Trongsa Lhuntse Tshechu - 9 Days
The Trongsa Lhuntse Tshechu is a festival honoring Guru Padmasambhava, "one who was born from a lotus flower.He is the founder of the Nyingmapa.
- Sightseeing in Paro, Thimpu, Trongsa, Bumthang, Wangdue and Taktsang Monastery (The Tiger’s Nest)
- Trongsa Culture Festival activitie
The Trongsa Lhuntse Tshechu is a festival honoring Guru Padmasambhava, “one who was born from a lotus flower.” This Indian saint contributed enormously to the diffusion of Tantric Buddhism in the Himalayan regions of Tibet, Nepal, and Bhutan etc. around 800 AD. He is the founder of the Nyingmapa, the “old school” of Lamaism which still has numerous followers. The biography of Guru is highlighted by 12 episodes of the model of the Buddha Shakyamuni’s life. Each episode is commemorated around the year on the 10th day of the month by “the Tschechu”. The dates and the duration of the festivals vary from one district to another but they always take place on or around the 10th day of the month according to the Bhutanese calendar. During Tshechus, the dances are performed by monks as well as by laymen. The Tshechu is a religious festival and by attending it, it is believed one gains merits. It is also a yearly social gathering where the people, dressed in all their finery, come together to rejoice.
December 18 – Arrive Paro (by Druk Air) and drive to Thimpu. Overnight at a hotel.
December 19 – Thimphu Sightseeing. Overnight at a hotel.
December 20 – Thimphu to Punakha. Overnight at a hotel.
December 21 – Punakha to Trongsa. Overnight at a hotel.
December 22 – Trongsa Festival. Overnight at a hotel.
December 23 –Trongsa to Bumthang. Overnight at a hotel.
December 24 – Sightseeing in Bumthang. Overnight at a hotel.
December 25 – Bumthang to Wangdue. Overnight at a hotel.
December 26 – Wangdue to Thimphu. Overnight at a hotel.
December 27 – Thimphu to Paro. Overnight at a hotel.
December 28 – Depart Paro (by Druk Air)
Departures & Availability
We do not have fixed departure date for this trip. This trip can only be organized upon your request. There is an option of private and tailor-made journey best suited for you, your family and friends. We have price discounts according to the group size, the bigger your group, the bigger your group discounts. We allow complete flexibility on your departure date, please choose your preferable date.
- Pick up from and drop off at the hotel and the airport on a tourist car / van /minibus.
Standard government-approved accommodation (in twin sharing rooms) for the duration of the tour.
Full-board meals – breakfast, lunch, dinner and tea & snacks – for the duration of your stay.
Drinking water for the duration of the tour.
Country presentation and tour Briefing on the evening of Day1 with welcome drinks.
Licensed English-speaking Bhutanese tour guides.
Private transportation and a designated driver within Bhutan. Toyota 4WD luggage vans and light trucks for group travel. Luggage will be hauled by horses, mules or yaks at higher elevations.
Monument and museums entrance fees for all sightseeing locations detailed in the itinerary.
Cultural afternoon/evening sessions with traditional mask and folk dances (with beverages). Only for group tours.
Bhutan visa fees and processing assistance.
Government royalty (35% of $200), which goes to the country’s health and education projects.
All route access and monument entry permits and fees.
All government taxes, official expenses and tourist service charges.
International airfare and airport departure tax.
- Your travel insurance (mandatory for the trip, see the travel insurance page).
Tips for tour guides, porters, driver, hotel lobby and in restaurants. (Tipping is expected)
Expenses of personal nature, such as laundry.
Alcoholic and cold drinks.
- Any expenses other than the Price Include section
Detailed ItineraryExpand All
Day 01: December 18 - Arrive Paro (by Druk Air) and drive to Thimpu
You can take flight to Paro from Bangkok, New Delhi, Kathmandu, Dhaka etc. We recommend you to fly from Bangkok because Druk air offer everyday flight from Bangkok – Paro – Bangkok whereas Druk air do not operate everyday flights from other sectors.
The flight into Paro on Bhutan’s national carrier, Druk Air, is a befitting introduction to the spectacular beauty of the country. In clear weather, magnificent views of the world’s highest peaks give way to the lush green Paro valley as you land. The first gift from Bhutan will be the cool, clean fresh air as you step out of the plane. After clearing customs and visa control you will drive you to Thimphu, the modern capital of Bhutan. The drive will take around 1 hour. Thimphu has a population of about 98,000. The town is made up of just three lines of shops and is the only capital in the world without traffic lights.
Day 02: December 19 - Thimphu Sightseeing
After breakfast we will visit the House of Incense and House of Paper to see the process of hand making incense and paper from raw product in Bhutan. Most amazing, highest quality incense and paper products can be purchased. We will then visit the Memorial Chorten built in memory of the third King of Bhutan who ruled the Kingdom from 1952-1972, Changlimingthang Lhakhang and the Handicrafts Emporium. After lunch we will visit the “Textile Museum”; Bhutan’s textiles are unique for their diversity and sophistication; the Textile Museum explores this dynamic craft. Embroidered and appliqué splendid fabric for sacred and ceremonial use is displayed, as well as several exquisite thangkas and altar coverings. Upstairs gallery highlights the diversity of Bhutan’s textile arts and skills featuring masterpieces from the Royal Family of Bhutan. A stop to tour Bhutan’s National Library where you will view hundreds of ancient manuscripts and ancients scrolls.
Day 03: December 20 - Thimphu to Punakha
Morning depart Thimphu and drive over the Docchu-La pass (3,200m) to Punakha. The teahouse at the pass offers beautiful views of the Himalayan range in the distance. This is a 3-hour drive with stops en route. Afternoon visit the magnificent Dzong spanning the Mo Chu and Po Chu rivers. This is the winter residence of the monastic body and the Je Khenpo (chief Abbott).
Day 04: December 21 - Punakha to Trongsa
Today we start early for the fabulous drive to the central valleys of Bhutan. The drive to Trongsa via Gangtey is about 6 hours crossing over Pele La Pass (3,300meters) and Yotongla Pass (3,400meters). The Central Road, across the Black Mountains was completed 30 years ago, and it bought about great changes to the people in central Bhutan. We pass Wangdue, one of the major towns and district headquarters of Western Bhutan where we make a short stop to view the Wangdue Phodrang Dzong dramatically located on the spur of a hill at the confluence of the Tsang Chu and Dang Chu rivers. We then climb steadily passing through semi-tropical vegetation and then to Pelela Pass (3,300m) with an alpine environment of rhododendrons and dwarf bamboo. This pass is traditionally considered the boundary between west and east Bhutan. If the weather is clear, the Himalayan range can be seen, particularly the peak of Jhomulhari (7,314m) to the west. En route we cross Chendebji Chorten built many centuries ago to suppress a demon.
Day 05: December 22 - Trongsa Festival
Today we attend a full day at the Trongsa Festival. What an exciting and exhilarating way to celebrate the day! The Trongsa Dzong was built by Chogyel Minjur Tempa, theThird Desi, in 1648 AD. It is presently the administrative seat of the district and home of the monastic school. Built at split-levels on a narrow spur, the Dzong is an architectural wonder. Views from here are extensive creating strategic location of this Dzong. Over the Dzong is the medieval Watchtower. This ancient structure gives unobstructed views of the valley and its Winding River and roads. The watchtower is located strategically above the Trongsa Dzong. Load your camera to capture the intensity of this festival, while your gain merit and religious purification; be immersed into medieval Bhutan and the enchanting Bhutanese culture. Here one can truly appreciate the essence of Bhutanese people and a preserved steadfast culture. Arrays of colourful brocades whirl through the air as the dancers spin and dance the “thunderbolt step”. Masks of glorious demonic demons and animals arouse your senses as purification takes place. The intensity goes on; your spirit will fly. Enjoy dinner at a local restaurant.
Day 06: December 23 - Trongsa to Bumthang
Today we will witness half day Trongsa festival; After lunch drive to Bumthang (68 kms, 3 hrs). This is one of the most spectacular valleys in Bhutan and also the heartland of Buddhism. Here many great teachers meditated and left in their wake many sacred grounds. The Guru and his lineage of Tertons (treasure finders), have led to the sprouting of many temples in the valley. Evening stroll down in the town of Bumthang.
Day 07: December 24 - Sightseeing in Bumthang
Enjoy breakfast and get ready to explore Bumthang village. Meet with textile weavers at looms as they weave their Bhutanese fabric and textile on toe strap looms with hand spun and dyed threads. Here is the best place for purchase of textile. Tour historical Jakar Dzong, “Palace of the White Bird”, as well as Jambay and Kurjey Lhakhang. A short walk to Flamming Lake to visit this religious and holy pilgrimage spot. Visit a Stone flour grist water mill and a beer and cheese factory, Tamshing Monastery and Wangdichholing Palace. In the evening visit a farmhouse for local hospitality. Return to lodge for relaxation and dinner.
Day 08: December 25 - Bumthang to Wangdue
Departing Bumthang we drive westward to Wangdue. Photo and rest stops along our way; perhaps an interesting archer’s match in Trongsa. Overnight at a hotel.
Day 09: December 26 - Wangdue to Thimphu
We arrive in Thimphu today; check into our hotel and enjoy an afternoon and exploration in Thimphu. Perhaps you have a special interest item to purchase; ask you expert Bhutanese guide to assist you.
Day 10: December 27 - Thimphu to Paro
After breakfast we depart Thimphu towards Paro village. As we drive to a path to hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery. The monastery is perched on a rocky ledge with a sheer drop of nearly 800m. It is said that in the second half of the 8th century, Guru Padmasambbava alighted here upon the back of a tigress. We enjoy lunch at Tigers Nest cafeteria and will have the option to hike up the mountain close to the Tigers Nest Monastery; spirituality and peace is within; what an incredible way. We then depart down the mountain to our vehicle and return to Paro to our hotel for rest and relaxation.
Day 11: December 28 - Depart Paro (by Druk Air)
Drive to Paro airport and fly to your next destination. We hope you have enjoyed your visit to Bhutan.
Gears and Equipment
All you need to bring for this Tour is simply some comfortable clothes; there is no any requirement of special equipment on the tour. However for your ease, the following gives you the general idea about the personal items you need to manage for the trip. The personal items referred here are optional and depends upon your choice. The most important factor to be considered while choosing the equipments and your Bag-pack, is the time of the year you are travelling.
In a tour, the vehicle transfers all the heavy items and equipments. But the Personal belongings of the clients which is required at any moment like money, water bottle, camera, suns cream and toilet paper etc. should be carried by yourself. It is therefore advisable that you pack the personal belongings into your daypack.
If you are going bhutan from kathmandu, we will supply complimentary water and wind proof duffel bag, which you can use on the tour for your shopping purpose. The duffel bag is yours to keep.
List of Recommended Equipment
- Duffel or Rucksack bag or suitcase (We will provide one complimentary ACE duffel bag for you to keep.)
- Warm wool or synthetic hat that cover your ears (only if you are travelling in the cold season i.e January, February and December)
- Goggles or sunglasses for sunbeam, dust and wind.
- A neck warmer is another piece of gear for extra warmth if you feel you will need it and is for cold season i.e January, February and December.(optional)
- 1 pair warm gloves (This is required if your are travelling in cold season i.e January, February and December).
- T-shirts (2).
- Waterproof (preferably breathable fabric) shell jacket (preferable if you are travelling in rainy season from June to September.)
- 1 pair cotton pants (loose jeans/khakis), 1 pair shorts.
- 2 pairs lightweight long underwear/thermals (if you are traveling in winter January, February and December).
- 2 pairs of liner socks, synthetic or capilene.
- 1 pair light camping shoes or sneakers..
- 1 pair sandals (Optional).
Medicines and First Aid Kits
(Please note our guide will also carry the first aid kit bag during the trek. However we still recommend you to bring your personal first aid kit as well)
- Extra Strength Excedrin for altitude related headaches.
- Ibuprofen for general aches and pains.
- Immodium or Pepto bismol capsules for upset stomach or diarrhea.
- Diamox (commonly prescribed as Acetazolamide) 125 or 250mg tablets for altitude sickness. Please discuss with us before starting to take this medicine.
- 1 small personal sized first-aid kit with blister treatments such as mole skin, band-aids, some waterproof tape, anti-infection ointments, etc. Your guides will have more extensive medical gear, but you should have the basics for general use.
- Passport and extra passport photos (4 copies).
- Airline ticket (Please make a copy and leave on at our office in KTM just in case if you need to change the date of your).
- Durable wallet / pouch for travel documents, money & passport.
- Lip balm. At least SPF 20, 2 sticks. A string taped to the stick is helpful, to hang around your neck and some are now being sold with a cord already attached. Handy as it avoids you from having to stop and look for it.
- Sunscreen. SPF 40 is recommended and should be relatively new since it loses its’ effectiveness over time.
- Pocket knife or small Swiss Army type.
- Water purification Iodine tablets or Polar-pure crystals.
- Toiletry kit. Be sure to include toilet paper stored in a plastic bag, hand wipes, and liquid hand sanitizer, towel, soap, etc.
- 2 bandanas.
- 1 pair adjustable trekking poles. Although these are listed as optional, these can be of great assistance to people who may think of themselves and generally clumsy or with bad knees, ankles, etc, especially when going downhill (Optional).
- Favorite snack foods, no more than 2 pounds (Optional).
- Paperback books, cards, mp3 player (there are a couple of stops where you could recharge. Avoid players with moving hardware as it may not function. Remember, keep these items light weight (Optional).
- Binoculars (Optional).
- 1 light weight point & shoot camera or 1 large SLR. Digital cameras are ok, but you must keep the batteries warm when not in use (Optional).
- Hydration bladder with drinking tube and tube insulator (Optional).
- A pee bottle for men and pee funnel for woman, some swear by them to avoid that chilly late night trip (Optional).
- 1 small stainless steel thermos (Optional).
This list is only a guide. While you are required to bring everything on this list, there are numerous options, brands, and versions of each piece of equipment. Use your experience and the listed features to find the best gear for you.
Trip Map / ElevationDownload
FAQs for Trongsa Lhuntse Tshechu
Why trek with Ace the Himalaya?
Ace has a reputation for successfully leading treks with knowledgeable leaders and staff taking care of all your travel needs. We are a certified sustainable travel company that also endorses the idea of giving back to the community by participating in various philanthropic activities. Here are 17 reasons why you should choose Ace the Himalaya for your next adventure!
What essential documents do I need to bring with me on tours?
Here are some documents that you will need to carry with you:
- Valid Passport – must be valid for up to 6 months after you return from your tour (Keep a separate photocopy)
- Travel insurance (Keep a separate photocopy)
- Cash and Traveller’s Cheques (Keep numbers and proof of purchase separately)
- Flight tickets
- Emergency contact numbers for T/C’s, banks, insurance, family contacts
Weather and Temperature
What is the best season for this tour?
The best time for Bhutan tours is between February to June and September and December.
What is the weather and temperature like on the tour?
It depends on the season you’re travelling. During winter (December to February), it is colder at night and relatively warmer during the day, with the temperature ranging from 4°C at night to 22°C. Between March and May, the weather stays prefect as the temperature averages 25°C during the day. From September to December, following the monsoon, the temperature gets cooler and allows for a great time to travel. The average temperature during this season is 20°C. The vehicles and the hotels during the trip will be air-conditioned making your travel very comfortable.
Arrival and Visas
Do I need to obtain VISA for Bhutan?
We will handle the visa procedures for you. The Govt. will sanction the VISA only after the receipt of full payment in advance. The visa fee is included with our tour price. Actual Bhutan VISA will be stamped in your passport on arrival on Paro airport. Without visa clearance number, tourists cannot board the flight or enter the country.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs forwards a copy of this visa clearance to the concerned Druk Air stations and other entry points; we also fax a copy of the visa clearance document to our clients for their reference. While the actual visa is stamped on arrival, the initial visa clearance is also required at the time of issuing Druk Air Tickets.
All you need is to carry 2 copies of original passport-sized photographs, which are required on arrival in the country. Please e-mail us the clear color copy of the passport for the visa procedures.
Will somebody come to pick me up at the airport upon my arrival?
Yes, our airport representative will be there to greet you at the airport. S/he will be displaying a sign board with your name on it at outside the airport terminal. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel by our tourist vehicle.
Payments and extra costs
How much additional money do I need per day?
It depends on your spending habits. Generally, all the foods, accommodation and hot drinks are included in the price. You can allocate USD 10 to USD 15 for chocolates and a few drinks during the trip.
Can I use credit cards in the places visited in tour?
There are just a few ATM’s in Bhutan for credit card (Master card / Maestro) & only few establishments in Bhutan accept credit card payments hence US Dollars (cash or Amex travelers cheques) or Euros Cash is suggested and convenient to cover any personal expenses (eg. beverages , laundry ,phone bills , tipping , shopping etc) that the Pax may make in the Kingdom. 1US$ is equivalent to Nu. 55 & 1 Euro is equivalent to Nu.69 as of today (the day we writing this text). NU= Ngultrum, the Bhutanese currency.
Who Can Participate?
How fit do I have to be and is this tour for me?
This festival tour is suitable for any kind of person, no previous experience is required.
What sort of accommodation can I expect in tour?
Hotels vary in style and quality. All Government approved hotels are clean and well maintained with hot and cool water, telephones with international dialing and fax facilities. We use three to four star hotels for this trip. All the meals and hot drinks are included in the trip price.
What sort of food can I expect in tour?
Most of the restaurants serve Bhutanese, Indian, Chinese and Continental cuisine always plenty to choose from. Local Bhutanese food are spicy like the Indian food.
Is the water available drinkable? Do I need to bring purifying tablets/filter?
The trip price included the drinking water for the all Bhutan trip. You don’t need to bring any bring purifying tablets/filter or pay for the water.
Will it be possible to get any clothes washed/Laundry ?
Laundry service is easily available at your hotel. Please note that laundry service is not included in the package price.
Can I charge my digital camera or other equipments on my trip?
These facilities will be available in most of the places in your hotel. Remember to bring travel adapters!
Health and Safety
Is Ace the Himalaya's staff insured?
Our company insures all our trekking staff members, including guides, cooks, Sherpa, and porters. Please browse through our legal docment page to view insurance details.
What immunizations will I need?
No vaccinations are compulsory for traveling in Nepal, but we do recommend you are covered for diphtheria & TB, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, *malaria, typhoid, polio and tetanus.
We also recommend:
- A dental check-up prior to traveling
- That you know your blood group in case of emergency
If you have any pre-existing medical conditions which might affect you on tour, you make these known to your tour leader and Ace the Himalaya at the time of your booking.
What is your cancellation policy?
Notice should be provided 20 days before the trip start date in case of cancellation. The trip can be canceled for justifiable reasons. Once the trip is canceled, a fee of 30% of the trip cost is retained for administrative costs.
However, the trip amount is entirely non-refundable if the cancellation is not made before the 20 days as per our terms and conditions. For submitting a claim to your insurance company after the cancellation, we can assist with documentation such as a receipt of monies paid. Refund will not be provided for unused accommodation in case of trip cancellation caused by personal reasons/sickness/weather.
More information about our cancellation policy can be found here in Terms and Conditions page.
Do I need to tip my guide and porters? How much would that be?
This is a difficult thing to gauge. We have seen everything from USD 20 to USD 1000 per person for guides and porters. Tipping is not required, but a small gesture of thanks to your guides and local porters thanks for their help. The level of the tip should reflect the level of satisfaction from and personal involvement with your guide.
Are there any communication facilities during the trip?
Telephones and Internet and international calls are readily available in most of the town for this trip.
Are there any photography restrictions?
You will have many photo opportunities during the trip. Please ask for permission before taking a person’s photo. Photography in, monasteries, shrine rooms of Dzongs and religious institutions is generally not permitted, but outdoor photography is. To be sure when visiting such places, you may consult with your guide just to make sure. Carry plenty of films and batteries. Photo shops in Bhutan do not sell equipment or accessories.
Can I add extra days to my trip?
No, because we can’t change your Druk air flight once it is booked.
Is there a minimum and a maximum number for your groups?
We cater to all group sizes, while maintaining the field staff ratio to give you the best quality and experience.
Transportation and flights
Do we book our international flights and Druk air flights?
Yes, you need to book your own International flights. We are a local agent and it would cost you significantly higher to book through us. Please find more information in the International Flight page.
Druk air is the only airline to and from Bhutan. We can ebook the Druk air flight to and from Bhutan and e-mail you the e-ticket.
Druk air flight cost is not included in the trip price. Druk air flights cost are different as per the flights sectors that you are taking. Druk air offer flights from following location. We recommend you to book your flight to Bangkok as they have every day flight to Paro and from Paro as well.
Please let us know which route is more convenient to you, the cost of the flights are as below. Please contact us for the up-to-date Druk air flight rate.
- Bangkok – Paro – Bangkok = US$890
- New Delhi – Paro- New Delhi = US$875
- Calcutta – Paro- Calcutta = US$510
- Kathmandu – Paro- Kathmandu = US$520
- Bangkok – Paro – Kathmandu = US$ 860
- Bangkok – Paro – New Delhi = US$ 875
What mode of transportation do you use?
Ace the Himalaya is all about providing you with local insights, lifestyle as well as adventure. Using a variety of private transport is an integral part of our Himalayan tours, enhancing the experience!
We use private tourist vehicles for sightseeing, city tours and pickups; whereas we use the best 4WD SUVs as our support vehicle. These vehicles are extremely sturdy, spacious and reliable and they make the journey as comfortable as possible. For larger groups, we also use supported trucks to carry your luggage.
Are there any weight restrictions on Druk air flights?
Druk Air allows only up to 20 kgs of luggage per person, after which the excess baggage charge is USD 5 per kg.
I want to extend my holiday, any recommendations?
Yes, you can extend your holiday. Ace the Himalaya offers many options and alternatives for your holiday extension. For more information, you can visit our Day trips pages.
These full and frank reviews are from travelers who have traveled with Ace the Himalaya previously. The reviews and experiences shown here are from reputable travel websites like TripAdvisor, Google, Facebook, and Trust Pilot, etc.
What makes this trip different ?
Our CSR with Sambhav Nepal
- Ace the Himalaya believes in giving back to the communities that surround and support tourism in Nepal. Ace provides logistical support and, if needed, cash donations to the projects of Sambhav Nepal (a local NGO).
- Sambhav Nepal and Ace work together to plan volunteer programs that will bring in foreign volunteers and make use of their enthusiasm, time, and talents in a variety of projects.
Sustainability and Responsible Tourism
- Of the few Travelife Partners in Nepal, Ace the Himalaya is one. We respect the procedures for sustainable tourism. Our excursions are socially and environmentally conscious, leaving the lowest possible impact in the Himalayas.
- About 80% of Ace the Himalaya’s staff members are natives of the regions where our trips are organized. It is one of our sustainable and responsible efforts to help local communities, support small businesses, and promote regional culture and way of life.