Dates 1 Mar '14 to 15 Mar '14
Est. Cost 3,400 - 3,540 USD (USD United States Dollars)
Type Tour Participants Wanted
Name Photography tour to Bhutan
Bhutan Photographic Tour Itinerary
Day 1. We begin the tour in Bangkok, meeting the night before in our hotel to get to know each other a little before boarding our flight to Paro, Bhutan the following day. The nights accommodation in Bangkok and the flights from Bangkok to Paro (and return to Bangkok after completion of the tour) are included in the tour price.
Day 2. After Flying to Paro we will be met by our guide and driver at Paro airport and they will take us on a scenic drive through the beautiful Paro valley to the Bhutanese capital city of Thimpu, where we will spend the rest of the day settling in and wandering around.
Day 3. Thimpu City. Visit Memorial Chorten, which is a great place to meet the older locals and practise your skills at intimate portraits. The people are very friendly and will usually be happy to pose for you to take their photo if you ask them the right way. The guide and the driver are a big help here to translate the jokes. Chang Gang Kha Lhakhang temple above the city of Thimpu, for some lovely photo opportunities of Monks, prayer wheels and beautiful traditional Bhutanese architecture.
Day 4. Walk and lunch to the Tango Monastery. 14 Km away from Thimphu (by coach), and about 45 Minutes walk through the Pine trees we reach the historic 13th century Tango Monastery and Buddhist Collage, where we will spend most of the day exploring and photographing the 6 temples and Monks of the Tango Monastery.
Day 5. Early morning journey to the Dochula Pass for a spectacular view of the Himalayas as the sun rises, before meandering onward to the beautiful region of Punakha, stopping at some great spots along the way.
Day 6. Through the Sha valley of Wangdue and Mangdi valley of Trongsa with view of mountains, villages, agricultural fields, waterfalls,monuments and chortens, crossing the Pele-la pass at an altitude of 3,400 meters into Trongsa. The Trongsa Dzong (temple fortress) is one of the most spectacularly sited Dzongs in Bhutan, perched on a sheer mountain commanding the valley in both directions. We will spend the whole morning here photographing and exploring before winding our way through the Chumey valley and into the region of Bumthang in Central Bhutan.
Day 7. Today we will spend investigating the beautiful region of Bumthang, in particular the lovely Jakar Dzong. This Dzong was built on a ridge overlooking the Chamkar valley in around 1549 on the site of an even more ancient temple. It is thought to be the biggest Dzong in Bhutan with a circumference of more than 1500 metres.
Day 8. Bumthang Region. A full day excursion to the Ura Valley, walking through beautiful spring countryside exploring lovely small villages and Monasteries dotted along the length of the valley, amongst fields and Yak farms.
Day 9. We leave Bumthang and head back in the direction of Punakha, stopping in the Probjikha Valley in Gangtey where we will investigate and photograph at the Gangtey Goemba, a beautiful traditional 17th Century Monastery.
Day 10 – 12. Gangtey to Punakha. In Punakha we will spend 3 days watching and photographing the unique and spectacular Festival Dromchen in the stunningly situated Punakha Dzong. The Punakha Dzong was built in 1637 to command the confluence of the Po Chhu and Mo Chhu Rivers (mother and father rivers). The full title of the Punakha Dzong is Druk Pungthang Dechen Phodrang, which means the Palace of Great Happiness. In the past it has been the seat of Bhutan’s Government and is now the home Je Khempo the head of the Buddhist Monk body of Bhutan and more than 1000 Monks.
The Festival Dromchen we will witness in Punakha is unique in the country, with a re-enactment of the pivotal incident in the 17th century war with Tibet in which the Tibetan army was vanquished. Not only is the Festival one the most spectacular and unique in Bhutan, it is also one of the main social outings for locals where they get a chance to dress up in their best traditional costume, making it extra colourful and presenting many great photo opportunities.
Day 13. Punakha to Paro. Today we head back to wher we flew in to Bhutan 13 days ago, but there are still lots to see here between Punakha and the Paro valley, not to mention in Paro itself. Every Dzong in Bhutan is unique and the Paro Rinpung Dzong and Ta Dzong are no exception.
Day 14. Paro Valley. We have saved one of the best until last… the hike to the Taktsang Monastery and the Tigers Nest. It is quite a long hike up, especially if you are stopping every 5 minutes to photograph, which you will be. It is an amazing place built right on the edge of the cliff and every step of the walk up through the conifer forest is beautiful, take lots of memory cards! You do have the option of a horse trip up to the Cafe at the half way mark, but I think the walk is just too good to miss.
Day 15. Today we will spend the day around the beautiful Paro valley, investigating the Kichu Lhakhang Temple and the ruined remains of the Drukgyel Dzong (Victory of the land of the Thunder Dragon) which was built in 1646 but caught fire and was razed in 1951. Followed by a free afternoon having a wander around the scenic town centre followed by a farewell dinner.
Day 16. It’s farewell to our guide and driver at the lovely Paro airport (seriously, its a lovely airport) as we head back to Bangkok for the end of the tour.
* This Itinerary is the plan, Actual tour may vary slightly due to festival dates, weather, road conditions or other things beyond our control. Either way, we will ensure you get the best photographic tour that we can provide and you will come away with fantastic images and memories that will last a lifetime.
Photography tour to Bhutan
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