Adventure Combo 2023
This multi adventure trip has been inspired by Kim Jacob and Pett ann adventurous couple who first formulated for their adventure groups to Bhutan way back in 2018. Pett was one time Olympic ski champion and Kim, an avid rock climber and a hiker. Our signature combo trip suits for amateurs or newbies who wish to experience maximum within a short span of time.
What can you expect from this combo?
River rafting in Punakha
Rafting on class II and IV rapids on rivers at Punakha is the most popular soft adventure in Bhutan. The stunning view of the picturesque Punakha valley dotted with quaint villages and the Dzong is why it is a must-try activity in Bhutan. Each second on the raft will serve your eyes with beautiful snippets of Punakha valley.
Trekking is the best way to experience our wilderness and pristine natural environment. It also offers an opportunity to see our rugged terrain and high mountains. In this 3-day trek, you can enjoy varied landscapes, pristine forests and Himalayan mountains within short time.
Hiking & Sightseeing
The trip is set in west Bhutan, visiting the most prime locations –Thimphu, Paro, and Punakha. You will explore the majestic fortresses, famous monasteries, unique cultures of Bhutanese people. Embark on interesting hikes including iconic Tiger’s Nest Monastery.
Deep into nature, mountain biking is an intimate and unique form of seeing Bhutan. The well-paved roads and just traversing Bhutan’s lateral highway is an exhilarating adventure in itself. The crisp fresh air, limited traffic, and the scenic beauty of the routes make biking a worthwhile experience.
About this trek
Mar-June & Sept-Nov
Mar-June & Sept-Nov
Moderate - Hard
Highest Walking dist
Mar-June & Sept-Nov
Highest Walking Time
3-Day moderate Chela Trek with 2 hours of River rafting in Punakha on class II and IV rapids, mountain biking for three days on highway, cultural sightseeing in Thimphu, Paro, Punakha and Gangtey with hike to must-see Tiger’s Nest Monastery.
The flight to Paro from Delhi or Kathmandu crosses the Himalayan Mountains affording spectacular views. Flight from later offers more views of the Himalayas than former. Eighty kilometers flight from Kathmandu, along with others, you will be greeted with the world’s tallest Mount Everest at 8849m, Lhotse 8515m, Makalu 8481m and Kanchenjunga 8586m of Sikkim. Fifteen minutes prior to land Paro international airport, you will see sacred Mount Jumolhari 7326m and Jichu Drake 6662m north of the valley. On arrival you will be greeted by your guide and transferred to a local restaurant for a lunch. After lunch, you can visit the Paro Dzong or fortress. It was built in 1646 and now houses government offices and religious institutions, as do all the Dzongs currently. You will cross a traditional wooden bridge on the way to the Dzong. Afterward you will visit Kichu Lhakhang, the oldest temple in the country. From there you will be taken to the Drukgyal Dzong (Bhutan Victory Fort), which was built in 1646 to commemorate Bhutan’s victory over Tibetan invaders during the 1600s. In the evening you can stroll through the Paro town. Overnight at a hotel in Paro.
After a hearty breakfast, you will begin your journey to Haa valley for your three days trek tomorrow. From Wochu village, you will drive all the way up through the forests of blue pine, fir, hemlock and rhododendron till you reach Chela La pass at 3990m. It’s a popular pass where visitors come here either to hoist prayer flags or hike to Kungkarpo 4200m, the highest ridge. If you also wish to be adventurous, you may hike up along five ridges each higher than the other to Kungkarpo. On clear weather, you will witness Mount Jumolhari, Jichu Drake, Gangchenta Mountain and Kanchenjunga of Sikkim to the distant left. Not long ago, the Kungkarpo was used as sky burial and you will still see gravestone and a stone shelter used by meditators. Return to the pass for your onward journey to Haa. Drive downhill for about an hour to town where you will have a late lunch in a local restaurant. Explore the town for a while and then continue your drive for tonight’s stay where it’s going to be at old feudal house converted to a cozy lodge. After driving for 15 minutes through big and quaint traditional farm houses and finally crossing a small stream, you will reach Soednam Zhingkha, where you will spend a night here.
6KM | 3 HOURS | 450M ASCENT | CAMP ALT 3150M
Your trek begins in Haa Valley at 2670m. From the hotel you will retrace your way till the junction where you make a detour to the valley floor. Drive across the Haa river aside clustered of farm houses up till the open meadow called Chungdu Pang, where the locals conduct their annual religious rights to their deities. You will be met by your trek staff here. Hike up the gradual ascent beside the school, and way up through countryside beautified by scattered farm houses. Continue further up through rocky path and large open meadows intermittently crossing the stream. You will also see some yak herd’s camp. After hiking for about 2 hours, you will get into forests of pine and fir where you will come to two-trail junction – as the trail left is used by local herders, we will follow the right. You will soon notice that trail getting steeper and after hiking for about another 1 hour through thick forests you will suddenly be astounded by sight of Sagala camp, an open grassy area which is at 3150m.
9KM | 6 HOURS | 700M ASCENT | 250M DESCENT CAMP ALT 3850M
Begin ascend for 30 minutes to Sagala pass at an altitude of 3550m. From the pass, you will take right and keep hiking along slowly ascending ridges, where on clear weather, you will have superb views of Mount Jumolhari (7,326m) and Jichu Drake peaks (6662m). It’s a long hike through meadows with patches of dwarf rhododendrons through stony trails. After making several ascents and descents, walking through the trails of rhododendrons and through meadows, you will finally be on the top of the ridge at 4100m, which offers great views of Haa Valley below. Making occasional ascents and descents through forests of hemlock and juniper, you will reach at your camp at 3850m.
11KM | 6 HOURS | 500M ASCENT | 360M DESCENT
Descending for few minutes and following the ridge through meadows and yak herder’s camp, we climb uphill through the forest of tall rhododendrons toward Kungkarpo sky burial at 4200m. The view of Haa valley is spectacular as you ascend through long and broad ridges connecting to Kungkarpo. From the sky burial, you will be walking up and down with panoramic view of Paro valley on left and Haa Valley on right. The view of Kila Goenpa Nunnery below is also spectacular. Descend further down along the ridges till you reach Chele La pass (3990m). Your vehicle will be waiting here. Descend to Paro valley to continue your drive to Thimphu. The drive to Thimphu is along the bank of Pachu river till you reach the confluence or a tri-junction where you will be met by roads going to Thimphu, Haa and another to the southern border. From the confluence we follow Thimphu chu river upstream through the villages of Wangsisina, Khasadrapcu and Namseling witnessing interesting
roadside stands where locals sell their farm produce. Thimphu is a capital city of hundred thousand people with mixed of traditional and modern influence with ever changing physical and socio-economy sphere. On arrival, you will check into your hotel. Overnight at hotel in Thimphu.
You will have a full day sightseeing in Thimphu. After breakfast at the hotel, you will start your morning activities by first visiting the Memorial Chorten. It’s a stupa built by the mother of third king in 1974 in memory of her late son King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk who was popularly known as the father of modern Bhutan. It’s a three-story Tibetan style unique chorten with a statues and paintings of tantric Buddhism. You will see locals circumambulating the stupa and if you are lucky you will see some rituals taking place. From here you will visit giant Buddha Statue at Kuenselphodrang – its 169 feet largest bronze Buddha statue in the world. Then you will head towards north of the valley to visit the Takins, the national animal of Bhutan. You will walk around the compound to see the animals. Drive back to town for lunch at the local restaurant. After lunch, you will embark on a walking tour visiting the textile museum and the famous craft bazar where they sell all genuine Bhutanese art and craft products. You may scour for interesting souvenirs for your friends and relatives back home. You will walk along the street to visit post office where you can find vast collection of stamps and if you wish you can also send cards using your own personalized stamps. From here you will visit the weekend vegetable market where locals from different parts come here to sell their farm products. Then you have options to either go to your hotel for relaxation or explore the town of your own.
Day 7 - Thimphu to Punakha via Dochula Pass. Biking along Express Way, Dochu La downhill to Punakha.
Your biking adventure begins today. After breakfast at the hotel, along with a guide and a mechanic you will be preparing bikes for the ride. After briefing on traffic rules, each of you will be allocated bikes. You can either start peddling from your hotel or load on van, which will be accompanying us. Bike along the street and then on Babesa express way to southward and at the end of the Express way, you can turn right to Simtokha to follow the lateral highway to Dochu La pass. From Simtokha to Dochu La pass is going to be all uphill through Yesupang and Hongtsho. Van will be following us if anyone of you wish to load your bike on it. Dochu La pass is marked by some more than 100 chortens and multicolored Buddhist prayer flags. Have a refreshing tea and coffee at the restaurant on the pass. You will begin riding downhill through the forests of pine, rhododendron and daphne plants and you will be slowly welcomed by gust of warm air of Punakha Valley which is situated at 1240m from sea level. Riding through the tropical forests and Thinleygang village you will reach Lobesa Village. Walk or bike through the village to visit the Chimi Lhakhang at the hillock, a temple built by Lama Drukpa Kuenly or Devine Madman. Bike through the new farm road below the village and continue riding to Punakha. The ride from the stream all the way to your hotel is on flat trail. Check in and overnight at hotel in Punakh.
Today is the day you have been waiting for that is rafting on class II and IV rapids in Pho Chu river. We will take a short hike and walk up to Samdingkha, the put-in. The hike is only 2 hours through the serene villages crossing the suspension bridge to the left. We will then climb a ridge and descend walking through villages again continuing upstream the Pho Chhu river to the put-in. After a safety briefing and getting geared up, you will be ready to raft. Rafting in the Pho Chhu river is not only an adventure but also a unique mode of sightseeing. As you continue on your rafting adventure you will see villages and people going about their daily lives from your raft. Staggering cliffs, forested valleys, and exotic birdlife surround the river banks. It is an amazing experience with breath-taking views of the valley around you.
After rafting for a while you will come to a placid section of the river with a sandy embankment. This is the place where you will have a picnic lunch. After lunch you will continue rafting downstream passing underneath the suspension bridge and the majestic Punakha Dzong, anchored like a massive ship between two rivers. Rafting experiences differ with the seasons, the summer rivers are larger and tides are stronger. Where the river in the winter is calm and clear. Take out is at the River Confluence marking the end of your rafting trip. Overnight at a hotel in Punakha.
Another day of biking on tarmac road towards Gangtey valley at an altitude of 2,900m, the winter habitat of the black-necked cranes. After breakfast, you will start riding on an uphill route for about 55km gaining almost 2000m. The support van will be following you closely if you wish to load your bike and take a breather. Just 3km before Pele La pass, you will take a detour to Gangtey valley. After a short while, you will arrive at Lawala Pass at 3200m. After the pass, the route is all downhill for 20 km through a blanket of dwarf bamboos and you might spot some yaks. Visit Gangtey Goenpa located on a hillock offering stunning views of the valley below. It is the only Nyingmapa monastery in western Bhutan. As its all dirt road till hotel, you may load your bike on the van. Overnight at a hotel in Gangtey.
As the road till Lawa La pass is narrow, you may prefer to load your bikes on the van. We will start the day by visiting the crane information center which has informative displays about the black-necked cranes and the valley environment. The black-necked cranes migrate from the harsh winters of the Tibetan plateau in November and stay here until March. After wards, you will drive to Punakha. From the Pass, you can ride all way down passing through Nobdhing and after making several switchbacks you descend to Tikti Zampa at 1400m. You may bike till Lobesa or take a break by loading on van. Drive from Lobesa to Dochula is all uphill till you reach the pass. The route from Dochula pass to Thimphu is all downhill. It is a nerve-breaking downhill ride through pine and oak forest passing villages of Hongtsho. Soon we reach the expressway and then the city of Thimphu 2330m – this is the end of your biking trip. After lunch, you will continue driving to Paro same way via Confluence from where you drive upstream of Paro river. Check into the hotel in Paro for relaxing hot shower. Overnight at a hotel in Paro.
Embark on a memorable journey to Taktsang or the Tiger’s Nest Monastery, which is Bhutan’s most famous monastery. Start by driving to the base for 20 minutes and then hiking all the up to the monastery which is at 3100m. Hiking through forests of pine, fir and hemlock with the amazing views of Paro valley below, you will reach at flat portion of the trail where there is a line of small prayer wheels and a bigger one. We continue further up till the look-out point from where you can see the whole monastery – it’s a good opportunity for a photography. Walk from the look-out point is down through the stony steps to the small water fall and then finally to the monastery. After paying visit,you will return to the cafeteria for a lunch. Then walk to the base where your car will be waiting for you to take you to hotel. It’s a deep sigh of relief and satisfaction for making a 5 hours of hike. On the way to hotel, you can make last stroll in Paro town. Overnight at hotel in Paro.
Drive to the airport for departure. Have a pleasant onward flight!.