Stride climate

Trip Type : Small Group Tour
Birds of Bhutan tour
Bumthang Valley Punakha Birds of Bhutan Trip

Birds of Bhutan

Encounters Travel
5.0 . Excellent
100%
Travel Style: You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level: Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
14 days
From: $ 6,229 $ 445 / day
Checking price

Overview

Short Description

The remote and beautiful Himalayan country of Bhutan is a paradise for keen birdwatchers. This tour travels right through the country with an expert guide and also includes some cultural sightseeing along the way

Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
Trip Type Small Group Tour
Off the beaten track trips will stretch your comfort zone. They don't always feature tourist highlights, but dive deeper into local life and culture.
Itinerary Focus Off the Beaten Path
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value - 3 star
Flights & Transport Only ground transport
Start City N/A
End City N/A

Trip Includes

Included:

  • All accommodation as per itinerary in 3-star level hotels
  • All meals as indicated in the itinerary
  • 24/7 airport transfer service
  • All transport in private vehicles
  • Bhutan visa fee, tourism development fee and government royalty
  • Local tour guide/tour leader
  • All national park entry and activity fees
  • All entrance fees to sites visited

Find your perfect trip
A vast selection of trips on every continent, for every style. Thousands of itineraries from hundreds of trusted travel companies.
Save time
Use simple search and comparison tools to easily find the best trip. Don't sweat the logistics -- travel providers plan for you.
Save money
Book directly with the operator. Find inclusive packages for the best value and get access to amazing deals.
Travel confidently
Read unbiased user reviews, pick the company that fits your style, and connect with them directly. No worries, just memories.

Travelers Also Viewed

See all similar trips

Itinerary

Day 1, Arrive in Paro, transfer to hotel
You arrive in Paro today on Bhutan's national carrier, Druk Air. We will book these flights for you, and can arrange extensions at either end of the tour in Nepal, India or Thailand, as well as an overland crossing into Bhutan from Sikkim or Darjeeling in northern India. After transferring to your hotel and lunch, we visit Paro Dzong and the National Museum. Although not a birding day, you may come across the Wallcreeper, a pair or two of Ibisbill, Brown Dipper, Hodgson's, Plumbeous and White-capped Water-Redstarts around the river valley and nearby rock cliffs.
| OVERNIGHT:
Paro - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Lunch, Dinner
| EXTRAS:
Single room supplement

Day 2, Paro to Thimphu via Chele La Pass
We begin our birding adventure properly today with a pre-breakfast drive up to the Chele La Pass in search of some of Bhutan's signature birds, the elusive and colourful Himalayan Monal and Satyr Tragopan. After breakfast at Chele La, drive to the capital, Thimphu and along the way there will be opportunities to spot Blood Pheasant, Kalij Pheasants, White-winged Grosbeak, White-browed Rose Finch, Spotted Nutcracker, Rufous Sibia, White-browed Fulvetta, Brown Parrot Bill, Stripe-throated Yuhina and various Eurasian Warblers. Before arriving at your hotel we take a short trip to downtown Thimphu where we usually see Ibisbill, River Lapwing, Ruddy Shelduck, and assorted shorebirds along the riverbanks.
| OVERNIGHT:
Thimphu - 4-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3, Thimphu to Punakha via Dochu La
We leave Thimphu early to reach the Dochu La pass (3,150m) in time for sunrise. On a clear day, the scenery from here is breathtaking and we can get a full view of the mightiest peaks of the Himalayas towering along the northern horizon. Today is an excellent opportunity to see pheasant species like the Satyr Tragopan and a host of mixed species that dwell in the cool broadleaf forests. En-route to Punakha, look out for the Red-flanked Bluetail and Golden Bush-Robin, Grey Bushchat and Rufous-breasted Accentor. You may also see the Blue-winged, Red-tailed and Chestnut-tailed Minlas, Rufus-winged, White-browed and Nepal Fulvetta and Whiskered, Stripe-throated, Rufus-vented, Black-chinned and White-bellied Yuhinas. It is also possible to see Barwings plus a good selection of Laughing Thrushes before Punakha. After lunch, take a short walk across the valley floor to the temple of the 'Divine Mad Man'. The temple is famous today for its miraculous powers to bestow fertility to barren women. From the temple, we walk to the banks of the Phochu River to look for the endangered Pallas' Fish-Eagle and the world-renowned White-bellied Heron.
| OVERNIGHT:
Punakha - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4, Punakha to Pele La
Today we take an excursion along the river and up through a forest of cool broadleaf and evergreen trees to Pele La, the pass that divides eastern and western Bhutan. The diverse habitats along the way should present numerous prospects of seeing a great range of species such as Cutia, Great Barbet, Darjeeling Woodpecker, Long-tailed Minivet, Streak-breasted Scimitar-Babbler, White-throated Laughing Thrush, Fire-tailed Myzornis, Yellow-bellied Bush-Warbler, Ashy-throated Leaf Warbler, and Verditer. Ward's Trogon is usually sighted along this road.
| OVERNIGHT:
Phobjikha - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5, Pele La to Trongsa
Today should be another day of great birding prospects but we start by looking not only for sightings of the White-collared Blackbird, the Himalayan Monal, Black-faced Laughing Thrush and White-tailed Nuthatch but also of the Himalayan Bear and Black Leopard. In the pine forests around the pass look for Rusty-flanked Treecreeper, Dark Rosefinch, Himalayan Greenfinch and Rufus-vented, Grey-crested, Green-backed Tits, Common Buzzard, Mountain Hawk-Eagle, Steppe Eagle and Himalayan Griffon. We then travel to the town of Trongsa through cool broadleaf forests where there is a good chance you will see Red-billed Leiothrix, Yellow-billed Blue-Magpie and Gray-sided Bush-Warbler.
| OVERNIGHT:
Trongsa - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6, Trongsa to Shemgang
We travel further east into Bhutan today into places visited by far fewer tourists, to an area known as the Black Mountain National Park, via the town of Zhemgang and finally to Tingtibhi, where we | OVERNIGHT. The path cuts through dense jungles that contain a plethora of wildlife species like the Black-Eagle, Blue-bearded Bee-eater, Speckled Piculet, Lesser Yellownape,and the Golden Langur (a strikingly beautiful monkey species that is found only in Bhutan). Flowers and fruiting trees that attract sunbirds will be plentiful en-route along the descent to the lowest elevation. This entire region is very rich in wildlife and has thus been declared as a protected area by the Bhutanese government.
| OVERNIGHT:
Tingtibhi - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7, Zhemgang Road
Today, we make an early start and breakfast and lunch will be served at birding points in the forests. The bamboo groves around Tingtibhi are usually the haunts of Lesser Rufus-headed Parrotbills and Streaked Laughing Thrushes while the fruiting trees attract Golden-throated Barbets, Wedge-tailed and Pin-tailed Green-Pigeon and Scarlet Minivets. This area is also the best chance of encountering the Rufus-necked Hornbill. Chances are you will see flocks of Yellow-bellied and White-throated Fantail and other species like Yuhinas, Minlas, Fulvettas and Sibias.
| OVERNIGHT:
Tingtibhi - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8, Zhemgang to Trongsa
We return to Trongsa today and en-route look for birds that we may not have seen earlier. Expect to see the Mountain-Imperial Pigeon, Golden-throated Barbet, Great-pied Hornbill, White-browed Piculet, Nepal House-Martin, Fulvous-breasted, Grey-capped, Gray-headed Green Woodpeckers, Laughing Thrushes, White-throated, Greater Necklaced, Rufus-chinned, Blue-winged and Red-faced Liocichla. The rare Beautiful Nuthatch is another species found in this region.
| OVERNIGHT:
Trongsa - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9, Trongsa to Bumthang
After breakfast we make the short trip to Bumthang just about 67 kilometres away and along the way keep an eye out for the Yellow-rumped Honeyguide. We then climb the Yotongla Pass and enter the forests of spruce and fir abruptly changing the avifauna. The Bumthang valley, one of the most beautiful in the country, is home to Beautiful Rosefinch, Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Spotted Laughing Thrush, Ibisbill and Snow Pigeon. The Himalayan Black Bear is commonly spotted in this valley. After lunch in Bumthang, explore the valley in the afternoon visiting, among others, the textile shops, the Jakar Dzong (fortress), ancient monasteries, the local brewery, and a stupa under which, legend has it, lies the severed head of a Tibetan General who tried to invade Bhutan.
| OVERNIGHT:
Bumthang - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Day 10, Bumthang to Sengor
Today we make an early start and begin our drive eastwards towards Sengor. En-route we make a visit to a village in the Ura valley. The Ura Valley is not only beautiful but has plenty of bird species. After the stopover, climb up to the Thrumsing La pass (3,780m), the highest point of the journey, and then begin a long descent to Sengor.
| OVERNIGHT:
Sengor - 2 to 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Day 11, Limithang Road camping
The next three days in the Limithang Valley promise to be the highlights of the tour. The area, situated at elevations ranging from 900m to 3,780m, boasts some of the country's most pristine forests, unrivalled in the density of tree species, and thus is a natural haven for birds. The endless stretches of forests, the quaint villages and a sleepy road which winds through the valley are all frequented by many species of birds that make the entire area a delight for bird lovers. Here we have the best chance of seeing famous Bhutanese birds that may have been missed elsewhere during the trip like the Rufus-necked Hornbill, Ward's Trogon, Satyr Tragopan and endless others. There will be opportunities to spot, amongst others, the Collared Scops-Owl, Collared Owlet, Himalayan Swiftlet, Striated, Black-crested, White-cheeked, Red-vented, Ashy, Black and Mountain Bulbuls, Golden-breasted and Yellow-throated Fulvetta, Slender-billed Rusty-cheeked, Streak-breasted, and Coral-billed Scimitar-Babblers, Hill and Rufecent Prinia, Gray-headed Canary Flycatcher, Common Tailorbird, Bronzed, Lesser Racquet-tailed and Hair-crested Dorangos, and Scarlet Finch. We spend our nights in comfortable camps with camp-beds and sleeping bags provided.
| OVERNIGHT:
Camping on trek
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Day 12, Limithang Road camping
Today and tomorrow we'll continue along the Limithang Road trek, keep your eyed peeled and have your camera ready to capture those elusive bird species.
| OVERNIGHT:
Camping on trek
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Day 13, Limithang Road camping
Today is our last full day on the Limithang Road Trek. We'll continue our bird-watching with our expert guide and hope to spot any birds we've not managed to tick off of our list so far.
| OVERNIGHT:
Camping on trek
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Day 14, Limithang to Bumthang
Having reached the east-most part of the tour, we start to retrace our journey back to back to western Bhutan, the airport and eventually the flight home. It doesn't however mean that no new birds will be added to the sighting list!
| OVERNIGHT:
Bumthang - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Day 15, Bumthang to Wangduephodrang
We continue driving west today out of the Bumthang Valleys, through Trongsa and Gangtey where we may stop to visit Dzongs and monasteries, and on to Wangduephodrang at the southern end of the Punakha Valley.
| OVERNIGHT:
Punakha - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Day 16, Wangdiphodrang to Paro
We visit Wangduephodrang Dzong this morning, whose unrestored condition really gives a feeling for how long these unique buildings have governed Bhutan through their combined monastic and civic function. We then cross back over the Dochu La Pass, hoping for good views again, before descending to Paro.
| OVERNIGHT:
Paro - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Day 17, Walk up to Taktshang (Tiger's Nest)
A visit to Bhutan would not be complete without seeing the iconic Taktshang, or Tiger's' Nest monastery. Perched on a vertical cliff-face, this spectacular and beautiful monastery is reached by a walk of around 4-5 hours each way. There are good opportunities for birdwatching along the way. In the afternoon we visit the ruined Drukgyel Dzong, and have a final opportunity to walk through Paro's two main streets before retiring to our hotel to look back at the last couple of week's adventures.
| OVERNIGHT:
Paro - 3-star hotel
| MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Day 18, Paro, transfer to airport
Today we bid farewell to the Land of the Thunder Dragon and transfer you to the airport in time to catch your outbound flight with Druk Air. We will book this flight for you, and can arrange extensions to your tour in Nepal, India or Thailand, and also your onward international flight home.
| OVERNIGHT:
N/A
| MEALS:
Breakfast

Availability

Checking price
Price From $ 6,229
Price Per Day: $ 445 per day
Check Availability

Check Current Availability, prices, specials with Encounters Travel.

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.

Ask Our Destination Experts

Clark Norton
Email Us

Stride Featured in

Stride Feature In

5 Encounters Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings

100%
5.0 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 5
Great 0
Average 0
Disappointing 0
Terrible 0
Value
5.0
Guide
5.0
Activities
5.0
Lodging
5.0
Transportation
5.0
Meals
5.0

Birds of Bhutan

Write a Review
No reviews yet for this trip. Be the first one to write a review

Company Reviews

Knowledgeable and entertaining

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
I just got back from the Discover Egypt tour and I don't have enough good things to say. Our guide, Mohamed El Zawahry is an Egyptologist and is incredibly knowledgeable and entertaining. I took my 2 kids, ages 12 and 16, and he did such an amazing job with them (and everyone else). Honestly as a blond haired, green eyed westerner I was a bit nervous about safety issues, but couldn't have felt better than I did (and I'm not a novice traveler). We saw so many things, learned so much, I only wish I would have added the Jordan trip on the front end of this tour! I had a medical complication in the middle of the trip and Mohammad and Walid went out of their way to help accommodate me. They made this trip so much more than it could have been! I highly recommend all of the 'extra' tours- Abu Simble, hot air balloon, Philae Temple- all incredible. Thanks for everything! My kids are still in awe!
Read more

Amazing bespoke trip round North India.

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
I just came home from an amazing bespoke trip round North India.
Encounters Travel were amazing. Hotels were beautiful, our driver and local guides I couldn’t praise more. The trip was well planned and ran like clockwork.
I saw some amazing places, learned about the history, architecture and people. I would recommend anyone to go to India and to go with Encounters
Read more

Amazing trip to Egypt!

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
I just got back from my amazing trip to Egypt!
My tour was Discover Egypt from January 13 to January 21, 2018... What can I say?! I grew up with a fascination for Egypt and I feel so blessed I was able to go, with so many dates as an option, once I saw the date of my birthday, that was it! What better way to spend my birthday than in a country that has always been on the top of my bucket list !
I was lucky to meet an amazing group of people that shared my desire to see this amazing place and every single person involved in this tour was absolutely amazing! My tour guy Big Mo was the best! I felt very safe and well taken care of from the moment I landed in Egypt to the day I left. I really appreciated the birthday celebration as well!
I miss every single moment I lived during those days.
I went with a fascination and left loving Egypt, it’s culture and it’s beautiful people.
I will treasure this experience forever.
Read more

Well organized

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
My husband and I booked the Discover Egypt trip in February 2017 and traveled in may 2017 and it was even more than we could have asked or dreamed it would be. Our group was led by Magz and we learned so much about Egyptian history and current culture. The trip was well organized and communication before during and after the trip was incredible. I have recommended this company to anyone who asks and can't wait to take another trip with them in the future. For any additional questions feel free to message me - I'm happy to provide more feedback. Thank you encounters for the trip of a lifetime!
Read more

Discover Egypt is the most comprehensive tour I've ever been on

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Encounters Travel Discover Egypt is the most comprehensive tour I've ever been on.They met us at the airport getting off the plane and took us back to the airport and saw that we got through security and everything in between. It is very safe in Egypt. You can walk the streets and when telling people that ask that we were from America we were met with smiles and positive comments. Because of the low number of tourists in the country right now Encounters Travel has negotiated with the hotels to stay in 5 star hotels. The pyramids are spectacular but it's only a small part of what you will see. Right now there are no crowds. An example My Wife and I took an optional tour to some pyramids southwest of Cairo. We went inside the Red Pyramid to the burial chambers. Two people passed us going in and two people passed us going out. That's 4 other people in the pyramid with us. All of the people with Encounters Travel are there to see to it that you have an enjoyable time and are extremely helpful.Our tour guide Big Mo is very knowledgeable and friendly.The Encounters agent in Hurghada, Mohamed,( I think everyone in Egypt is that name,HaHa) Was extremely pleasant and fun to be with. When Anass,the Encounters manager found out that my wife couldn't walk far he arraigned for a wheel chair to tour the Egyptian museum so she could see it all. This was my second time going on the Discover Egypt tour. I went last year with my son and when my wife heard all of our stories she wanted to see it. Someone asked her on the way home what her favorite part was and she replied "All of it" If you ever thought of going to Egypt now is the time.
Read more

Details

Flights & Transport

Only ground transport

Group Size:

Intimate Group - 12 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 20

Trip ID#:

Encounterstraveltourcms-BHTHBB

Trip Excludes

Excluded:
  • International flights (available on request)
  • Travel insurance (compulsory)
  • Drinks, snacks and other personal expenses (e.g. Laundry)
  • Tips for tour leader and driver
  • Any other items not mentioned above

Similar Trips

See all similar trips
×
Great Choice!

You can access members-only savings of up to $700 on over 6,000 Stride Select trips.

Sign in to see trip eligibility

or
or
Provide email and password

With your FREE membership you get to:

  • Save up to $700 per person!*
  • Access private deals and offers
  • See personalized trip recommendations
  • Save favorite trips
*See Member Savings Program details
Already a member?

We respect your privacy and take great care to protect your information. By joining you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

×
×
Sign in to Save Trips
Welcome back! We're so happy to see you. ? Forgot Password?
Don't have an account? Join
  • Bookmark trips you like
  • Share with your travel companions
  • Track price changes
  • Access private discounts on trips you save
×
Sign in to see your results

TripFinder is a member-only feature. Don’t worry, it’s free!

With a membership you:

  • Save up to $700 per person!*
  • Access private deals and offers
  • See personalized trip recommendations
  • Save favorite trips
*See Member Savings Program details
×
Activate your free Stride membership

Just use the email address and password provided in the email we sent.

? Forgot Password?

With your free membership you:

  • Save up to $700 per person!*
  • Access private deals and offers
  • See personalized trip recommendations
  • Save favorite trips
*See Member Savings Program details
×
To Follow, sign in or sign up (it's free) ? Forgot Password?
Don't have an account? Join
member benefits
First name is required!
Last name is required!
First name is not valid!
Last name is not valid!
This is not an email address!
Email address is required!
This email is already registered!
Please enter valid email address
Password is required!
Enter a valid password!
Please enter 6 or more characters!
Please enter 32 or less characters!
Passwords are not the same!
Terms and Conditions are required!
Email or Password is wrong!
Please select the captcha checkbox!
Please select the valid captcha!
Something went wrong! Try again later!
Find the 3 best trips for you.
Take a short quiz to recieve your top matches.

x
x
Download your brochure

Enter your email to get the "" brochure.

x
Brochure successfully sent!

We've sent the "" brochure to "". Check your inbox!