Luxury Tailor Made Bhutan Holidays
We take you off the beaten track, revealing lesser known walks and inside knowledge by our specialist guides.
Imagine walking through pine scented valleys, the rich sound of birdcall following your every move, until you stumble across an unknown temple where monks reside. You stop and listen to their mesmerising chanting and receive a blessing. You then return on your downward walk, feeling exhilarated, to return to your room with beautiful views over an ancient palace or across to the mountains. You then have a Bhutanese hot stone bath and a massage to soothe your aches and pains before sitting down to a heavenly meal. You truly believe you have reached Nirvana!
Bhutan offers something for everyone! It is perfect for those on honeymoon or those simply taking a well earned holiday to relax and take gentle walks in the most beautiful and romantic surroundings, in gorgeous accommodation which blends in with the surroundings and to immerse oneself in Bhuddism and the Bhutanese culture. It is equally perfect for the adrenaline charged couple or family who want to spend their time hiking, trekking, cycling, rafting, kayaking and playing archery and darts.
Highlights of Bhutan
- An unique and unspoilt Buddhist culture set amidst stunning mountain scenery.
- An intriguing blend of tradition and emerging modernity.
- One of the finest regions in Asia for birds (750 species) and wild flowers.
- A wide choice of mountain walks and treks into truly wild country.
- Private camp that you can walk to and spend the night.
- Fascinating and colourful religious festivals in the Buddhist monasteries.
- An increasing number of truly beautiful hotels in Paro, Punakha, Trongsa, Thimphu, Gangtey and Bumthang.
- Cycling, rafting, hiking, walking and kayaking.
- Longer treks for the dedicated hiker.
- Traditional Bhutanese breakfasts, lunch and dinners at a Bhutanese farmhouse, served around a bukhara (a wood burning stove) with the rest of the family. If breakfast, you can also learn how to milk cows should you wish!
- Visits to the local cheese factory, beer and cider brewing factories and to bee keeping projects.
- Visits to the weaving centres where one can see the most beautiful designs and garments being woven by the women with their magnificent textiles from silk to cotton and wool. Learn about the 13 arts and crafts still performed in Bhutan today.
- Wonderful Bhutanese hot stone baths and spa treatments at selected lodges and hotels.
- The opportunity to interract with the monks, attend their religious ceremonies and obtain a blessing. Perhaps make a donation to a meal for the monastery.
- Participate in the traditional sport of Bhutan, archery as well as darts and watch the men as they challenge one another over huge distances and then celebrate with wonderful dances and chanting.
- We can arrange a special Buddhist ceremony whether for a wedding or renewal of vows or simply a blessing for health!
If scenery, culture and mountains draw you then Bhutan surely must be your next special holiday. Bhutan’s easy eccentricity is so compelling – a comfortable, unfussy uniqueness that pervades every aspect of life, from the traditional gho and kira that the people must wear to the architecture, scenery and food which, to the scalded and stupefied foreigner, appears to consist primarily of chillies with meat, cheese or vegetable tossed in to provide a bit of body! Then there’s the Bhutanese pragmatism, pulling in whichever bits of whichever century they find useful without worrying too much about modernity – or much else! Picture a scene: near Chheri Gompa at the head of the Wang Chhu river a couple of hours beyond the capital, Thimphu, there was a yak train bringing in ginseng from the mountains along an age-old trading route that winds it’s way down from the high alpine meadows through dense temperate evergreen and semi-evergreen forest. As the beautifully decorated yaks trailed in to the road-head a cavalcade of modern Japanese cars swept up the well-maintained road from Thimphu. A monk of some considerable antiquity emerged from the lead car and was, promptly and without too much ceremony, loaded onto a palanquin to be carried up the steep slope to the monastery. It was the retired Head Abbot or Je Khenpo of Bhutan, the second most important individual in the kingdom after the monarch; an office dating back almost 500 years to the Shabdrung or Great Unifier who gave Bhutan its present distinctive national identity.No matter what your expectations, it would be a fair bet that the country will match them; there are only 700,000 people in a country the size of Switzerland; it is 71% forest; there’s a diversity of life in its rugged beauty that is simply staggering although it is most apparent in the flora, the insects and the birds. Another anecdote: On a December evening, feeling our way up to a pass in thick fog with the weird and wonderful shapes of trees draped in snow and ice coalescing out of the murk, a magnificent Monal pheasant strutted onto the road and displayed himself a few yards away, showing no sign of retreating. It was our first sighting of the national bird of Nepal known as the Danphe or the Bird of Nine Colours. Just then 3 females appeared and our cup brimmed over!
These days Uma Paro and the Aman group of hotels each have excellent hotels here, to supplement more traditional properties. Access is usually by air via Kathmandu, Kolkata or Delhi but we also travel to Bhutan by road from one of our favourite places to stay near Darjeeling, a very scenic drive.