Mission Trip or Pilgrimage to Kingdom of Bhutan

"Bhutan is a traveler's dream location."
VOYAGE TYPE
  • Historical Site
  • Outdoor Adventure

There are a few locations around the world that register as exotic. These hard-to-get-to-get-to locations remind us of the glory days of travel when grand expeditions to unknown cultures evoked a wanderlust in those who heard the stories. The Kingdom of Bhutan remains one of a handful of locations on the planet that fall into the exotic category. With a population of under 800,000 in a landlocked country the size of Switzerland and a limited number of visas allowed each year, Bhutan is a traveler’s dream location.

Wonder Voyage loves taking travelers into the Kingdom of Bhutan. Be prepared. This is a cultural experience that will never leave you. As a Buddhist nation, you will learn the beauty and intricacies of Buddhism by visiting temples and fortresses throughout the Himalayan region. Travel winding roads, follow cascading rivers, climb into alpine forests, and taste regional meals that never disappoint. Her people are easier laughers, and they greet their prized visitors with wide smiles. Come with an open heart and learn a thousand years of folk tales, religious stories, and cultural gold.

Overview


  • See numerous Temples that speak to the heart of Buddhism in Bhutan.
  • Climb the breathtaking mountain to visit the iconic Tiger’s Nest Monastery.
  • Engage with thousands of locals in a vibrant festival.
  • Raft on one of the numerous swirling rivers along the valley villages.
  • Explore forts that define the founding of modern Bhutan.

Itinerary

Every Wonder Voyage itinerary (mission trip and/or pilgrimage) is personalized to the desires, direction and personality of each group. This itinerary is only a description of the kind of journey we can create for your unique team.


  • Day 1- What a Landing!
    The flight into Paro is a befitting introduction to the spectacular beauty of Bhutan. In clear weather, magnificent views of the world’s highest peaks, give way to the lush green Paro Valley. Your Bhutanese escort will greet you on arrival, and introduce you to the magnificent kingdom you will get to know well over the next few days. After lunch, visit Ta Dzong (built in 1656 and renovated in 1968), an ancient watchtower, which now houses the National Museum. The evening ends with a walk through Paro’s main shopping district. 
  • Day 2 – Tiger’s Nest
    A very special day, with an excursion to the spectacular Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) monastery. From Satsam Chorten, the trail climbs through beautiful pine forest, many of the trees festooned with Spanish moss, and an occasional grove of fluttering prayer flags. We stop for a rest and light refreshments at the Taktsang Jakhang and then walk a short distance until we see the Taktsang monastery. This incredible monastery clings to the edge of a sheer rock cliff that plunges 900 meters into the valley below. Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava, the tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan, flew here on the back of a flying tiger. Making it to the monastery will take your breath away but you will love the results.
  • Day 3- Trongsa
    We drive to Punakha via Dochula Pass. If the weather is clear, we stop to view the Higher Himalayas. After breakfast, we visit the Trongsa Dzong, the most impressive dzong in Bhutan, built in its present form in 1644 by Chogyal Minjur Tempa, the unifier of Bhutan. Trongsa Dzong is the ancestral home of the present Royal Family and the first two hereditary kings ruled Bhutan from this Dzong. Then visit Ta Dzong, an ancient watch tower before driving to Bumthang.
  • Day 4-  Trekking
    We start two days of traditional trekking from one village to the other on the mountain’s opposite side. The trek route follows the Chamkhar Chu River, coming across villages and temples. This is a very easy and relaxing day. Arrive at the village camp at an altitude of 2900 meters. Camp will be set and you will love the catered dinner and mountain vibe. Walking time 5 – 6 hours.
  • Day 5- Over the Pass
    The trail ascends gradually towards the Phephe la pass, going through the forest of junipers until you arrive at the pass at an altitude of 3340 meters. This is a short but strenuous climb over the pass. After the pass descends to Tang Valley, finally arriving at Ugyenchholing village. Camp by the side of the river at an altitude of 2850 meters. Walking time 7 – 8 hours.
  • Day 6- Burning Lake
    We’ll enjoy a morning walk up to the Ugyenchholing then drive to Jakar following the Tang Chu River where we will visit the best museum in Bhutan. On the way visit the Membertsho Lake, where Terton Pemalingpa, the reincarnation of Guru Padmasambhava is supposed to have discovered religious treasure in the 12th century. This ‘burning lake’ is very sacred for Buddhists and is visited by many Bhutanese during auspicious days to offer butter lamps. 
  • Day 7-   Gangtey
    After breakfast, drive to the beautiful valley of Phobjikha/Gangtey. Visit Gangtey Gompa Monastery. Gyaltse Pema Thinley, the grandson and mind reincarnation of Pema Lingpa founded the Temple in 1613, and Tenzin Legpai Dhendup, the second reincarnation, built the temple. The present Abbot, Kunzang Pema Namgyal is the ninth reincarnation. Take a beautiful nature walk through the Phobjikha Valley, famous for the Black Necked Cranes during winter. 
  • Day 8-  Thimphu
    After breakfast drive to Thimphu where you will take a morning rafting ride down a fabulous river, giving you a totally different perspective. While in Thimphu if time permits, visit the Tashichho Dzong, the seat of the national government, and the Central Monastic Body, including the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot of Bhutan). Tonight we become participants on one of Bhutan’s famous festivals.
  • Day 9-  Giant Buddha
    The day begins with a visit to Kuenselphodrang. The Buddha Dordenma is a gigantic 51.5-meter tall statue made of bronze and gilded in gold, making it one of the world’s largest Buddha statues ever built. The Buddha Dordenma sits atop a hill overlooking the whole of Thimphu Valley in Kuenselphodrang. After a bit of shopping for local arts and crafts, we will bid you farewell.

Legacy Location

Wonder Voyage Legacy Fund

Legacy in Kingdom of Bhutan

PRICE

Starting at
$6000* per person
  • *This is the base cost of the trip. Your cost may differ depending on housing, activities, etc.

MAP

PHOTO GALLERY