- Thirteen nights hotel accommodation, based on double occupancy (3- or 4-Star in Bhutan; 4-Star in Nepal & Tibet.
- Meals: Bhutan, full board; one welcome dinner in Kathmandu, and rest of the days daily breakfast only.
- All transfers and sightseeing as on itinerary.
- English-speaking local guides.
- Tibet permits and Bhutan visa processing ( fees quoted separately)
- Sightseeing admission fees.
- Booking of domestic flights (airfare separately quoted)
Trip Does Not Include
- Visa fees (Bhutan and Tibet visa fee are quoted separately but paid with the trip cost).
- Nepal visa fee $25 to pay when you obtain visa on your own.
- Lunch and dinner while in Nepal and Tibet.
- Drinks, tips and other personal expenses such as phone, laundry etc.
- Extra expenses or loss due to nature and unforeseen events beyond the control of our management.
- Travel Insurance.
- International airfares and airport taxes. Hotels in the gateway cities before and after the trip.
Note on Itinerary
We do our best to adhere to the itinerary, but it should be taken as a guideline that, given local circumstances, might differ in sequence or substance on a given day.
Trip Activity Level.
This trip is basically motor vehicle-based sightseeing with some short hikes and village visits; it is suitable for all travelers in general good health. Hiking to Takstang Monastery in Paro can be strenuous, but ponies can be provided with prior arrangement. Some sights are high on the hillock and require climbing stairs.
The longest drive in this trip will be four hours, from Punakha to Paro. Otherwise, drive times are short. We will certainly have occasional stops for photography and for refreshments. Roads in the Himalaya are narrow, and some portions may be rough and damaged. While in Tibet, we stay in an elevation of 3,500m (11,480 ft) . On the first day in Lhasa, it is normal to experience mild symptoms of altitude sickness that include dizziness, a light headache, disorientation, and breathlessness. Most people feel better within a couple of days. The itinerary allows time for acclimatization. It is nonetheless advisable to keep physically fit and start mild exercises like jogging, swimming, cycling or practice some aerobics in the months before the trip. It’s your responsibility to determine that your fitness for this trip. If you have any health conditions, please consult your physician before you sign up for this trip.
Accommodations and facilities
There are limited choices of accommodations in Bhutan and Tibet. Except a few over-priced international chain properties, most hotels in Bhutan are small, with 25-40 rooms. Our preferred hotels are these small, comfortable, locally managed properties with traditional décor and warm, friendly services. You will have en suite bathroom with 24-hour running hot and cold water. Part of the character of these hotels is that not all of the rooms the same, so there could be some variation even within the same group. They provide some fundamental toiletry supplies, but hair dryers, irons, and ironing boards might not be available. Hotels in Bhutan are 3-4 star by local standards. In Nepal and Tibet, there are more choices and we use comfortable 4 star hotels.
Hotels listed on the itinerary are our preferred accommodations, but their limited inventories of rooms means they can be subject to change. We will accommodate you in comparable alternative hotels, and we appreciate your understanding. A confirmed list of hotels will be provided with the final trip dossier about seven or eight weeks prior the trip date.
Hotel Khang Residency, Thimphu
Drubchu Resort, Punakha
Raven's Nest Resort, Paro
Drukchen Hotel, Paro
Hotel Shambhala, Kathmandu
Club Himalaya Nagarkot
Hotel Heritage, Bhaktapur
4-Points By Sheraton, Lhasa
Our Tour Guides are local people with college degrees, government certifications, and experience with and knowledge of the destinations and their history, culture and religion. Our guides are, just as importantly, easy-going, detailed oriented, patient, and committed to a high level of customer service. They will uncover the wonders of the destinations that you would never find on your own, and make sure your tour is without a hitch. Your guide will also deal with the bureaucracy and passport or permit control, carry all necessary documents and vouchers, and stay alert to road and weather conditions. Note: Guides will change in each country, due to local licensing requirements.
We use clean, reliable, comfortable vehicles for all transfers and tours, often the Toyota Hiace microbus (capacity 8-9 persons) and Toyota Coaster Bus (capacity up to 20 persons); depending on group size, we might also use Japanese-made sedans, SUVs or minivans. We provide separate drivers and guides. Our drivers might speak little or no English, but they know the roads and are, in a pinch, mechanically skillful.
Altitude sickness and health Concerns
There is no mandatory vaccinations required for traveling to Bhutan, Nepal and Tibet. However, you may consider vaccination against rabies and Hep A. We recommend that travelers with cardiac-pulmonary issues or any other medical conditions consult their physician before departure. The main health consideration in Tibet is altitude related illness or Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). You might initially experience some mild symptoms, such as headaches, lethargy, nausea, and sleeplessness; most people feel better within a few days. Just in case, a supply of bottled oxygen is carried in the vehicle at all times, and hotels in Lhasa are equipped with oxygen. Doctors are also available on call.
You’ll be glad if you start some physical exercises in the weeks before leaving; jogging, swimming, cycling, hiking, and aerobics are all helpful. Fitness makes for a better trip and helps you accommodate the altitudes. You should have a good sleep the night before you fly in to Lhasa and take complete rest on the first day. It's also advisable to drink three or four liters of water daily, and consume liquid food. Hydrate!
International and Internal Flights
The trip starts in Paro, Bhutan, and concludes in Lhasa, Tibet. You can fly into Paro from Bangkok, Kathmandu, or Delhi, but Bangkok is the recommended gateway city. It has two daily flights and you don't need visa for Bangkok. From Lhasa, headed home, you can fly to Chengdu, Beijing, or Shanghai to connect with your international flight.
We will book all internal flights – Bangkok-Paro-Kathmandu-Lhasa-Chengdu (or Beijing). Estimated airfare is quoted separately. Airfares are dynamic and they don't have seat allotment. Bangkok-Paro-Kathamndu portion of the airfare will be billed to you. Kathmandu-Lhasa-Beijing portion, on Air China, can be charged directly on your credit card.
You have liberty to book your international airfare from your hometown to the gateway and departure cities (Bangkok, for example, arriving, and departing from Beijing, Shanghai or Chengdu). We can certainly help you book international flights if they originate in the United States. Please, once you receive your itinerary, verify its dates and details, and reconfirm the schedules.
Visa and Permits
Your passport must be valid for at least for six more months at the time of travel. Nepal visas can be obtained from any Nepali embassy or consulate in your country, or you can wait until you arrive at Kathmandu airport. In either case, you will need to complete visa application and attach a passport size photograph. Visa fee costs US$ 25 for a 15 day valid visa. Please, pay in exact change and in US currency. We will acquire visas for Bhutan and China Tibet for you. Please provide us a scanned copy of the photo page of your passport and a passport size photograph.
We will obtain Bhutan visa clearance letters for you in advance. You will need to present your letter when you check in for your Druk Air flight, and again on arrival at Paro airport. Your passport will be stamped with actual visa at Paro airport.
We will also procure Invitation Letters for Chinese Visa (popularly known as permits), but you still need to complete the visa application forms (provided by our staff in Kathmandu) and provide one passport size picture. Our Kathmandu office will deal with the Chinese embassy while you are sightseeing. After Tibet, if you want to travel to China, please let us know and we will work to extend your visa.
Booking and payment schedule
When you are sure you will be joining us, please don't delay booking so that we can confirm you in preferred hotels and flights. A deposit of US$300 for on land travel plus the cost of internal airfares are requested initially, along with a completed trip application form and a copy of the photo page of your passport. Balance payment is due 90 days prior to your departure. Reservations booked within 90 days of departure require full payment at the time of booking. Balance payment must be paid by personal check or wire transfer.
Cancellation and refund
Cancellation request must be received by us in written form. Cancellation fee of the landcost will be as below.
- 90 days prior departure: Administrative fee US$ 150 per person.
- 60-89 day's prior departure: US$ 250 or 25% of the land cost whichever is higher.
- 45 days to 59 days prior departure: US$ 450 or 50% of the land cost whichever is higher.
- 30 days to 44 days prior departure: US$ 600 or 75% of the land cost whichever is higher.
- Less than 30 days:100%
Visa fee are non refundable.
Cancellation and refund of air tickets will be as per airline policy and $25 will be levied by us to process refund. For details, please view booking and cancellation terms and coditions