Thimphu day hikes

If you have had your fill of museums and city sights you may like to head out of the city on foot.

Take a short drive out of the capital and walk an hour or so to visit Tango Monastery. Founded by Lama Gyalwa Lhanampa in the 12th century, today the monastery is a school for the study of Buddhist philosophy metaphysics mathematics and poetry.

Nearby walk a couple of hours to visit Cheri Gompa. This is the place where Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel established the first body of monks in 1620 when the gompa itself was founded.

For a half day excursion walk from the Radio Tower at Sangaygang (perhaps visiting the Takin Reserve on the way up) via Wangditse temple to Zilukha nunnery.

If you are looking for a tough work-out you could hike the steep ascent from Motithang just out of Thimphu all the way up to Phajoding Gompa, where a monastery and retreat centres for meditation are located at 3536m.

Or for a longer tough trail drive about an hour and 30 minutes from Thimphu to Tsaluna village (along a rough road) and make a 5-6 hour hike from here to the Paro valley.  The walk begins with a slight ascent to the village of Bjadakha at 2950m, one of the oldest villages in the region, where you will see traditional Bhutanese farmhouses.  After the village you ascend again steeply to Jele La at 3500m where there is a ruined Dzong.  From the ridge you should be able to see Paro town.  From here it is a steep descent for around 2 and a half hours to the National Museum where your driver will meet you to drive back to Paro town.

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