Duration: 8 Days / 7 Nights
Destination: Thimphu, Punakha & Paro
Get away from the crowed and venture off the beaten path with our Thunder Dragon Motorcycle ride. This 8 days tour allows you to get away from all and immerse yourself in the great outdoors. On this tour you will get an opportunity to travel through dramatic mountain passes with panoramic view of the scenic Himalayan mountain ranges, come across a country steep in mystery, experience the freshness of the mountain breeze and the sight and sound of the nature, all come together to make your tour a lasting experience and memorable one. This unique ride in the Land of the Thunder Dragon is an experience of a lifetime.
Day 01: Arrival Paro
At your arrival at Paro International Airport, you will be met by our local tour executive and transfer by road to your hotel. Lunch in the hotel. After lunch, you tour leader will give you a short briefing and guidelines regarding the terms and condition of the roar, traffic safety and your Royal Enfield Motorcycle. Following the guideline enjoy your afternoon introductory ride through Paro valley. We suggest you making a ride to Chele La Pass (12,200ft/3720m), which is only 40km. The pass lies at a cool crisp and takes you through a spectacular lovely forest of pine, oak and rhododendrons that are ablaze in the months of April and May. En-route you can also make a short visit to Kela Dechen Yangtse Anim Dratshang (Nunnery) perched on the opposite cliff side. If you are there on a clear day the view of the Mt. Jomolhari and other giants are at your site. Return down the valley through following the same road and ride to your hotel. Rest day at leisure.
Day 02: Leave Paro – Thimphu
Today you leave Paro on your motorcycle to the capital Thimphu. The capital lies at an elevation of 7700ft/2350m) and it is only 65km and easily negotiated in 1.5 hours. Your ride takes you follow Pa Chhu River, taking you through beautiful settlement, farmhouses and terrace of rice fields. It takes 28km to Chhunzom where you will have a short paperwork and after Chhunzom it is only 31km to your destination. At your arrival at Thimphu ride straight to your hotel for check-in. Lunch will be served in the hotel or in the capitals restaurant. After lunch ride to Kunsel Phodrang where the newly constructed giant Buddha statue overlooking the valley below. The spot offers a clear view of the capital city. Returning back make a short stop at National Memorial Chorten. This Chorten is one of the busiest place in the heart of the capital. People from all walk of life comes to pay tribute to the king and pray for their well being. It was built by Her Majesty Ashi Phuntsho Choden Wangchuk in 1974, and was built in memory of her son the third King of Bhutan. A short uphill ride will takes you to Changangkha Lhakhang. This Lhakhang was consider the oldest temple in Thimphu dated back to 12th century. It was founded by the decendent of Lama Phajodrukgom Zhipo. Returning back stroll around the downtown of Thimphu.
Day 03: Explore Thimphu
In the morning, you will ride to Tango and Cheri Goemba. It takes around 18km and the ride takes you pass the SAARC Convention Center, which now houses the National Assembly Hall, after 7km you will pass through Dechencholing Palace, which serves as the residence of the royal grandmother, on your way to Pangrizampa the road widen to a steep climb and then takes you pass through several settlements and houses and finally reaches the main parking lot in Dodena, the motor road ends here. Leave your motorcycle in the parking lot and hike to Cheri Goemba, it is only 2 hours walk. Cheri Goemba was built in 1620 and was built by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel. It is the seat where he first established the monistic body. However, after Cheri Goemb, if you have time we recommend taking an alternate to visit Tango Goemba. It is only 200m walk to the Tango from the parking lot. Tango Goemba sits at the edge of a richly forested hillside and today it serves the biggest religious university in the country. Follow the same trail to the parking and ride back to Thimphu for lunch. Available sightseeing in Thimphu after lunch are National Institute of 13 Arts and Crafts, National Library, Drubthob Goemba and in the evening hour make a visit to Trashichhoe Dzong. Visit to the dzong is permissible only after five or office hours. If you are here in the weekends on Saturday and Sunday, you can visit during the day hours. You can also visit the biggest vegetable market in Thimphu, located on the bank of Wang Chhu River. The market offers fresh vegetable and other products like local souvenir. Return to your hotel and rest at your leisure.
Day 04: Thimphu – Punakha
After you breakfast in the hotel, depart Thimphu for historical Punakha Valley. En-route visit first and oldest dzong built by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel in 1629, and now houses for the Resigious studies. Returning back from Simtokha Dzong continue your uphill ride through small village of Lhuntsho and to Dochu La Pass (3115m) The pass is one of the best in the country and offers 108 Chortens constructed in 2004. This group of Chortens are known as “Druk Wangyel Chorten” or the “Chortens of the Victory of the Druk Gyelpo”. It was initiated by Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuk. Apart from this magnificent Chorten the Pass also offers the view of the great Himalayan Mountain range. From this lofty pass, the road leads downhill till you reach Punakha. It is only 50km and enroute stop to visit the historical Chemi Lhakhang. This temple located on the barren hilltop is built by Lama Ngawang Chogyel in the year 1499 and was built in honor and memory of his brother Lama Drukpa Kuenley, popularly known as the “Divine Mad Man”. After lunch take an excursion up a scenic road to the traditional village of Talo and then to Nalandra Buddhist Institute.
Day 05: Explore Punakha
Today in the morning your excursion leads, you further northern end of Punakha valley to visit the Kabji Chorten Ningpo. The ride up to Chorten Ningpo passes through many tiny villages and it is one of the best scenic ride in Punakha during the spring, autumn and winter. Returning back follow the same road to visit Khamsum Yueley Namgyel Temple in Yebesa. This temple is notable one of the finest temple in the country with beautiful painting and unique architecture. It also offers a good view of the valley below and the surrounding mountains. Lunch will be served in Khuruthang and after lunch you last stop of the day is Punakha Dzong. The dzong saddles on the confluence of two giant rivers the Pho Chhu and the Mo Chhu River. It was built in 1637 and named “Pungthang Dechen Phodrang” the “Palace of the Great Happiness”. The war materials captured during the Tibetan invasion can be found in the dzong. The dzong is surrounded by stories and myths. It serves as the capital of Bhutan until 1955. The establishment of the wangchuk dynasty on 17th December 1907 took place here and the first National Assembly was held here in 1953. Today Punakha continues to serve the winter residence or capital of the monastic body headed by Chief Abbot (Je Khenpo). Ride back to your hotel for rest.
Day 06: Punakha – Paro
Today you have a long ride covering 133km and is negotiated in 4 hours. The ride takes you via Dochu La Pass and Thimphu where you will stop for lunch. After good lunch stroll around Thimpu or choose toride straight to Paro.
Day 07: Hike to the Famous Tiger’s Nest
The highlight of this excursion will be graded as unforgettable memory as the incredible “Tiger Nest Hike” unveils the era of rescue by Guru from the darkness period. Taktshang, literally means the Tigers Lair, is adventurously perched on the rocky cliff elevating 1000 meters from the basement. The history dates back to eight century when the Guru Rinpochhe flew on the back of tigress from Tibet en route Singye Dzong in the north east Bhutan in the eighth century. His mission to subdue evil spirits dwelling in the Himalayan region of Bhutan was brought to fruition after meditating for three months in the existing cave. Up on his blessing, the current stature of the monastery was initiated in 1694 and unfortunately the old structure was engulfed by fire in 1998 and it was revamped in 2004, which you will behold on your visit. The fascinating hike could vary in duration depending on the physique of an individual. However, on an average it is only three hours hike. Further, option lies at your decision, whether to make up till the nest or enjoy the breathtaking up view of the nest from the cafeteria viewpoint.
Day 08: Depart
After the breakfast, drive to airport to board your flight to onwards destination.