SIGNATURE JOURNEY | Spring 2022

Travel to see Bhutan’s stunning rhododendron flowering season

 

Bhutan in the Time of Rhododendrons: Spring 2022 journey

Group | 12 Days | Moderate Touring

Dates: May 09 ~ 20, 2022

(See "Dates & Prices" below for other future departures)

 

Discover Bhutan when the kingdom’s legendary wild rhododendrons bloom like the exuberant whorls of a flamenco dancer’s dress. Hike along forested trails overhung with spring rhododendrons to enter secluded valleys and visit ancient Buddhist temples and monasteries; learn about Bhutanese culinary traditions with a curator of Bhutanese heritage foods. Experience the Himalayan landscape of Bhutan during one of the loveliest seasons of the Bhutanese year. 

 
  •  Excellent time of year for nature enthusiasts 
     

  • Hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery
     

  • High-end, traditionally authentic lodges & accommodations
     

  • Highlights of central & western Bhutan
     

  • Markets, monuments, museums, and more

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EXPEDITION OVERVIEW

 

FROM OUR PHOTOGALLERY

 

ITINERARY

Bhutan's wild and magnificent rhododendron blooms elevate the stunning landscape, transforming the merely beautiful into a journey that is unforgettable. Old-growth rhododendron forests, such as those found in Bhutan and a few other parts of the Himalayas, have long fascinated explorers, botanists, collectors, and enthusiasts. This journey coincides with the long season of flowering rhododendrons in Bhutan and takes us to a centuries-old village in the center of Bhutan, where we get a taste of traditional life. Traveling along the east-west national highway, we stop to “smell the flowers” and explore hiking trails redolent with the breath of Himalayan pines. Enter a series of awe-inspiring Buddhist monasteries strung across the country like pearls on a necklace before the final, spectacular ascent to Tiger’s Nest monastery, one of Bhutan’s most beloved shrines.

RELATED:
Our In Focus feature The Magnificent Madness of Bhutan's Wild Rhododendron Blooms.

DAY BY DAY

DAY 1: FLIGHT FROM BANGKOK, THAILAND TO PARO, BHUTAN


Take the breathtaking flight to Bhutan from Bangkok this morning with some of the highest peaks in the world rearing their heads above the clouds, including Mt. Everest. After meeting your Bhutanese guide—who will travel with you for the duration of your stay—at the airport, we transfer to our lodge in the forested hills overlooking Paro town. Meals included: Lunch, Dinner Accommodations: The Olathang Hotel or comparable




DAY 9: EXPLORE BHUTAN'S CAPITAL


National Memorial Stupa, Thimphu, copyrighted, source: bhutanhimalaya.com

This morning, we explore the bustling and exciting capital of Bhutan. Thimphu has some of the most impressive markets in the country as well as many colorful temples and monasteries scattered around the valley. Later, dive into Bhutanese culture with a trip to the magnificent Royal Textile Academy and learn about Bhutan's 13 sacred arts and crafts.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: The Thimphu City Hotel or comparable




DAY 10: MORE CAPITAL SIGHTS & LEARNING TO COOK BHUTANESE/PARO


Today, meet a Bhutanese food curator and learn to cook a traditional Bhutanese meal with her and her team. Visit a beautiful nunnery overlooking the valley, and take an optional hike with sweeping views of the capital. Transfer this evening with an hour-long return drive to Paro Valley Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Accommodations: Olathang Hotel or comparable




DAY 2: FLIGHT TO JAKAR, CENTRAL BHUTAN


A dramatic mountain flight past Bhutan’s Himalayan peaks brings us to Jakar valley in central Bhutan. We check into our family-owned lodge and begin our stay with an exploration of the Jakar town. Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Accommodations: The Mountain Resort or comparable




DAY 5: EXPLORE TANG VALLEY


An old man naps in the medieval palace of Tang Orgyencholing, Bhutan, Spend the day on an excursion to bucolic Tang valley where we eat at a traditional farmhouse featuring ingredients grown on the farm. Cross a suspension bridge and enter a village where time seems to have stopped still before continuing on a hike to Tang Orgyencholing Palace with its surrounding homes and ancient palace complex, now a wonderful repository of Bhutanese history. Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Accommodations: Mountain Resort or comparable




DAY 3: PILGRIM’S WALK, JAKAR