Trekking in Bhutan

Explore what truly sets Bhutan apart from anywhere else and discover one of the most remote kingdoms on earth. Whether you are looking for a day hike or a gruelling 31 day adventure, Bhutan has it all. Pristine mountain lakes, imposing glaciers and some of the world's most endangered species await you in the mountainous amphitheatre of the Himalayas. Let us give you a selection of some of the country's finest treks.
Note: Your trek guide is the expert on the route to take.

The Druk Path Trek is the most popular trek in the country as it passes through a gorgeous natural landscape of blue pine forests, high ridges and pristine lakes while at the same time offering the opportunity to visit some ancient lhakhang (monasteries), Dzongs (forts) and villages. The trek follows the original ancient mule track that once connected Bhutan to the Indian border. The Druk Path is also a fairly easy hike to undertake, as the distances between rest camps are fairly short. The trail takes you through forests of fir, blue pine and dwarf rhododendrons at altitudes ranging between 7,874 -13,779 feet. This trek also offers good views of Mt. Gangkar Puensum (24,836 ft.), the highest unclimbed peak in the world.

  • Day 1: PARO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT - PARO
    Upon arrival at Paro International airport, A representative from BEST Bhutan Co., ltd. will be there to receive you. In the afternoon, you will have an opportunity to explore the beautiful town of Paro. (Overnight hotel in Paro)
  • Day 2: PARO HALT - TAKTSANG MONASTERY OR TIGER'S NEST HIKE
    After breakfast, we will drive you to the trail head to commence a climb through beautiful pine forest. Takshang Monastery (Tigers nest) has to be the monastery with the most outstanding setting in Bhutan. Set on a vertical cliff face at 3100m 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). The primary Lhakhang or main temple was built around Guru Rimpoche meditation cave in 1684 by Gyalse Tenzin Rabgay. Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava, the tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan in 747 AD, flew here on the back of a flying tiger, Dorji Drolo from Kurtoe Singye Dzong in the east. After lunch, we will visit Drukgyel Dzong (a ruined fortress), 16km away from Paro. Although it is now in ruins, this Dzong has great historical importance for the people of Bhutan. It was a place where the Bhutanese finally defeated the Tibetan invasion. On a clear day one can view sacred Mt. Jomolhari (mountain of Goddess). Afternoon relax in hotel and pack for the trek. (Overnight hotel in Paro)
  • Day 3: PARO - JILI DZONG (Distance: 7km, 4-5hrs, 1090m ascent, camp altitude 3480m).
    The 6-day Druk Path Trek begins today at the National Museum (Ta-Dzong). The first day can be quite arduous as you have to climb more than 1000m elevation. The trek follows a gravel road past a few farms for about 30 minutes and then climbs up a steep ridge before leading through blue pine and fir forests to Damche Gom. Once you reach the ridge below Jili Dzong you descend about 100m to the camp site below the Dzong. If the weather is clear, the Paro valley and the high snow-capped mountains of the Himalayas can be seen. If the caretaker is there you can visit the Dzong. (Overnight camp Jele Dzong)
  • Day 4: JELE DZONG to JANGCHULAKHA (Distance: 10km, 4-5hrs, 310m ascent, 50m descent, camp altitude 3770m).
    Today's trek starts with a short and steep climb for about an hour and a half, and then the slope evens out a bit and the ascent is more gradual passing through a thick alpine forest of rhododendron till we reach our overnight camp. You may see herders and their yaks around your campsite. Your camp site will be surrounded by juniper forest form where early morning and late afternoon you can hear the calls of Himalayan monal. (Overnight camp at Jangchulakha)
  • Day 5: JANGCHULAKHA - JIGMELANG TSHO (Distance: 11km, 4hrs, 230m descent, 330m ascent, camp altitude 3870m)
    After breakfast, we follow a trail along the ridge of the mountains and on a clear day you can get stunning views of the mountains and valleys. Our overnight camp is close to Lake Jigmelang Tsho. This lake is known for its giant sized trout, and if you are lucky you may enjoy well-prepared trout for dinner. (Overnight camp near Jigmelang Tsho)
  • Day 6 : JIGME LANGTSHO to SIMKOTRA TSHO (Distance: 11km, 4hrs, 820m ascent, 400m descent, camp altitude 4110m)
    The trail today goes through large areas of dwarf rhododendron trees and past Janatsho Lake. Once again, you may come across some yak herder camps where you will get the opportunity to get a glimpse of a nomad,s life. (Overnight camp near Simkotra Tsho Lake)
  • Day 7: SIMKOTRA - PHAJODING - MOTITHANG (Distance: 14km, 6-7hrs, 130m ascent, 1810m descent, camp altitude 3750m)
    Today,s trek begins with a gradual climb and if the weather permits you will get a spectacular view of Mt. Gangkar Puensum, the highest mountain in Bhutan and several other Himalayan peaks. From this pass, the trek takes you gradually downhill towards Phajodhing, where a monastery and meditation retreat centre is located. After passing Phajodhing monastery then trek to Thimphu (Motithang), is downhill through blue pine forest. The walk, at a leisurely pace, takes about three hours. (Overnight hotel in Thimphu)
  • Day 9: THIMPHU - SIGHTSEEING
    After breakfast, we will drive you to the Dochula Pass at 3140m for a photo stop and for tea, coffee etc and to enjoy the most spectacular view of the Himalayan snow capped mountains and a great view of Gasa Dzong at a distance if the weather is clear.
    After lunch, visit the National Memorial Chorten built in honor of Bhutan's late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck before visiting Giant Buddha Shakyamuni statue at Kuenselphodrang, Then visit Trashichoe Dzong, seat of the national government and the Central Monastic Body which includes the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot of Bhutan). Afternoon you can do last minute souvenir shopping in the shops of Thimphu. (Overnight hotel in Thimphu)
  • Day 10: DEPT BHUTAN - PARO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
    In the morning drive to Paro International Airport where your guide from BEST Bhutan Co., ltd will bid you farewell as you embark on your onward journey.

The Laya-Gasa Trek is considered one of the most scenic treks in Bhutan, offering amazing views of some of the most pristine and unspoiled landscapes in Bhutan. This fourteen day, 217 km journey begins at Drukgyel in Paro and takes you through gorgeous alpine meadows, high mountain passes and dense sub-tropical jungles before terminating in Damji in Tashithang. The first five days of this trek follow the same route as the Jomolhari Trek I through Jigme Singye National Park and offer awe-inspiring views of Mt. Jomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tsherimgang. On the sixth day the path diverges and you will depart Lingshi for the camp site at Chebisa, a charming little village adorned with a beautiful waterfall of crystal clear water. Along the trail you’ll be able to spot indigenous animals such as blue sheep and Takins, the national animal of Bhutan. You’ll travel through remote mountain villages inhabited by Layaps (people of Laya), a distinct segment of the Bhutanese society with unique culture, traditions and appearance. Thhe trek also offers a day of relaxation at the famous Gasa hot springs that is sure to rejuvenate you. This is one of the more difficult treks offered in Bhutan due to the high altitudes and steep ascents and descents along the path. The best seasons to complete this challenge are in April-June and Mid-September-Mid-November.

  • DAY 1: GUNITSAWA VILLAGE - SHARNA ZAMPA (40mins, 80m descent, camp altitude 2,850m)
    This trek begins at Gunitsawa Village were you pass the army post. At the army checkpost your trek permit (provided by your tour operator) will be checked and endorsed. The campsite is on the opposite side of the river, not far from Gunitsawa.
  • DAY 2: SHARNA ZAMPA - THANGTHANGKHA (Distance 22km, 7-8hrs, 770m ascent, 10m descent, camp altitude 3,610m)
    On this long day, the trail continues with lots of small ups and downs. After going uphill through the river valley the valley finally narrows gradually to a mere path which descends to a meadow where a camp will be set up. From here, if weather permits, you will have the first great view of Mt. Jomolhari.
  • DAY 3: THANGTHANGKHA - JANGOTHANG (Distance 19km, 5-6hrs, 480m ascent, camp altitude 4,080m)
    If you did not see Mt. Jomolhari the previous evening, you will still have a chance to get a great view early this morning. This morning the trek continues up the Paro Chhu valley which widens into patches of alpine meadow and scanty growths of forest. You will cross an army checkpoint along the way and enjoy a spectacular view of high mountain ridges and snow-capped peaks. In this area yaks and their herder’s homes become a regular feature of the landscape. Passing the villages Soe, Takethang and Dangochang is another asset on this day. After reaching Jangothang, one of the most beautiful campsites of the Himalayas, you will again have a spectacular view of Mount Jomolhari.
  • DAY 4: JANGOTHANG HALT
    The rest day in Jangothang provides plenty of possibilities for day hikes with great views of lakes and snow capped mountains such as Jomolhari and Jichu Drake. There are good chances to spot some blue sheep on the upper slopes of the valley. Jangothang is a perfect environment for your acclimatization. You can also trek up to Tosoh or hike around the area. There are good short hiking trails in three directions. Jomolhari and its subsidiary mountain chains lie directly west, Jichu Drake to the north and there are a number of unclimbed peaks to the east.
  • DAY 5: JANGOTHANG - LINGSHI (Distance 18km, 6-7hrs, 840m ascent, 870m descent, camp altitude 4,010m)
    This is one of the longest days of the trek. A short distance from the camp the trail begins climbing rapidly for about half an hour and then becomes a gradual ascent to the Nyilila pass at 4,870m. While on the climb enjoy the surroundings. You might see herds of blue sheep grazing on the slopes of the mountains. From the pass you will have spectacular views of Mt. Jomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tsherimgang, all of them rising above 7,000m. It's a gradual descent to the camp where you will pass by some of the yak herder’s tents, made from yak wool. The herders use these tents while travelling tovarious pastures for their yaks. As you come down into the Lingshi basin, a beautiful U-shaped valley, you get a wonderful view of Lingshi Dzong on clear days. Tserimgang and its glaciers rise up at the north end of the valley. The campsite is next to a stone hut you reach just before Lingshi Dzong.
  • DAY 6: LINGSHI - CHEBISA Distance 10km, 5-6hrs, 280m ascent, 410m descent, camp altitude 3,880m)
    Today is the shortest walking day, and you can really take it easy. Shortly after starting you will reach a chorten below Lingshi Dzong. Here, you have the choice of staying on the main trail or taking a detour up to the Lingshi Dzong (4,220m), which sits right atop a high ridge. This Dzong is under reconstruction from a 2011 earthquake which damaged its central building. In addition to a very special atmosphere of mystic tranquility, Lingshi Dzong provides a great view over the valley. After Lingshi Dzong you will be passing the villages of Lingshi and Goyul. In Goyul, the stone houses are clustered together to form a small compact village that is unusual in Bhutan where settlements are usually scattered. On reaching the campsite at Chebisa you will have plenty of time to visit the village houses if you feel up to it. There is also a beautiful waterfall located behind the village that is worth visiting.
  • DAY 7: CHEBISA - SHOMUTHANG (Distance 17km, 6-7hours, 890m ascent, 540m descent, camp altitude 4,220m)
    The morning starts with a long ascent behind Chebisa Village (2-3 hours) through a wide pastureland towards Gobu La (pass). On the way, you will see a few people herding yaks. There is also a great chance to spot large herds of blue sheep above the trail. After crossing Gobu La (4,410m), you descend into the valley, then climb again a little bit, before descending again to Shakshepasa (3,980), a large U-shaped valley. Climbing from here you will finally reach the campsite at Shomuthang, above a river, which is a tributary of the Nochu river.
  • DAY 8: SHOMUTHANG - ROBLUTHANG (Distance 18km, 6-7hrs, 700m ascent, 760m descent, camp altitude 4,160m)
    You begin by climbing up the valley to view Kang Bum (6,526 m) and some edelweiss. After two hours of climbing you will reach Jhari La (4,750m), from where you catch the first glimpse of Sinche La, the pass you will have to cross the day after. The big snow peak in the north is Gangchhenta 6,840 m, better known as the Great Tiger Mountain. If weather is clear, Tserim Kang and the top of Jomolhari will be visible. The camp by the river is called Tsheri Jathang located in a beautiful wide and remote valley. Herds of takin, the Bhutanese National Animal, migrate to this valley in summer and remain for about four months. The valley has been declared a takin sanctuary. Climb up a little bit and you will reach the campsite at Robluthang in a rocky meadow.
  • DAY 9: ROBLUTHANG - LIMITHANG (Distance 19km, 6-7hrs, 850m ascent, 870m descent, camp altitude 4,140m)
    The trek starts out with an initial 40-60mins ascent before gradually raising for another 1.5 hours through a boulder field. It is then a 1 hour steep ascent before reaching Sinche La (5,005m) – the final and highest pass on the trek if you don’t intend to continue the Snowman trek from Laya onwards. As you descend the far side of the passyou will see an impressive terminal moraine and a glacial lake at the foot of the valley. You can see classic examples of lateral moraines where the glacier has pushed rocks up both sides of the valley. Below the moraine, you cross the Kango Chhu and soon reach the Limithang campsite. The peak of Gangchhenta towers over the campsite even though it’s quite a distance away.
  • DAY 10: LIMITHANG - LAYA (Distance 10km, 4-5 hrs, 60m ascent, 340m descent, camp altitude 3,840m)
    Today, you walk downhill all the way along a narrow, winding river valley. After a long time, the trail takes you through densely forested region. The trail leads you to the west side of Laya village. From the west of the village you will have spectacular views of Mt. Gangchhenta and catch Mt. Masagang. In the village centre is a community school and a basic health unit with a telephone connection. The campsite is located below the school.
  • DAY 11: LAYA - KOINA (Distance 19km, 6-7hrs, 260m ascent, 1,070m descent, camp altitude 3,050m)
    The trail winds up and down along the river valley of Mo Chhu avoiding natural obstacles and affording breath-taking views of the raging river, feeder streams and waterfalls. Lots of ups and downs will lead you to Kohi Lapcha at 3.300 m. The trek then drops down to the large stream of Koina Chhu, where you will find the campsite of Koina.
  • DAY 12: KOINA - GASA Distance 14km, 6-7hrs, 740m ascent, 1,500m descent, camp altitude 2,240m)
    Today you will have the last major climb of the Laya Gasa Trek. You will cross Bari La (3,740m), after which the trail descends all the way until you reach Gasa village (2,770m), where you will find the first restaurants since you started from Drukgyel Dzong. There also is a campsite close to Gasa Dzong. You will have to decide whether you want to stay in Gasa village or descend for another hour to the Gasa Tsachu (hot springs) and relax in the rejuvenating mineral waters. The Gasa Tsachu is one of the most popular hot springs in Bhutan.
  • LAYA GASA TREK - FINISH
    This trek finishs in Gasa, this remote village is home to a distinctive and architecturally unique Dzong.

Jomolhari Trek is longer than the Jomolhari Loop - the most popular trekking routes in Bhutan. With altitude differences of 2,500m and nearly 5,000m it offers a wide range of landscapes, fauna and flora. The highlight of this trek is the spectacular view of Mount Jomolhari from Jomolhari Base camp (Jangothang).

  • Day 1: PARO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT - PARO
    Upon arrival at Paro International airport, a representative from BEST Bhutan Co., ltd. will be there to receive you. In the afternoon, you will have an opportunity to explore the beautiful town of Paro. (Overnight hotel in Paro)
  • Day 2: PARO HALT - TAKTSANG MONASTERY OR TIGER'S NEST HIKE
    After breakfast, we will drive you to the trail head to commence a climb through beautiful pine forest. Takshang Monastery (Tigers nest) has to be the monastery with the most outstanding setting in Bhutan. Set on a vertical cliff face at 3100m 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). The primary Lhakhang or main temple was built around Guru Rimpoche meditation cave in 1684 by Gyalse Tenzin Rabgay. Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava, the tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan in 747 AD, flew here on the back of a flying tiger, Dorji Drolo from Kurtoe Singye Dzong in the east.
    After lunch, we will visit Drukgyel Dzong (a ruined fortress), 16km away from Paro. Although it is now in ruins, this Dzong has great historical importance for the people of Bhutan. It was a place where the Bhutanese finally defeated the Tibetan invasion. On a clear day one can view sacred Mt. Jomolhari (mountain of Goddess). Afternoon relax in hotel and pack for the trek. (Overnight hotel in Paro)
  • DAY 3: GUNITSAWA VILLAGE - SHARNA ZAMPA (40mins, 80m descent, camp altitude 2,850m)
    This trek begins at Gunitsawa Village were you pass the army post. At the army check post your trek permit provided by your tour operator) will be checked and endorsed. The campsite is on the opposite side of the river, not far from Gunitsawa.(Overnight camp
  • DAY 4: SHARNA ZAMPA - THANGTHANGKHA (Distance: 22km, 7-8hrs, 770m ascent, 10m descent, 3,610m)
    On this long day, the trail continues with lots of small ups and downs. After going uphill through the river valley, the valley finally narrows gradually to a mere path which descends to a meadow where a camp will be set up. From here, if weather permits, you will have the first great view of Mt. Jomolhari. (Overnight camp)
  • DAY 5: THANGTHANGKHA - JANGOTHANG (Distance19km, 5-6hrs, 480m ascent, camp altitude 4,080m)
    If you did not see Mt. Jomolhari the previous evening, you will still have a chance to get a great view early this morning. This morning the trek continues up the Paro Chhu valley which widens into patches of alpine meadow and scanty growths of forest. You will cross an army checkpoint along the way and enjoy a spectacular view of high mountain ridges and snowcapped peaks. In this area yaks and their herder’s homes become a regular feature of the landscape. Passing the villages Soe, Takethang and Dangochang is another asset on this day. After reaching Jangothang, one of the most beautiful campsites of the Himalayas, you will again have a spectacular view of Mount Jomolhari. (Overnight camp)
  • DAY 6: JANGOTHANG HALT
    The rest day in Jangothang provides plenty of possibilities for day hikes with great views of lakes and snow capped mountains such as Jomolhari and Jichu Drake. There are good chances to spot some blue sheep on the upper slopes of the valley. Jangothang is a perfect environment for your acclimatization. You can also trek up to Tosoh or hike around the area. There are good short hiking trails in three directions. Jomolhari and its subsidiary mountain chains lie directly west, Jichu Drake to the north and there are a number of unclimbed peaks to the east. (Overnight camp)
  • DAY 7: JANGOTHANG - LINGSHI (16km, 6-7hrs, 810m ascent, 1,090M descent, camp altitude 3,800m)
    The trail leads to a last settlement in the valley and drops to the Paro Chhu. Passing the lake of Tshophu (4,380m) you will climb up steeply to Bhonte La pass at 4,890 m, the highest point of this trek route. Reaching the Dhumzo Chhu River, you trek downstream passing the few houses of Soi Yaktsa (Dhumzo) to arrive at your camp soon after. (Overnight camp)
  • DAY 8: LINGSHI - SHODU (22km, 8-9hrs, 940m ascent, 920m descent, camp altitude 4,080m)
    The trail climbs up to the Yelila pass at an altitude of 4,930m. From the pass, on a clear day you will get an excellent view of Jomolhari, Tserimgang and Masanggang. The trek from the pass to the campsite at Shodu is a steep downhill. (Overnight camp)
  • DAY 9: SHODU - BARSHONG (16km, 5-6hrs, 250m ascent, 670m descent, camp altitude 3,710m)
    The trail follows the Thimphu Chhu through rhododendron forests, past beautiful waterfalls along the way. The valley narrows till the path takes to the slopes and gradually ascends to the ruins of Barshong Dzong. (Overnight camp)
  • DAY 10: BARSHONG - DOLAM KENCHO (15km, 4-5hrs, 290 m ascent, 640 m descent, camp altitude 3,320m)
    The trail descends down to the Thimphu Chhu river valley, through dense forests of rhododendron, birch, conifer, maples and bamboos and then ascends to pasture lands. The camp is in a meadow. (Overnight camp)
  • DAY 11: DOLAM KENCHO - DODENA (THIMPHU) (8km, 3-4 hrs, 500 m ascent, 930m descent)
    The trail continues through forested areas winding up and down and through a small pass. Languor's (monkeys) can be seen along the way. In Dodena, you will exit the Jigme Dorji National Park and reach the road head next to an impressive cantilever bridge. Jomolhari Trek, finishes at the beautiful Cherri Monastery, while it is a 40 min hike to the monastery it is well worth it. (Overnight hotel in Thimphu)
  • Day 12: THIMPHU - SIGHTSEEING
    After breakfast, we will drive you to the Dochula Pass at 3140m for a photo stop and for tea, coffee etc and to enjoy the most spectacular view of the Himalayan snow capped mountains and a great view of Gasa Dzong at a distance if the weather is clear. After lunch, visit the National Memorial Chorten built in honor of Bhutan's late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck before visiting Giant Buddha Shakyamuni statue at Kuenselphodrang, Then visit Trashichoe Dzong, seat of the national government and the Central Monastic Body which includes the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot of Bhutan). Afternoon you can do last minute souvenir shopping in the shops of Thimphu. (Overnight hotel in Thimphu)
  • Day 13: DEPT BHUTAN - PARO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
    In the morning drive to Paro International Airport where your guide from BEST Bhutan Co., ltd will bid you farewell as you embark on your onward journey.

The Snowman Trek is an extension of the beautiful Laya Gasa Trek, and leads from Laya into high altitudes of the Bhutanese Himalayas. It takes tough and enduring trekkers into the Lunana region and further on to Gangkhar Puensum and Bumthang or down to Sephu in Trongsa district, depending on which route you choose. The Snowman trek leads through the most remote areas up to very high altitudes. Trekkers have to camp in altitudes above 5,000m more than once, and depending on the seasonal temperatures, the camps are sometimes on snow. The Lonely Planet describes the Snowman Trek as one of the most difficult treks of the world. The best time for Snowman Trek is summer - unlike many other high altitude treks of Bhutan. Many groups that attempt this tough trek do not finish due to problems with the high altitude or snow blocked passes. However, those who make it will remember this trek as an outstanding, beautiful and as one of the most rewarding trek of their life. In this version of the Snowman Trek, one has the possibility of spending a day or two at perhaps one of the most beautiful hot springs of the Himalayas.

  • Day 1: Gunitsawa Village - Sharna Zampa (40mins, 80m descent, camp altitude 2,850m)
    This trek begins at Gunitsawa Village were you pass the army post. At the army checkpost your trek permit (provided by your tour operator) will be checked and endorsed. The campsite is on the opposite side of the river, not far from Gunitsawa.
  • Day 2: Sharna Zampa - Thangthangkha Distance (22km, 7-8hrs, 770m ascent, 10m descent, camp altitude 3,610m)
    On this long day, the trail continues with lots of small ups and downs. After going uphill through the river valley the valley finally narrows gradually to a mere path which descends to a meadow where a camp will be set up. From here, if weather permits, you will have the first great view of Mt. Jomolhari.
  • Day 3: Thangthangkha - Jangothang (Distance 19km, 5-6 hrs, 480m ascent, camp altitude 4,080 m).
    If you did not see Mt. Jomolhari the previous evening, you will still have a chance to get a great view early this morning. This morning the trek continues up the Paro Chhu valley which widens into patches of alpine meadow and scanty growths of forest. You will cross an army checkpoint along the way and enjoy a spectacular view of high mountain ridges and snow-capped peaks. In this area yaks and their herder's homes become a regular feature of the landscape. Passing the villages Soe, Takethang and Dangochang is another asset on this day. After reaching Jangothang, one of the most beautiful campsites of the Himalayas, you will again have a spectacular view of Mount Jomolhari.
  • DAY 4: SHARNA ZAMPA - THANGTHANGKHA (Distance: 22km, 7-8hrs, 770m ascent, 10m descent, 3,610m)
    On this long day, the trail continues with lots of small ups and downs. After going uphill through the river valley, the valley finally narrows gradually to a mere path which descends to a meadow where a camp will be set up. From here, if weather permits, you will have the first great view of Mt. Jomolhari. (Overnight camp)
  • Day 4: Jangothang Halt
    The rest day in Jangothang provides plenty of possibilities for day hikes with great views of lakes and snow capped mountains such as Jomolhari and Jichu Drake. There are good chances to spot some blue sheep on the upper slopes of the valley. Jangothang is a perfect environment for your acclimatization. You can also trek up to Tosoh or hike around the area. There are good short hiking trails in three directions. Jomolhari and its subsidiary mountain chains lie directly west, Jichu Drake to the north and there are a number of unclimbed peaks to the east.
  • Day 5: Jangothang - Lingshi (Distance 18km, 6-7hrs, 840m ascent, 870m descent, camp altitude 4,010m)
    This is one of the longest days of the trek. A short distance from the camp the trail begins climbing rapidly for about half an hour and then becomes a gradual ascent to the Nyilila pass at 4,870m. While on the climb enjoy the surroundings. You might see herds of blue sheep grazing on the slopes of the mountains. From the pass you will have spectacular views of Mt. Jomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tsherimgang, all of them rising above 7,000m. It's a gradual descent to the camp where you will pass by some of the yak herder's tents, made from yak wool. The herders use these tents while travelling tovarious pastures for their yaks. As you come down into the Lingshi basin, a beautiful U-shaped valley, you get a wonderful view of Lingshi Dzong on clear days. Tserimgang and its glaciers rise up at the north end of the valley. The campsite is next to a stone hut you reach just before Lingshi Dzong.
  • Day 6: Lingshi - Chebisa (Distance 10km, 5-6 hrs, 280m ascent, 410m descent, camp altitude 3,880m)
    Today is the shortest walking day, and you can really take it easy. Shortly after starting you will reach a chorten below Lingshi Dzong. Here, you have the choice of staying on the main trail or taking a detour up to the Lingshi Dzong (4,220m), which sits right atop a high ridge. This Dzong is under reconstruction from a 2011 earthquake which damaged its central building. In addition to a very special atmosphere of mystic tranquility, Lingshi Dzong provides a great view over the valley. After Lingshi Dzong you will be passing the villages of Lingshi and Goyul. In Goyul, the stone houses are clustered together to form a small compact village that is unusual in Bhutan where settlements are usually scattered. On reaching the campsite at Chebisa you will have plenty of time to visit the village houses if you feel up to it. There is also a beautiful waterfall located behind the village that is worth visiting.
  • Day 7: Chebisa - Shomuthang (Distance 17km, 6-7 hrs, 890m ascent, 540m descent, camp altitude 4,220m)
    The morning starts with a long ascent behind Chebisa Village (2-3 hours) through a wide pastureland towards Gobu La (pass). On the way, you will see a few people herding yaks. There is also a great chance to spot large herds of blue sheep above the trail. After crossing Gobu La (4,410m), you descend into the valley, then climb again a little bit, before descending again to Shakshepasa (3,980), a large U-shaped valley. Climbing from here you will finally reach the campsite at Shomuthang, above a river, which is a tributary of the Nochu river.
  • Day 8: Shomuthang - Robluthang (Distance 18km, 6-7 hrs, 700m ascent, 760m descent, camp altitude 4,160m)
    You begin by climbing up the valley to view Kang Bum (6,526 m) and some edelweiss. After two hours of climbing you will reach Jhari La (4,750m), from where you catch the first glimpse of Sinche La, the pass you will have to cross the day after. The big snow peak in the north is Gangchhenta 6,840 m, better known as the Great Tiger Mountain. If weather is clear, Tserim Kang and the top of Jomolhari will be visible. The camp by the river is called Tsheri Jathang located in a beautiful wide and remote valley. Herds of takin, the Bhutanese National Animal, migrate to this valley in summer and remain for about four months. The valley has been declared a takin sanctuary. Climb up a little bit and you will reach the campsite at Robluthang in a rocky meadow.
  • Day 9: Robluthang - Limithang (Distance 19km, 6-7 hours, 850m ascent, 870m descent, camp altitude 4,140m)
    The trek starts out with an initial 40-60mins ascent before gradually raising for another 1.5 hours through a boulder field. It is then a 1 hour steep ascent before reaching Sinche La (5,005m) - the final and highest pass on the trek if you don't intend to continue the Snowman trek from Laya onwards. As you descend the far side of the passyou will see an impressive terminal moraine and a glacial lake at the foot of the valley. You can see classic examples of lateral moraines where the glacier has pushed rocks up both sides of the valley. Below the moraine, you cross the Kango Chhu and soon reach the Limithang campsite. The peak of Gangchhenta towers over the campsite even though it's quite a distance away.
  • DAY 10: BARSHONG - DOLAM KENCHO (15km, 4-5hrs, 290 m ascent, 640 m descent, camp altitude 3,320m)
    The trail descends down to the Thimphu Chhu river valley, through dense forests of rhododendron, birch, conifer, maples and bamboos and then ascends to pasture lands. The camp is in a meadow. (Overnight camp)
  • Day 11: Rest / Acclimatisation day in Laya
    If you have trekked from Paro Valley you should spend a day recuperating from the trek to Laya and preparing yourself for the rest of this challenging but spectacular trek. If you have started from Gasa (Punakha) you should also walk up to Laya to acclimatize, and not just stay at the trail junction to Lunana. It's worthwhile to spend one day in Laya just for the great views from Laya and its extroadinary inhabitants.
  • Day 12: THIMPHU - SIGHTSEEING
    After breakfast, we will drive you to the Dochula Pass at 3140m for a photo stop and for tea, coffee etc and to enjoy the most spectacular view of the Himalayan snow capped mountains and a great view of Gasa Dzong at a distance if the weather is clear. After lunch, visit the National Memorial Chorten built in honor of Bhutan's late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck before visiting Giant Buddha Shakyamuni statue at Kuenselphodrang, Then visit Trashichoe Dzong, seat of the national government and the Central Monastic Body which includes the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot of Bhutan). Afternoon you can do last minute souvenir shopping in the shops of Thimphu. (Overnight hotel in Thimphu)
  • Day 12: Laya - Rhoduphu (Distance 19km, 6-8hrs, 1,030m ascent, 750m descent, camp altitude 4,160m)
    From Laya we descend to an army camp and continue following the river till the turn off point to Rhoduphu. After lunch the climb continues through rhododendron bushes till you reach the camp at Roduphu just next to the Rhodu Chhu.
  • Day 13: Rhodophu - Narethang (Distance 17km, 5-6hrs, 740m ascent, camp altitude 4,900m)
    After following the river for about half an hour you will have a steady climb to a high open valley at 4,600m and then further up to Tsomo La (4,900m). Tsomo La offers a superb view of Lunana, Mount Jomolhari and Jichu Drake, and the Tibetan border. The route then crosses a flat, barren plateau at about 5,000m. The campsite at Narethang is towered by the peak of Gangla Karchung (6,395m).
  • Day 14: Narethang - Tarina (Distance 18km, 5-6rs, 270m ascent, 1,200m descent, camp altitude 3,970m)
    From the camp you will climb for about an hour to Gangla Karchung La (5,120m). The view from the pass is breathtaking and the whole range of mountains including Jekangphu Gang (7,100m), Tsenda Kang and Teri Gang (7,300m) can be seen. The pass descends along a large moraine. Again one has great views: a massive glacier descends from Teri Kang to a deep turquoise lake at its foot. Up here a glacial lake burst through its dam in the early 1960s, causing widespread damage and partially destroying Punakha Dzong. Finally, it is a very long descent through thick rhododendron to Tarina valley, where you will find several good campsites along the Tang Chhu.
  • Day 15: Tarina - Woche (Distance 17km, six to seven hours, 270m ascent, 330m descent, camp altitude 3,910m)
    The walk leads down through conifer forests following the upper ridges of the Pho Chhu, passing some impressive waterfalls. The trail then climbs over a ridge and drops to Woche, a settlement of a few houses, the first village in the Lunana region.
  • Day 16: Woche - Lhedi (Distance 17km, six to seven hours, 980m ascent, 1,190m descent, camp altitude 3,700m)
    The trek starts through juniper and fir forests, and further ahead, through rhododendron bushes. Climb up to Keche La pass (4,650m) where one can have the great view of surrounding mountains again. After the pass, descend to the riverside walking through a village with a stunning view of Table Mountain and others. Follow up the river till Lhedi Village. Lhedi has a basic health unit, a school and a wireless telephone connection.
  • Day 17: Lhedi - Thanza (Distance 17km, seven to eight hours, 450m ascent, camp altitude 4,150m)
    In clear weather, you will have great views of Table Mountain (7,100m). Around lunchtime you will pass the small village of Chozo (4,090m) which has a dzong still in use. Reaching Thanza again you will have a great view of Table Mountain which forms a 3,000m high wall of snow and ice behind the village. Although there are possibilities to camp directly at Thanza, most groups prefer to camp in Thoencha.
  • Day 18: Rest day at Thanza
    In Thanza walk around and experience some village life or climb up the ridge for fascinating views of lakes and mountains. But as it takes time to arrange new yaks (the yaks from Laya will not go further than Thanza) you might have to spend one day at Thanza anyway.
  • Day 19: Thanza - Tshorim (8-6hrs, camp altitude 5,120m)
    Having chosen the route to Bumthang the trek starts by climbing a ridge with a great view of Table Mountain and Thanza valley below. The ridge altitude is 4,500m and it rises gradually up to 4,650m. After lunch, walk upwards towards the left side of the bridge to enjoy the view of snow-capped mountains. You reach the campsite of Tshorim after climbing more ridges.
  • Day 20: Tshorim - Gangkhar Puensum Base Camp (6-7hrs, camp altitude 4,970m.
    This is one of the highlights of the trek and the day starts with a short climb to the Tshorim Thso. You walk on the side of the lake enjoying a panoramic view of the Gophu La ranges. The last climb to the Gophu La pass (5,230m) is very short. After the pass descend to the base camp, walking along the ridge to enjoy a great view of Gangkhar Puensum. If interested, one can divert to the left side to climb up the pyramid peak for a better view or you can go down to the base camp nearby Sha Chhu.
  • Day 21: Gangkar Puensum Base Camp - Geshe Woma (6-7hrs, camp altitude 4,200m)
    The trail further follows the Sha Chhu and descends gradually to Geshe Woma.
  • Day 22: Geshe Woma - Warathang (8-9hrs, camp altitude 4,000m)
    The path continues following Sha Chhu for two and a half hours until the stiff climb to Saka La begins. Visibility along the Saka La trail is poor so one must see top of the ridge for guidance. After having lunch nearby a yak herders' camp you climb up to Saka La (4,800m). The path then descends to a couple of lakes and another short ascent is stunning. Scenery once again is beautiful with small lakes and the mountain peaks.
  • Day 23: Warathang - Duer Tsachu (5hrs, camp altitude 3,590m)
    A one hour climb leads to Juli La (4,700m). After the pass, you descend to the riverside through dense rhododendron, juniper and conifer forests. After the bridge a short climb leads to Duer Tsachu. These hot springs, where Guru Padmasambhava is supposed to have taken bath, might be the most stunningly beautiful hot springs of the Himalayas. You might want to spend an extra day at Duer Tsachu.
  • Day 24: Duer Tsachu - Tshochenchen (8-9hrs, camp altitude 3,850m)
    From the hot springs it is a long and steady climb again with great views of mountains in Lunana. You will also come across blue lakes and yak herder huts.
  • Day 25: Tshochenchen - Duer Village
    This is the last day of the trek and your porters change from yaks to horses. The path follows the Chamkhar Chhu, descending gradually with a few climbs in between. The trek ends here when you arrive at Duer village. From here you drive to Jakar (Bumthang).
  • Snowman Trek II - Finishes
    Duer Village