This trek is to the beautiful Phobjikha valley (3,000m), one of the few glacial valleys in Bhutan, which lies in the mountains east of Wangdue Phodrang. After crossing over the pass you soon come to the great monastery of Gangtey, established in the 17th century. The village of Phobjikha lies a few kilometers down from the monastery, on the valley floor. This quiet, remote valley is the chosen winter home of the rare black necked cranes that migrate here annually from the Tibetan plateau. This moderate trek runs through the villages of Gogona and Khotokha, passing through meadows and fields, then forests of juniper, magnolia and rhododendrons in full bloom in April. It is one of the finest low level treks in Bhutan.
Season: The best times for this trek are March to May, and September to November. The best months are April and early May when the rhododendrons are in full bloom.
Day 01: Arrive at Paro Airport.
Welcomed by personnel of Bhutan Dynasty Travel and transferred to Thimphu on completion of arrival formalities. Overnight halt in Thimphu.
Day 02: Thimphu – Gangtey
After breakfast, morning tour of Thimphu, visiting National Memorial Chorten, Tashichho Dzong, National Library and Institute for Zorig Chusum (generally known as the Painting School), where students learn the 13 traditional arts and crafts of Bhutan.
After lunch drive for about 5 hours to Gangtey. En route, cross Dochula pass (3,088m) and drive by Wangdue Phodrang. Overnight at camp/farm house, Gangtey.
Day 03: Gangtey – Gogona. 15km, 6-7 hours
Trek commences today. The trail winds gradually upwards through meadows and fields, ascending to Tsele-la pass (3,400m) where we stop for lunch. The trail then descends gradually for some time through forests of juniper, bamboo, magnolias, and rhododendron. After a last short climb, we reach Gogona village. The people of Gogona were originally nomads and they speak a language called Bjopkha (language of nomads). Overnight camp.
Day 04: Gogona – Khotokha, 16 km, 6 / 7 hours
The trail winds up gently above Gogona village, climbing into a forest of fir, oak, spruce, rhododendron, cypress and juniper. A long and gradual climb takes us up to Shobju-la pass (3,400m). The path leads down to the wide valley of Khotokha, where the people of Sha (a region of Wangdue Phodrang district) come in summer to graze their animals. Overnight camp.
Day 05: Khotokha Chazam/Wangdue Phodrang. 12km, 5 hours
A short ascent takes us to a pass, from which the path descends steeply through ever- changing vegetation till finally reaching the bridge at Wangdue Phodrang. The trek ends here. Overnight at the hotel in Wangdue Phodrang.
Day 06: Wangdue Phodrang – Thimphu
After exploring the attractive Wangdue Phodrang and Punakha valleys, we drive to Thimphu. Afternoon sightseeing in Thimphu, visits to the following as time permits: Folk Heritage and National Textile Museums, Handicrafts Emporium; paper making factory; market. Overnight at hotel in Thimphu.
Day 07: Thimphu – Paro
Morning drive to Paro, en route visit Semtokha Dzong. Today’s sightseeing in Paro includes visits to: Ta Dzong (National Museum), Rinpung Dzong, Drukgyel Dzong and Kyichu Lhakhang. Overnight at hotel in Paro.
Day 08: Depart
After early breakfast, drive to Paro airport for flight to onward destination.