu downstream past Sonagasha, the King's Palace and on to Punakha Dzong.

    The fabulous Punakha Dzong, one of the most spectacular and important in the kingdom, is situated at the confluence of two rivers. In 1994 there was a major flood in the town which caused a lot of damage to the dzong but it has now been beautifully renovated and is a real showcase for Bhutanese craftsmanship and painting. You are normally allowed into the dzong unless there are VIPs visiting. After your visit you may either drive back to your hotel or extend your walk southwards down the valley for a further hour or so to reach the large settlement of Khuruthang and continue on to your hotel or to meet up with your transport.

    After lunch you will drive to Gangtey where you will spend the night.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Hotel Gakiling Or Yo Lo Koe Lodge or Similar, Gangtey
  7. Day 7 - Gangtey Valley walk. Drive to Trongsa.

    Today you will doubtless see some of the Black-necked cranes which come to the Gangtey valley in the winter and are usually resident from November to February. They overnight in the marshy meadows below Gangtey village and then fly off in the morning to their feeding grounds, so it worthwhile arranging to go to see them before breakfast, before they fly off for the day. Speak to your guide about an early call and how best to arrange a visit.

    After breakfast you have the chance for a pleasant walk in the valley. In addition to glorious scenery, the valley boasts some wonderful legends surrounding events and places in the valley, including tales about two different types of Yeti, a large one and a small variety, as well as many other interesting legends. A number of different walks are possible and your guide will suggest a suitable one for your group.

    Firstly, it is a short 10-minute drive to reach the Black-necked crane Information Centre. The centre has interesting displays on the ecology of the valley, a small library on Bhutanese wildlife and birds and some telescopes for observing birdlife. From here it is another 10-15 minutes to reach the small hilltop settlement of Gangtey and its impressive gompa, built in the 17th Century. The gompa has been recently beautifully restored and is worth a visit. From the gompa you can follow a network of foot trails and farm tracks down from the hill top and along the valley visiting various small villages and gompas along the way.

    Later, you drive out of the valley and over the Pele La to continue on to reach the town of Trongsa. You will see Trongsa's splendid Dzong long before you reach it because the road takes you up a long side valley before eventually turning back to Trongsa town. Trongsa has an exceptionally dramatic dzong, the ancestral home of the royal family. Because of its important strategic location this was one of the most important dzongs in the country. Set above the dzong is the Ta Dzong, the watchtower, a lovely old building which has been recently really beautifully renovated and houses an excellent museum with several floors of royal memorabilia and sacred artefacts. The views from the roof are worth the climb.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Yangkhil Resort Or Similar, Trongsa
  8. Day 8 - Attend Trongsa Tsechu and drive to Bumthang.

    In the morning you will visit the Trongsa Tsechu (festival). This festival takes place in the winter when there are fewer tourists and has great rustic charm. Bhutanese festivals are welcome opportunities for the Bhutanese to get together, not only to socialise and have fun, but also because the very act of attending a festival is thought to confer merit and wash away sins. Village people from the area gather to participate in the festival and for the singing and dancing. Spectacular dances are performed which are intended to give moral instruction, drive away evil spirits, promote good crops and celebrate the Buddhist faith in its many guises. Watch out for the very jolly clowns who tease onlookers and dancers alike.

    After your morning at the festival you will drive to Bumthang, crossing the Yotong La. The Bumthang region encompasses four major valleys. Jakar town where you will stay for two nights is in the main valley called Chokhor. The other valleys are the Ura Valley which is to the east, Tang valley which is slightly more off the beaten track and the Chumey Valley, the first valley you pass through on your journey to Bumthang from the west. Depending on what time you left Trongsa you may have time to visit a couple of of small temples in Chumey on the way, as well as Zugney, an important centre for weaving which is such an integral part of Bhutanese craftsmanship and culture. It is said that every home in Bhutan is equipped with a loom and that young girls become proficient in weaving before the age of 20. Finally you arrive at Jakar town, which lies in a pretty steep-sided valley overlooked by a distinctive dzong, the so called 'Castle of the White Bird', named after a bird that was said to have indicated the most auspicious place to build. You will drive to your hotel to check in.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Ugyenling Hotel Or Similar, Jakar
  9. Day 9 - Walk to Swan Lakhang. Afternoon valley walk to various temples.

    In the morning you will visit Ngang Lakhang, also known as Swan Lakhang or Swan Temple. First you drive the short distance to arrive at a long mani wall in Tangbi. You descend to cross the river by a suspension bridge and then have a pleasant walk of about 3 hours, up the river valley through forest and meadows to reach Ngang Lakhang, also known as 'Swan Temple'. This temple has an illustrious history. Guru Rimpoche is said to have visited here and the present temple, built in the 15th century is said to be named after swans supposedly seen on a nearby lake by the temple's founder, a Tibetan lama named Namkha Samdrup. After your visit to the temple you descend to cross the river to a road and will meet your vehicle to drive back to Jakar.

    In the afternoon you can make a short, almost entirely level walk taking in some of the principle sights of the valley. From the hotel you either walk or drive the short way to reach Jambay Lakhang. This is one of the country's oldest temples, built in the mid-7th Century. One interesting feature to look for is the set of three steps in the main temple. The first step, now hidden below floor level, is said to represent the time of the past or 'historical' Buddha. The second, very well worn, step represents the present Buddha, whilst the third step above, is said to represent the age of the future Buddha. The point at which the second step is worn down to ground level is held to be the time when the world as we currently know it will end.

    From Jambay you take a farm track along the valley floor and walk for 30 minutes to reach Kurjey Lakhang, a series of three large temples. The oldest of the temples here houses a rock indented with the body shape of Guru Rinpoche, whilst the most recent dates back just 25 years and was built by the Queen Mother - Ashi Kesang Wangchuck. Descending from the temples you cross a suspension bridge and walk downstream for 45 minutes to Tamshing Lakhang: the most important Nyingma gompa in the Kingdom, established in 1501 by Pemalingpa. Inside you can see a suit of chain-mail armour, which Buddhists believe will bring good fortune if you wear it and then walk around the inner temple three times. Your transport will meet you outside the gompa and return you to your hotel, with perhaps a stop in Jakhar town-ship or a visit to spectacular Jakar Dzong.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Ugyenling Hotel Or Similar, Jakar
  10. Day 10 - Fly to Paro. Drive over Cheli La pass, 3,990m/13,090ft, to Haa Valley with visit to Kila Nunnery on way.

    Today you will transfer to the small domestic airport at Jakar for the short flight to Paro.

    After arriving in Paro, you will drive up to the Cheli La, a pass at 3,990m/13,090ft where in clear weather you will have wonderful views of the snow-capped mountains to the west which mark the border with Tibet. On the way you will call in at Kila Nunnery, a peaceful retreat for some 30 nuns who live a life of seclusion in an incredibly pretty spot set in lush forest beneath cliffs.

    From the pass you descend on a long zig-zag road down into the Haa Valley. As you approach you will notice three almost identical conical hills in a line on the other side of the valley. These are believed by the locals to be the physical manifestations of three very important Buddhist saints. The left one is Manjushri (the god who holds the flaming sword which cuts the knot of ignorance), the middle one is Chenrizig (the Buddha of compassion of which the Dalai Lama is the human incarnation) and the right hand hill is Chana Dorji (this being the protector god of Bhutan). Collectively they are known as Rigsum (three hills).

    As you descend further you look down on the square yellow roof of Haa's monastery-fortress, the Namgay Dzong. Spread around the dzong are the buildings of the Indian Army dating from the visit of President Nehru - the Indian army has a presence in Bhutan ostensibly to protect the kingdom from possible invasion from China. Although part of the dzong is used by the Indian Army the central tower of the Dzong is still used by the local people. The old town itself is just to the north-west and is really quite attractive with traditional two storey shops and a post office. There is a large school in Haa. In the afternoon you should have time for some initial exploration in the Haa Valley.

    (If the flight to Paro is cancelled today then you will drive back to Paro over the next two days instead of visiting the Haa Valley).

    Overnight iconOvernight: Lechuna Heritage Lodge or Similar, Haa
  11. Day 11 - Walks in the Haa Valley. Drive back to Paro with visit to Dzong Drakha.

    In the morning you will have time for a walk in the Haa Valley. Firstly you might drive up to the very top of the valley for an overview. This is a very pretty drive talking about 40 minutes and from here you will get really good views of the valley as well as over to the mountains of the west. On your return you take a spur road to Talung village and walk down from the top of the village for a look at a typical Haa village. Rejoining your vehicle at the bottom of the village you then drive the short distance to the bottom of a track for a nice walk up to Yongto Gompa, an ascent of 100 metres taking about 30 minutes. Yongto Gompa is perched on a ridge overlooking the main valley and is one of the oldest monasteries in Haa, thought to have been built in the 15th century. From here you walk downhill for 30 minutes through pine trees to Yangtha village. This is a large village on the floor of the main valley. In 2001 they suffered a huge fire which destroyed 12 houses. Amazingly, the fire left the temple of the village perfectly intact. After the fire the King visited the people of the village and paid for the reconstruction. The new houses are built in exactly the same traditional style and blend in remarkably well.

    After lunch you drive back to Paro with a visit on the way to the temple of Dzong Drakha, a beautiful cliff temple spectacularly located on a broad ledge with vertical limestone cliffs above and below and with lovely views.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Hotel Olathang Or Similar, Paro
  12. Day 12 - Sightseeing in the Paro Valley including Kyichu Lakhang and Paro Dzong.

    Today's sightseeing in the Paro Valley will begin at the ancient temple of Kyichu Lakhang which was one of 108 temples built by Songtsen Gampo an important early Tibetan king, to pin down the Bon demon who was thought to hover over the whole of Tibet.

    You will also visit Bhutan's National Museum to see some of the treasures housed in the Ta Dzong, or watch tower, above the Dzong. Displays include a fascinating collection of ancient thangkas depicting Bhutan's important saints and teachers. You can then visit the spectacular Paro Dzong. This Dzong is one of Bhutan's most impressive and well-known dzongs, and perhaps the finest example of Bhutanese architecture you'll see. The massive buttressed walls that tower over the town are visible throughout the valley. The dzong's correct name, Rinchen Pung Dzong (usually shortened to Rinpung Dzong), means 'Fortress on a Heap of Jewels'. In 1644 Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal ordered the construction of the dzong on the foundation of a monastery built by Guru Rinpoche. The fort was used on numerous occasions to defend the Paro valley from invasions by Tibet. From here, you may like to walk down into the town and have a wander around the streets before returning to your hotel.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Hotel Olathang Or Similar, Paro
  13. Day 13 - Walk to Taktsang, 3,110m/10,203ft, 4-5 hours. Afternoon sightseeing in Paro or time at leisure.

    Today you will walk up to the famous Tiger's Nest, Taktsang Monastery - a fitting climax to your trip. The monastery is perched some 600m/2,000ft up on a cliff overlooking the valley and was said to be where the legendary Indian saint, Guru Padma Sambhava, flew from Tibet on the back of a tiger to defeat five demons, who were opposing the spread of Buddhism in Bhutan. It's a steep uphill walk through woods, of about 1½-2hrs, to reach a tea house (an ascent of 340m/1,115ft). Apart from offering welcome refreshment this tea house is one of the principle viewpoints of the monastery, and those who prefer not to climb any further can relax here whilst others continue on. If there is a particular religious gathering or VIP visit in progress, you will not be able to enter the monastery itself but a further half an hour's ascent is well worth it in any case, as it brings you to another viewpoint directly across from the monastery. If you are able to make a visit, the final section of the walk takes you from here steeply down approximately 100m/330ft into the gorge that separates you from the monastery and then climbs back up again to reach the monastery gate. You descend to the valley floor by your outward route back to where your vehicle will be waiting. The full walk to the monastery and back involves approximately 740m/2,428ft of ascent.

    The remainder of the day will be at leisure or to do any sightseeing that has been previously missed.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Hotel Olathang Or Similar, Paro
  14. Day 14 - Fly to Kathmandu. Transfer to hotel. At leisure.

    Again, a sensational take-off and scenic Himalayan flight past Chomolhari, Bhutan's second highest peak, past Kangchenjunga and Everest back to Kathmandu, where you transfer to the Dwarika's Hotel. The remainder of the day is at leisure for sightseeing and shopping.

    Overnight iconOvernight: Dwarika's Hotel, Kathmandu
  15. Day 15 - At leisure in Kathmandu.Transfer to airport and depart for London.

    You will have much of the day free in Kathmandu when you may wish to do some sightseeing or shopping or simply relax by the pool at your hotel. Later there will be a group transfer to the airport for your overnight flight back to London.

    Overnight iconOvernight: In flight
  16. Day 16 - Arrive London.

Map

Map Key

  • AirportAirport
  • General point of interestPoint of interest
  • Mountain RangeMountain Peak
  • TrekDay walk in this area
  • FlightsFlights
  • Internal TransfersInternal Transfers
  • Trek routeTrek

2020

Dates Availability Land Only Flight Inclusive from
Thu 17 Dec - Fri 1 Jan 2021 ! Restricted

Restricted

This departure attends the Trongsa Festival
Contact usContact us

2021

Dates Availability Land Only Flight Inclusive from
Wed 17 Feb - Thu 4 Mar 2021 ! Available

Available

This departure attends the Punakha Tsechu
£2885 Book£3585 Book
Tue 16 Mar - Wed 31 Mar 2021 ! Available

Available

This departure attends the Paro Tsechu
£3195 Book£3895 Book
Tue 14 Sep - Wed 29 Sep 2021 ! Available

Available

This departure attends the Thimphu Tsechu
£3295 Book£3945 Book
Thu 4 Nov - Fri 19 Nov 2021 ! Available

Available

This departure attends the Black-necked Crane Festival
£3265 BookContact us
Mon 6 Dec - Tue 21 Dec 2021 ! Available

Available

This departure attends the Trongsa Tsechu
£2985 BookContact us

Hold your place

Not quite ready to book? Why not call us on 0044 (0)1453 844400 to hold a no obligation place while you make up your mind?

 
Optional supplements
  • Single room supplement
    From £660
  • Single Room Supplement
    From £675
Insurance
  • Cover starts from £143
No Surcharge Guarantee

No surcharges will be applied to your holiday after you book. Prices on this website are updated regularly. The Flight Inclusive holiday price, or Land Only holiday price, will be confirmed to you at the time you make your booking. There will be no surcharges after your booking has been confirmed.

Flight inclusive holidays

The 'flight inclusive' holiday prices shown on this website are based upon our preferred airlines and the best priced economy class fares we are able to secure at the time of publication.

We will be able to advise on fares with alternative airlines, upgrades to Business Class, and the options for flights from regional UK airports, please contact us for more details.

Booking your holiday
  • deposit
    From £100

For the majority of our holidays, a deposit payment of £100.00 per person is required to secure your place(s), however a small number of holidays require a higher deposit - please refer to the holiday itinerary for more details. If the holiday departs within 60 days, a minimum deposit of £750.00 per person is required.

Book now!
  1. Book your small group holiday securely online – click the ‘Book’ button next to your chosen departure or visit our How to Book page
  2. Complete and return a Booking Form available to download here.
  3. Call us on 01453 844400 and one of our travel specialists will talk you through the booking process.

What’s included

  • An English speaking Bhutanese leader
  • Economy class return air fares from the UK & UK Departure Tax (flight inclusive only)
  • Single, timed group airport transfers for international flights on arrival and departure
  • All internal flights and hotel/airport transfers
  • Dwarika’s 5* hotel in Kathmandu, bed & breakfast on twin-share basis
  • All road transport by private vehicles
  • In Bhutan, good standard hotel accommodation in main towns and best available hotels in outlying towns, on full board, twin-share basis.
  • Bhutan Visa
  • Bhutan Departure Tax
  • Sightseeing where specified
  • Carbon offsetting with the Ecoan Tree Planting Project (for clients taking our flight inclusive option)
  • A free Mountain Kingdoms Water-to-Go bottle

What’s not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Visa fees for Nepal
  • Lunch and evening meals in Kathmandu
  • Optional trips
  • Tips


Review your holiday

Reviews

Read holiday reviews by Mountain Kingdoms travellers.

Overall score:           (Based on 27 reviews)

What a treat Bhutan is!          

Bhutan is as friendly, colourful and quirky as we had hoped it may be, but with better infrastructure than we had dared hope. Some lovely walks in valleys and over ridges with far reaching views of the Himalaya. We stayed in some charming traditional houses, ate some good food, and enjoyed the company of an entertaining group, all aided by the expert leadership by our guide Bhim, and outstanding driver Ugyen who made everything run so easily, giving us lots of local insights and stories, as well as some top souvenir tips!

Gentle Walking Bhutan          

I think the ‘gentle’ part of your title could be reviewed! Either Gentle Trekking or Mountain Walks might give a better hint of the fairly strenuous days. Your altitude guide could perhaps be emphasised - though none of these comments detract from our huge enjoyment of an amazing and greatly enjoyed adventure.

A wonderful experience!          

This was a wonderful trip and an experience I will remember for a long time, particularly the climb up to the Tiger's Nest Monastery! We were very lucky to have Tshering as our tour leader, a very experienced guide and a really nice man. Everything went smoothly, thanks to the hard work he put in behind the scenes. Thanks to Mountain Kingdoms for offering such a good trip.

Bhutan, an experience!          

When you say that you are going to Bhutan, most people say, "Where's that?" but honestly what a place! Starting with a night at the Dwarika's Hotel in Kathmandu which was an oasis in the chaos of Kathmandu and on to Paro in Bhutan. From the moment you drive out of the airport you know that you are somewhere different, soaring mountain scenery and crashing rivers in the valleys. Most of the people you see and meet are in National costume and are very friendly. The local festivals are brilliant brightly coloured events for the locals to put on their Sunday best. Travelling high across mountain passes on roads (well almost) you would not believe, the skill and patients of the driver was incredible! The Dzongs and Temples are fascinating structures, but some such as 'Tiger's Nest' do take a bit of hiking uphill to get there, but it is worth it when you are there. If you are looking to go somewhere different, this is definitely the place to go, but hurry it won't stay this way forever!

Gentle Walking Bhutan          

Group size just right. A good mix of ages. The trip ran smoothly as far as meals were concerned everywhere, prompt and efficient.


Extend your holiday

Royal Manas National Park, Bhutan

Royal Manas National Park, Bhutan
  • Three full days at Royal Manas National Park - a birder's paradise
  • Accommodation in a comfortable hotel close to the park, plus hotel nights en route
  • Accompanied by an expert wildlife guide throughout
  • Private transport, driver and all meals included

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Extend your stay in Bhutan with time at the Royal Manas National park, a wonderful birder’s paradise close to the Indian border. Our extension package gives you three full days to explore the park and surrounding area, with all meals, private transport and comfortable accommodation included. You will be accompanied throughout by an expert guide to maximise your bird and wildlife viewing.


Bumdra Trek Extension, Bhutan

Bumdra Trek Extension, Bhutan
  • A two-day trek that can be added to the end of your holiday in Bhutan
  • Camp beneath Bumdra Monastery in a beautiful, scenic spot
  • Enjoy views of the High Himalayan mountains
  • Trek to Taktsang Monastery on a path that few others take
  • Full service camping experience experience with porterage

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If you would like to experience a night under canvas in the mountains of Bhutan this short, two-day trek is the perfect opportunity. Setting out from the Paro Valley you walk up 900m to a beautiful, scenic spot by Bumdra Monastery with wonderful views across the high Himalaya. Here you camp for the night before a leisurely descent the following morning to reach iconic Takstsang Monastery - enjoying a vantage point that very few others get to see.


The Pavilions Himalayas, Nepal

The Pavilions Himalayas, Nepal
  • Spend two or more tranquil nights in rural Pokhara
  • Sample the organic and locally sourced Nepali cuisine
  • Idyllic setting with mountain views
  • The resorts offers a swimming pool, spa and gym
  • Eco-friendly

More Details

We are delighted to offer this new luxury stay in a rural location just outside Pokhara.  We are sure this is set to become a favourite with our clients.

The Pavilions Himalayas is a luxury resort set in beautiful farmland amid paddy fields in a tranquil rural location approximately 5km outside Pokhara. There are dramatic mountain views from the resort as well as Pokhara’s famous Peace Pagoda seen on top of a nearby ridge.

The beautiful rooms are set in individual villas and are large and comfortable, all having whirlpool baths, separate rain shower cubicles, enormous beds and offering wonderful hand made soaps and shampoos made with herbs from their garden.

All facilities at the resort are top of the range and include a lovely swimming pool and spa.  From the resort it is just a short drive to explore Pokhara or there are pleasant walks from the hotel or you can just chill at the resort, have a massage and enjoy the facilities.


Kathmandu Valley sightseeing, Nepal

Kathmandu Valley sightseeing, Nepal
  • 8203;Visit the ancient cities of Bhaktapur, Patan, Kathmandu and Timi with their stunning art and architecture
  • Observe traditional crafts such as pottery, woodcarving and thangka painting
  • Choose from a selection of full and half day guided tours
  • Travel in a private car with a driver and an English-speaking guide

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The Kathmandu Valley has a long and rich history and a vibrant culture and there is much that is worthwhile to see there - crowded bazaars, ancient temples, Buddhist stupas, crumbling shrines and picturesque palaces. The Malla kings who ruled in the valley created three major cities in the valley, Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Patan and each of these cities has buildings that are showpieces for the art and architecture of local Newari craftsmen. We offer a selection of half day trips and full day trips to these sites the valley.


Koshi Tappu, Nepal

Koshi Tappu, Nepal
  • Koshi Tappu is home to over 500 species of birds
  • Look out for exciting wildlife like jungle cats, crocodiles and rare water buffalo
  • Explore the park by foot, raft and jeep
  • Stay in the pleasantly located Koshi Camp

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Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve is one of the finest birdwatching and wildlife areas in all Asia. Located in south-east Nepal, the reserve covers 175 square kilometres with large expanses of open water created by the Koshi barrage, with marshes, lagoons, sandbanks and mudflats offering an outstanding wetland habitat. The reserve is home to over 500 species of birds, with the resident inhabitants being joined by large numbers of migratory species from Siberia and Tibet, which take up residence from November to February. The Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve provides one of the best places in Nepal to view migratory water fowl, waders and shore birds with many species seen here which are not recorded elsewhere in the region.

There is also much wildlife to be seen in Koshi Tappu including blue bull, golden jackal, Bengal fox, fishing cat, jungle cat, mongoose, civet cat, porcupine, Indian flying foxes and rare Gangetic dolphins as well as rare Marsh Mugger crocodiles.  In addition, Koshi Tappu is the last habitat of the endangered Arna, a type of wild water buffalo.

During your visit you will explore the park with bird and animal spotting from a raft trip on the Koshi River, birdwatching walks, jungle walks and jeep trips. You will also have the opportunity to visit a family in one of the very interesting nearby local villages for a taste of rural Nepalese life. The Koshi Camp offers simple but comfortable accommodation and an expert staff of naturalists and birdwatchers to give you a comprehensive introduction to this wonderful area.


Dwarika’s Resort Dhulikhel, Nepal
  • Relax in luxuriously furnished accommodation with stunning Himalayan views
  • Relax and rejuvenate in the top of the range spa
  • Take a dip in the refreshing infinity pool
  • Enjoy locally sourced organic food at the resort's restaurant

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Dwarika’s Resort is a charming hotel located just an hour’s drive from Kathmandu city and set on a ridge above the town of Dhulikhel. At an altitude of 1,700m/5,600ft and enjoying panoramic views of the mountains, Dwarika’s Resort is the perfect way to relax and feel revitalised and rejuvenated. The resort promises ‘a Himalayan approach to well-being in rustic luxury.’

Built in Dwarika’s own inimitable style the resort offers a relaxing atmosphere of complete harmony in the tradition of ancient Buddhist and Hindu beliefs. The rooms are spacious and luxurious and are set in lovely gardens with inspiring mountain views. Facilities include an infinity pool overlooking beautiful countryside, top of the range spa facilities, a fitness centre, a Chakra sound therapy centre and a Himalayan salt room and meditation room all inspired by a blend of Vedic Philosophy and Buddhist Medicine.

The resort offers an impressive range of ayurvedic treatments as well as yoga and meditation and classes. Its wonderful restaurants offer delicious food, sourced locally and from Dwarika’s own organic farm, with delicious menus carefully created to complement Dwarika’s philosophy and treatments. Other activities include lovely walks to visit their farm or to explore the surrounding area and visit traditional villages such as the legendary Namobuddha Monastery or the Newari village of Panauti, to experience the simple joys of Nepalese rural life.


Bhutan Hotel Upgrades
  • Upgrade your accommodation for your trip in Bhutan.
  • Choose from boutique and spa hotels in various destinations.
  • Stay in luxurious properties with first rate service and facilities
  • Enjoy fine dining and indulgent rooms

More Details

For our brochure trips to Bhutan we offer good standard tourist hotels and lodges, however, Bhutan also offers some lovely boutique and spa hotels which we are pleased to offer as upgrades on your trip. We offer a range of properties in Paro, Thimphu, Punakha and other towns all of which provide excellent facilities and service as well as attractive locations.


Tibet Extension
  • Visit some of Tibet's most important historical and cultural sites and monasteries of Tibetan Buddhism.
  • Offers a scenery completely different to that of Bhutan and Nepal.
  • Suitable to add to any holiday flying in/out of Kathmandu.

More Details

​A visit to Tibet offers an exciting extension to a visit to Nepal or Bhutan. Regular flights to Lhasa from Kathmandu make it possible to visit most of the major sights in and around Lhasa on an 8 day itinerary and a visit to Tibet will provide an exhilarating contrast to your trek or tour in Nepal or Bhutan. Tibet’s high plateau offers totally different and starker scenery to that of the other Himalayan countries. Here you will see some of the most important historical and cultural sites and monasteries of Tibetan Buddhism – the Potala Palace and Samye, Ganden and Drepung Monasteries.

If taking this extension you will need to spend an extra day beforehand in Kathmandu while our agents there process your Tibet visa. They will need your passport for the day for this purpose. You need to let us know in good time if you wish to take this extension as we need to put this process in hand and send your details to the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu well before your departure date.


Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge - Extension

Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge - Extension
  • Fly from Kathmandu to Pokhara in the Annapurna range of Nepal
  • The lodge is an ideal base for you to relax in a rural mountain setting
  • Beautiful outdoor swimming pool reflecting view of the Annapurna range
  • Delicious Nepali dishes & continental specialities made from local fresh ingredients, home-grown herbs & garden salads

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Why not extend your adventure in Nepal by visiting the beautiful Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge. Tiger Mountain Pokhara lodge is a lovely place, situated on a ridge half an hour outside Pokhara and enjoying the most stunning mountain views over the Annapurna range of mountains.

The lodge is an ideal base for you to relax in a rural mountain setting, away from the bustle of town. With a central lodge, bar and dining room, the comfortable rooms are arranged in clusters of cottages resembling a Nepali village. All have attached bathrooms, private verandas and Himalayan views. Daily menus feature a range of Nepali dishes as well as continental specialities made from local fresh ingredients and home-grown herbs and garden salads. You may enjoy lovely walks through the forests and villages of the lovely countryside surrounding the lodge, escorted by trained local guides. The beautiful swimming pool reflects the distant white peaks of the Annapurna range. The lodge also offers a range of Ayurvedic and shiatsu therapy and yoga and meditation sessions are also available (at additional cost). You may also venture further afield to visit Pokhara, Nepal’s second city located on a lovely lake and also enjoying spectacular views.


Chitwan National Park extension

Chitwan National Park extension
  • Activities include; bird watching, elephant washing, canoe ride, elephant experience, landrover safari and jungle walks
  • Choice of accommodation from budget to luxury
  • Suitable to add to any holiday flying in/out of Kathmandu

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Why not extend your adventure in Nepal by visiting Nepal’s jungle region for a complete contrast to the high mountains and the Kathmandu Valley. Chitwan is home to a rich and varied wildlife. Here are found wild elephant, rhinos, leopard, sambar, chital (spotted) deer, wild boar and
arguably the most magnificent of cats, the Royal Bengal Tiger. You may even see sloth bear, gaur (wild cattle) and crocodiles. Chitwan is also wonderful for birdlife especially in the spring, when the jungle rings day and night to the calls of several kinds of Asian cuckoo.


Shivapuri Heights Cottage extension
  • Escape the crowds and hustle and bustle of Kathmandu
  • Walks available from the cottage - explore the nearby countryside
  • Single and double rooms available, or exclusive hire of the entire cottage
  • Breakfast and dinner included, plus unlimited tea and coffee

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While in Kathmandu, why not experience an exclusive, private, home away from home? Shivapuri Heights Cottage is a “home-stay-style” property that offers a great escape from the hustle and bustle of the City. It is located in 2 acres of land at an altitude of 6,000ft /1,830m on the edge of the protected Shivapuri Reserve, with beautiful views looking down into the Kathmandu Valley.


Bardia National Park extension

Bardia National Park extension
  • Jungle activities including an elephant experience, bird watching, rafting and nature walks
  • See wild elephant, rhinoceros, leopard, deer, wild boar and if you are lucky, the famous Royal Bengal Tiger
  • Stay at the delightful Tiger Tops Karnali Lodge situated on the edge of the park

More Details

After your adventurous time in the Himalaya why not add a relaxing Jungle Safari to your trip?
The Royal Bardia National Park is situated in the west of Nepal. We use Tiger Tops Karnali Lodge, which is acknowledged to be the best lodge in the area. Bardia’s remote geographic location and the fact that the lodge has only 12 rooms, lends a degree of exclusivity to the experience, in comparison to other more popular parks. From the lodge you will be able to participate in safaris and have the chance of seeing some of the country’s wonderful wildlife, for instance, wild elephant, rhinoceros, leopard, deer, wild boar and if you are lucky, the famous Royal Bengal Tiger. There is also the possibility of visiting the villages of the Tharu tribal people that surround the lodge. With its abundant wildlife, relaxing lodge and first class service, our Bardia extension is an experience you will savour!


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