Wilderness Experience Trekkin tour in Bhutan's Lunana region

Stages and stations

Schedule of Bhutan's Snowman Trek

Day 1: Arrival in Bhutan

You will arrive at Paro International Airport on the day you start your course and will be picked up by a member of our partner's staff, together with the other participants, who will take you to a hotel in the city. Depending on your arrival time, you can use the remaining time of the day for acclimatisation and your own activities.

Day 2: Hike to Taktshang Monastery

Today you and your group hike up to the famous cliff-hermitage of Taktsang. This monastery, also known as the "Tiger’s Nest", is located just a few kilometres north of Paro, on a steep rock face almost 1000 metres above the Paro valley. The monastery can only be reached by foot – those who start the hike should be fit and have a good head for heights. The way itself is worthwhile: It leads through beautiful pine forests, through streets lined with prayer flags and grants grandiose views.

In the afternoon you will visit the Buddhist temple Kyichu Lhakhang before returning to the hotel.

Day 3: Start of the trekking tour – From Paro to Shana

Today the actual trekking tour starts. From Paro you drive to Drukgyel-Dzong which marks the starting point of the trip. While the staff attach the luggage to the pack animals, you and your group visit the ruins of the former Buddhist monastery fortress. Once the necessary equipment has been stowed away, you will start your first stage: Along the Paro River, the trail climbs slightly, past traditional farmhouses and wide rice fields, until you reach your camp for the coming night after a five- to six-hour hike.

Day 4: From Shana to Soe Thangthangkha

Today you continue uphill following the river and through the valley, which narrows and closes in after some distance. Afterwards, your path winds further uphill and downhill. After about four to five hours of hiking – you will cover about 15 kilometres on this day – you will reach your camp for the upcoming night, located in a meadow with stone shelter.

Day 5: From Soe Thangthangkha to Jangothang

Today you continue climbing uphill; you will be able to observe how the vegetation turns rapidly alpine. After you have passed an army outpost, the landscape in front of you stretches into a wide valley. Now, incomparable views of mighty mountain ranges and snow-capped peaks accompany you all the way to Jangothang. You will also come across yaks and yak herder camps. After almost 20 kilometres and a five- to six-hour hike you will finally reach your next camp for the night.

Day 6: Exploration day in Jangothang

After the first three days of hiking you may allow your legs some rest today. This day is entirely dedicated to the exploration of the Jangothang valley. Climb a little higher near your camp to enjoy the view of Jumolhari or Jichu Drake or hike to the glacial basin of Jumolhari or to glacial lakes of Tsophu. Of course, you can also use this day to relax and fully enjoy the special atmosphere of your "mountain camp".

Day 7: From Jangothang to Lingshi

The rest day in Jangothang is followed today by a particularly serious hiking tour. You ascend a little higher, walk on a plain for a while until finally the ascent to Nyile La Pass takes place at an altitude of 4,800m. After the pass it is a long descent into Lingshi basin. The vegetation here is very sparse, but the view to Mount Tserim Kang is simply spectacular. After about 19 kilometers and five to six hours of hiking, you will reach your camp for the night, which is located at about 4,150 m above sea level.

Day 8: From Linghsi to Camp Chebisa

With a planned hiking time of three to four hours, the shortest trekking day of the tour awaits you today. Most of the way is smooth, along the ridge of the river valley which known for its abundance of medicinal herbs. You will then cross a small side valley and the small mountain village of Goyak before reaching your camp near the picturesque village of Chebisa.

Day 9: From Chebisa to Shomuthang

Leaving all settlements and villages behind, the trail again climbs through high-altitude pastures, frequented by the blue sheep and grazing yaks. You will pass the Gombu La pass at about 4,350m altitude, descend a little further to a river, before reaching a range of hills again that will lead you into the wooded valley of Jolethang-Chu. From here the trail winds uphill to the yak pastures of Jachim (4260m) before dropping down to the meadow camp at Shomuthang alongside a tributary of the Mo-Chhu.

Day 10: From Shomuthang to Robluthang

Today you start early, cross the river and enjoy the view of Mount Gang Bum in the southeast. Once you have reached the Jari La Pass, you will be offered more magnificent views of Mount Gangchentak, Mount Tserim Gang and Mount Jomolhari. The switchback trail now zigzags downhill to meet a stream, through landscapes shaped by rhododendron, up to a small bridge over the Jolethang-Chhu and further to a clearing near Tseri Jathang, which is regarded as a summer refuge of the takin. After a total of seven to eight hours you finally reach your rock-strewn meadow camp at Robluthang at about 4,160m altitude.

Day 11: From Robluthang to Lemithang

This day is characterized by another challenging hiking tour. The trail leads uphill burnt-out forest and marshy terrain, to reach a glacial valley. You cross a river and meadows potholed with marmot burrows and finally reach the Sinche La Pass, the highest point of your trek at 5000m. The effort is rewarded with a breathtaking view of the snow-capped Mount Gangchentak. A longer descent, a double crossing of the Gang Chhu, passing rhododendron and cedar forests and finally the arrival at your camp for the night: Camp Lemithang, with the Great Tiger Mountain looming over camp.

Day 12: From Lemithang to Laya

Lemithang is located in the Laya region which is a wonderful place to get a genuine insight into Bhutan's culture and traditions. Today you zigzag along and cross the Zamdo Nagi-Chhu, hike through a uninhabited forest area and, after a total of three to four hour,s you reach the village of Laya. You and your group camp on a high flat bench above the east end of Laya Village for the night.

Day 13: Exploration day in Laya

No hike today, as it is all about Bhutan's culture. Use this day to get to know the inhabitants of Laya and the Bhutanese traditions and cultural peculiarities. In the evening there will be a little cultural show for you, where the girls of the village will sing and dance.

Day 14: From Laya to Rhoduphu

From Laya we continue today, following the course of the river till the turn off point to Rhoduphu. After lunch, you will hike through rhododendron landscapes until you reach your next camp at about 4,350m altitude after a hike of eight to nine hours.

Day 15: From Rhoduphu to Nharithang

Today you follow the Rodo-Chhu upstream through rhododendron forests and arid scrubland until you reach a valley and from there continue up to Tsemo La (4.905m) to admire the fascinating Mount Jumolhari. The path now continues evenly, past herds of yak, to your camp at Narethang. This is located next to Mount Gangla Karchung and is your first real altitude camp (4.940m).

Day 16: From Nharithang to Tarina

Today you and your group go a little further up to the Gangla Karchung La-Pass, after which you will be led into the Lunana region. An incredible view of three turquoise blue high mountain lakes, situated at the foot of the mighty Teri Kang, undoubtedly rewards the physical efforts of the last few days. A long and sometimes steep descent follows on a good trail through rhododendron bushes to reach the campsite at Tarina.

Day 17: From Tarina to Woche

Through conifer forests you continue today, following a part of the Pho-Chhu. The way leads over a small mountain range and then goes down to Woche, located at an altitude of about 3800 m. After a six- to seven-hour day's hike, you finally set up your camp for the following night.

Day 18: From Woche to Lhedi

Fir, juniper and rhododendron forests are still your constant companions today. From the Keche La-Pass (4.480m) you can enjoy beautiful mountain views. After the pass is behind you, you descend to the riverside and follow the stream, surrounded by a picturesque scenery, until you reach the village of Lhedi near which your camp is set up.

Day 19: From Lhedi to Thanza

The trek continues along the river, uphill to the village of Choejong. At Thanza you cross a bridge and finally reach your campsite for the following night.

Day 20: Exploration day in Thanza

In order to give your body some rest and to replenish your energy reserves, you will enjoy a rest day in Thanza today. Walk around, climb higher for unforgettable views, or spend a relaxing day at camp.

Day 21: From Thanza to Danje

Today you climb a mountain range and can admire the unfolding mountain landscape. With three to four hours of hiking this trekking day is comparatively short. In the early afternoon you finally reach Danja, your camp for the upcoming night.

Day 22: From Danje to Tshorim

From Danje you and your group continue up and have a magnificent view of the Thanza valley and snow-capped mountain peaks. After a hike of eight to nine hours you will arrive in Tshorim, where you will spend the following night.

Day 23: From Tshorim to Zanam

Another highlight awaits you today: The trek starts with the ascent to Lake Tshorim. You can walk on the side of the lake and enjoy incomparable views of the Gophula mountain range. We continue up to the Gophula pass and then down again towards our base camp, accompanied by a breathtaking view of the Gangkar Puensum. The walking time on this day is about six to seven hours.

Day 24: From Zanam to Geshe Woma

The path follows the Sha-Chhu today and leads down to your night camp Geshe Woma, situated at about 4.200m altitude. On this day you hike again for a total of six to seven hours.

Day 25: From Geshe Woma to Warathang

Today you also hike along the Sha-Chhu until the somewhat steeper ascent to Sakala begins. After a refreshing lunch we continue up to the Sakala pass at an altitude of 4,800m. Afterwards you walk downhill again for a while and enjoy wonderful views of unfolding lakes and mountain landscapes. After a total of eight to nine hours you will reach your camp for the night.

Day 26: From Warathang to Dur Tsachu

A short ascent leads you to the Julila pass today. Afterwards the trail leads through rhododendron, juniper and conifer forests down to a river course where you cross a bridge and finally arrive at the hot springs of Dur Tsachu, your camp for the next night.

Day 27: From Major Tsachu to Tshochen

From Dur Tsachu it is again a serious hike to Tshochen – past idyllic mountain lakes and grazing herds of yak. After eight to nine hours of hiking you will set up your night camp in Tshochen

Tag 28: From Tshochen to Gorsum

Today is the second last day of your trekking tour. You will mainly hike along a river and after about 12 kilometres you will reach Gorsum, your last camp.

Day 29: End of the trekking tour – From Gorsum to Bumthang (Jakar)

On the last day of the trek you will leave Gorsum following Chamkhar Chhu towards the village of Dur. Here you will be picked up and driven to your lodge in Bumthang. From today until the last day of your journey, you will cover the remaining distance exclusively in a vehicle and spend the nights in hotels or lodges.

Day 30: Exploration tour in Bumthang

Today is dedicated to the exploration of Bumthang. This region is considered the religious heart of Bhutan. Some of the oldest Buddhist temples and monasteries can be admired here. Bumthang Dzongkhag consists of four main valleys – Ura, Chumey, Tang and Choekhor. The latter is the largest of the valleys and is commonly referred to as the "Bumthang Valley". In this area you get an incomparable insight into the religious life of Bhutan and, at the same time, you can enjoy picturesque natural landscapes.

Day 31: From Bumthang to Gangtey

After breakfast you will continue your journey to Gangtey which you will reach after a five to six-hour drive. Gangtey, or Phobjika Valley, is often regarded as one of the most beautiful valleys in Bhutan. Here you can admire the fascinating Jigme Singye Wagchuk National Park, the huge monastery complex Gangte Goema or the Black Necked Crane Information Centre where excellent sightings of black-necked cranes can be made.

Day 32: From Gangtey to Phunakha

Just like yesterday, you will start today’s trip right after breakfast: From Gangtey you continue your journey to Phunakha where you arrive after about three hours. The Phunakha Dzong is certainly the most impressive Buddhist monastery in the country, located directly at the confluence of Pho-Chhu and Mo-Chhu. In this former seat of government, the head of Bhutan's clergy spends the winter months with his entourage. A visit to this mighty complex will undoubtedly amaze every visitor.

Day 33: From Phunakha to Thimphu

After breakfast you will make a short hike to Chimmi Lhakhang Templ, which is situated on a hill amidst rice fields and has become a famous pilgrimage site for childless couples. At noon you will make a stop in Dochula before continuing your journey to Thimphu.

Day 34: Exploration day in Thimphu and return trip to Paro

Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan, lies in a valley in the western part of the country. Here you will not only find the seat of government, but also a multitude of fascinating Buddhist sites. The world-famous monastery fortress Tashichho Dzong is the government palace, covered with a golden roof. Today you can visit this impressive building and other sites such as the National Memorial Chorten, the Buddha Dordenma Statue or the Centenary Park before you are driven back to Paro in the evening.

Day 35: Last day of programme and departure

Today, your 35-day travel adventure comes to an end. After breakfast in the hotel you will be driven back to the airport in Paro, from where you can start your journey home or to another destination.

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