HM7 KINGDOMS OF THE HIMALAYA TOURSEARCH TOUR
Bhutan, Sikkim & Darjeeling
Cultivated slopes, thick forests, tea plantations; Institute of Tibetology, Gangtok; Thimphu, the Bhutanese capital; Himalayan peaks, high plateaux; Punakha: deep in the heart of Bhutan; Spectacular 'Teschus' - annual festivals
- DATES & PRICES
- FULL ITINERARY
- MAP & HOTELS
- TRIP INFORMATION
Dates & Prices
Prices are in US Dollars (USD), before taxes (if applicable) - All pricing reflects per-person Land Only expenses, however, we can book flights from virtually every city. Please call us for an air quote.
|Start Date||End Date||Price||More Info|
|Fri 29 Sep 2017||Thu 12 Oct 2017||$3790 USD|
|Fri 28 Sep 2018||Thu 11 Oct 2018||$3790 USD|
Cautionary note to LAND ONLY participants: Due to variables such as festival dates, internal flights, and ever-changing entry (visa) requirements, our published tour dates and / or itinerary can shift right up to departure. Travellers who book their air with us have our assistance if things need to be changed after tickets are issued; if you book your own and have to make changes, you will have to deal directly with whomever sold you your tickets. Fees may apply.
Optional Single Supplement: $720 USD (number of singles limited).
Josie F. (Toronto, ON, CA)
Bhutan was a wonderful experience on all levels. Local guide & bus drivers were exceptional. Very comfortable transportation. Food was delicious & plentiful. We had all one could wish for in a tour leader. A perfect guide in all areas. Could not have asked for a more rewarding experience.
Marilyn P. (Mission, BC, CA)
Excursions I enjoyed were craft manufacturing, Dzongs, zoos, Produce market in Kalimpong, markets in towns with overnight stays, Tibetan market, Flag lowering ceremony in Thimphu. Our local guide Ugen was great. Always pleasant and helpful. Knowledge of buddist religion very good and explanations of picture on walls of monasteries were very informative. Vans and SUVs were good. Drivers were amazing. Good variety of food and no one went hungry. Our tour leader Subash Tamang was courteous and enthusiastic throughout. Great choice for this and any future tours for Himalayas. A great tour.
*The red tour trail on the map does not represent the actual travel path.
The following is a list of sample hotels at some locations included on this tour. The hotels shown here are meant to provide a general sense of the standard of hotel we usually aim for; they are not necessarily confirmed for your chosen departure.
Yeedzin Guest House
Number of rooms: 12 doubles & 7 singles, with attached bath. Restaurant with Bhutanese, Chinese, Indian, Continental. Currency exchange, Internet ... laundry, safe deposit boxes at reception.
Namsay Choling Resort
The hotel offers 40 comfortable rooms with panoramic view of Paro Valley. Facilities include business centre with internet, restaurant, traditional ... stone bath, garden with bonfire area, lounge area with fire places, handicraft shops. All standard rooms are equipped with phone, attached bath, TV, standard twin beds.
Click here to visit hotel website
Hotel Shanker, Kathmandu is a heritage hotel, housed in a 19th-century palace within walking distance to Thamel and Durbar Marg, ... tourist hubs. It was the royal residence of the rulers of Nepal from 1894 until 1964, when it was converted into a luxury hotel. The facade was kept intact but the interiors were redesigned to give travellers the kind of comfort they'd expect of a world class hotel. The hotel is characterised by exquisite and authentic objects d'art. For example, the carved windows displayed in the lobby bar are over 200 years old.
Click here to visit hotel website
The Himalayan Hotel is a stone built, two story family hotel located a short distance from the centre of town ... surrounded by spacious gardens. The hotel has excellent views of Kanchenjunga and the surrounding mountain ranges. 16 rooms, most with their own fire-places, attached bathrooms with running hot and cold water, fitted with showers.
Click here to visit hotel website
Breakfast and dinner are included daily; all meals included in Bhutan. Evening meals on tour will be taken mostly at hotels. In some locales we endeavour to break up the buffet dinners with a meal at a local restaurant but, overall, the imperatives of hygiene and quality dictate hotel meals. All transport, accommodation, sightseeing and entrance fees are included for sites noted as 'visited' in the detailed itinerary. Gratuities for drivers, restaurant staff, porters, local guides. Airport transfers for land & air customers arriving / departing on tour dates.
Tour Leader gratuities, lunches in India & Thailand, drinks, personal items (phone, laundry, etc), domestic and international (if applicable) air taxes, visa fees, and any excursions referenced as 'optional'. Airport transfers for Land Only customers. Optional trip cancellation insurance. Our post-reservation trip notes offer further guidance on shopping, not included meals, visas.
"Visa Fees" are not included in the tour cost; we list these separately as they can change without notice. For HM6, these nominal fees include the cost of your Bhutan pre-clearance, Sikkim permit.
Seasonality and Weather
SIKKIM/DARJEELING: Temperatures may fall as low as 0 C (32 F) at night (particularly in Darjeeling) and reach as high as 25 C (76 F) during the day. You can expect it to be on average 15-20 C during the day in the hills. We travel between Sept and March to avoid the Indian Monsoon though rain is possible at any time.
BHUTAN: The Monsoon occurs between Jun & Aug. Outside that time days are usually very pleasant (10C/50F) with clear skies and sunshine. Nights are cold. Oct/Nov, Mar-mid Jun are the best times to visit - rainfall is at a minimum and temperatures are conducive to active days of sightseeing.
Our FALL trip coincides with the Thimphu or Bumthang Tsechu. The Tsechu reflects the deeply rooted religious sentiments of the people. For three days various types of masked dances are performed. Many depict the story of good triumphing over evil, the day of judgment, matrimonial fidelity etc.
Transport and Travel Conditions
Land transportation is via private bus or Land Cruiser type vehicle depending on group size and / or conditions. Air conditioning / heat in vehicles is generally not available in this part of the world. Road conditions are generally quite poor and can be bumpy, and as with all mountain roads the occasional delay can occur due to landslides or adverse weather conditions. The roads are also quite twisty on the mountain sections; if you suffer from travel sickness you should bring your usual remedy.
Internal flights via scheduled carriers. Porters are generally available at hotels but you must be able to manage with your baggage at airports.
THIS IS A TRIP FOR THE HARDY
This tour does not feature any hiking or camping, but it can be considered strenuous due to the fact that it is very busy: you must be prepared for some early starts, be steady on your feet, and be able to endure some heat / cold and long travel days at high altitudes. We have numerous walking tours and visit several sites that are LARGE with steps and uneven surfaces.
ALL PASSENGERS will require a medical questionnaire to be signed by his/her physician indicating that the traveller is fit to travel on such a journey. Those with pre-existing conditions that could be exacerbated by travel at high altitude or on poor roads, or persons with compromised immune systems and mobility problems, should carefully consider their participation.
We will be staying in hotels with private bathrooms, and there will be hot water, though in more remote areas this may only be available in the morning and evening. Few of the hotels are centrally heated, although coal fires can sometimes be provided in the bedrooms at a small extra cost. Generally hotels are comfortable and often spectacularly located, though simple with quirks that can range from charming to frustrating. Single rooms are limited and possibly smaller than twins. Porters are generally available (see 'Inclusions').
Staff and Support
Tour Leader throughout, local drivers, local guides at various locations.
10-18 (plus Tour Leader)
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