From here it’s a short walk down a stone staircase, cross the bridge and then make a slight strenuous climb to the monastery. You are welcomed by a healing vibe. The air in the monastery exists in its most purest form. There are various shrines, and each one of them represents a meaning. You’d find a lot of monks praying and meditating inside the monastery, and thus observing noble silence is required. We even went down to a place where it is believed that the tigress who got Guru on her back, rested exactly for the time he meditated. I decided to sit in the monastery for a while, listening to the chantings and having a deeper look at the view and in that very moment I realised that the best views of life comes only after the hardest climbs. I am grateful to witness such a glory of this place. It’s a surreal experience.
1. There are many caves that surrounds and reside in the monastery, out of which ‘Tholu phuk’ and ‘Pel Phuk’ are very famous, as it is believed to be caves where Guru first meditated.
2. Indian currency is widely accepted at the local markets and restaurants.
BEST TIME TO VISIT: October - December / April-July
It’s located 10 miles north of Paro, thus Paro is a perfect home base when making a visit. It’s recommended that you arrive Paro a night prior before the hike, as it is a full day activity. You can leave from your hotel around 7.30 am and can finish the hike at a decent time, as the sun sets down.
1. There are several paths leading to the temple, but the most popular one where you’d find yourself among lot of people, will go through a pine forest and colourful prayer flags.
2. On an average, it takes around 5-6 hours for a round trip hike and one hour for the tour inside the monastery. Due it’s location, it’s very obvious that vehicles can’t drive anyone up. One can hire a horse to an extent, but soon you will have to let your legs take the glorious steps.
1. Timings: 8am-1pm and 2-5pm (October-March) / 2-6pm (April-September)
2. Make sure that your guide has arranged for a standard permit in advance, without which you won’t be able to enter.
3. A person has to register with the security at the entrance and deposit the bags and belongings.
4. Camera and photography isn’t allowed inside the monastery, so you have to make sure that you live in the very moment and capture images with your eyes that will stay as memories forever.
Have you been to Bhutan? How was your experience? Do share in the comments section below.