From the fiery chilly dishes and virgin mountains to landscapes adorned with prayer flags, Bhutan has all the elements that will add to any traveler’s delight. Yak Adventure Travel, one of the premier tour companies in Asia, offers a sensational varied rooster of high quality tour and treks in Bhutan with over a 100 departures and expeditions to choose from. Of these, the top ten must visit sites and activities would definitely be:
Taktshang Monastery (the tiger’s lair):- an architectural delight. Trek up to Taktsang clinging to a rocky ledge at 3000 meters near Paro, the most holy monastery and rewarding of a trek in Bhutan. It’s a superb hike, fairly demanding but there are ponies for those who don’t wish to walk. Allow at least half a day and feel the magic and true essence of Bhutan at its best.
Tshechus:- catch the pulse of Bhutan’s cultural heritage through the “mask dances.” Colorful Buddhist festival with masked dancers, chanting monks and jesters entertaining villagers and town folks dressed in their finest attire. These mask dances are an integral part of Bhutanese culture dating back to the 9th century. A must attend festival to make your trip to Bhutan complete.
Kingdom in the clouds: A Ride through the high passes:- The ride through the high mountain passes like DochuLa, Pelela, Yutongla and ThrumshingLa, are simply awe inspiring. Multicolored Buddhist flags flutter around gleaming shrines lined with rows of prayer wheels. By clear weather, the views from these high points are simply superb.
Chimi Lhakhang (the fertility temple):- a place of reverence. Perched on a knoll overlooking the small hamlet of Lobesa is the Chime Lhakhang. Built by Drukpa Kuenleg (1455-1529) or the “Divine Madman” the famous Tibetan saint was known for his unique method of preaching the Buddha dharma often using the phallic icon to ward off evil spirits and human vices. Your trip to Bhutan would be incomplete if you don’t include this temple in your travel itinerary.
Bumthang (The Switzerland of the East):- Popularly known as the spiritual heartland of Bhutan, Bumthang is a day’s drive from the capital city Thimphu. The vast expanse of greenery and its scenic beauty, dotted with numerous temples and monasteries makes Bumthang one of the most sought after destinations in the Asia.
Trekking and bird watching:-Bhutan is a living museum and has made it to UNESCO’s list of “World Cultural Heritage” sites. The abrupt change in altitude and landscape, within a span of a few hundred kilometers, makes Bhutan one of the riches bio-diversity hotspots of the world and is often referred to as a “Bird Watcher’s Paradise.”
A Floral Delight (Diversity in colors):- With about 72.5 percent of the total geographical area under forest cover, Bhutan is one of the richest in the world in terms of floral diversity and its varied natural habitat. From the cool broadleaved tropical forests in the south to alpine vegetation and shrubs in the north, our rich forest cover with its wide array of hues and colors is sure to captivate any visitor’s imagination.
Photography:- The rugged and bumpy terrain, majestic waterfalls and picture perfect sunsets is sure to add to any photographer’s delight. Equip yourself with a camera and take back home memories and frames that one could spend watching for a lifetime.
The Dzongs (Giant Fortresses):- Bhutan’s rich architectural heritage manifest in these gigantic fortresses. Often perched in strategic locations or on hillock overlooking the valley below, these dzongs serves both as administrative centers and home for the monastic communities. Among the best are those of Paro, Thimphu, Punakha and Trongsa.
The People:- Bhutanese in general are fun loving people. Don’t be surprised if you see little red-robed monks playing soccer in their bare feet or for that matter, the old and elderly circumambulating chortens and temples—their wide smiles greeting you with their doma-stained teeth.