Haa Summer Festival (8 days)

Haa Summer Festival (8 days)

The two-day Alpine Summer Festival in Haa gives a peek into the Bhutanese culture and way of life. Apart from mask dances and traditional Bhutanese folks songs and dances, alpine flowers are displayed. One gets a good insight into the highlander community and their way of life. Traditional sports like archery and dart are played. Tourists can experience the unique cuisine of Haa which is different from food from other parts of the country. Various homestay programmes are also on offer for visitors who want to experience typical Bhutanese lifestyle and hospitality.

Courtesy: TCB

Itinerary

  1. Arrive in Paro

You will be received by the representative of BCD-Bhutan Tours and Travels at the airport and transferred to a hotel. After lunch, visit Ta Dzong (National Museum) built in 1656 and renovated in 1968, the watchtower built to defend Rinpung Dzong during inter-valley wars of the 17th century. A few minutes’ drive from the museum is Rinpung Dzong (meaning “Heap of Jewels”, built in 1646 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the first spiritual and temporal ruler of Bhutan.

Dinner and overnight stay in a hotel

  1. Excursion to Taktshang Monastery – Thimphu

After breakfast, hike to the spectacular Taktshang (Tiger’s Nest) monastery, one of the most famous monasteries in Bhutan, perched on the side of a cliff 900 m above the Paro valley floor. It is a three-hour uphill walk at a moderate pace. On the way back, visit Kyichu Lhakhang, the oldest and most sacred temple of the Kingdom dating back to the 7th century.

Drive to Thimphu in the evening. On the way, visit Tamchog Lhakhang built by Thangtong Gyalpo (popularly known as Lama Chazampa, meaning the Iron Bridge Builder) in the 15th century.

Dinner and overnight stay in Hotel

  1. Thimphu sightseeing

Today, we visit National Institute of Zorig Chusum (13 traditional arts and crafts) where we can meet the students undergoing training followed by Folk Heritage Museum which provides a glimpse into the traditional Bhutanese farmhouse, Textile Museum, and Takin Preserve (takin is Bhutan’s national animal).

After lunch, visit the Centenary Farmers’ Market (open from Friday to Sunday) where locals come from far and wide to sell a variety of vegetables and dairy products. Watch an archery match at Changlingmithang. We then visit Thangtong Dewachen Nunnery before visiting Tashichho Dzong, the seat of the central government and the Central Monastic Body.

Dinner and overnight stay in a hotel

  1. Thimphu to Punakha

After breakfast, drive to Punakha via Dochula Pass (3,116 m) whose crown is decorated by 108 Druk Wangyal choetens (stupas) built by the eldest Queen Mother, Her Majesty Gyalyum Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck. Enroute to Punakha, to Punakha, visit Chime Lhakhang associated with Lam Drukpa Kunley, who, in the late 15th century, used humour, songs and outrageous behaviour to teach. After lunch, visit the magnificent Punakha Dzong built in 1637 by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal to serve as the religious and administrative centre of the region.

Dinner and overnight stay in a hotel

  1. Punakha to Paro

After breakfast, drive to Paro via Thimphu. After lunch, visit the tallest statue of sitting Buddha. You can have a bird’s eye view of the capital city from there. We then watch an archery match (national sport of Bhutan) at Changlingmithang. In the evening, drive to Paro.

Dinner and overnight stay in a hotel

  1. Haa Summer Festival Day 1

After breakfast, drive to Haa valley, some 69 km and 3 hours’ drive away. Enroute to Haa, stop at the Chelela Pass at an altitude of 3,988 m. On a clear day, you will enjoy the spectacular views of Mt. Jomolhari, Jichu Drake and other Himalayan range. Attend the Day 1 of the festival showcasing the rich alpine flowers, folklore, and culture. You will be given the details of the programme.

Dinner and overnight stay in a guesthouse

  1. Haa Summer Festival Day 2

Attend Day 2 of the festival in the morning. After lunch, visit Lhakhang Karpo and Lhakhang Nagpo and then drive to Paro.

Dinner and overnight stay in a hotel

  1. Departure

Drive to the airport and bid farewell.