Morning visit the Partition Museum in Amritsar
Afternoon half day excursion to Wagah border, 32 Kms from Amritsar to witness the ‘Change of Guard’ on both sides of the Indo-Pakistan border. It is a spectacle comparable to ‘Changing of the Guards’ in London but with a slightly bazar Bollywood twist! The atmosphere is charged on both sides of the fence during the ceremony.
Morning sightseeing takes you to the Golden Temple – the sacred Sikh sanctuary spread out in a vast complex around a huge water tank in the midst of which stands a marble sanctum where the holy book of the Sikhs, the Guru Granth is reverently placed. The roof of the sanctum is gold-leafed. The community kitchen provides free meals to up to 100,000 pilgrims or visitors in a day and is a fascinating place to visit. Walk by the busy bazaars of the city, visit the historic Jallianwalah Bagh Gardens.
Later visit the Golden Temple to see the palki ceremony in which the holy book of Sikh “Shri Guru Granth Sahib” is taken to bed for the night in a procession.
The capital town of Bhutan and the centre of government, religion and commerce, Thimphu is a unique city with unusual mixture of modern development alongside ancient traditions. With the population of about 90,000 it is perhaps still the world’s only capital city without a traffic light.
Arrive Thimphu; check in at hotel for 03 nights.
In the afternoon explore Thimpu
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner in the hotel
Start the day with Simply Bhutan, an exclusive project under the Bhutan Youth Development Fund (YDF), built to offer a unique experience to its visitors. It is a living museum and studio encapsulating the cultural heritage of the Bhutanese people, fully operated by young people and job seekers, who receive here on the job training in basic business & management skills, customer care and other spheres of life.
After lunch, take a short drive (15 km) to Pangri Zampa, 16th century one of the oldest monasteries in Bhutan located just north of Thimphu. Here is a monastic school where Buddhist students learn Lamaism and astrology based on Buddhist philosophy.
Later visit to Trashichhoedzong :This impressive fortress/monastery houses Secretariat building, the throne room of His Majesty, the King and various government offices. It is also the summer residence of Chief Abbot and central monk body.
Further visit King’s Memorial Chorten continuously circumambulated by people, murmuring mantras and spinning their prayer wheels. Construction of this landmark was the idea of Bhutan’s third king, His Majesty Jigme Dorji Wangchuk (“the father of modern Bhutan”) who has wished to erect monument to world peace and prosperity. Completed in 1974 after his untimely death, it serves both as a memorial to the Late King and as a monument to peace.
End the day with a visit to the government-run Handicrafts Emporium and local crafts shops, to browse through example of Bhutan’s fine traditional arts.
After breakfast at hotel, Drive to Punakha across Dochula pass (3,080 meters). In Bhutan, the passes are marked by a large Bhutanese Chorten and prayer flag. Dochula pass offers the most spectacular view over the high peaks of the eastern Himalayas on a clear day.
On arrival check in at hotel for 02 nights.
After checking into hotel, proceed to visit PunakhaDzong, a massive structure built at the junction of two rivers.
Later in the day excursion to ChimiLhakhang , situated on a hillock in the centre of the valley, also known as the temple of fertility. It is widely believed that couples who do not have children and wanting one, if they pray at this temple, they are usually blessed with a child very soon. The trail leads across rice fields to the tiny settlement of Pana, meaning ‘field’. A walk through the village near the temple will give you rare glimpses into the daily life and lifestyle of the villagers
Evening can be spent exploring Punakha village located right on the bank of river.
Visit Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup Lhakhang nunnery:
Perched on a ridge amid pine trees and overlooking valleys of Punakha and Wangduephodrang, gleams the magnificent structures of Sangchhen Dorji LhuendrupLhakhang(Temple).
Later visit a Farm House in a village near Punakha. Bhutan has highest “Happiness Quotient” in the world and this is evident from their life style…..quite relaxed and full of content. Experience the village life, meet the locals, how they manage their farms & livestock. Don’t forget to sip a cup of locally brewed Suja (salt and butter tea) or perhaps local ara (locally brewed rice wine) with the family.
After breakfast drive back to Paro descending back down from Dochu La, follow the way back up the dramatic Wang Chhu and ParoChhu river valleys, before crossing through Paro Town towards the north end of the valley.
Arrive Paro and check in at for 2 nights.
Later in the day after checking into hotel, proceed to visit Ta Dzong, originally built as Watchtower, which now houses National Museum.
Then walk down the trail to visit RinpungDzong, meaning (“fortress of the heap of jewels”), which has a long and fascinating history. Along the wooden galleries lining the inner courtyard are fine wall paintings illustrating Buddhist lore such as four friends, the old man of long life, the wheel of life, scenes from the life of Milarepa, Mount. Sumeru and other cosmic Mandala.
After breakfast excursion to Taktshang Monastery “Tiger’s Nest”. It is one of the most famous of Bhutan’s monasteries, perched on the side of a cliff 900m above the Paro valley floor. It is said that Guru Rinpoche arrived here on the back of a tigress and meditated at this monastery and hence it is called ‘Tiger’s Nest’. This site has been recognised as a most sacred place and visited by ShabdrungNgawangNamgyal in 1646 and now visited by all Bhutanese at least once in their lifetime.
Or visit DrukgyelDzong, a ruined fortress where Bhutanese warriors fought Tibetan invaders centuries ago. The snowy dome of sacred Chomolhari, “mountain of goddess” can be seen in all her glory from the approach road to the Dzong.
Along the way, visit the 7th century KyichuLhakhang, one of the 108 temples built in the Himalayas by Tibetan King, SongtsenGampo. The building of this temple marks the introduction of Buddhism in Bhutan.
Fly to Kathmandu – time permitting visit the monkey temple
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