Trip Snapshot

Name of Trip :

Beautiful Laya Gasa Trek

Trip Length : 21 Nights/ 22 Days
Difficulty Level :
Rating : Popular
Destination(s) : Bhutan
Highest Altitude : 4930m/ 16269ft.
Max Elevation : 5,005m
Highest Camp : 4,220m
Group Size : 4-10 Person
Best Season : April to June & Mid September to Mid Nov
Trip Start From : Drukgyel Dzong, Paro, Bhutan
Trip Ends : Tashitang, Punakha, Bhutan
Accommodation : Hotels and Resorts
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Route Map

Beautiful Laya Gasa Trek


Laya Gasa Trek lets you explore the Himalayas providing breathtaking views of Mount Jumolhari, Jichu Drake and Gangchhenta (Great Tiger Mountain). Till the trekking point of Lingshi, Laya Gasa Trek stays similar to the Jomolhari Trek I. The highlight of the second part of the trek is the opportunity to relax and indulge in the Himalayan Hot Spring therapy at the Gasa hot springs. The trekkers can reach as high as 5,005m with the highest camp site at 4,220m.
  • Day 01: Arrive Paro by Druk-Air
  • Day 02: Visit Drukgyal Dzong
  • Day 03: Trek begins: Paro - Shana
  • Day 04: Shana – Thangthangkha
  • Day 05: Thangthangkha - Jangothang
  • Day 06: Jangothang - Lingshi
  • Day 07: Lingshi - Chebisa
  • Day 08: Chebisa - Shomuthang
  • Day 09: Shomuthang - Robluthang
  • Day 10: Robluthang - Lemithang
  • Day 11: Lemithang - Laya
  • Day 12: Halt in Laya for rest and to explore the Laya village
  • Day 13: Laya - Koeina
  • Day 14: Koeina - Gasa
  • Day 15: Gasa – Gasa Tsachu (Hot spring)
  • Day 16: Gasa Tsachu – Geon Damji
  • Day 17: Geon Damji - Tashithang
  • Day 18: Tashithang - Punakha
  • Day 19: Punakha – Thimphu
  • Day 20: Thimphu - Paro
  • Day 21: Paro - Paro
  • Day 22: Drive to Paro Airport

Destinations :

Paro-Thimphu, Punakha, Trongsa and Bumthang

Activities :

Hiking, Visit Farm House , Monastery, Museums, Weekend market (Friday, Saturday and Sunday only) Stroll around the City etc.

Tour Highlights :

  • Visit the impressive Dzong (fortresses), former palaces and Buddhist monasteries!
  • Hike through the ridge top Goembas (monasteries) and meet the monks.
  • Hike through the terraced farmlands and villages, visit the farmhouses and meet the villagers.
  • Attend the local festivals and events.
  • Visit the vibrant markets and towns.
  • Visit the traditional arts and crafts workshops, meet the artisans, weavers and painters!
  • And much more...

Beautiful Laya Gasa Trek


Day 01

:

Arrive Paro by Druk-Air

Fly into Bhutan on Druk Airways. If you are lucky, you will have glorious view of the snowcapped Himalayas. The remarkable and steep descent into the Paro valley is an awe-inspiring beginning to an adventure of a lifetime. After visa formalities and collection of baggage, you will meet the Bhutanese representative from Bhutan Majestic Travel, over night hotel in Paro

Day 02

:

Visit Drukgyal Dzong

(A ruined fortress – 16 Kms. away from Paro town) Although in ruins, this Dzong is of great historical importance. It was here that the Bhutanese finally defeated the invading Tibetans and drove them back. From here, the peak of Jhomolhari "Mountain of the goddess" can be seen on a clear day Alt. 7,314m/24,029ft.). Visit the Paro Rinpung Dzong. This massive fortress is located on a small hill just above the Paro River (Pa-Chu) in the Paro valley. You have to walk about 15 minutes by crossing an ancient wooden bridge built in typical Bhutanese architect. The Dzong houses the District Administration office and the District Monk Body. It was built in 1646 AD. After lunch, visit the National Museum (Ta-Dzong). This was actually the Watch Tower of the Dzong. It was converted to the National Museum in 1968. Visit Kyichu Lhakhang (Lhakhang means Monastery). Kyichu Lhakhang was built in 659 AD by the King Songtsen Gempo of Tibet as one of the 108 such Monasteries which he built in various places to spread Buddhism. It is located between Paro Town and Drugyal Dzong. It is one of the holiest places in Bhutan as it marks the advent of Buddhism in the country. Overnight in Hotel.

Day 03

:

Trek begins: Paro - Shana

Drive up to Drukgyal Dzong where the road ends and start the trek by following the river gently uphill through a narrowing valley of paddy fields. You will find plenty of traditional farm houses in a purely rural setting. The camp site is just beyond an army outpost. Alt. 2800m, Distance – 17 km and time 5-6 Hrs.

Day 04

:

Shana – Thangthangkha

Continue uphill through the river valley which narrows and closes in after some distance. The trail then winds up and down along the drainage. Most of the trail actually is downhill after the initial climb. The camp site is located in a meadow with stone shelter. Alt. Approx. 3400m, distance 15 km, time 4-5 Hr.

Day 05

:

Thangthangkha - Jangothang

Walk up along the Pachu (Paro River), pass a small army outpost where the valley begins to widen again. You can now clearly view the high ridges and the snow capped mountains all around and also sees the yaks and the yak herders’ winter homes. Camp beneath a ruined fortress at the base of the Jhomolhari Mountain. Alt. 4240m. , Distance 19 km and time 5-6 Hr.

Day 06

:

Jangothang - Lingshi

Walk up toward the pass through a wide pasture land. Depending on the season you are there, you might find some yak herders in their camping tents along the way. As you come down after the pass to the Lingshi basin, you will see some beautiful views of the Lingshi Dzong and the valley and also Tserim Kang (mountain) and its descending glaciers at the north end of the valley. Camp in a stone shelter with a built-in fire pit or in the tent. Alt. 4150m. Distance 19 km. Time 5-6 Hr.

Day 07

:

Lingshi - Chebisa

Today is the shortest walking day and you can really take it easy. On reaching the camp site at Chebisa, you can visit the village houses if you feel up to it. Alt. 3850m. Distance 12 km. Time 3-4 Hr.

Day 08

:

Chebisa - Shomuthang

You walk through a wide pasture land towards Gugu-la (pass). On the way, you will see few people herding the yaks. After crossing the Gugu -la (Alt. 4350m ) descend down to the valley. The camp site is on a bench above a river which is a tributary of the Mochu River. Alt. 4260. Distance 17 km. Time 5-6 Hr.

Day 09

:

Shomuthang - Robluthang

As the walk is little strenuous, it is advisable to start a little early. After crossing the Jerela (pass) Alt. 4600m you come down to Tsharijathang valley where you can normally see herds of Takins. Camp at Tsharijathang. Alt.4390m. Distance 15 km. Time 6-7 Hr.

Day 10

:

Robluthang - Lemithang

After crossing the Shingela pass, alt. 4900m., you come down and follow the valley. Lemithang is under the Laya District and you will see people dressed in typical Laya costume with long pointed bamboo hats on their head. Camp at Lemithang. Alt. 4140m. Distance 19 km. Time 6-7 Hr. If you have time, it would be advisable to spend a day here exploring the valley and meeting the people who have a different and unique culture.

Day 11

:

Lemithang - Laya

Today, you walk all the way downhill along a narrow winding river valley. The trail leads you to the west side of Laya village. Camp site is on a high flat bench above the Laya village. Alt. 3850m. Distance 10 km. Time 3-4 Hr.

Day 12

:

Halt in Laya for rest and to explore the Laya village

Day 13

:

Laya - Koeina

The trail winds up and down along the river valley avoiding natural obstacles and affording breath-taking views of the crashing river, feeder streams and water falls. Camp. Alt. 3800m. Distance 19 km. Time 6-7 Hr.

Day 14

:

Koeina - Gasa

You cross the Babela pass, Alt.3740m., after which the trail is all the way down till you reach the camp site which is close to Gasa Dzong. Alt. 2900m. Distance 17 km. Time 6-7 Hr.

Day 15

:

Gasa – Gasa Tsachu (Hot spring)

After a late breakfast, trek to Gasa Tsachu. After lunch relax in the hot spring. The Gasa Tsachu is one of the most popular hot springs in Bhutan. Camp at Gasa Tsachu.

Day 16

:

Gasa Tsachu – Geon Damji

After a short climb, the trail winds through the rolling hills and passes through the pine and oak forests, villages and wheat fields. You will also see a beautiful view of the Gasa Dzong glued to the valley wall seeming to float in space. Camp. Alt. 2280m. Distance 21 km. Time 6-7 Hr.

Day 17

:

Geon Damji - Tashithang

The trail descends from the high agricultural benches above the Mo-Chu ( Chu means River ) into a lush semi-tropical gorge filled with banana trees, creepers and various tropical vegetation. You will also see monkeys and few other animals occasionally. Camp at Tashithang. Alt. 1700m. Distance 17 km. Time 6-7 Hr.

Day 18

:

Tashithang - Punakha

After a short walk to the motor road, drive down to Punakha valley. Stop at Punakha and visit the Punakha Dzong. Punakha was the former capital of Bhutan. The Dzong lies between two rivers known as Phochu and Mochu which means " Male River and Female River ". It was built by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel the founder of Bhutan in 1637 AD and is one of the most important and historical Dzongs in Bhutan. In the Dzong are kept the sacred remains of Pema Lingpa and Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel. The Dzong now houses the District Administration office and the winter residence of the state Monastic Body and its Chief Abbot. Lunch in Punakha. After lunch, drive to Thimphu. 77 km. Time approx. 3 Hr. Overnight in Hotel.

Day 19

:

Punakha – Thimphu

Visit the Memorial Chorten ( a huge stupa ) built in memory of the third king of Bhutan who reigned the Kingdom from 1952-1972. Visit the National Library where ancient manuscripts are preserved. Visit the Wood Craft and Painting school where traditional arts and crafts are still kept alive. Visit the Handicrafts Emporium where Bhutanese textiles and other arts and crafts are displayed and can be purchased. Visit Simtokha Dzong. This is one of the oldest fortresses in Bhutan. It was built in 1629 AD. It houses the largest monastic schools in the country. Visit Tashichho Dzong, the main secretariat building. This massive structure houses part of the government Ministries, the office of the King and the Throne Room. It also houses the State Monastic Body and the living quarters of the Chief Abbot and the senior monks. Overnight in Hotel in Thimphu.

Day 20

:

Thimphu - Paro

Drive to Tango visit the Buddhist College. Picnic Lunch served. Drive to Paro. 65 km. Time 2 Hr drives. Overnight in Hotel.

Day 21

:

Paro - Paro

Drive up to Satsam Chorten (10 km from Paro town) and from there walk up to Taktsang Monastery. The name Taktsang means “Tiger’s Nest ". The Monastery is perched on a rocky ledge with a sheer drop of nearly 4000 ft. and overlooks the Paro valley and the river. It is said that in the second half of the 8th century, Guru Padma Sambhava known as the second Buddha in Bhutan, meditated in the spot where the Monastery is situated having alighted there on the back of a flying tigress. Picnic lunch at the Taktsang cafeteria. The round trip hike takes about 4 Hr.

Day 22

:

Drive to Paro Airport

Beautiful Laya Gasa Trek


Cost Includes:

  • Receive and Transfer to Airport
  • Double/Twin in 3 Star Hotel
  • 3 Meals every day with Evening Tea
  • Toyota SUV for FIT & Toyota Bus for Group with Driver
  • English Speaking Guide
  • All Sightseeing
  • Museum Fees
  • Bhutan Visa
  • All Permits
  • Bottled Mineral Water
  • Walks and Hikes

Cost Does Not Include:

  • Donations to Monasteries
  • Insurance
  • Alcohol & Beverages
  • Tips for Guide, Driver & Hotel Staff
  • Gifts & Souvenirs
  • International Telephone Calls
  • Round Trip Air fare
  • Inbound Airfare

Accommodations and facilities:

There are limited choices of accommodations in Bhutan. With a few exceptions of highly over priced international chain properties, hotels in Bhutan are small with 15 to 20 rooms. The hotels have been categorized by local authorities as Star 1, 2 and 3, with 3 Star being on the top level 1Star at the bottom and naturally we have pick the 3 Star category hotels and resorts which are local architecture with Bhutanese décor, well maintained and staffed with the friendly locals. There is disparity in the rooms in most of the hotels and travelers of the same group may end up in two different types of rooms although you have paid the same amount. You will have private bathroom with 24 hour running cold and hot water. They provide some fundamental toiletry supplies but hair dryers, iron and ironing board etc may not be available. Hotels in Paro and Thimphu do have internet access in office or reception areas. There are some new deluxe properties and international chain resorts which are above the traditional classification criteria and in the higher side in terms of price and can be booked with supplemental cost. Hotel listed on the itinerary are suggestions only and during peak season and tours timed with festival, we may not get the same hotels and in that case, we will book you in the similar property or upgrade you to the higher level.

Guide and Escorts

Our Tour Guides are local individuals with college degree, government certification, experienced and with knowledge on the destination, history, culture and religion and most importantly they are easy going, detailed oriented, patient and high level of customer service skills. They will uncover the wonders of the destinations for you which you would never find on your own. They ensure that everything goes well with your tour without a hitch.

Vehicle:

We use good condition Toyota SUV and Toyota Coaches for all transfers and tours. Driver and guide is not the same person. Driver may speak little or no English but they know the road and are skillful to fix the problem in case of mechanical breakdowns. Depending on group size, we will use Japanese made Sedan cars, SUVs or minivan for entire transfers and tours.

International and Internal Flights:

All internal flights are part of travel plan and are locally booked by us. You will be emailed e-ticket receipts once the reservation is booked and tickets issued. But you have liberty to book your international airfare on your own. We can certainly help you book international flight if that originates from the city that you live in. Once you receive itinerary, it's your responsibility to verify the itinerary and reconfirm the schedules.

Visa and Permits:

Passport should be valid for 6 months or more at the time of travel. We will take care of Bhutan Visa and permits. Bhutan Visa Fees of USD 20 which will be collected with the Tour Payment in advance. You will need to provide a copy of your passport which should be sent to us by email for Bhutan Visa Processing. Bhutan visa is preprocessed by us and we will provide you a copy the Visa Approval Letter before your trip which you will need to present at Druk Air counter at the time you check in for flight to Bhutan. You will get actual visa seal on your passport upon arrival at Paro airport.

Trip Activity Level:

This trip is basically motor vehicle based sightseeing with some short hikes and village visits and suitable for all travelers with regular health conditions. When we are driving from one city to another, we will be driving from 3-6 hours with occasional stops for photography and for refreshments. Roads are narrow and some portions may be rough and damaged. The itinerary allows enough acclimatization for you and it's advisable that you should keep physically fit and start mild exercises like jogging, swimming, cycling or practice some aerobics about 2-3 months ahead of the trip. It's your responsibility to determine that you are fit for this trip and if you have any health conditions, please consult with your physician before you sign up for this trip.

Note on Itinerary:

We do our best to adhere to the itinerary but it should be taken as a generic guideline in terms of what you expect to do or see during the tour and may differ in the practical ground from exact sequence or order of the sights to the overnight places depending on the local conditions.

Booking:

When you are sure you are traveling, please don't delay in booking so that we can confirm you in preferred hotels and flights. A 100% of both the Tour and Airfare is requested along with a completed trip application form plus copy of the photo page of your passport.

Cancellation:

  • 100% Refund if tour canceled within 60 Days from the start of the tour.
  • 50% Refund if tour canceled within 45 Days from the start of the tour.
  • 25% Refund if tour canceled within 30 Days from the start of the tour.
  • No Refund if tour canceled less than 30 Days from the start of the tour.

Final Trip Dossier:

A final trip dossier with local contacts, hotel lists, check lists, travel notes and relevant information will be sent about a month ahead of the trip.

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