This program offers a solid introduction to the historical wealth of Bhutan, visiting the monastic centers of this Buddhist kingdom set amid stunning Himalayan valleys. Upon arrival in Paro, you will be met and transferred overland to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan since 1955. In Thimpu, all homes are built in the traditional Bhutanese style, lending this city a very historical feel. Touring in Thimpu includes Tashichodzong, the administrative and religious center of Bhutan; the Memorial Chorten; Drubthob Gompa Nunnery; the School of Arts and Crafts; and other important spots. After two nights in Thimpu, drive to Gangtay, with stops for sightseeing along the way. Gangtay is the largest Nyingmapa monastery in Bhutan, and it has a small village surrounding it; spend one night in this charming town. Continue on to Paro, a scenic drive that takes you through the Dochula Pass and the Punakha Valley, the winter capital of Bhutan for over 300 years. During your two nights in Paro, spend a full day with a private guide visiting the most important dzongs, including Taktsang, Sangdo Phelri, Drukgyal, Ta Dzong, and Rimpung.
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