Bhutan Tour / Fall Festivals Tour

Festivals of Bhutan

Join our Fall Festivals Bhutan tour. Explore Bhutan during the colorful festival season.

Attend three very different festivals on this exciting tour!

Tsechus are religious festivals where masked dances are performed by monks and secular people to instruct the onlookers in the ways of dharma and to honor Padmasambava, considered the founder of Buddhism. The Thimphu Tsechu, one of the grandest festivals in Bhutan.

In addition, attend the Thimphu Drubchen where the deities are prayed to and dances are performed only by monks. At the

Continuing onwards, we attend the Gangtey Festival. Afterwards visit Gangtey Goempa. It is one of the oldest and most important seats of the Nyingmapa school of Buddhism.

In addition, observe the Thangi Mani Festival in Choekhor Village just outside Bumthang.

All festivals are located in small villages where lifestyles and traditions have remain unchanged throughout the centuries.

Hike to the infamous Tiger’s Nest Temple, (Taktsang Lhakhang).

Visit monasteries, sacred sites, bazaars, small villages, enjoy the breath-taking Himalayas and local culture.

This is an exciting opportunity to really become immersed in the true Bhutanese culture as you travel through Bhutan with Original World Travel.

  • Experience exciting Tsechus (buddhist religious festivals)
  • Explore the countryside visiting monasteries, markets, shrines and small villages
  • Learn about Bhutanese culture at the famed School of Arts and Crafts in Thimphu
  • Visit Drugyel Dzong for a magnificent view of sacred Mt. Jumolhari
  • Tiger’s Nest Temple, (Taktsang Lhakhang)

View A Detailed Itinerary:

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Monks at the Thimpu Tsechu Festival in Bhutan

  • 1
    Day 1: Arrival in Paro-Drive to Thimphu

    You are met at airport and we drive one hour through the hamlets of Paro along the riverside to Thimphu the capital city of Bhutan.

    On the drive we will pass the Tamchog Lhakhang, built by Thangtong Gyalpo (iron bridge builder/saint from the 14th-15th century. We shall stop to visit the 17th century Simtokha Dzong standing on a lofty ridge.

    This afternoon we shall explore the small city including a visit to the National Memorial Chorten.

  • 2
    Day 2-3: Thimphu

    Our small group will enjoy visiting the cultural highlights of Thimphu and attend the Thimphu festival where dances are performed by monks and secular people.

    Visit the School of Arts and Crafts, National Institute of Traditional Medicine, the Folk Heritage Museum, the textile museum and weaving center and Tashi Cho Dzong, as well as the bustling local bazaar.

  • 3
    Day 4: Punakha

    This morning we attend the Thimphu festival again.

    Afterwards, we drive to Punakha over the Dochula Pass where we see the 108 Bhutanese stupas built by the queen for the well being of the country.

  • 4
    Day 5-6: Gangtey (Phobjikha Valley)

    Visit Punakha Dzong, built in 1673. Then drive to Gangtey in beautiful Phobjikha Valley.

    Phobjikha Valley is home to the rare black-necked crane that migrate from high plateaus of Tibet in late Fall.

    We attend the Gangtey Festival and visit Gangtey Goempa. It is one of the oldest and most important seats of the Nyingmapa school of Buddhism.

    Afterwards, we enjoy a walk that descends through flower meadows to Semchubara village and into an open valley past chortens into the edge of the forest before descending to the Khewang Lhakhang and village. Here we have an opportunity to interact with local residents.

    We also visit the Black Necked Crane Information Centre.

  • 5
    Day 7: Gangtey-Trongsa

    During a spectacular drive to Trongsa enjoy unspoiled natural scenery with many waterfalls alongside the climbing road. We drive over Pele La pass (3,420m) on the Black Mountain range.

    Visit the beautiful Chendebji Chorten en route built in Nepalese style with painted eyes facing the four directions. The Chorten was erected in the 18th century by a Tibetan lama to cover the remains of an evil spirit that was subdued at this spot. The imposing Trongsa Dzong can be viewed across a deep canyon to signal your approach to the town around a curving road. Trongsa is the ancestral home of Bhutan's ruling dynasty.

    Visit Trongsa Dzong, a masterpiece of Bhutanese architecture and the largest Dzong in Bhutan.

  • 6
    Day 8-10: Trongsa- Bumthang (Jakar)

    A pleasant drive to Bumthang one the most spectacular valleys in Bhutan and also the spiritual and historical heartland of the country. The road winds steeply up to Yo Yutung La Pass (3,400m) before descending down through dense coniferous forest to Chummey Valley. We visit the Chummey weavers' workshop showcasing Bumthang's noted textiles.

    We’ll tour the historical Jakar Dzong built by Minjur Tenpa, the third Druk Desi (Temporal ruler appointed by Shabdrung) in 1646 A.D.

    Visit The Burning Lake, also known as Membar Tsho, a pool where the Guru Padmasambhava hid a treasure.

    One morning we go to Choekhor Village to observe Thangi Mani Festival held at Tamshing Monastery. The Tamshing Lhakhang (temple of the good message), built in 1501 by Pema Lingpa, is the most important Nyingmapa temple in the kingdom and follows the Pelling tradition of Pema Lingpa.

    We shall tour the sites of Bumthang including: Chakhar (Iron Castle) Lhakhang and several ancient and important monasteries including Kurjey Lhakhang, Kencho Sum Lhakhang, and Pema Samba Lhakhangs.

    One day we will venture off the usual tourist route to visit the isolated village of Ura in the beautiful central valley.

  • 7
    Day 11-12: Paro

    This morning fly to Paro (weather permitting).

    We visit Ta-Dzong (converted into the National Museum in 1968), located on a hill overlooking the Paro Dzong, as well as Paro Dzong- also called Rinchen Pung Dzong / Rinpung Dzong ('fortress on a heap of jewels').

    The next day, we start at 7 am to Satsam Chorten for a glorious hike to Taktsang Lhakhang (aka “Tiger’s Nest Temple”). The monastery is perched on a rock face and is revered by the Bhutanese as Guru Padmasambhava (who introduced Buddhism to Bhutan) is said to have flown on the back of a tiger to the site to meditate.

    On the return to Paro town, we stop at the Kyichu monastery built from the 7th century. This is one of the oldest monasteries in Bhutan built by the great Tibetan King Songsten Gyepo and the main statue is of the Future Buddha, which is similar to the main Buddha statue in the Potala Palace in Lhasa Tibet.

  • 8
    Day 13: Depart or continue on the Nepal-Tibet Tour

    Transfer to the airport.

  • Trip Length

    13-day trip begins in Paro and ends in Paro

  • Dates

    September 13-October 25, 2023

  • Land Cost

    $5820 per person based on min 2 people, single room supplement: $545
    Plus Airfare (estimates): Bumthang-Paro: $250 per person econ/$285 business class

  • Accommodations

    Best available traditional guesthouses in Bhutan

  • Group Size

    2-12 guests

  • Included Meals

    All meals in Bhutan

  • Duration

    13 Days

  • Reading List

    Suggested Reading

  • Extend Your Trip

    Treasures of Tibet
    following Bhutan

Thimphu, Bhutan

Wangdue Phodrang, Bhutan

Gangtey Palace, Paro, Bhutan

Trongsa, Bhutan

Bumthang, Bhutan

Trongsa, Bhutan

Trongsa, Bhutan

Punakha, Bhutan

Taktsang Palphug, Paro, Bhutan

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