12 Days Black-Necked Crane Festival in Bhutan

12 Days Black-Necked Crane Festival in Bhutan

Sketch Itinerary

The 12 days Black-Necked Crane festival in Bhutan is celebrated annually at the courtyard of Gangtey Goenpa in the bowl shaped glacial valley of beautiful Phobjikha (3000m) where the beautiful Nake Chuu flows across it. This festival is a very rare occasion for visitors to rejoice and celebrate the arrival of this endangered and majestic bird, (Grus nigricollis) during the winter months (late October to late February). These migratory birds which come from the high Tibetan highlands fly around the Gangtey Goemba three times before landing in the Phobjikha valley down below and repeat the same act when they go back to their Tibetan homeland in late February. A small section of the  Black necked cranes also come to Bumdeling in far eastern Bhutan.

The annual black-necked crane festival is organized to generate awareness and understanding on the importance of conserving the endangered Black-Necked cranes. The festival includes cultural programs such as folk songs and dances (some with black-necked crane themes) and mask dances performed by the local people, crane dances and environmental conservation-themed dramas and songs by school children.

View Road travel map of 12 days Black-Necked Crane festival in Bhutan in Google Map.

Date: 11 November, 2019.
Venue: Gangtey Goenpa, Phobjikha, Wangduephodrang.

Sketch Itinerary:

Day 01. Arrive at Paro.

Day 02. Paro – Thimphu.

Day 03. Thimphu sightseeing.

Day 04. Thimphu sightseeing.

Day 05. Thimphu – Punakha – Gangtey.

Day 06. Gangtey – Trongsa.

Day 07. Trongsa – Bumthang.

Day 08. Bumthang.

Day 09. Bumthang – Punakha.

Day 10. Punakha – Thimphu.

Day 11. Thimphu – Paro.

Day 12. Depart.

Detail Itinerary

Detail Itinerary for 12 Days Black-Necked Crane Festival in Bhutan

Day 01.Arrive Paro (Altitude 2280 m) (By Druk Air flight):

Your Guide from Yak Holidays will receive you at the airport and drive you to the Hotel.

  • Visit Ta Dzong (built in1656 and renovated in 1968),
  • Rimpung Dzong (literally meaning “Heap of Jewels”). Dinner and overnight in Tashi Namgay Resort or similar. tnr.b

***NOTE: You also have an option for accommodation up gradation in Paro.  Please contact us for the up gradation cost.

Day 02. Paro – Thimphu (Altitude 2320 m, 54 km, 1 hour).

  • A day hike to Taktsang Monastery
  • Kichu Lhakhang, built in 659 A, Drukgyal Dzong built in 1647, now in ruins,

In the evening, drive to Thimphu.  On the way, view Tamchog Monastery built by Thangthong Gyalpo (Popularly known as Lama Chazampa, which literally means, the Iron Bridge builder) in the 15th century.  Dinner and O/N in Hotel Migmar or similar. www.hotelmigmar.com

***NOTE: You also have an option for accommodation up gradation in Thimphu.  Please contact us for the up gradation cost.

Day 03. Thimphu Sightseeing: (Altitude 2320 m).

  • National Memorial Chorten (1974)
  • National Library
  • Painting School
  • Traditional Medicine

After lunch,

  • Royal silver smiths
  • Bhutanese paper factory at work
  • Tashichho Dzong, Handicrafts Emporium.

Dinner and O/N in Hotel Migmar or similar.

Day 04.  Thimphu Sightseeing: (Altitude 2320 m).

  • Folk Heritage Museum
  • Textile Museum
  • Changangkha Lhakhang

After lunch, hike to Cheri Monastery.

Dinner and O/N in Hotel Migmar or similar.

Day 05. Thimphu – Punakha – Gangtey: (Altitude 3120 m) (143 Km, 6 hours drive).

  • Drive to Gangtey via Dochula pass – You can see the higher Himalayas, if the weather permits
  • Royal Botanical Park at Lam Pelri.

Enroute Wangdiphodrang Dzong from outside razed by fire in 2012 (now under construction). Dinner and overnight in Theckchen Phodrang Guest House or similar.

***NOTE: You also have an option for accommodation up gradation in Thimphu.  Please contact us for the up gradation cost.

Aman Kora Gangtey (5 star) www.amankora.com

Day 06. Gangtey – Trongsa. (Altitude 2300 m)(Distance 67 km, Drive Time 3 hour drive). After breakfast, witness Black Necked Crane Festival.  

After lunch, drive to Trongsa. Dinner and O/N in Tashi Ninjay Guest House or similar http://www.tourism.gov.bt/directory/hotel/tashi-ninjay-guest-house

Day 07. Trongsa -Bumthang (2800 m) (Distance: 68 km, 3 hrs): After breakfast, visit:

  • Trongsa Dzong
  • Ta Dzong

After lunch, drive to Bumthang. Dinner and O/N in Swiss Guest House or similar. www.swissguesthouse.bt

***NOTE: You also have an option for accommodation up gradation in Bumthang.  Please contact us for the up gradation cost.

Day 08.  Bumthang Sightseeing (2800m):

  • Jakar Dzong, built in 1667.
  • Jambay Lhakhang, built by King Srongsen Gampo of Tibet in the year 659.

After lunch,

  • Kurjey Lhakhang that is named after body print of Guru Rimpoche, built in 1652 by Minjur Tempa
  • Tamshing Lhakhang (Temple of the good message

In the evening, visit Membarstho which literally means, “The burning Lake”. Dinner and O/N in Swiss Guest House or similar.

Day  09. Bumthang – Punakha/Wangdi Phodrang (Altitude 1310 m) (197 km, 6 hrs drive): Early breakfast, drive to Wangdi/ Punakha. Lunch will be served on the way. Dinner and overnight in Punatshangchhu Cottages or similar.

***NOTE: You also have an option for accommodation up gradation in Punakha.  Please contact us for the up gradation cost.

Day 10. Punakha – Thimphu(Altitude 2320 m, Distance 76 km, Drive Time 3 hour): After breakfast, drive to Punakha.  On the way visit

  • Chime Lhakhang
  • Punakha Dzong.

After lunch, drive to Thimphu. In the evening, free to stroll in town. Dinner and O/N in Hotel Migmar or similar.

***NOTE: You also have an option for accommodation up gradation in Thimphu.  Please contact us for the up gradation cost.

Day 11. Thimphu – Paro (Altitude: 2280) (54 km, 1 hr): After breakfast,

  • The Largest statue of Buddha in the world
  • Takin Preserve Centre
  • Philatelic office.

After lunch, drive to Paro. Witness the archery match. In the evening, visit a farm house.  Dinner and O/N in Tashi Namgay Resort or similar.

***NOTE: You also have an option for accommodation up gradation in Paro.  Please contact us for the up gradation cost.

Day 12. Departure: (Altitude 2280 m) Early morning, drive to Airport and Farewell.

Tour Photo Gallery
Rinpung Dzong @ Paro
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Value Added Services
  • Hot stone bath.

    bhutanese archery

    Practicing Archery

  • Cycling around Paro valley.
  • Practice Archery.
  • Bhutanese cooking class.
  • Bhutanese cultural show featuring various mask dances and folk dances.
  • Talk on Gross National Happiness / Buddhism.
  • Consulting an Astrologer.
  • Practice Dart.
  • Performing religious ceremony.
  • Marriage ceremonies.
Cycling-around-Paro-valley
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Please contact us for the price.

Optional Activities
  • Hike to Phajoding/ Tango/Cheri  Monastery.
  • Village walk to Kabisa
  • Mountain biking around Thimphu valley.
  • Hike to Cheri Monastery / Tango Monastery / Phajoding Monastery.
  • White water rafting in Mo Chhu/ Pho Chhu
  • Hike to Dzongdrakha Monastery.
  • Hike to Kila Gompa.
  • Excursion to Chelila Pass.