Nestled in the Himalayas, Bhutan is a small country with landscape ranging from lush subtropical plains in the south to the sub-alpine Himalayan mountains in the north. With Bhutan being the first and only Carbon negative country in the world, we as nature enthusiasts were excited for this trip as soon as it got planned. In span of 7 days, we covered three major cities of Bhutan – Thimphu, Punakha and Paro. When a country’s official tourism council has a hashtag – #happinessisaplace, you know for that the place is special and it surely was.
So come with us in this journey into Bhutan through this Photoblog, as we share some of the images we made all along our trip across the 7 days we spent in this amazing country. (For best experience, view it on a PC).
As soon as we land in Paro, instead of rushing to collect bags and complete the immigration process, almost everyone got busy snapping images
Even though its one of the smallest airport we have visited, the immigration formalities were a breeze and we were off to Thimphu. Couple of hours into the drive and Thimphu welcomed us
Next day we were off to exploring Thimphu, starting with the famous Buddha Dordenma – the largest sitting Buddha in the World
Our super enthusiastic guide Ugyen from Heavenly Bhutan Travels, told us there is small hike which give some amazing view of the Thimphu city and it was completely worth it as we got a view of the huge Buddha Dordenma overlooking the Thimphu city
Next up was the Tashichho Dzong in Thimphu
followed by visit to the Thimphu city. Quick fact – Bhutan is the only country in the world that does not have traffic lights. Instead, traffic police controls all the traffic.
and a click of the Clock Tower Square, a typical place to relax & hangout!
We finally got back to our resort by evening and were greeted with this lovely sunset view
Day 3 and we were up early, leaving for Punakha and we were greeted by a lovely surprise just as we left our resort – a Brown Parrotbill, a very unexpected lifer (for people who are not into bird-watching, a lifer is a term used to describe a bird species you see for the 1st time)
Driving through the beautiful valleys, we soon reach Dochula Pass – one of the most beautiful mountain pass we have seen which was built in honor of 108 Bhutanese soldiers who died in a 2003 military operation.
We also visited the Druk Wangyal Lhakhang temple at Dochula pass, probably the most beautiful temple we saw in the trip.
Our next stop was the Royal Botanical Garden at Lampelri
& another bird-watching surprise here, the beautiful Yellow-bellied Flowerpecker
We finally reached Punakha in afternoon and head straight to the Punakha Dzong, also known as Pungtang Dewa chhenbi (meaning “the palace of great happiness or bliss”).
After exploring this amazing architectural brilliance, we head to see the longest suspension bridge in Bhutan
& finally we arrive at our resort in Punakha – Puna Cottages and were greeted by this lovely sunset
Next day we started early again, this time for a short Hike to Khamsum Yulay Namgyal Chortem
The view from the top of this temple was crazily stunning! One of the best ones..
Rest of the day we spent driving & exploring Punakha in our ride for the trip – Hyundai Creta, thanks to Heavenly Bhutan Travels
Day 5 and we were off on our journey to Paro, via same route i.e. Punakha – Dochula Pass – Thimphu – Paro. As soon as we reached Lamperlri, this majestic Mountain Hawk-eagle was soaring low!
We were back at Dochula Pass again and tried to captured some different views
& also tried the Bhutanese special butter tea – SUJA
and came across the commonly seen songster of Himalayan region – Blue Whistling Thrush
Since we started our day early, we did not halt at Thimphu and continued our journey to Paro and soon the Paro Dzong welcomed us
Exploring the banks for Paro river, this amazing species showed up..! 6 of them. Some amazing bird watching on this day!
Day 6 was the most awaited day of the trip – hike to the famous TaktSang Monastery (Tiger’s Nest).
lot of prayer flags along the hike…
and prayer wheels too…
and finally we made it after a hike of 3 hours! Hiking to this majestic place give a very special feeling, a feeling of accomplishment..!
Spent rest of the day relaxing at our resort in Paro – Rema Resort, on the banks of Paro river.
& celebrated our hike with Bhutan special – Takin Red Wine & Zum Zin Peach Wine
Day 7 was a drive to the Chelela Pass – highest motorable road in Bhutan. It was raining and foggy but that did not stop us from visiting this place
The views of the valleys and the forest were stunning here..
Do not miss out of hot tea, maggi and momos atop Chelela pass!
On way back, we got some lovely view of the Paro Valley
and finally we did a small trip back to the Paro Dzong, to capture this stunning fort at night in all its glory
So finally it was time head back to the resort to pack bags and we were already having mixed feelings. The Country stands true to its hashtag of #happinessisaplace, rather exceeds it! Its Day 8 and we finally board our Druk Air flight to Delhi right on time.
As the flight takes off, the weather is very clear and we are getting some excellent views around 15-20 minutes later… the Pilot announces “Mt. Everest on the right”
& that was the best end for any of trips ever!
Thanks for virtually travelling with us in this photographic journey, hope you enjoyed it all along. We have tried something new, so any kind of feedback will be appreciated. And if you have reached this far in the blog, do let us know which of the images is your most favourite in the comments.
As for the this amazing trip to Bhutan, we couldn’t have asked for more. As I mentioned at the start, everything about this place is unique and very special. It is a place that will make you fall in love with nature all over again. A huge shoutout to Heavenly Bhutan Travels for the perfect arrangements. It is totally justified why they are #1 tour operator for Bhutan on Trip Advisor.
Stay tuned for couple of more blogs on Bhutan.
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– Rudraksha & Shraddha