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Gasa Hot Spring Trek - 12 Days

Gasa Hot Spring Trek

Trip Facts:

Trip Name: Gasa Hot Spring Trek
Trip Id: TIB1418
Trip Duration: 12 Days
Max. Altitude: 3,120m/10,240 ft (The Tiger Nest Monastery)
Best Season: March to May and September to November
Meal: Full board (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
Accommodation: Government approved 3 stars and Above
Transportation: Private car, van or bus (Depends on group size)
Trip Type: Private Tour

Trip Overview:

Gasa Hot Spring Trek is a fun-filled trek. The main feature of the trek is to dip in the Gasa hot springs relaxing the body and mind. Bhutanese people also believe in the medicinal value of the lake where many locals can be spotted. The trekking experience is unforgettable with the hikes going to Bhutanese countryside where simple Buddhist folks live a harmonious and contented life full of vigor and simplicity. The trek offers amazing views, local interaction and before & after trek the tour visits the important cities of Bhutan – Paro, Thimphu and Punakha. Another interesting feature of the tour is hike to the Taktsang Monastery perched in a vertical cliff – Taktsang Monastery is closer to Paro town. Throughout the journey several historical and religious landmarks are visited such as Punakha Dzong, Chimi Lhakhang, Paro Rinpung Dzong, Kyichu Lhakang and many other Buddhist monasteries and shrines. Overall, Gasa Hot Spring Trek is leisurely trek and witnessing the culture, religion and history of the Dragon Kingdom.

Trip Highlights:

  • Majestic views of the world’s highest peaks onboard flight to/from Paro.
  • Guided city tour of the tiny capital Thimphu.
  • Explore Paro exploding with colors and tradition
  • Dip into the Gasa Hot Spring
  • Leisurely & fun-filled trek into the Bhutanese countryside
  • Visit the Bhutan’s old capital city – Punakha
  • Punakha Dzong – the most beautiful monastery in Bhutan
  • Discover rich Buddhist, Tibetan culture and traditions

Day to Day Itinerary:

Day 01: Arrival Paro (2,250m) – Sightseeing
Arrive Paro by the Bhutanese National Carrier flying over the world’s highest mountains and finally landing at the lush green Paro valley. A cool and clean fresh air greets the visitor as stepping down from the plane, the first gift of Bhutan. After clearing customs and visa formalities, meet the representatives and the Bhutanese guide, and a short tour brief by the guide then transfer to Paro town for lunch. After lunch visit Ta Dzong. Ta Dzong, once a watchtower, built to defend Rinpung Dzong during inter-valley wars of the 17th century. It was inaugurated as Bhutan’s National Museum in 1968. Afterwards visit Rinpung Dzong. Rinpung Dzong built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the first spiritual and temporal ruler of Bhutan; the Dzong continues its age-old function as the seat of the district administration, district court and the monastic body. The southern approach to the Dzong has a traditional roofed cantilever bridge called Nemi Zam. Overnight at Hotel.(Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 02: Paro – Thimphu (2,350m) Sightseeing 
After breakfast, drive towards Thimphu (the capital of Bhutan) which is about 1 & half hours drive. En-route Thimphu, one can do a short hike to Tamchog Monastery, a private temple owned by the descendents of famous Tibetan bridge – builder Thangthong Gaylpo. Later on continue the drive to Thimphu and visit Buddha point for a stunning view of Thimphu city and Takin Compound: One the way to the Viewpoint over Thimphu is the home of Bhutan’s national animal, the Takin, a strange looking beast which some say resembles a beestung moose. The Bhutanese have their own story to narrate about how the Takin was created by the Master Drukpa Kuenley (the divine madman).(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

In Thimphu visit Tashi Choe Dzong: The fortress of the glorious religion was initially constructed in 1641 and rebuilt by King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk in the 1960s. Visit the Folk Heritage Museum – a 300 year old traditional house converted into a museum. (Both open Mon-Fri). Brush shoulders with the everyday Bhutanese grocery shopping for local produce at the Centenary Farmers Market (Open Fri – Sun). Also see the new authentic craft bazaar (Close on Tue) of 80 stalls showcasing works by artisans from rural areas will showcase. Overnight at Hotel.(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 03: Thimphu – Punakha (1,310m) 
After early breakfast, drive towards Punakha which is about 1 & half hour passing along Dochu La Pass at 3140m. On clear weather, the pass commands a wonderful panorama of the Eastern Himalayas. From the pass, the road descends through varied forest and finally emerging into the highly cultivated valley of Punakha. Take a short hike through beautiful rice fields to Chimmi Lhakhang, a temple dedicated to Drukpa Kuenley, who as a favorite saint of the Bhutanese people is known affectionately as “the Divine Madman”. The temple is on a hillside in the middle of rice fields and has become a pilgrimage site for childless couples. In the afternoon, visit Punakha Dzong. Located at the confluence of the Pho-chu (male-river) and Mo-chu (female-river), the Punakha Dzong is arguably the most impressive dzong in the country. Overnight at Hotel.(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 04: Drive to Tashithang (1,840m) & trek to Geon Damji (2,430m) 
After an early breakfast, drive through the valley of Punakha on the Mo-chu side to Tashithang which will be approx. 18 km and 1 & half hours drive. Start the trek at Tashithang (1840m) and camp at Geon Damji (2430m). First the trail gradually climbs up above the Mo-chu into the lush semi-tropical forest filled with banana trees, creepers and different kinds of orchids. If luck favours ‘Takin’ the national animal can be seen on the other bank of Mo-chu. Geon Damji is a large village with rice terraces along side. Overnight at camp (Walking Duration: 5-6 hrs)(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 05: Trek to Gasa Hotspring (2,240m) 
Today, the trail gradually passes through oak forests and also different varieties of orchids can be spotted along the way. Before reaching Gasa, a Dzong can be seen from the view point. The trail to Gasa Hot spring is to descend through quite thick forest and mini bamboo. Overnight at Camp. (Walking Durations: 4-5 hrs)(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 06: Rest at Gasa Hotspring (2,240m) 
The day will be at leisure and to try out the hot spring located by the bank of a stream. There are cement pools to dip into. The day can also be spent going up to Gasa Dzong with packed lunch. The trek to Gasa Dzong will be quite a tough climb and takes about 2 hours upto an elevation of 2770m. Overnight at Camp.(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 07: Trek to Geon Damji (2,430m) 
The trail winds through rolling hillsides with vistas of fields, villages and Oak and Pine forests. Gasa Dzong will be visible behind glued to the valley wall as the trek proceeds ahead. The route goes through small settlements and finally at camp of Geon Damji – a large village with rice terraces on the hillsides. Overnight at Camp. (Walking Duration: 5-6 hrs)(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 08: Trek to Tashithang (1840m) & drive to Punakha (1,310m)
Start from Geon Damji and end at the vehicle point at Tashithang. From here it is 18 km (1 hour drive) to Punakha but the initial 5-6 km is unpaved road. Upon arrival in Punakha, check-in hotel. Overnight at Hotel. (Walking Duration: 5 hrs)(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 09: Punakha – Thimphu (2350m)
Drive to visit a stunning hill-top nunnery – Sangchen Dorji Lhundrup Chholing. Have a chat with the nuns and enjoy the charm of the surrounds! The main temple is dedicated to the bodhisattva of compassion (Avaloketeshvara) and next to the temple is a beautiful Stupa and there are slate carvings of religious figures. Re-crossing Dochula and drive towards Thimphu upon arrival check-in hotel. Overnight at Hotel (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 10: Thimphu – Day excursion to Haa Valley (2740m) – Paro
After breakfast, drive over the Chelela pass (3899 m). From the pass, good view of the Himalayan Ranges and the valley beyond can be spotted. Then continue the drive towards Haa. Haa is made up of five counties and was closed to outside world until 2002. There is a military camp by the Indian Army. In Haa valley, visit Wangchucklo Dzong dating back to 1915 and Lhakhang Nakpo (Black temple) is said to have been built by pigeon emanation of King Songtsen Gampo in the 7th century and Lhakhang Karpo (white temple). After the visit drive to Paro. Overnight at Hotel (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 11: Paro – Hike to Taktsang Monastery (3,120m)
Early in the morning, make an excursion to Taktsang Monastery – this has to be the monastery with the most outstanding setting in Bhutan. Set on a vertical cliff face at 2950m above sea level, it defies all engineering logic. For the energetic, hike 2 hours up to get a more dramatic view of the monastery. (The hike demands a certain level of fitness and a pony ride to the monastery can be arranged at additional cost). Just on the outskirts of Paro town, visit Kyichu Lhakang, one of the oldest temples in Bhutan and have the opportunity to meet the local villages in a local farm house. Overnight at Hotel.(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner included)

Day 12: Paro depart 
After breakfast, drive to the Paro airport in time to catch the onward flight. Bid farewell to the remote and legendary Dragon Kingdom disappears again behind its guardian mountains.(Breakfast only included)

Cost Details:

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Cost Includes:
• Airport pick-up and drop-off by private vehicle.
• 3-star accommodation (4 & 5 stars may require an additional premium).
• Bhutan visa fee – including all necessary processing
• Route Permit
• Three meals per day during your stay in Bhutan
• A licensed Bhutanese tour guide
• All land transportation by private vehicle
• Camping equipment and haulage for trekking tours
• Sightseeing as per itinerary
• Monuments entrance fees where applicable
• Drinking water
• All internal taxes and charges
• A sustainable development fee of $65. (This sustainable development fee goes towards free education, free healthcare, poverty alleviation, along with the building of infrastructure.)

Cost Excludes:
• Airfare & Travel Insurance
• Expenses of personal nature, Tips to guides and drivers
• Expenses occurred due to unavoidable events i.e. road wrecks, flight delays etc.

Note: 
• On the day of departure, the ‘local agents’ host obligation shall be limited to providing breakfast only and any extra requirements shall be payable on a usage basis.

Our entire Bhutan tours are private journeys and tailor made programs suited for any independent travelers according to their chosen traveling dates. Should you wish, the tour can be easily customized as per your interest and activities you wish to get involve in or spend more time in your places of interest. Contact us to customize this tour as per your requirements. This tour can be undertaken round the year.

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