This trek leads you to the hot spring at Gasa, which is believed to possess medicinal values and cure people of their illnesses. This package tour encompasses the trek to the hot spring with the opportunity of visiting Punakha,Thimphu and the Paro valleys.
The entire trek is through beautiful forests of sub-tropical trees in the beginning and alpine vegetation towards the end of the trek. A lot of orchid species can be seen and in the winter months it is common to see the national animal takin grazing in the meadows.
Trip length: 10 Days
Season: February to March
October to December
Day 1: Arrive Paro
On arrival at Paro airport you will be received by our Tour Representative and escorted to Thimphu. En route, a quick stop at a bridge connecting to the 15th C Tachogang Lhakhang, a temple attributed to one of Bhutan’s popular saints, can be a wonderful experience.
This evening you can make a leisurely stroll in the Capital city to get a feel for the ambience of the place. Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 2: Thimphu
Thimphu, being the administrative Capital and home to many temples and monasteries, offers diverse interests to the visitors.
The wide range of interests include the visit to the Memorial Chorten, a stupa that fulfills the dual function of a memorial and a place that commemorates world peace; Tashichho Dzong, the fortress which houses the office of the King and other Secretariats; the Painting School where students learn the 13 traditional arts and crafts , the Traditional Medicine Institute, Handicrafts Emporium and Folk Heritage Museum, that is an epitome of a traditional Bhutanese house as would have looked some 500 years ago.
Time permitting, you can also go on easy walks and visit temples and monasteries, as per the discretion of your tour guide.
Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 3: Thimphu - Punakha - Tashithang
Today, it’s a morning drive to Punakha via Dochula pass (3,100m), through magnificent forests of rhododendron and magnolia. On the clear days, you can have the panoramic view of eastern Himalayan peaks.
There is a gradual descent from the pass and lunch stop is at Metsina, after which you can visit Punakha Dzong.
Built in 1637 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the Patron Saint of Bhutan, the dzong is now used as the winter residence of monk body and is the administrative centre of the district.
After the Dzong visit, the drive to Tashithang, your first camp on this trip, is across agricultural land holdings and past traditional Bhutanese houses.
Overnight at camp.
Day 4: Tashithang - Damji - Gasa
The trek starts by the riverside, following a well-made path through semi tropical forest. The day’s walk is fairly gentle climbing up to Damji village at 2,250m, with the walking time of about 6 hours.
After lunch, it is a continuous walking through sub-tropical forests and villages up to the hot springs at Gasa Tsachu.
The Tsachu is a famous place where people from all over the country come to have bath, due to its curative powers. A soak in the evening is a nice way of winding up your day before hitting the Camp below the Dzong at 2,900m.
Day 5: The day at Gasa Tsachu
Today is the day to laze in the hot spring or take a pack lunch and climb about two hours to visit Gasa village and the Dzong.
Day 6: Gasa Tsachu - Geon Damji
After a short climb, the trail winds through the rolling hills and passes through the pine and oak forests, villages and wheat fields. From the trail, there are beautiful views of the Gasa Dzong.
Today the campsite is at 2280m with an approximate walking distance of about 21 km spanning about 6 to7 hours.
Day 7: Geon Damji - Tashithang - Punakha
The trail today is a descent from the high agricultural holdings above the Mochu river into a lush semi-tropical gorge filled with banana trees, creepers and various tropical vegetation.
After walking for about 6 to7 hours in a distance spanning some 17 kms, you will reach Tashithang, where your car will be waiting to transfer you to Punakha. The rest of the day can be spent in rest and relaxation.
Overnight at Punakha
Day 8: Punakha- Thimphu
One of the highlights in Punakha is the Punakha Dzong, which lies strategically between two rivers known as Phochu and Mochu rivers. Built by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the Founder of Bhutan in 1637 AD, it is one of the most important and historical Dzongs in Bhutan. This beautiful fortess now houses the District Administration office and the winter residence of the state Monastic Body and its Chief Abbot.
After lunch, drive to Thimphu over the Dochula Pass. While in Thimphu, you can do sightseeing that might have been left out during your onward journey. In the evening, you can stroll in the town visiting some handicraft shops.
Overnight in Thimphu.
Day 9: Thimphu - Paro
The morning drive to Paro will bypass familiar spots line the confluence at chunzom, the Tachogang lhakhang, and the airport.
Sightseeing in Paro encompasses the visit to Rimpung, the 17th C Paro Dzong; the Taa Dzong, a conch shaped building that was originally designed as a Watch Tower; and the 7th c. Kichu Lhakhang, the oldest temple in the Himalayan region.
A leisurely stroll in the streets of Paro town in the evening will offer opportunity for mingling with the local people.
Overnight at Paro
Day 10: Paro
Today is a hike to Taktsang or the Tiger’s Nest Monastery, which is considered one of the most iconic sights in Bhutan. It is precariously perched on a cliff face at 3000 meters, and legend has it that Guru Rimpoche, one of the Patron Saints of Bhutan, alighted on a tigress at the present day site where the temple was built.
The hike is about 3 hours to the Monastery and about 2 hours to get back to the car park.
There are options of doing an evening stroll in Paro town, buying souvenirs, or using the massage facilities at the hotel, after your very well earned rest following the Tiger’s nest hike.
Overnight at Paro
Day 11: Depart
After checking your flight schedule, our guide and driver will escort you to the airport at an appropriate time and bid you farewell.