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On the Trail of the Snow Leopard

Best time to travel
Oct – May
Ideal length
12 nights
Perfect for

At a glance

  • International return flights from Paro.
  • All private transfers and guiding throughout.
  • 5 nights’ accommodation with our unique partner properties and 7 nights full service camping with an expert guide.
  • Hike to the famous Tiger's Nest Monastery to get ready for your trek.
  • Hike the famous Jomolhari trek through the remote valleys of Bhutan to the basecamp of Mount Jomolhari and take in the staggering views of the Himalaya's.
  • Explore the Thimphu and its valley over the course of a full day.
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The royal kingdom of Bhutan has a lot to offer. From elegant dzongs (fortresses), religious monasteries to thrills of adventure like white water rafting, long and short family trekking, Bhutan is a country that should definitely be on your list. In this suggested itinerary, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the Jomolhari Trek. With altitude differences of 2,500m and nearly 5,000m (lowest and highest point of the route), it offers a wide range of landscape ,fauna and flora. The highlight of this trek is the spectacular view of Mount Jomolhari from Jomolhari Basecamp, Jangothang. We work with excellent guides in Bhutan, so you will be very well looked after by these experts. Throughout your journey, your driver/guide will also take you to Paro and Thimphu, where you’ll have the opportunity to visit the highlights and get to know this fascinating country in depth.

Trip Overview

Depart from Dublin to Paro.
On arrival in Bhutan, you will be met by your private guide and driver and set off on your adventure starting in Paro. You’ll spend two nights in a beautiful handpicked property. Paro contains a wealth of things to see and do, and of course the fabulous Tigers Nest Monastery which you can walk to the following day.
Enjoy a guided visit to the Tigers Nest Monastery.
It involves a steep 800-metre ascent, but there are numerous rest-stops on the way and your reward is amazing when you see the monastery at close range. Enjoy the wonderful scenery as you walk through pine forests that are colourfully decorated with moss and prayer flags.
Tiger's Nest Monastery
Your guided trekking adventure beings!
You will be privately transferred to the trek starting point Drugyel Dzong and trek to Shana Camp. You’ll spend two nights in deluxe camps along the way. The path goes upstream of the Pachu river through villages gradually ascending to 2800 meters at Shana camp.
Paro aerial view
Next, it’s time to trek from Shana to Soi Thanthangkha.
Today, the trail again follows the Pachu River ascending through pine, oak and spruce forest. The camp is at an altitude of 3800 meters near a stone shelter.
Paro river, Bhutan
Then, you will trek from Soi to Jangothang.
You will begin climbing slowly until you reach an army camp. Then follow the river above tree line with stunning views of the surrounding peaks. A leisurely will take you to Jangothang at an altitude of 4050 meters. The view of Jhomolhari (7320 meters) and Jichu Drake (6900 meters) is outstanding!
Jamolhari mountains
It’s time to relax in Jangothang.
Relax without any activities or you can explore the surrounding areas like Tshophu Lake, visit Yakherders.
Yak on mountains in Bhutan
Trek from Jangothang to Lingshi.
Today, the trail follows the stream for half hour and crosses the bridge to the right side. Climb up the ridge and enjoy stunning views of Chomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tshrim Khang mountains. Then walk through the wide-open valley sometimes coming across herds of blue sheep. Nearing the camp, you will see the Lingshi Dzong perched on top of a hill with commanding view of the valley.
Blue sheep Bhutan
Trek from Lingshi to Shodu.
Today will be the most difficult day, so you will start early. Begin walking opposite the dzong gradually through the valley until the stiff climb to Yale la pass at 4950 meters the highest point of the trip. The panoramic view of Mt.Chomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tshrim Gang is incredible.
Hiking Bhutan
Trek from Shodu to Barshong.
Today, the path follows the Thimchu river descending through rhododendron, Juniper and pine forests. The view of the cliff facing rocks and waterfalls are stunning. The trail gradually ascends after 3/4 hours to the ruins of Barshong Dzong reaching the camp at 3500 meters.
Bhutan mountains with waterfalls
Finally, you’ll trek from Barshong to Dodina.
The path descends for a while joining the Thimchu river and gradually ascending and descending through thick bamboo and pine forests. From Dolemkencho the trail descends all the way to Dodina where your private driver will be waiting for your return.
Forest in Bhutan
You’ll be privately transferred to Thimphu.
You’ll spend the next two nights in a handpicked property. Enjoy a privately guided tour of this Bhutan’s capital city.
Thimphu at night
With your guide, enjoy a visit to Thimphu Valley.
Visit the Motithang Mini Zoo where you can see the National animal, Takin, graze peacefully in a small protected park. Walk to the Zilukha Nunnery and then drive to the Tango Monastery for a picnic lunch. You’ll then hike to the monastery that takes about 45 minutes. It is a 13th-century structure and is home to about 150 monks studying Buddhist Philosophy and meditation.
Monks in Thimphu
Your final stop is Paro.
You’ll be privately transferred here and will spend your final night in a partner hotel. You have the option of indulging in Zuri Goenpa Hike, that’s if you have the energy! This hike is an easy one with little climb of about 20 minutes and then it levels along the slope above Paro valley with spectacular views down below, finally finishing at the National Museum, altogether taking about 2 hours.
Paro Valley, Bhutan
Try your hand at archery!
As it is the national sport of Bhutan, we couldn’t let you leave without enjoying an archery lesson at your hotel.
Depart from Paro for your flight home.
Arrive in Dublin.

Tailoring your holiday

OROKO Itineraries are created with you in mind and no two are the same. These can be used to help plan your trip - or we can design a completely different itinerary to suit you.

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Where to rest your head

Looking for the best accommodation? We've got the contacts


Bhutan Spirit Sanctuary

Bhutan Spirit Sanctuary is an upscale mountainside retreat tucked into the hills of the Paro Valley. It offers luxury accommodation just outside of Paro and centres on an understanding of Buddhism, Bhutanese culture and well-being. A ‘well-being inclusive’ hotel, the property offers a number of programmes and experiences including yoga, meditation,  meetings with monks and local interactions as well as cookery class, hiking, archery and cultural visits. There is also a well equipped spa which offers the traditional therapies such as massages and is conceived of as a place to really come to understand one’s physical and spiritual ailments.


The Postcard Dewa

The Postcard Dewa is newly built, a 15-key hotel in Bhutan with hilltop views of Thimphu valley. It’s a 20-minute drive to the city and one of the world’s highest Buddha statues. The 13 rooms and two suites come with private sit-outs overlooking the forest. There’s fresh mountain trout and ema datshi on the menu. Soak up a traditional hot stone bath or swim in the temperature-controlled pool, hike up monasteries and take a picnic basket to Raidak River.

What people are saying

I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you so much for the most wonderful holiday we had in Eagles Palace in Greece. In terms of OROKO, the service, value for money was excellent and how everything was looked after for us.  I look forward to booking my next holiday next spring! To finish, a big big thank you for one of the best holidays ever!

Sharon & family – Greece, July 2019


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