This six day trek takes you into an area adorned with a multitude of pristine, crystal clear lakes. As you walk amidst the shimmering lakes you’ll be treated to stunning views of the entire Himalayan mountain range and some of the world’s highest peaks including Mt. Everest, Jomolhari, Masang Gang, Jichu Drake, Gangche Ta and many more.
During the trek an entire day will be dedicated to visiting some of the more picturesque lakes, fishing and resting. The trail also takes you through several Bhutanese villages so you can get a good idea of traditional Bhutanese village life as you make your way back from the lakes.
While this is a somewhat strenuous trek, it is well worth the effort because of the tranquility and beauty of natural landscape that you will enjoy during the journey. The best time to embark on this trek is between April-June or September –October.
Drukair flight to Paro crosses the Himalaya Mountains, affording spectacular views of the awesome peaks, including the sacred Jumolhari and Jichu Drake peaks in Bhutan. If you arrive via Kathmandu, you can see the Mount Everest and Mount Kanchenjungal. On arrival you will be transferred to your hotel. After lunch, visit the 8th century old Kichu Lhakhang, From there drive to the Drugyal Dzong Ruins (Bhutan Victory Fort), which was built in 1646 to commemorate Bhutan’s victory over Tibetan invaders during the 1600s. On a clear day you can see Mount Jumolhari, Bhutan’s second-highest mountain at 7,329 meters, from the village below the Dzong. In the evening you can explore town and absorb the lifestyle of the people. Overnight hotel in Paro.
Morning hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery, which is perched on a rocky ledge with a sheer drop of nearly 3000 ft. and overlooks the Paro Valley. Taktsang or the Tiger’s Nest is one of the most venerated pilgrim sites in the Himalayas. Guru Padmasambhava founded Taktsang Monastery in the eighth century. It is believed that the Guru came to this place on the back of a tigress from Khengpajong in the Kurtoe region and meditated for three months in a cave at Taktsang and converted the Paro valley to Buddhism. The hike to reach the viewpoint to the monastery makes for a nice half-day excursion. Hike back to Paro in the afternoon. Stroll freely in Paro town in the evening. Overnight hotel in Paro.
Drive downstream alongside the Pa Chhu River to its confluence with Wang Chhu (Thimphu River) then up valley to Thimphu, the capital town. Before arriving Thimphu, visit Simtokha Dzong, Kingdom’s oldest Dzong built by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. Afternoon visit Memorial Chorten, built in the memory of Third King of Bhutan. Then visit Tashichho Dzong, Thimphu’s most impressive building situated at the banks of Wang Chhu which, houses the King’s Throne room and it is also the summer residence of the Chief Abbot. Take a stroll through Thimphu market in the evening. Overnight hotel in Thimphu.
After breakfast, visit the Art School where centuries old art of Bhutanese painting is taught. The National Library is another interesting place to visit, which houses vast collection of ancient Buddhist texts and manuscripts. Also visit Traditional Medicine Institute where centuries old healing arts are still practiced. Later visit Textile and Folk Heritage Museum. Afternoon visit Handicrafts Emporium. Here exotic weaves in silk, wool, raw silk, cotton, silver jewelry, carpets, thangka paintings, bamboo ware and other traditional crafts of the Kingdom are available. Evening, drive to the broadcast tower for the fascinating view of Thimphu valley. Overnight hotel in Thimphu.
Drive for 45 min to reach starting point of the trek. The first day walk, over mule path, will end after four hours at the signboard of Genekha School. All through the trail, terraced fields and coniferous vegetation are abundant. Overnight camp at Genekha alongside a stream at 2,800m.
The trek starts at beautiful Gynekha village and begins with a short descent to the river. After crossing the river you start climbing until you reach a huge rock platform from where you have a picturesque view of the valley below. After another two hours you reach Gur, an area of yak pastures located just below the main trail.
On the second day after starting your trekking, the trail takes you across the high ridges from where you can truly appreciate the rugged beauty of your surroundings and the mountain vegetation. The path winds through refreshing meadows adorned with wild flowers and asparagus (in spring). The first mountain pass you cross is marked by a huge cairn and gives a spectacular view of Kanjenjunga (Sikkim) and a number of the Bhutanese Himalayan peaks. As you descend the pass you will be able to see the entirety of the Dagala mountain range including meadows and yak herder camps. Once you have descended into the Labatama valley you begin climbing gradually through the valley, passing several yak herder huts before you arrive at Uthso Tsho. The campsite is right next to the lake.
This day will be dedicated to relaxing and recuperating at Labatama. It is an ideal to taker an excursion to any of three nearby lakes: Reli Tsho, Hen Tsho and Jama Tsho. Hikers are encouraged to take the opportunity to engage in some trout fishing as the location is ideal. Permits are required for fishing so you should request your tour operator to make the necessary arrangements beforehand.
The trail climbs along the western side of Dala Tsho up to a saddle at 4,520m. From here onwards you will have a fantastic view of the majestic Himalayan peaks all through the descent. The mountain peaks visible include Mt. Everest (Nepal), Mt. Kanchenjunga (Sikkim), Mt. Jomolhari, Mt. Jichu Drake, Mt. Tshering Gang, Mt. Khangbum, Mt. Masang Gang, Mt. Tsende Gang and Mt. Gangche Ta. If you want an even better view, you can climb a peak close to the saddle with an altitude of 4,720m. From the saddle the path descends, passing some yak herder huts to Doccha Chhu. You follow the river for a while, but stay higher up on the slope to reach Panka with ascents and descents along the way.
This day entails the crossing of several passes but none of them require a major climb. You should keep your eyes open for different varieties of blue poppy (June-July) and mountain birds while in this area. After crossing the last pass, Tale La (4,180m) you start a long descent to Talakha Gompa. You will camp right beside the monastery and wake up to the early morning prayers of the monks. From here you will be treated to a great view of Bhutan’s capital Thimphu.
From the monastery it’s a short walk down to the feeder road which will lead you to the village of Chamgang. Overnight at Thimphu.
Drive from Paro to Thimphu in the Morning and fly to onward destination.