Jhomolhari Trek and the West
The 7326 m / 24,035 ft. high Jhomolhari Mountain, sometimes known as the “Bride of Kangchenjunga” or “Goddess of the Holy Mountains” straddles the boarder between Tibet and Bhutan. The mountain is sacred to Buddhists who believe it is the abode of one of the Five Tsheringma Sisters; the female protector goddesses (Jomo) of Tibet and Bhutan, who were bound under oath by Padmasambhava to protect the land, the Buddhist faith and the local people.
The trek will take you to Jhomolhari base Camp through fascinating mountain scenery with a unique flora and fauna. You will cross Bonte La Pass with 4890 m / 16,040 ft. Before and after the trek you will visit cultural sights in Paro, Thimphu and Phunakha Valleys and as a highlight, the famous Taktsang Monastery also know as the Tiger’s Nest.
Difficulty Level :
13 Total tour days
7 Trekking days
117,5 km / 72,9 miles
3284 m / 10,722 ft. altitude gain
3284 m / 10,722 ft. altitude loss
Board the early morning flight from Bangkok/Kathmandu/Delhi/Singapore to Paro, taking in views of the some of the highest peaks of the eastern Himalaya, including Mount Everest, if weather permits. In the afternoon, a short walk, starting from an ancient traditional wooden bridge, will take us to Paro Dzong and Ta Dzong, the National Museum, housed in an old watchtower above the Paro Dzong. The museum’s collections include displays of spectacular thangkas (religious scroll paintings), bronze statues, and elaborate stamps.Day 2
We have an early start to avoid the heat on our walk to the famous Taktsang Monastery, also know as the Tigers Nest. It is perched on the side of a steep cliff about 900 metres above the floor of Paro valley. It is said that in 8th century Guru Padmasambhava flew on the back of a tigress from Singye Dzong in Lhuntse District to meditate in the cave where Taktsang Monastery now stands. Taktsang Monastery was built in 1692 by Gylse Tenzin Rabgye, who is believed to be the reincarnation of Guru Padmasambhava. The walk takes about 4 to 5 hours. Drive to Shana in the afternoon to our first campsite.Day 3
Trek from Shana to Soi Thangthanka (3575 m / 11,730 ft) / 6-7 hrs.Day 4
Soi Thangthanka to Jangothang (Jhomolhari Camp) (4040 m / 13,250 ft.) 4-5 hrs.Day 5
Rest day at Jhomolhari Camp. Explore the view of Jhomolhari and explore the area around the camp. The chances are high to come across groups of Blue Sheep.Day 6
Jhomolhari Camp to Tso Phu Lakes (4350 m / 14,270 ft.) 2-2.5 hrs.Day 7
Tso Phu Lakes to Dhumzo Chhu or Chorapang (3800 m / 12,460 ft.) via Bonte La (4890 m / 16,040 ft.) 5.5 hrsDay 8
Dhomzo Chhu to Thangbue (4120 m / 13,510 ft.) via Tagulun La (4540 m / 14,880 ft.) 4.5 hrs.Day 9
Thangbue to Shana (2890 m / 9480 ft.) via Thombu La (4270 m / 14,005 ft.) 5 hrs. and drive to Thimphu.Day 10
Thimphu still has no traffic lights but is a vibrant town with many attractions. Here we would like to show you:
The National Institute for Zorig Chusum, which means the “13 traditional arts” of Bhutan is commonly known as the Painting School. The students follow a comprehensive course that starts with drawing, painting, woodcarving, embroidery and statue making.
National Institute of Traditional Medicine: Established in 1978, there is a day care facility and clinic where traditional doctors diagnose patients and prescribe appropriate medicines or treatments. The traditional herbal medicines, ointments and medicinal teas consist of plants, minerals and animal parts, are manufactured in the production facility and distributed to regional health-care units within the country.
The Royal Textile Academy is worth a visit to experience Bhutan’s living national art of weaving. Techniques and styles of the local costumes and textiles made by man and women across Bhutan are on display.
Changangkha Lhakhang is located in Motithang above Thimphu town. It was established in the 12th century and the central statue is Chenresig in an 11-headed, thousand-armed manifestation. You will get an excellent view of Thimphu from the courtyard.
Trashi Chhoe Dzong – This magnificent Dzong located on the north of the city on the west bank of the Wang Chhu (river) housed the original National Assembly and now houses the secretariat, the throne room and offices of His Majesty the King of Bhutan and the ministries of home affairs and finance. The northern portion is the summer residence of His Holiness the Je Khenpo (the chief abbot) and the Central Monastic Body.
National Memorial Chorten was built in 1974 to honour and in memory of the third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck. Inside are numerous religious paintings and complex tantric statues reflecting both peaceful and wrathful aspects of Buddhist deities.
Buddha Point at Kuensel Phodrang . The 169 feet bronze statue of Buddha Dordenma (Vajra Throne) Buddha is symbolising indestructibility. This is a nice place to end the day with great views of Thimphu valley next to Buddha DordenmaDay 11
Thimphu – Punakha
Today you will drive over the 3140 m high Dochula (pass) to Punakha. From the pass you can enjoy the panorama of the Bhutan Himalaya.
The 108 Druk Wangyel Chorten on the pass were built by the present Queen Mother of Bhutan, Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck, to commemorate Bhutan's victory over Assamese militants and to liberate the souls lost during the fighting.
Punakha Town is located at an altitude of 1250 m. On the way we will visit Chhimi Lhakhang and Punakha Dzong.
Chhimi Lhakhang: Perched on the hilltop overlooking the Punatsang Chhu, Chhimi Lhakhang was build in 1499 by the cousin of Lama Drukpa Kunley (The Divine Madman), in his honour, after he subdued the demoness of the nearby Dochula with his ‘magic thunderbolt of wisdom’. A wooden effigy of lama’s thunderbolt is preserved in the Lhakhang, and childless women visit the Lhakhang to receive a Wang (blessing) from the saint to become fertile and also to seek protection for the children that they already have.
Punakha Dzong: Guru Rinpoche, who predicted that a person named Namgyal would arrive at a hill that looks like an elephant, foretold the site of the Punakha Dzong. Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal visited Punakha and chose the tip of the trunk of the sleeping elephant at the confluence of the Mo Chhu (female river) and Pho Chhu (male river) as the place to build the Dzong. It was named Pungthang Dechen Phodrang, which means the Palace of Great Bliss. Punakha Dzong remained the centre of the government until it was relocated to Thimphu Dzong. It continues to be the winter home of the central monk body.
The Dzong contains the massive gold statues of Buddha, Guru Rinpoche and the Zhabdrung, dating back to the mid-18th century. Bhutan’s most treasured possession is the Rangjung (Self-Created) Kharsapani, an image of Chenresig that is kept in the Tse Lhakhang and was brought to Bhutan from Tibet by the Zhabdrung.Day 12:
Punakha – Paro
Today you will return to Paro via Semtokha Dzong, the oldest Dong in the country. In the afternoon there will be some time for some shopping and a relaxing stroll through Paro town.Day 13
Flight from Paro to Bangkok/Kathmandu/Delhi/Singapore
- 5 nights in double or single room occupancy in minimum 3 star hotels in Bhutan. If you would like to stay in 4 or 5 star hotel, please let us know.
- 4 nights in comfortable dome tents.
- All group camping equipment.
- All meals - breakfast, lunch and dinner. Sometimes lunch will be pack lunch or a picnic.
- Full time English speaking licensed Bhutanese guide during your travel in Bhutan.
- All internal road transport in comfortable vehicle.
- All entry fees.
- Group medical kit.
- All park entrance fees and trekking permits.
- Animals to carry 20kgs personal equipment.
- Return flight from Bangkok to Paro/Bhutan in economy class. There are also flights to Bhutan from Delhi, Kolkata, Bagdogra, Dhaka, Kathmandu, Guwahati and Singapore. The trip cost will change accordingly.
- Visa fee and services for Bhutan.
- All internal taxes.
- A sustainable tourism Royalty of US$ 65 per person per night. This Royalty goes towards free education and free healthcare and poverty alleviation.
- Alcoholic drinks, soft drinks, tips, laundry
- International flights from your home destination to Bangkok and back. We are happy to assist you in arranging this flight.
- Insurances, Travel insurance, health insurance.