Festival Date: 13th Dec, 2022 6 Nights – 7 Days
Paro- Thimphu – Punakha – Phobjikha
The Dochula Druk Wangyel Festival Was Established In 2011 In Commemoration Of His Majesty The Fourth Druk Gyalpo And The Armed Forces’ Victory Over Indian Insurgent Forces Residing In Southern Bhutan In 2003.
Druk Wangyel Festival is an annual festival held on December 13th at the Druk Wangyal Lhakhang Festival Ground located at Dochula Pass around 22km from the capital city Thimphu. Dochula Pass is one of the most scenic locations in the entire kingdom, offering a stunning panoramic view of the Himalayan mountain range. Set amidst this breathtaking backdrop, the Dochula Druk Wangyal Tsehchu is an experience unlike any other and truely exemplifies Bhutanese cultural traditions.
The Druk Wangyal Lhakhang was built over a period of four years (2004-2008) under the vision and patronage of Her Majesty the Queen Mother Ashi Dorji Wangmo. The Lhakhang honors the courageous service of the Fourth King, who personally led the troops against the insurgents, as well as the regular Armed Forces of the country
Day 01: Paro Sightseeing – Thimphu
Our Representative from Bhutan Everest Tours & Treks will receive you at the airport and drive to Ta-Dzong (watch tower), which now serves as the national museum. The museum highlights various aspects of Bhutanese culture and history dating back to the 7th century. A short walk downhill takes you to the imposing Rinpung Dzong which serves as the district’s administrative and religious centre. Walk further down and cross a traditional bridge into Paro town.
Dinner and overnight stay in a hotel.
Day 02: Paro Taktshang (Tiger’s Nest) – Thimphu
After breakfast drive to Paro valley and hike to Taktshang or “Tiger’s Nest” one of the holiest Buddhists sites in the Himalayan region. The monastery clings to a sheer rock face almost 900 metres above the valley floor.
The uphill hike from the road point takes around 3 hours at a moderate pace. The trail passes through beautiful pine forests adorned with Spanish moss as you go further up. Stop for rest and light refreshments at the Taktshang cafeteria.
Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava, the tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan in 747 AD, flew here on the back of a flying tigress and meditated for three months.
Later visit Kitchu Lhakhang, built in 659 A.D by the Tibetan king Songtshen Gompo. Then drive north to ruin Drugyel Dzong, the imposing fortress, which kept at bay invasions from the north in ancient times.
Evening drive to Thimphu
Dinner and Overnight at hotel in Thimphu
Day 03: Thimphu Sightseeing
After breakfast visit National Memorial Chorten, built in 1974 to honor the third Druk Gyalpo, Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, Kuensel Phodrang, where the largest statue of Sitting Buddha is located, Takin Preservation center in Motithang and Changangkha Lhakhang.
After Lunch visit Tashichho Dzong (the administrative headquarters of Bhutan), paintings and statues inside the monument provide a deep insight into Buddhist philosophy. Painting School; famous for traditional Thangkha paintings, Textile and Folk Heritage Museum; the fascinating testimony of the Bhutanese material culture and living traditions.
Dinner and overnight stay at a hotel in Thimphu.
Day 04: Thimphu – Punakha Sightseeing. (Druk Wangyel Festival)
After early breakfast, drive to Dochula pass (3,050m). on the way attend the Druk Wangyel Festival. If the weather permits, you can see a range of high Himalayan peaks towards the north east. Following peaks can be seen from this pass, on a clear day ; Masagang (7,158m), Tsendagang (6,960m), Terigang (7,060m ), Jejegangphugang (7,158 m ), Kangphugang (7,170 m ), Zongphugang (7, 060 m ), a table mountain that dominates the isolated region of Lunana – finally Gangkar puensum, the highest peak in Bhutan at 7,497m. The descent from Dochula into Punakha/Wangduephodrang valley follows winding road as the altitude difference is 1700 meters. On the way visit Chimi Lhakhang, situated on a hillock in the center of the Lobesa valley, is dedicated to Lama Drukpa Kuenley, who in the late 15th century used humor, songs and outrageous behavior to dramatize his teachings and due to this also known as ‘Divine Madman’. This temple is also known as the temple of fertility. It is widely believed that couples who do not have children and wanting one, if they pray at this temple, they are usually blessed with a child very soon. It is about 30 minute walk across field from the road to the temple or you can drive directly to temple.
Dinner and Overnight at hotel in Punakha.
Day 05: Punakha Sightseeing – Gangtey / Phobjikha,
After breakfast drive to Khamsum Yulley Namgyal stands majestically on a strategic ridge above the Punakha valley. Built over a period of 9 years, Bhutanese craftsmen including carpenters, painters, and sculptors consulted Holy Scriptures rather than engineering manuals, to construct this 4-storey temple. It is a splendid example of Bhutan’s fine architectural and artistic traditions and the only one of its kind in the world. Built by Her Majesty the Queen Mother, this temple is dedicated for the wellbeing of the kingdom and the benefit of all sentient beings. After lunch visit Punakha Dzong, a massive structure built at the junction of two rivers. Punakha was Bhutan’s capital until 1955, and Punakha Dzong still serves as the winter residence of the central monk body. Bhutan’s first King, Ugyen Wangchuck, was crowned here in 1907. The fortress has withstood several damages from fire, earthquake and flood over the centuries. The latest flood, in October, 1994, caused great damages to the fortress but miraculously spared its most holy statue.
Evening drive to Gangtey/Phobjikha. In the mountains east of Wangduephodrang lies the beautiful Phobjikha valley, after crossing Tsele La (3440m) the trail crosses several pastures, and then descends through mixed forest of Juniper, bamboo, magnolia and rhododendron.
Dinner and Overnight at Phobjikha.
Day 06: Gangtey / Phobjikha – Thimphu
After breakfast drive to the great monastery of Gangtey, established in the 17th century. The village of Phobjikha lies a few km, down from the monastery, on the valley floor. This quite, remote valley is the winter home of black necked cranes, which migrate from the arid plains of Tibet in the north, to pass the winter months in a milder climate. Explore Gangtey village and Phobjikha valley.
Evening drive to Thimphu.
Dinner and Overnight stay at hotel in Thimphu.
Day 7: After breakfast drive to the airport for flight to onward destination.