“The Last Shangri-La”

Bhutan monks

Departure: May 23 – 28, 2011*

TOUR NOW DEPARTED

*Tour begins and ends in Kathmandu, Nepal

If ever a place exists where nature and man consulted to create their dearest image, it’s Bhutan. On your journey, led by Glenn, you will experience remote gold-roofed temples and monasteries, travel through peaceful villages in emerald valleys surrounded by spectacular Himalayan scenery. Each minute is exciting to discover a kingdom with incredibly unique and treasured tradition, culture, religion and natural environment which Bhutanese people still strive to preserve in the face of modernity. In being together on such a special spiritual trip you will witness the joy of encountering the vastness which will give rise to deep personal inner experiences. It will be a journey to arouse memories – finding yourself taking a conscious look at events in your life and understanding how much one is connected to everything.

Your Spiritual Host & Escort in Nepal &Tibet

Glenn H. MullinGlenn H. Mullin is the author of more than 25 books on Central Asian culture, and a translator of classical Tibetan literature. He has led tours for over twenty years to the sacred power places of Tibet, Nepal, China, Mongolia, and Buddhist Siberia.

He divides his time between writing, lecture tours related to his books, and leading groups to the power places of Asia that he so loves. His books include The Flying Mystics of Tibetan Buddhism (Serindia, Chicago), The Fourteen Dalai Lamas: A Sacred Legacy of Reincarnation (Clear Light, Santa Fe), Buddha in Paradise (RMA, NY), The Female Buddhas (Clear Light, Santa Fe), The Six Yogas of Naropa (Snow Lion Publications, Ithaca, NY), The Practice of Kalachakra (Snow Lion Publications, Ithaca, NY), Death and Dying: The Tibetan Tradition (Penguin Arkana, London), and The Mystical Arts of Tibet (Longstreet, Atlanta).

Many of his other titles focus on the lives and works of the early Dalai Lamas. Glenn has worked on four films, five television specials, and six audio recordings of Central Asian sacred music.

Featured Hotels or similar:

Tour Price Includes:

  • 1 night in Kathmandu
  • 2 nights in Thimpu
  • 1 night in Punakha
  • 2 nights in Paro
  • Round-trip flight between Kathmandu & Paro
  • Round-trip transfers airport/hotels
  • Local English-speaking guides throughout
  • Sightseeing, with entrance fees
  • 6 Breakfasts – 5 Lunches – 5 Dinners

Tour Highlights:

  • Escorted in Bhutan by Tour Host Glenn H. Mullin
  • Visits to old Dzongs
  • Visit to the restored Mercheng

TOUR ITINERARY
(B = Breakfast; L = Lunch; D = Dinner)

Day 1, Sunday, May 22: Arrive Kathmandu

Nepal Durbur SquareArrange your flight reservations to arrive in Kathmandu, Nepal this morning where your local escort will meet you and transfer you to your reserved accommodations, allowing you time to rest after your trip. Overnight in Kathmandu.

Note: Body Mind Spirit Journeys will be happy to assist you with your flight plans.

OR continue on from the Nepal & Tibet tour.

See our combined program here.

Day 2, Monday, May 23: Tour Begins. Fly to Paro and onward to Thimpu (B/L/D)

Bhutan foodTransfer to the airport, and the adventure begins as you fly from Kathmandu to Paro, Bhutan. It’s one of the great sights in travel as you descend into Paro.  After disembarking, a glance in any direction provides an awe-inspiring view of the Himalayan Mountains at very close range. You depart the airport as you travel through the Paro Valley and visit the Tiger’s Nest monastery, the national museum and  the Paro Dzong (fortress-monastery). Contine to Thimpu and your hotel for dinner and a chance to savor Bhutanese cuisine and sample arra, the distinctive local spirit.  Dinner and overnight in Thimpu.

Day 3, Tuesday, May 24: In Thimpu (B/L/D)

Tashichho DzongThimpu, perhaps the most unusual capital city in the world is a bustling town on the banks of its own river and set gloriously in the hills of its own valley. A regal town, Thimpu is home to the revered Bhutanese Royal family, and on the bank of the river lies Tashichho Dzong, the main building that houses the throne room of his majesty the king of Bhutan. After touring the city’s best known sights, there will be time to wander along the main street and into shops, all of which are decorated in traditional style. Thimphu’s shopkeepers are delightfully helpful and will do their best to oblige even the smallest request. Bhutan’s famous stamp collection can be viewed and purchased in the capital’s main post office. Dinner and overnight in Thimpu.

Day 4, Wednesday, May 25:
To Punakha (B/L/D)

Punakha is situated in its valley and is best known for its Punakha  Dzong,  home to the central monk body and the Je Khenpo during the milder winter months. A temperate climate and natural drainage from the Phochu (male) and Mochu (female) rivers, the fertile Punakha Valley produces abundant crops and fruits. Punakha Dzong was strategically built at the junction of the two rivers in the 17th century by the first Shabdrung to serve as the religious and the administrative center. In spite of four catastrophic fires and a devastating earthquake that destroyed many historic documents, Punakha Dzong houses sacred temples including the Mercheng where the embalmed body of Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal lies in the state. The Dzong has been fully restored by the present king. In 1993 the largest Thongdrel, religious embroidery composed entirely of appliqué on silk brocade that has ever been created, was dedicated to the Dzong and the people of the Punakha valley by his majesty King Jigme Singye Wangchuck and the Je Khenpo. Dinner and overnight in Punakha.

Day 5, Thursday, May 26: To Paro (B/L/D)

A free morning in Punakha and then return to Paro. From a Buddhist point of view, Paro was the first stop for Guru Rimpoche on his crusade from Tibet to Bhutan over one thousand years ago. Guru Rimpoche is said to have arrived on the back of the tigress and meditated at a monastery which is now a hallowed shrine for Bhutanese pilgrims who travel from all over the land to pray at its temple. Dinner and overnight in Paro.

Day 6, Friday, May 27: In Paro (B/L/D)

Paro contains a wealth of attractions which you will see this morning highlighted by the elegant and perfectly symmetrical Rinpung Dzong, built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the first spiritual and temporal ruler of Bhutan.  Behind Rinpung Dzong, on the high hillside, is the castle-shaped Ta Dzong. Once a watchtower built to defend Rinpung Dzong during the inter-valley wars of the 17th century, it has housed the nation’s heritage in Bhutan’s National Museum since 1976. The museum’s circular shape is perfect to show off its varied collections that are displayed over the several floors. A sprinkling of shops decorates the high street that marks Paro Town and is a great place to buy local items. “Farewell to Bhutan” dinner this evening. Overnight in Paro.

Day 7, Saturday, May 28: Tour ends. To Kathmandu & your return flight home (B)

Transfer to the airport for your flight back to Kathmandu.

Note: Rates for additional nights’ accommodations in Kathmandu to accommodate your International flight schedules are also available on request.

Please note: This itinerary is subject to change without notice due to circumstances beyond our control. Tour is operated in cooperation with Glenn H. Mullin Lecture Tours. Pre/post nights are available upon request. Travel insurance is highly recommended. Some inclusions may not be available on indicated dates and dates may have to be adjusted.  Listed local Hosts and guides are subject to availability and will be hosting your itinerary wherever possible. However, due to scheduling, there may be some times when the local Host or guide is not available. If this occurs, BMSJ will provide a comparable and experienced substitute.

TOUR PRICES:
** Bonus! SAVE! You will receive a 5% discount if ALL payments are made by check or money order. This discounted price is noted below in red.

Tour – Per Person, double occupancy, LAND ONLY (no flights)
$2,595 payments via check or money order
$2,732 payments via credit card

PLUS: (to be added to above price)
Pre-Paid Gratuities:
$100 payments via check or money order
$105 payments via credit card

Single Room Supplement:
$295 payments via check or money order
$311 payments via credit card

NOTE:  The Single Room Supplement applies for those who would like to secure a private room throughout the tour.

ROOMMATES: We will be happy to try to find a suitable roommate for those who are traveling alone and would like to share a room.  Per our Terms and Conditions, registration for the tour will be held open until 4 weeks before the departure date in order to try to match everyone with a roommate.  If, by that date, we have not been able to match you with a suitable roommate, you will be responsible to pay for the single supplement.  An early registration will facilitate this process.

 

Travel Insurance

Body Mind Spirit Journeys highly recommends the purchase of Trip Cancellation/Interruption Travel Insurance, and we therefore provide you with an easy way to contact BMSJ’s preferred insurance provider, Access America.

If you need additional information or have questions, please call Access America directly at
800-284-8300, and refer to code F025323.

 

Please read our Body Mind Spirit Journeys Terms and Conditions.

 

TOUR NOW DEPARTED