Bhutan International Marathon Tour is an annual event in which the runners compete over 26.2 miles (42 km) for full marathon or 13.1 miles (21 km) for half marathon. Runners start the race at Gasa and finish at Punakha. While it is a competition, it is also a journey through stunning rural countryside and villages.
In this 8 Days Bhutan Tour , you can participate in the Bhutan International Marathon at Punakha. You will also be visiting the beautiful valley of Thimphu and Paro and doing some sightseeing. This tour also includes many hikes through beautiful villages and forests.
Duration : 07 Nights / 08 Days .
Destination Covered : Paro- Punakha- Gasa - Thimphu .
The flight to Paro crosses the Himalayan Mountains, offering spectacular views of the Himalayas. On arrival you will be greeted by the guide and transferred to the hotel lunch. After lunch, visit the Rinpung Dzong and from there we will take an enchanting short hike to Zuri Dzong.
Evening stroll through traditional Bhutanese set up of Paro town.
Overnight in Paro
Today, you will drive to Punakha. We will endeavor into a beautiful hike popularly called as Lungchutse hike through the forest of rhododendron fir and hemlock. If you want to read more about it you can read our blog https://www.bhutaninbound.com/blog/2020/10/04/the-lungchutse-hike/
After a hike we will have good lunch at Dochula. On the way, you will stop at Lobesa to hike through rice paddies up to the Chimi Lhakhang Temple. This temple is dedicated to the great Yogi in the 14th century known as Drukpa Kuenley, or the "Divine Madman," who is believed to bless women who seek fertility. You will arrive at Punakha after traversing through rice field and along the bank of Punakha River.
Overnight in Punakha
After breakfast we start our acclimatization activity with a hike to Soela Gompa via Khamsum Yulley Namgyel Chorten. This hike is approximately 15km with a moderate level of difficulty but for some, about 5km of the initial climb will be on the difficult side. This hike will take around 8 hours. Options to return after visiting the Chorten for a shorter hike can be arranged.
Overnight in Punakha
After breakfast, you will drive to Damchen Resort in Khuruthang for Packet Pick Up and also for pre-race briefing. Later in the afternoon, visit the Punakha Dzong, which is stunningly situated in between the male and female rivers like an anchored ship.
Overnight in Punakha
Today you will participate in Bhutan International Marathon.
On this 26.2 miles (42 kms) or 13.1 miles (21 kms) journey through stunning rural countryside and villages, before finishing at the historic Punakha Dzong, one will discover the geographical and cultural wonders of a country naturally designed to be a tantalizing destination for adventure and spiritual seekers.
The Marathon will be followed by the prize award ceremony.
Overnight in Punakha
Following breakfast, you will drive to Thimphu via Dochula pass. On reaching at Dochula, visit the new Druk Wangyal Monastery, which is the only of its kind in the country with elaborate paintings depicting the lineage of the present monarchy and their visionary works. Check into hotel on arrival.
After lunch, you will visit Memorial Chorten (built in memory of the third King of Bhutan who reigned from 1952-1972), Nunnery temple, traditional paper factory and the giant Buddha Statue at Kuenselphodrang overlooking the Thimphu valley. You will then visit the majestic Tashichoedzong, the seat of the national government. In the evening you can explore Thimphu city and absorb the lifestyle of the people.
Overnight at Thimphu
We have saved the best for last. Get your energy up at breakfast today as we will be hiking to the famous Tiger’s Nest monastery resting at the sheer edge of the cliff, 900 meters above the valley floor. The monastery is at an elevation of 3,120 meters above the sea level and is an overwhelming sight to capture.
Taktsang or Tiger’s Nest acquires its name from the legend of its foundation, when in the 8th century Guru Rinpoche, widely revered as the second Buddha in Bhutan, arrived from Tibet flying across the mountains on the back of a tigress and meditated here for three months and blessed and preached tantric Buddhism.
Visit the ancient Kichu temple and discover the stories connected to its construction in the 7th century before calling of the day.
Hike Duration: 4-6 Hours
Overnight: Hotel in Paro
Departure from Paro International Airport
5.0 / 1 Reviews
I organized a tour with Bhutan Inbound for myself and my husband. We timed our visit during Bhutan International Marathon which was on first week of March as both of us are pretty athletic.
On arrival we were directly transported to Punakha; two days before the commencement of Marathone Day. The first day we just relaxed and visited few villages and some sightseeing places. On second day we took a very long day hike to Suela Gompa to acclimatize and prepare ourselves for the grand day.
On Marathon Day , we could just complete the run playfully. The run was fun as we could see Bhutan more close than through the windows of the car.
Our Marathon Tour was mixed with some cultural sightseeing, night stay at Tashigang Goemba/Monastery and homestay. We had a good time. Our guide Tshendu was flexible, we added many things on the itinerary as we moved on like Lungchutse hike ,visit to villages and both our tour guide and the company was very flexible with it. We brought some color pencils and books for the monk and it was a joy to see how small things can make them so happy.
We also met Geeta who organized the tour for us. We really appreciated her effort to come all the way to Paro from Thimphu to meet us.
By the end of the tour we have finished all our hard cash as whatever Bhutanese currency we had , we tipped our guide and driver. But when I entered the Duty Free Shop I really liked one book but did not have the hard currency to pay and due to technical difficulties the credit card was also not working. When we mentioned that to Geeta , she took all the trouble to send that book from Bhutan to Dubai. It was something which was much beyond our expectation.
Bhutan is beautiful not because of the country alone but because of the people, this was the impression that I got about Bhutan after the end of the Tour.