|Date||22nd April to 7th May 2018|
|Duration||14 nights / 15 days|
|Group size||Guaranteed to run for a minimum of 2 clients or larger groups possible|
|Accommodation||From basic lodge t a comfortable hotel. Luxury camping.|
|Climate||Wide varieties of weather are expected, hot and sunny to cold at the high elevation. Occasionally rain is expected in some places|
Day 1: Arrive Paro – transfer Thimphu
Day 2: Thimphu – Punakha
Day 3: Punakha – Phobjekha
Day 4: Phobjekha – Trongsa
Day 5: Trongsa – Zhemgang
Day 6: Zhemgang – Tingtibe – Gomphu Road
Day 7: Tingtibe – Trongsa – Bumthang
Day 8: Bumthang – Phrumshingla – Sengor
Day 9: Sengor – Namling – Yongkala
Day 10: Yongkala – Namling – Limithang Road
Day 11: Yongkala – Namling – Limithang Road
Day 12: Yongkala – Trongsa
Day 13: Trongsa – Paro
Day 14: Paro – Chelela Birding
Day 15: Departure
Day 1: Arrive Paro – transfer Thimphu (2hrs)
The flight into the Himalayas is one of the most scenic and breath taking one with the views of some of the tallest mountains in the world. On your arrival at the Paro international airport, our representative will receive you.
Drive to Thimphu the capital city of Bhutan (2hrs) drive.
Evening birding around sewage pond in Thimphu searching for one of the main target bird, Ibisbill, other birds we’ll be searching here include Black-tailed Crake, Wallcreeper, Brown Dipper, Ruddy Shelduck, Common Merganser, White-capped and Plumbeous Water Redstart, White Wagtail, Rufous-breasted Accentor, Common and Green Sandpiper, Common and Crested Kingfisher just to name few…
Day 2: Thimphu – Dochula – Punakha (3hrs)
Early morning drive to Punakha over the Dochula Pass (3150). Our day starts from this pass with the breathtaking views of eastern Himalayas ranges. The mixed forests of hemlock, fir, oaks, and rhododendron here is good habitat for many good species including, Spotted and Black-faced Laughingthrush, Blue-fronted Redstart, Eurasian Jay, Stripe-throated and Rufous-vented Yuhina, Spotted Nutcracker, Long-tailed Minivet, Rufous-vented and Coal Tit. Then drive to Punakha over the Dochula Pass (3150). En route stop at Lamperi Botanical Garden and take the nature walk for about hours, birds we’ll be looking here include Brown Parrotbill, Streak-breasted Scimitar Babbler, Darjeeling and Rufous-bellied Woodpecker, Speckled Wood Pigeon, Plain-backed Thrush White-collared Blackbird and Green-backed Tit.
Continue your drive to Punakha valley, along with the drive you’ll look for the species like Chestnut-tailed Starling, Great and Golden-throated Barbet, Long-tailed Shrike, Spotted Dove, Red-vented and Black Bulbul, Common Kestrel.
Afternoon: Visit Punakha’s Punthang Dechen Phodrang (the names means palace of Great Bliss) Standing on the tongue of the land of land where two rivers, Phochu and Mochu, meet. Punakha Dzong has special significance in Bhutan history. Punakha Dzong was a place where Bhutan’s first king, Ugyen Wangchuck was crowned in 1907. It is winter residence for Je Khenpo (spiritual leader) and entire central monk body.
Later in the evening birding along the Pho Chu valley looking for one of the main target bird, White-bellied Heron. One of the rarest birds in the world, with a population of less than 60 worldwide. Other birds we might see Pallas Fish Eagle, White-throated and Crested Kingfisher, Ibisbill, River Lapwing, and few species of Ducks.
Day 3: Punakha – Nobding – Phobjekha (4hrs)
Early morning you’ll wind up your way to the Phobjekha Valley (4hrs) stopping along the way looking for Brown Dipper, Ward’s Trogon, Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Cutia, Grey-bellied Tesia, Grey-hooded, Blyth’s and Black-faced Warblers, Green-tailed and Mrs. Gloud’s Sunbird, Striated Prinia, Blue-capped and Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush, Pale-Blue Flycatcher, White-capped River Chat, White-tailed Nuthatch, Rusty-flanked Treecreeper, Yellow-browed Tits and few different species of Cuckoos.
Before reaching Pelela pass we’ll take the road to Phobjekha valley, crossing Lawala pass the vegetation changes into dwarf bamboo, here you’ll searching for the species like Spotted, Chestnut-crowned and Black-faced Laughingthrushes, Spotted Nutcracker, Great and Brown Parrotbills, Oriental Skylark, White-browed Shortwing Yellow-billed Blue Magpie, Chestnut-headed Tesia, Red-billed Chough, Large-billed and Whistler’s Warbler, Slender-billed Scimitar Babbler and Oriental Skylark.
Day 4: Phobjekha – Pelela – Trongsa (4hrs)
After early breakfast, we’ll drive to the Pelela pass (3400) and spend our morning hours birding along the old road searching for the high altitude species like Himalayan Monal, Blood Pheasant, Satyr Tragopan Himalayan Griffon, Brown and Great Parrotbill, Spotted Nutcracker, White-winged and Collared Grosbeak, Darjeeling and Rufous-breasted Woodpecker, Stripe-throated and Rufous-vented Yuhinas, White Collared Blackbird, White-browed and Dark-rumped Rosefinch. Continue your drive to Trongsa, we’ll also be looking for the species like Speckled Wood Pigeon, Ultramarine Flycatcher, Golden-breasted and White-browed and Rufous-winged Fulvetta, Streak-breasted and Rusty-cheeked Scimitar Babbler. Black-winged Cuckoo Shrike, Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Nepal House Martin, Blyth’s Swift and White-throated Needletail, Black Eagle and many more…
The remainder of the afternoon will be spent exploring the nearby broad-leaved evergreen forest in search of specialties like Spotted Forktail, Grey-bellied Tesia and Spotted Wren-Babbler.
Day 5: Trongsa – Zhemgang – Tingtibe (6hrs)
Today on our drive to Zhemgang, we will have lots of stops at several-forested valleys, the species you’ll for looking for along the drive are Rusty-cheeked Scimitar Babbler, White-browed, Coral-billed and Streak-breasted Scimitar Babbler, Long-tailed Shrike, Black-throated and Striated Prinia, Rufous Woodpecker, Sultan and Yellow-cheeked Tit, Common Green Magpie, Great, Golden-throated and Blue-throated Barbet Rufous-bellied Eagle, Mountain Hawk Eagle, Common Kestrel, Ashy-throated, Black-crested and Striated Bulbuls and various minivets. Just to name the few. This is also our best chance for the Golden Langur, a rare monkey endemic to Bhutan and only discovered in the 1950s.
Later in the evening, we’ll be birding Zhemgang – Dakphel road searching for the species like Blyth’s Shrike Babbler, Cutia, Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Black-eared Shrike Babbler, Red-faced Liocichla, Rufous-chinned Laughingthrush and may more…
Day 6: Zhemgang – Tingtibe – Gomphu Road
Today you’ll explore wide varieties of habitats on the Zhemgang – Tingtibe roads. Habitats vary from mossy forests to streamside lowland forest. This is another chance to see Golden Langur, which is fairly common here. We’ll also be searching for Rufous-necked and Great Hornbill, Pin-tailed and Wedge-tailed Green Pigeon, Cutia, Scarlet Minivet, varieties of beautiful Laughingthrushes, Spotted Wren Babblers and very rare and sought after Beautiful Nuthatch.
In the afternoon we’ll be exploring the Gomphu Road, the road that goes to Manas National Park, here we’ll be searching for the species like Lesser Rufous-headed Parrotbill, White-hooded Babbler, Grey-throated and Rufous-capped Babbler, Lesser Yellownape, Blue-bearded Bee-eater, Lesser Necklaced Laughingthrush, Blue-throated Flycatcher, Striated and Black-chinned Yuhinas, Chestnut-winged and Drongo Cuckoo, Common Green Magpie, Emerald Dove, White-throated Bulbul and with the little bit of luck Pale -headed Woodpecker.
Day 7: Tingtibe – Trongsa – Bumthang (8hrs)
After your final morning birding, we will work our way back to Trongsa, looking along the way for the species we might have missed before.
After Trongsa it is another 3hrs drive take you through the Yotongla pass. Here we will search for Hill Partridge, Chestnut-tailed Minla, Brown and Great Parrotbill, Chestnut-crown, Black-faced and Spotted Laughingthrush, Darjeeling Woodpecker, Red-headed Bullfinch, Slender-billed Scimitar Babbler, Scaly-breasted Wren Babbler, Grey-crested, Coal, Rufous-vented and Rufous-fronted Tits, Rufous-breasted Accentor, Plain Mountain Finch, Chestnut-headed Tesia, Rufous-gorgeted and Slaty Blue Flycatchers.
After crossing Yotongla will bring you to the Chumey valley in Bumthang. Bumthang is famous for its distinctive woolen weaves, known as yathra. At the village of Zugney you will see the fine samples of yathra hanging by the roadside. The weavers all women can be seen at their looms beside the road. The road continues over the Kikila pass to enter the next valley in Bumthang (Jakar) the district headquarters.
Day 8: Bumthang – Phrumshingla – Sengor (4hrs)
We drive from Bumthang to Sengor going over Thrumshingla (3800m). Thrumshingla is the prime habitat for Blood Pheasants and also hold other high altitude species like, Snow Pigeons, Orange-flanked Bush Robin, Golden and White-browed Bush Robin, Fire-tailed Myzornis, Spotted Nutcracker, Red-billed Chough, Fire-tailed Sunbirds, Greats Parrotbills, Stripe-throated and Rufous-vented Yuhinas, Grey-crested, coals, Rufous-vented Tits, White-browed Fulvata, Dark-rumped Rosefinch, Plain-backed Thrush, White-collared and Grey-winged Blackbird, Rusty-flanked Treecreeper Buff-barred, Ashy-throated, Blyth’s and Large-billed Leaf Warbler.
Later in the evening, we will be birding around Sengor looking for Satyr Tragopan. Sengor is known as the hotspot for Satyr Tragopan. Other birds you’ll be looking out here include Bar-winged and Scaly-breasted Wren Babbler, Gold-naped Finch, Hoary-throated Barwing, Bar-throated and Red-tailed Minlas, Whistler’s and Grey-hooded Warbler and Slender-billed Scimitar Babbler.
Day 9: Sengor – Namling – Yongkala (2hrs)
In the morning before we hit our road to Yongkala, we’ll drive back to the pass to search for the Blood Pheasant, Satyr Tragopan once again if we have missed the other day, back to the camp for breakfast.
After breakfast, we will hit the Bhutan’s wet subtropical forest and one of the finest birding areas in the Himalayas. the species we’ll be searching for include Ward’s and Red-headed Trogon, Bay Woodpecker, Great and Golden-throated Barbets, Rufous-necked Hornbill, Wedge-tailed Green Pigeon, Mountain Hawk Eagle, Orange-bellied Leafbird, Maroon Oriole, Grey-hooded, Grey-cheeked and Chestnut-crowned Warblers, Black-headed Shrike Babbler, Fire-tailed Myzornis, Yellow-cheeked and Green-backed Tits, little and Slaty-backed Forktail, Mountain and Black Bulbul, Rusty-cheeked and Streak-breasted Scimitar Babbler, Fire-breasted Flowerpecker, Green-tailed Sunbird and Scaly, Bhutan, Grey-sided and Blue-winged Laughingthrush and many …
Day 10 & 11: Yongkala – Namling – Limithang Road.
Today we’ll spend two entire day birding upper and lower Limithang road, we may see following birds, Rufous-throated, Long-billed and Pygmy Wren Babbler, Rufous-necked Hornbill, Lesser and GreaterYellownape, Grey-headed and Bay Woodpecker, Speckled and White-browed Piculet, Coral-billed, Slender-billed, Streak-breasted Scimitar Babblers, Scarlet Finches, Blue-throated, Great and Golden-throated Barbets, Barred Cuckoo Dove, Black Eagle, Long-tailed Shrike, Grey Treepie, Grey-chinned and Scarlet Minivets, Ashy, Spangled and Black Drongos, Small, Large and Rufous-bellied Niltavas, Sultan, Black-Spot Yellow Tits, White-breasted and Black-throated Parrotbills, Golden-breasted, Rufous-winged, Yellow-throated, Nepal and Rufous-winged Fulvettas, Blue-winged, Grey-sided, Scaly, White-crested and Rufous-necked Laughingthrushes, Asian barred and Collared Owlet, Yellow-bellied and White-throated Fantail, Golden Bush Robin White-tailed, Chestnut-bellied Nuthatch, we’ll also make our every effort to find the Beautiful Nuthatch and many more…
Day 12: Yongkala – Phrumshingla – Trongsa (6hrs)
After a final morning birding in this wonderful habitat, you’ll retrace our way back to Trongsa passing through the Sengor valley, after crossing one of the high passes, the Thrumshing La (3800m). Thrumshing La is the prime habitat for Blood Pheasant and also holds other high altitude species such as Snow Pigeon, Orange-flanked Bush-Robin, Spotted Nutcracker, Red-billed Chough, Fire-tailed Sunbird, Great Parrotbill, Stripe-throated Yuhina, Grey-crested and Coal Tits and White-browed Fulvetta. We continue through the valley of Bumthang, one of the most beautiful valleys in Bhutan. After crossing the Bumthang valley it is another 3hrs drive to Trongsa crossing the Yotongla pass (3400m).
Day 13: Trongsa – Paro (7hr)
We leave our hotel in the morning as we start our return back to home. We do so with an eight hours journey bringing us back to Paro. We bird along the way for any missed species as we retrace our footsteps by following the same road as we came.
Day 14: Paro – Chelela Birding
Very early in the morning drive to the cool alpine meadow of Chelila pass (3890m). This is the highest pass on the car road. Here we should be reward with the three different species of Pheasants, Colorful Himalayan Monals, flocks of Blood Pheasants and Kalij Pheasants. Besides this, we’ll also see other birds like White-browed Finch, White-browed Bush Robin, Rufous-bellied and Darjeeling Woodpecker, Hodgson’s Treecreeper, Coal, Rufous-vented, Rufous-fronted and Grey-Crested Tits, White-winged and Collared Grosbeaks, Chestnut-crowned, Black-faced and Spotted Laughingthrushes, Brown Parrotbill and Long-tailed Minivet.
Afternoon option: Hike to Taktsang Monastery (Tiger’s Nest). The place is visited and sanctified by Guru Rimpoche is one of the most venerated pilgrim sites of the Himalayan world. Over the period of time, many great Buddhist masters have visited and meditated around here. Later in the year 1692 AD. The 4th temporal ruler of Bhutan built the monastery over the cave where Guru Rimpoche and his consort Khandro Yeshi Tshogyal have mediated. The monastic complex clings to the rock towering 800 meters above the valley. It is located 2950 meters above sea level. On the hike, you may see few different species of Laughingthrushes, Eurasian Nutcracker, White-browed Fulvetta, Yellow-billed Magpie and Little Forktail.
Day 15: Departure
After breakfast, transfer to airport for departure. Off to Bhutan staff will bid you farewell and safe journeys until we meet again.
2 people: USD 4000 per person
3 or more: USD 3580 per person
- All internal taxes and charges (including royalties)
- Accommodation on twin sharing basis
- All meals, tea, snack and bottled water
- All travel with a licensed local birding guide
- All surface transfers by a private vehicle
- Camping equipment and haulage for camping and trekking tours
- All entry fees to monuments, Museum and National Parks
- Bhutan Visa Fee
- Optional tours/excursions, personal & incidental expenses.
- Tips, laundry, phone calls, and bars.
- International and domestic air fare, and insurance