Abide Bhutan Adventure

River Rafting Tour

detailed itinerary

The crystal clear rivers of Bhutan are one of the kingdom’s most precious natural resources. The pristine environment and the sheer variety of the rivers’ courses provide a unique opportunity for travellers to explore Bhutan’s beautiful wilderness. The rugged, untamed waterways of Bhutan will not disappoint the adventurous seekers.  The rivers are plentiful with strong currents varying between slow, gentle flows in some places and powerful, raging torrents in others.

There are six rivers in Bhutan, and if you are a highly-skilled rafter, you can choose a multi-day water trip and explore Bhutan’s stunning landscapes. Or have a combination of rafting and trekking itinerary. Fed by the glacial-melt of the Eastern Himalayas, six major rivers (Wang Chhu, Sunkosh, Puna Tsang Chhu, Mangde Chhu, Kuri Chhu and Dangme Chhu and their tributaries), have been scouted for kayaking and rafting.

When you arrive in Paro by Bhutan’s national carrier, Druk Air, your tour guide will pick you up at the airport and then escort you to your hotel. After taking a rest, you will head to enjoy sightseeing around Paro.

You will first visit the Ta Dzong Museum, which houses many religious relics, works of art and handicrafts offering a great orientation into Bhutan’s historical, cultural, and religious past. Next drive to the Kyichu Lhakhang, one of the 108 temples constructed by the Tibetan king Songtsen Gampo. This temple is built in a manner similar to the Jokhang in Lhasa, and holds great golden image of Buddha Shakyamuni inside. And Later explore the Paro Rinpung Dzong. Located at the suburb of Paro City, Rinpung Dzong is a fortress built in the 17th Century to protect Paro valley, which offers you picturesque scenery and a sense of inner peace.

Stay overnight in Paro.

In the morning, we will drive from Paro to Thimphu and the ride takes about 1.5 hours. Then you will enjoy a full-day sightseeing around the capital of Bhutan, Thimphu, to visit the following sites:

1) National Memorial Chorten:
The National Memorial Chortan was constructed in memorial of the third King of Bhutan, King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, in 1974. The King was generally regarded as the father of modern Bhutan and widely esteemed by the Bhutanese. “Chorten” in Bhutan literally refers to the “seat of faith” and Buddhists often call such monuments the “Mind of Buddha”.

2) National Textile Museum:
It is an amazing museum that keeps the traditional art of waving preserved and exhibits a good collection of ancient colored textile in various forms. You can find how the exquisite exhibits are waved by locals giving a spot operation with intricate tools.

3) Traditional Arts and Crafts Painting School
Visiting the painting school where students receive a six-year course on the 13 different traditional arts and crafts.

4) National Institute of Traditional Medicine
See the productive process of Bhutan’s traditional medicine, herbs mostly, and watch the medical practitioner training.

5) Traditional Paper Making Factory
Originating from the old tradition in the 8th century, Bhutan papermaking has been well preserved and listed as the valuable national heritage of Bhutanese culture.

Stay overnight in Thimphu

The new day begins with tasty Bhutanese breakfast. After that, we will travel northeast to Punakha, the former capital of Bhutan. On the way, we will stop at scenic Dochu La Pass (3,100m), where there are about 108 sacred stupas or temples being build out there. The perfect vintage point brings you the unobstructed vista of Great Himalayas.

After lunch at Wangduephodrang (1,350m), we keep driving to Punakha, which used to the capital of Bhutan. You will explore the world-renowned Punakha Dzong, widely believed to be the most beautiful Bhutanese Dzong, built at the confluence of Pho Chhu and Mo Chhu Rivers. You will also visit Chimi Lhakhang, a popular Buddhist monastery built around 1499 by Ngawang Chogyal.

Stay overnight in Punakha.

The rafting over Mo Chhu River beings from Base of Khamsum Yulay Namgyal Chorten and ends in Khuruthang, covers a shorter 10 km length. After breakfast, you will be transferred to Tashithang, the starting point of the kayaking route. Compared to Pho River, the Mo Chhu River is suitable for both kayaks and rafts, and is much easier to challenge. It will take about 2 to 3 hours for the rafting.

Stay overnight in Punakha.

After breakfast, we will drive the same way back to Thimphu from Punakha. You will visit the Kuensel Phodrang, where the largest statue of siting Buddha is located. Here you will enjoy a stunning panoramic view of the Thimphu city.

You will also visit the Changangkha Lhakhang, an old fortress-like temple and monastic school perched on the ridge, and the Takin preservation center in Motithang, a north-western suburb of Thimphu.

After lunch, we will further visit the Dechenphu Lhakhang, one of the most sacred and commonly visited places in Thimphu. The temple is the residing place of Gyenyen Jagpa Milen, the valley’s guardian deity.

Stay overnight in Thimphu.

After breakfast, we will drive to Paro from Thimphu. Upon arrival, you will enjoy a trek to Taktshang Goemba (also known as Tiger’s Nest). Standing on the cliff of Paro Valley, Taktshang Goemba (3120 meters) is the landmark of Paro as well as the holiest temple in Bhutan. It’s said that Guru Padmasambhava (also known as Guru Rinpoche) had flied here on the back of a tigress and meditated in the caves on the cliffside for three months. From here, you can catch a panoramic view of Paro Valley.

After lunch, you may opt for a stone bath or enjoy free exploration nearby.

Stay overnight in Paro.

Today, our tour guide will transfer you to Paro International Airport for your next destination. Tour service end.

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