Bird Watching Tours - 8 Days
Bhutan is a paradise for bird lovers and ornithologists. Over 747 plus species of birds have been recorded and many more are yet to be discovered. Around 50 species of the known birds are winter migrants. These include ducks, waders, birds of prey, thrushes, finches and buntings. The partial migrants to Bhutan include cuckoos, swifts, bee-eaters, warblers and flycatchers. The country harbors more than 16 species of vulnerable birds. They are the Pallas’s Fish Eagle, White bellied Heron, Satyr Tragopan, Gray-bellied Tragopan, Ward’s Trogon, Blyth’s King Fisher, Yellow-rumped Honey Guide, Rufous Throated Wren Babbler, Chestnut-breasted Partridge, Blyth’s Trogon, Wood Snipe, Dark-rumped Swift, Rufous-necked Hornbill, Gray-crowned Prinia and the Beautiful Nuthatch all of which breed in Bhutan.  Bhutan is home to many species of birds that are in danger of extinction, including the Imperial Heron or white-bellied heron, which is one of the rarest birds in the world.

Kuzuzangpola – Welcome to Bhutan!

Day 01 Arrive Paro: The flight into Bhutan takes you the great Himalayas, offering you the most scintillating scenery of the world’s highest glacial peaks. As you enter Paro valley, you will see the silvery Pa-chu (Paro river) meandering down the valley with lush green paddy fields, pristine forest, incredulous fortress-like monasteries known as Dzongs and majestically flowing rivers. On arrival at the Paro International Airport, you will be received by Away Smile Travels representative.

Do some birding around Paro Chhu in which you may encounter birds like Ibisbill, River Lapwing.Grey-backed Shrike, Oriential-turtle Dove, Rufous-breasted Accentor, Hodgson’s Redstart and perhaps Black-tailed Crake. Overnight Hotel Paro.

Day 02 Paro-Chelela-Thimphu.

We spend the morning birding at Chelela Pass. Birds you may encounter include Himalayan Monal, Blood and Kalij Pheasant, Yellow-billed Blue Magpie, Grey-crested &Rufous-fronted Tits, Black-faced Laughing Thrush, Collard Grosbeak, White-browed & Dark-rumped Rosefinch, Long-tailed Thrush.

Later drive to Thimphu making a few stops for birding along Thimphu chu for river birds. Overnight Hotel Thimphu.

Day 03 Thimphu-Punakha (Drive 3 hours) 

Drive to Punakha with having stops for birding at Dochula Pass. Entering the pristine forest of hemlock, fir, oak and blossoming magnolias and rhododendrons. White-Throated, Striated and Chestnut-Crowned Laughing thrushes are present here, Ibisbill, River Lapwing, Grey-backed Shrike, Oriental Turtle Dove, Rufous-breasted Accentor, Hodgson’s Redstart and perhaps Black-tailed Crake, Darjeeling Woodpeacker, Hoary-throated Barwing, Fire-tailed Myzornis, Rufous-winged Fulvetta, Rusty –flanked Treecreeper, Red- headed Bullfinch are the birds you may encounter too. Overnight Hotel Punakha

Day 04 Punakha Birdwatching

After Breakfast, birding along Pho chhu river for White-bellied Heron which can be seen in Punakha.  In the late afternoon, visit the Punakha Dzong. Overnight Hotel Punakha

Day 05 Punakha- Pelela- Gangtey (Drive 3 hours) 

Early in the morning drive to Pelela pass (16 km from Phobjikha valley) and take a birding downhill of the old highway in which you may come across with Himalayan Griffon, Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush, Grey-sided Bush Warbler, Fire-tailed Sunbird, Great and Brown Parrot bill, etc. Drive to Gangtey valley. On this stretch you are likely to spot the White-winged Grosbeak, Spotted Laughingthrush, Yellowish-bellied Bush Warbler, Rusty -flanked Treecreeper, and the prized Ward’s Trogon. Gangtey is winter home for the Black-necked Cranes. They are migratory bird from Tibet and China in November till the end of February. Several brief stops shall be made for birding.  Overnight Hotel/Home Stay in Gangtey

Day 06 Gangtey-Paro (Drive 6 hours)

Morning visit Black-Necked Crane Information Center. The Center has informative displays about the cranes and the valley environment. 

Drive back to Paro.  On the way back brief stops shall be made for birding.  Overnight Hotel Paro

Day 07 Paro Sightseeing (Tiger’s Nest)

After breakfast drive to Ramthangka village and hike to Tiger Nest. Taktshang meaning the ‘Tiger’s Nest’ is one of Bhutan’s most venerated pilgrimage sites and a very popular site for all tourists visiting Bhutan. According to legend, Guru Rinpoche miraculously flew here on the back of a tigress, meditated in a cave here for three months and converted the whole of Paro valley to Buddhism. Resting at an altitude of 900 meters above the valley, Taktshang is an architectural wonder and the spectacular four-hour walk will be your most overwhelming experience ever. (Round trip 5 hrs).  Brief stops shall be made for birding along the trail. Overnight Hotel in Paro.

Day 08 Paro Departure.
After breakfast drive to the Paro International Airport where our representatives will bid you goodbye!
Thank you (Kardrienchhey) for visiting Bhutan with Away Smile Travels “Smiles for Miles “

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