Day 1: Arrive Paro, 2200m
Welcome to the Land of Thunder Dragon. On arrival at Paro airport, you will be greeted by our guide and take you to one of the restaurants for lunch. After lunch, you will visit the Rimpung Dzong, dating back to the 17th century. This building is an ancient fortress and centre of civil and religious government in the Paro valley. From the Dzong, you can walk down to the road head crossing a traditional wooden bridge. From here, you will be taken to Kichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest and the most sacred shrine in the country. In the evening, you can stroll in Paro town. Overnight hotel in Paro.
Day 2: Acclimatisation hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery
5Km | 4-5 hours | 900m Ascent
After breakfast, hike to Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) Monastery, Bhutan’s most famous monastery, which stands at 3180m gives you acclimatization for the next day’s trek. According to the legend, it is believed that Guru Rimpoche, the 8th century Spiritual Master, flew to this location on the back of a tigress to meditate. Explore the Monastery and hike back to Paro. Overnight hotel in Paro.
Day 3: Drugyal Dzong to Shana (Trek starts)
17Km | 5-6 hours | 300 Ascent | Camp altitude 2850m
The trek starts from the ruins of Drugyal Dzong at 2300m with a downhill walk on a wide trail. The trail climbs gently traversing 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 you reach Gunitsawa village where you pass the army post. The campsite is on the opposite side of the river, not far from Gunitsawa. Camp at an altitude of 2850m.
Day 4: Shana to Sio Thangthangkha
21Km | 6-7 hours | 900 Ascent | Camp altitude 3750m
On this long day, the trail continues with lots of small ups and downs. After going uphill through the river valley the valley finally narrows gradually to a mere path, which descends to a meadow where a camp will be set up at the altitude of 3750m. From here, if weather permits, you will have the first great view of Mt. Jumolhari.
Day 5: Sio Thangthangkha to Jangothang
19Km | 4-5 hours | 300 Ascent | Camp altitude 4050m
This morning the trek continues up the Paro Chhu valley, which widens into patches of alpine meadow and scanty growths of forest. You will cross an army checkpoint along the way and enjoy a spectacular view of high mountain ridges and snow-capped peaks. In this area, yaks and their herder’s homes become a regular feature of the landscape. Passing the villages Sio, Takethang and Dangochang is another asset on this day. After reaching Jangothang, one of the most beautiful campsites of the Himalayas, you will again have a spectacular view of Mount Jumolhari and Jichu Drake.
Day 6: Jangothang Halt
The rest day in Jangothang provides plenty of possibilities for day hikes with great views of lakes and snow capped mountains such as Jumolhari and Jichu Drake. There are good chances to spot some blue sheep on the upper slopes of the valley. Jangothang is a perfect environment for your acclimatization. You can also trek up to Tsophu Lake or hike around the area.
Day 7: Jangothang to Lingshi
19Km | 6-7 hours | 800 Ascent | 730 Descent | Camp altitude 4100m
The trail follows the stream or half an hour and crosses the bridge to the right side. Start the climb up to the first ridge with a breathtaking view of Jumolhari, Jichu Drake and Tshering Gang. Then walk towards the valley, almost flat for a while, until the climb to the Ngye La pass at an altitude of 4830m. After the pass, it is a gradual descent to the Lingshi camp, enjoying the panoramic view of the peaks and Lingshi Dzong.
Day 8: Lingshi to Shodu
22Km | 8-9 hours | 940 Ascent | 920 Descent | Camp altitude 4100m
The Laya Gasa route leaves the Jumolhari trek here. The trek 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). From the pass, on a clear day, you can see Jumolhari, Gangchen Ta, Tsheringang and Masangang. The trek from the pass to the campsite at Shodu is a steep downhill.
Day 9: Shodu to Barshong
16Km | 5-6 hours | 250m Ascent | 670m Descent | Camp altitude 3600m
At this place, one comes back to tree line. The trail follows the Wang Chhu through rhododendron forests, past beautiful waterfalls along the way. The valley narrows till the path takes to the slopes and gradually ascends to the ruins of Barshong Dzong.
Day 10: Barshong to Dolam Kencho
15Km | 5-6 hours | 250 Descent | Camp altitude 3320m
The trail descends gently through a dense forest of rhododendron, birch and conifers, and then drops steeply to meet Wang Chhu. It stays on river left, climbing over ridges and descending to side streams. Then traverses steep cliff to Dolam Kencho, a camp among pastureland at 3320m.
Day 11: Dolam Kencho to Dodena to Thimphu (Trek ends)
8Km | 3-4 hours | 680 Descent
The trail continues through forested areas winding up and down and through a small pass. Langurs (monkeys) can be seen along the way. In Dodena, you will exit the Jigme Dorji National Park and reach the road head next to a impressive cantilever bridge. You will be picked up by our transport and drive to Thimphu. In the evening, you can stroll through Thimphu town and absorb the life style of the people. Overnight hotel in Thimphu.
Day 12: Thimphu to Paro and Depart
In the morning, you will drive to airport for departure. Safe journey.