Festival Dates 2023
Experience the vibrant culture of Bhutan and join in the festivities of the Black-Necked Crane Festival! This incredible event includes visits to Black-Necked Crane settlements, handicraft and game stalls, and traditional folk songs and masked dances honoring these majestic birds.
The Bhutan Black-Necked Crane Annual Festival Tour (8 Days) is an exciting journey that takes you to the main cities of Bhutan, including Paro, Thimphu, Punakha, and Gangtey/Phobjikha. You will be able to witness the Black-Necked Crane Festival in Phobjjijkha and interact with the locals to gain a better understanding of the culture of Bhutan. During your tour, you will also enjoy a hike around Gangtey, a visit to Punakha Dzong, and a stunning walk up to the famous Tiger’s Nest near Paro Valley.
For those who wish to explore more of Bhutan, an extended 10-12 day itinerary is available, which includes a tour of Trongsa and Bumthang Valley. Our experts are also available to customize the trip according to your needs and preferences. Don’t miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience the Black-Necked Crane Festival!
Fly to Paro international airport, complete immigration and customs formalities, meet our guide at the arrival gate and transfer to your designated hotel in Thimphu. A one-hour drive from Paro to Thimphu.
Note: You will be required to bring the e-visa clearance copy sent by the tour company before arrival. The original visa would be stamped upon arrival at the Paro airport. No photograph is required anymore. For early arrivals, we try to cover the sights which cannot be added later.
In the morning, we will visit the Memorial Chorten (Built in the memory of the third King who reigned from 1952-972), the nunnery temple, and the mini Zoo to see Takin, the national animal of Bhutan.
After lunch, you will visit other landmarks of Thimphu including the Bhutanese traditional painting school, National Institute of traditional medicine, Heritage museum, the Taschichho Dzong, and the traditional paper factory. If you are traveling during the weekend, you will also visit the Thimphu Weekend Market if time permits.
Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu
After a good breakfast, we start a scenic drive to Punakha with a stop for tea at Dochula Pass (3100m), where on a clear day; you will see breathtaking views of the Himalayas. We again drive downhill through rhododendron and hemlock forests. Then we pass through rice fields along river backs and reach Punakha. Before reaching Punakha, we stop by Chimi (Chime) Lhakhang Monastery also known as the temple of fertility.
Then we drive to Punakha Dzong, built between 1637-1638, which is the second oldest and second-largest Dzong in Bhutan, located between Pho Chu and Mo Chu rivers.
Overnight at the hotel in Punakha.
After breakfast, we visit Wangdipodrang and its nearby village including Mushroom town. We then drive through dense Oak and Rhododendron forest to Gangtey, also known as Phobjikha, a beautiful village surrounded by amazing snow-capped mountains. For Gangtey, we enjoy views of the Black mountain ranges as well as the beautiful Phobjikha valley, the winter habitat of the black-necked cranes. During November, we see Black-Necked Cranes migrating from Tibetan plateaus to escape arid winter conditions. We explore Phobjikha village before the sun is down.
Overnight at the hotel in Phobjikha/Gangtey.
Today on 11 November 2021 is the importation day of this trip as we get to enjoy the most popular Black-Necked Crane Festival which is celebrated on the premises of Gangtey Monastery, beautifully perched atop a small hill. Locals gather at the monastery and enjoy the arrival of endangered black-necked cranes. It is an entertaining festival with folk songs and mask dance. In the afternoon, we hike the beautiful Gangtey nature trail for a little over an hour and reach Khewa Lhakhang Temple. On the way, we pass Semchubara Village and descend to the Chorten before reaching Khewa Lhakhang. After exploring a beautiful temple, we drive back to our hotel.
Overnight at the hotel in Gangtey.
After a good breakfast in the morning, we drive back to Paro. The total distance is about 170 Kilometer and takes about four to five hours with some stops on the way. Get fresh and take your leisure time in the evening.
Overnight at the hotel in Paro
After breakfast, take an excursion to Tiger’s Nest, also known as Taktsang Monastery, the most sacred Bhutanese monastery perched on the cliff over Paro Valley. It is said that Guru Rinpoche arrived here on the back of a tigress and meditated at this monastery hence it is called “Tiger’s Nest”. The hike up to the monastery takes about five hours for a round trip.
In the late afternoon, visit Ta Dzong and the National Museum of the Kingdom.
In the evening, we take you to the farmhouse to enjoy the cultural dinner where you can also try for a hot stone bath (Stone bath costs around 25 USD). We then drive back to the hotel.
Overnight at the hotel in Paro
Depending on your flight time, our guide will come to your hotel to transfer you to the airport. You shall be ready at the hotel two hours before the flight time. We wish you a safe flight and look forward to welcoming you into Bhutan soon in the future.
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Payment: A deposit of 30% of the total tour cost is required to book the tour with Himalayan Windows (HW). The remaining balance is to be paid three days prior to the departure date. Payment can be made via Wire Transfer or Credit Card. All credit card payments are securely processed and a bank fee applies.
Cancellation: For cancellations more than 30 days before the Tour Start Date, there will be no cancellation fee. If the cancellation happens within 29-4 days prior to the Tour Start Date, a charge of 30% of the total invoice amount will be applied. Cancellations occurring within 3 days or less of the start date or in the case of a no-show, 100% of the total invoice amount will be charged. Learn more about Terms and Conditions.
Accommodation: Accommodation is typically provided in twin rooms in cities, though a single supplement can be requested for an additional fee. During peak season, it can be difficult to find single or twin rooms in the mountains, so our lodges usually offer dormitory-style accommodation. Our priority is always to provide clean and safe rooms for our guests.
Meals: Our packages in Bhutan include full board meals, with breakfast, lunch, and dinner included. For treks, all meals are provided, but you will need to pay extra for drinking water and snacks.
Nepal Visa: If you are planning a trip to Nepal, you must have a valid passport and Nepal Visa. Depending on your country of origin, you may need to obtain a Nepal Tourist Visa before your arrival. To be eligible, your passport should be valid for a minimum of six months from your Tour Start Date. If you are planning on traveling to multiple countries on your trip, make sure to get a multi-entries Nepal Visa.
Bhutan Visa Clearance: All visitors to Bhutan must have a valid Bhutan Visa Clearance before their trip. To obtain it, you must submit a color-scanned copy of your passport, which must be valid for at least 6 months from the start date of your tour. Your tour operator will send you a Visa Clearance prior to your departure, which you must present at the Druk Air/Bhutan Airlines counter during check-in. Once you arrive at Paro Airport, your passport will be stamped with the original visa.
Tibet Group Visa (TGV): All travelers from any nation intending to go to Tibet from Nepal must obtain a Tibet Group Visa (TGV) in Kathmandu with the help of a tour operator. To ensure the successful application of the TGV, you should plan to arrive in Kathmandu 3-4 working days before your travel date. If you are coming from China, you will not require a TGV; instead, you will need a Chinese Visa and Permit. To find out more about the process of entering Tibet, please look into the Tibet entry procedure.
Nepal & Bhutan: Visiting Nepal and Bhutan at the same time is ideal as they share a similar climate. From high mountains to low land sub-tropical plains and jungles, the two countries have similar weather. The best time to visit is from March to April (spring) and October to December (autumn and early winter). During these months, the air is clean and fresh with sunny skies. January and February are colder months, while June, July, and August (summer) are typically monsoon seasons.
Tibet: It is best to visit Tibet between April and October when the weather is warm and the skies are clear. However, from November to March, it is still possible to explore certain areas like Namtso, Everest Base Camp, and Mount Kailash, as long as the roads are not blocked by snow. Temperatures during this time may be quite cold.
HimalayanWindows strongly recommends that anyone planning to travel in the Himalayas purchase Travel Insurance. This policy will provide coverage in the case of medical emergencies, evacuation, theft, loss of belongings, and last-minute tour/ticket cancellations. Having this protection in place will help ensure that your trip is safe and enjoyable.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the Bhutan tour Where is Bhutan? Bhutan is a small, landlocked country situated in the eastern Himalayas between China and India. Its landscape ranges from Subtropical plains and forests in the south to subalpine forests and the snowy Himalayas in the North. Bhutan is a principally Buddhist country, and it is recognized as the last stronghold of Mahayana Buddhism. Do I need to use a… Read More »
Namaste from HimalayanWindows! HimalayanWindows is a company operated by travel professionals involved in the travel industry for more than a decade. We use package tours for Nepal, Tibet, and Bhutan. HimalayanWindows believes that Our Motto is to satisfy every customer in all aspects. We are a team of professional, experienced travel entrepreneurs working in the Himalayas for years! We want to introduce ourselves as a tour and trekking operator… Read More »