Information

Bhutan is one of the smallest countries in the world, it has one of the richest concentration off biodiversity. Around 6000 plants, 670 birds and 180 mammal species have been recorded in Bhutan, all in an area of around 38000 sq.km. This is one of there highest species richness per unit area for any country.

The reason such high diversity is found in Bhutan is a result of its biogeography and conservation policies. Located in the eastern Himalayas, Bhutan's landscape is extremely varied and influenced by the monsoons. Biogeographically, the country lies in a global ecotone, in between the warm Indo-malayan ecozone in the south and the temparate palearctic ecozone in the north. In a distant e of less then 115 KM running north to south, the altitude ranges from subtropical low lands at 150 metres near the border with India to snow capped peaks over 7000 metres at its northern borders with Tibet and China. The country is also divided into major valleys and mountain systems by seven major rivers.

Physically, the country can be divided into three zones:

1. Alpine Zone (4000m and above) with no forest cover;
2. Temperate Zone (2000 to 4000m) with conifer or broadleaf forests;
3. Subtropical Zone (150m to 2000m) with Tropical or Subtropical vegetation.

Forest types in Bhutan are fir forests, mixed conifer forest, blue pine forest, chirpine forest, broadleaf mixed with conifer, upland hardwood forest, lowland hardwood forest, and tropical lowland forests. Almost 60% of the plant species found in the eastern Himalayan region are present in Bhutan.

Bhutan boasts of about 300 species of medicinal plants and about 46 species of rhododendrons. Some common sights for the visitors are the magnolias, junipers, orchids of varied hues, gentian, medicinal plants, Daphne, giant rhubarb, the blue and trees such as fir, pine and oaks.

This tour focusses in the south central region of Bhutan where you can see the Great Hornbill, Wreathed Hornbill, Rufous Necked Hornbill and Oriental pied hornbill apart from scores of other exotic bird species. Also we will see the majestic golden langurs and have chance to photograph them.

Important

This tour is highly recommended for keen birdwatchers and bird photographers. It covers the major birding destinations in Bhutan and not only you get to see the beautiful landscape but exotic flora and fauna of Bhutan on this tour. This tour covers almost the entire width of Bhutan i.e from Paro to Samdrup Jongkhar.

This route allows for a large vegetation and altitude variation thus variation in the bird species. Our learned and highly experienced field bird guides will share their knowledge and experience and make sure you see as many bird species as possible.

Dates and Prices

07TH MARCH 2020

20TH MARCH 2020

07TH APRIL 2020

INDIVIDUAL DEPARTURES ARE ALSO AVAILABLE.

PLEASE MAIL US FOR THE PRICE FOR THIS TOUR

Miscellaneous

A pre approved visa to Bhutan will be provided for this tour and it helps us if you book as early as possible to secure the desired accommodation and services.

Itinerary

Day 01: Arrive Paro and Birding Paro River
Day 02: Paro – Chele la Pass Birding
Day 3: Paro - Tiger's Nest Excursion – Thimphu
Day 04: Thimphu – Dochula – Punakha
Day 05: Birding Jigme Dorji National Park
Day 06: Punakha – Nobding – Phobjikha
Day 07: Phobjikha – Pelela – Trongsa
Day 08: Trongsa – Zhemghang
Day 9: Zhemghang – Tingtibe – Gomphu Road
Day 10: Zhemghang – Bumthang
Day 11: Bumthang – Thrumshingla – Sengor
Day 12: Sengor – Namling – Yongkola
Day 13: Yongkola – Namling – Limithang Road
Day 14: Yongkola – Namling – Limithang Road
Day 15: Yongkola – Korila – Trashigang
Day 16: Trashigang – Khaling – Morong
Day 17: Morong – Dewathang – Samdrup Jongkhar
Day 18: Departure

Day 01 - Arrive Paro and Birding around Paro

The flight into Paro is one of the most scenic and breath taking experience with the views of some of the tallest mountains of the world. Upon your arrival at the Paro international airport, you'll be received by our friendly staff. Transfer to the hotel. Tour brief and meet the birding guide and driver.

Afternoon visit the Paro Rimpung Dzong (fortress). In the evening birding along the Paro River searching for Ibisbill, other species would be Plumbeous Redstarts, Oriental Turtle Dove, Rock Pigeon, River Lapwing, Olive-backed Pipit, Red-billed Chough, Common Hoopoe, Black-tailed Crake, Grey-backed Shrike, Blue Whistling Thrush, White-collared Blackbird, Black Bulbul, White Wagtail, Eurasian Tree and Russet Sparrow.

Overnight at hotel in Paro

Day 02 - Paro to Chelela and back to Paro

An early morning start and we will drive towards Chelela pass (3890m). On the way to the pass we will see the three beautiful pheasants i.e Blood Pheasant, Kalij Pheasant and the Himalayan Monal. Also we will see birds like Rufous-bellied and Darjeeling Woodpecker, Large Hawk and Eurasian Cuckoo, Black Eagle, Eurasian Jay, Yellow-billed Blue Magpie, Spotted Nutcracker, Long-tailed Minivet, Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush, Rufous-gorgetted and Ultramarine Flycatcher, Indian Blue Robin, White-browed Bush Robin, Orange-flanked Bush Robin, Blue-fronted Redstart, Hodgson's Treecreeper, Rufous-vented, Coal, Green-backed and Grey-crested Tits, Buff-barred Warbler, Tickell's Leaf, Blyth's Leaf and Large-billed leaf Warblers, White-throated, Black-faced, Chestnut-crowned and Spotted Laughingthrushes, Dark-rumped and White-browed Rosefinches. In the evening we will have some time to explore the Paro town.
Overnight at the hotel in Paro.

Day 03 - Paro to Tiger’s Nest (Ttakshang) – Thimphu 

After and early breakfast at the hotel, we will have a short drive to the parking lot at the base of the Tiger's Nest monastery, from here you can hike to one of the most beautiful and holiest temple in Bhutan. Tigers Nest or Ttakshang is Bhutan's most scenic icon and most important destination for pilgrimages and clings to the side of a steep cliff some 200 meters above the Paro valley.
The place was first visited by Guru Rimpoche, founder of the tantric form of Buddhism in Himalayan countries, in the 8th century. It was said that he meditated here for about three months. After him, many high Buddhist monks came to meditate at this location and attained the highest level of spirituality. The original temple was built in the 17th century, but tragically, it was burnt in accidental fire in 1998. The temple was rebuilt to its fullest glory in 2003. Ttakshang is the 10th-holiest site in the Buddhist world.

The total hike will take the average person about four hours. From the parking area, it will take about one hour to the tea house (rest and refreshment provided) and then another one and a half hours to the temple. Then in the evening drive to Thimphu, the capital city of Bhutan. The drive will take about one and half hours.

Overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.

Day 04 - Thimphu – Dochula – Punakha

Early morning drive to Punakha over the beautiful Dochula Pass (3150). Our day starts from this pass with the breathtaking views of eastern Himalayas ranges. The mixed forests of hemlock, fir, oaks and rhododendron which is good habitat for many good species including, Fire-tailed Myzornis, White-throated, Spotted and Striated Laughing thrushes, Oriental, Indian, and Large Hawk Cuckoos and Rufous-gorgeted Flycatcher.

After breakfast at the pass, we descend down to the Lamperi Botanical Garden and take the nature walk for about two hours, birds we'll be looking here include Brown Parrotbil, Barred Cuckoo Dove, Wedge-tailed Green Pigeon, Maroon Oriole, Streak-breasted Scimitar Babbler, Scarlet Finch, Spot-winged Grosbeak, Eurasian Jay, Grey-winged Blackbird and Strong-footed Bush Warbler. Later drive to Punakha and check in to the hotel.

Afternoon: Visit Punakha Dzong we'll visit impressive Punakha Dzong supposed to be one of the most beautiful dzong in Bhutan. After finish visiting the Dzong drive along the Po-chu River looking for White-bellied Heron, Pallas's Fish Eagle and other shores birds.
Overnight at hotel in Punakha.

Day 05 - Birding the Jigme Dorji National Park

Today you will spend the whole day birding inside the Jigme Dorji National park and along Mo chu River. Today the species we will come across are Red–headed Trogon, Wallcreeper, Slaty-bellied Tesia, Small and Large Niltava, Black-chinned Yuhinas, a trio of fork tails, Pygmy and Spotted Wren-babblers, Woodpeckers, Laughing thrushes, and with luck White-bellied Heron and Pallas's Fish Eagle.

We also have a good chance of finding the species like Crested Kingfisher, Grey Treepie, Ashy Drongo, Verditer Flycatcher, Brown-throated Treecreeper, Blackthroated Tit, Black Bulbul, Red-vented Bulbul, River Lapwing, Grey Wagtail, Gadwall, and Large-billed Crow,Turtle Dove, Great Cormorant, Blue Whistling Thrush, Plumbeous Water Redstart, Rufous Sibia, Grey-headed Canary Flycatcher,Green-backed Tit, Brown Dipper, White-capped Water Redstart, White-throated Laughing thrush, Golden-throated Barbet, Great Barbet,
Overnight at the hotel in Punakha.

Day 06 - Punakha to Nobding to Phobjikha

Early morning you'll drive upto the Phobjikha valley (4hrs) stopping along the way looking for Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Cutia, Grey-bellied Tesia, Grey-hooded, Blyth's and Black-faced Warblers, Green-tailed and Mrs. Gloud's Sunbird, Brown Dipper, Ward's Trogon, , Striated Prinia, Blue-capped and Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush, Pale-Blue Flycatcher, White-capped River Chat, White-tailed Nuthatch, Rusty-flanked Treecreeper, Yellow-browed Tits and few different species of Cuckoos. Before reaching Pelela pass we'll take the road to Phobjikha valley, crossing Lawala pass the vegetation changes into dwarf bamboo, here you'll searching for the species like Spotted, Chectnut-crowned and Black-faced Laughingthrushes, Spotted Nutcracker, Great and Brown Parrotbills, Oriental Skylark, White-browed Shortwing Yellow-billed Blue Magpie, chestnut-headed Tesia, Red-billed Chough, Large-billed and Whistler's Warbler, Slender-billed Scimitar Babbler and Oriental Skylark.
Overnight at the hotel in Phobjikha (3000m).

Day 07 - Phobjikha to Pelela to Trongsa 

An early breakfast and we'll drive to the Pelela pass (4000 Metres) and spend the morning hours birding along the old road at Pelela for high altitude species like White- winged and collared Grosbeak, Spotted Nutcracker, Slaty-blue, Verditer and Dark-sided Flycatcher, Spotted Laughing thrush, Himalayan Griffon, Great and Brown Parrotbill, Plain Mountain Finch, , Grey-sided Bush Warbler and varieties of Tits, Some of the key birds you'll looking her include Himalayan Monal, Dark-rumped Rosefinch, Scarlet Finch and Gold-naped Finch Along the drive to Trongsa along the drive, we'll also be looking for the species like Golden-breasted and White-browed and Rufous-winged Fulvetta, Streak-breasted and Rusty-cheeked Scimitar Babbler, Speckled Wood Pigeon, Ultramarine Flycatcher, . Black-winged Cuckoo Shrike, Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Nepal House Martin, Blyth's Swift and White-throated Needle tail, Black Eagle and many more.Overnight at hotel in Trongsa.

Day 08 - Trongsa to Zhemgang

Today on our way to Zhemgang, we will have lots of stops at several-forested valleys, the species you'll for looking for along the drive are Grey-bellied Tesia, Crested Bunting, Spot-winged Starling, Long-tailed Shrike, Black-throated and Hill Prinia, Rufous Woodpecker, Sultan Tit, Rusty-cheeked Scimitar Babbler, White-browed Scimitar Babbler, Streak-breasted Scimitar Babbler, , Yellow-cheeked Tit, Common Green Magpie, Rufous-bellied Eagle, Mountain Hawk Eagle, Common Kestrel, Blue-capped Rock thrush and various minivets. Just to name the few. This is also our best chance for the Golden Langur discovered in the 1950s.

Later in the evening we'll be birding Zhemgang – Dakphel road searching for the species like Blyth's Shrike Babbler, Cutia, Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Black-eared Shrike Babbler, Red-faced Liocichla, Rufous-chinned Laughing thrush and may more…
Overnight at Tingtibe Camp (800m)

Day 09 - Zhemgang to Tingtibe to Gomphu Road 

Today you'll explore wide variety of habitats on the Zhemgang – Tingtibe road. Habitats vary from mossy forests to stream side lowland forest. This is another chance to see Golden Langur, which is common here. We'll also be searching for Rufous-necked and Great hornbill, Pin-tailed and Wedge-tailed Green Pigeon, Cutia, Scarlet Minivet, varieties of beautiful Laughing thrushes, Spotted Wren Babblers and very rare and sought after Beautiful Nuthatch.

In the afternoon we'll be exploring the Gomphu Road, the road that goes to Manas National Park, here we'll be searching for the species like Lesser Rufous-headed Parrotbill, Lesser Yellownape, Blue-bearded Bee-eater, Lesser Necklaced Laughingthrush, Blue-throated Flycatcher, Striated and Black-chinned Yuhinas, Chestnut-winged and Drongo Cuckoo, Common Green Magpie, White-hooded Babbler, Grey-throated and Rufous-capped Babbler, , Emerald Dove and with the little bit of luck Pale -headed Woodpecker. Overnight at Tingtibe Campsite (800m).

Day 10 - Zhemgang to Yotongla to Bumthang

After the morning birding, we will work our way back to Trongsa, looking along the way for the species we might have missed before.
After we cross Trongsa it is another 3hrs drive through the Yotongla pass. Here we will search for Hill Partridge, Chestnut-tailed Minla, Brown and Great Parrotbill, Chestnut-crown, Black-faced and Spotted Laughing thrush, Darjeeling Woodpecker, Red-headed Bullfinch, Slender-billed Scimitar Babbler, Scaly-breasted Wren Babbler, Grey-crested, Coal, Rufous-vented and Rufous-fronted Tits, Rufous-breasted Accentor, Plain Mountain Finch, Chestnut-headed Tesia, Rufous-gorgeted and Slaty Blue Flycatchers,

After crossing Yotongla we will enter the Chumey valley in Bumthang. Bumthang is famous for its distinctive woollen weaves, known as yathra. At the village of Zugney you will see the fine samples of yathra hanging by the roadside and it is woven by all women weavers and you can see them at work. The road continues over the Kikila pass to enter the next valley in Bumthang (Jakar) the district headquarters,

Overnight at hotel in Bumthang.

Day 11 - Bumthang to Thrumshingla –to Sengor 

We drive from Bumthang to Sengor going over Thrumshingla (3800m). Thrumshingla is the prime habitat for Blood Pheasants and also hold other high altitude species like Great Parrotbills, Stripe-throated and Rufous-vented Yuhinas, Grey-crested, coals, Rufous-vented Tits, White-browed Fulvata, Dark-rumped Rosefinch, Plain-backed Thrush, White-collared and Grey-winged Blackbird, Rusty-flanked Treecreeper Buff-barred, Snow Pigeons, Orange-flanked Bush Robin, Golden and White-browed Bush Robin, Fire-tailed Myzornis, Spotted Nutcracker, Red-billed Chough, Fire-tailed Sunbirds, Ashy-throated, Blyth's and Large-billed leaf Warbler. Later in the evening we will be birding around Sengor looking for Satyr Tragopan. Sengor is known as the hotspot for Satyr Tragopan. Other birds you'll be looking out here include Bar-winged and Scaly-breasted Wren Babbler, Gold-naped Finch, Hoary-throated Barwing, Bar-throated and Red-tailed Minlas, Whistler's and Grey-hooded Warbler and Slender-billed Scimitar Babbler. In the evening, you'll also try for the Himalayan Owl, which comes around your campsite.
Overnight at Sengor Camp (3000m).

Day 12 - Sengor to Namling to Yongkala 

Before breakfast, we'll once again drive toward Thrumshinla pass to see the Blood Pheasant and Satyr Tragopan.

Then we will hit the Bhutan's wet subtropical forest and one of the finest birding areas in the Himalayas. For the next two days you will be birding the lush forested valley searching for Coral-billed and Slender-billed Scimitar Babblers, Black-throated and White-breasted Parrotbills, Golden-breasted, Yellow-throated, Ruofus-winged and Nepal Fulvettas, Grey Treepie, Green-tailed, Black-throated and Crimson Sunbirds, Black-headed Shrike Babblers, Ward's Trogon, Slender-billed, Streak-breasted Scimitar Babblers, Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Golden-throated and Great Barbet, , Fire-breasted Flowerpecker, Streaked Spiderhunter, Grey-sided and Blue-winged Laughingthrush, Whiskered , Black-chinned, White-naped and Striated Yuhinas, Golden and Rufous-capped Babblers, Cutia, Rusty-fronted Barwing, Black-tailed Crake. Overnight at Yongkala Camp (1400m)

Day 13 and 14 - Yongkala – Namling – Limithang Road 

We will spend the two full days birding the upper and lower Limithang road. This Yongkala-Limithang road is one of the best birding sites in Asia as it allows the birder an opportunity to access the wide varieties of Habitats from the pristine broad-leaved to coniferous forest that spans across a vast altitudinal range. All this is protected within the Thrumshing La National Park.

Some of the species you'll be searching for the here include flocks of busy Lesser Rufous-headed and Black-throated Parrotbills, Golden-breasted and Yellow-throated Fulvettas; Rufous-throated, Long-billed, Pygmy and Sikkim Wedge-billed Wren Babbler, White-tailed Nuthatch, Grey-chinned Minivet, Black-spotted Yellow Tit, Coral-billed and Streak-breasted Scimitar Babbler and Black Eagle, Grey-bellied Tesia, Red-headed Trogon, Hoary-throated Barwing, Great and Golden-throated Barbet, Cutia, Black-faced, Whistler's and Grey-cheeked Warblers,
Overnight at Yongkala Camp (1400m).

Day 15 - Yongkala to Trashigang via Korila

After morning birding in this rewardful habitat, we head toward Trashigang and often stop along the forested road looking for the Himalayan Bulbul, Black-tailed Crake, Crimson Sunbird, Common Green Magpie, Stop at Korila pass. Here the forest is rich in mosses and lichens. Birds we may see here are Steak-breasted Scimitar Babblers, Grey-winged Blackbird, Hoary-throated Barwing, Long-tailed Minivet, Crested Bunting, Bhutan, Scaly and Blue-winged Laughing thrushes.

In the evening, free time to explore town of Trashigang, one of the main trading center in the eastern Bhutan. Overnight at hotel in Trashigang.

Day 16 - Trashigang to Morong via Khaling

After breakfast we drive towards Morong passing through lofty forests and rhododendron-filled valleys with several birding stops along the way in areas of lush, verdant, montane forest. Some of the desirable species that we will be on the lookout for this morning include the much sought-after Ward's Trogon, Golden-naped Finch, Rufous-breasted Accentor, Blue-winged and White-throated Laughing thrushes.

Later in the evening we'll spend time birding around Morong looking for the species like Rufous-necked Hornbill, Silver-eared Mesia, Scarlet Finch and every effort will be made to look for Beautiful Nuthatch.
Overnight at Morong Camp (1600m)

Day 17 - Morong to Samdrup Jongkhar via Dewathang

In the morning before breakfast, we'll explore this entire sketch of morong searching for species like Black-faced Warbler, Grey-headed Canary-Flycatcher, Striated, Bhutan, Blue-winged Laughingthrush, Long-tailed Sibia, Silver-eared Mesia, Long-tailed Broadbil, Rufous-necked Hornbill and Beautiful Nuthatch just to name a few
After early breakfast at the camp we'll be heading to a lower elevation than we have been able to visit so far on the trip. We'll target the varieties of low elevation specialties including Pied Falconet, the extremely rare Dark-rumped Swift, Pin-tailed Green Pigeon, Sultan Tit, Black-backed Forktail, Red- headed Trogon, Black Eagle, House Sparrow (rare in Bhutan…), several species of Cuckoo, Jungle Babbler, Grey-sided Laughingthrush and many more.

Overnight at Samdrup Jongkhar, the border town with India.

Day 18 - Samdrup Jongkhar to Guwahati

After breakfast we drive towards Guwahati and first complete the border formalities on both sides as we enter India. Today we drive through the Indian plain of Assam, where the wildlife of these plains is totally different from the Himalayas. The species we may see on the drive are Little Cormorant, Indian Pond Heron, Egrets, Black Ibis, Black Drongo, we will also keep our eyes for rare species like Lesser and Greater Adjutants.

Upon arrival in Guwahati transfer to the hotel and overnight at the hotel.



Day 19 - Departure

Timely transfer to the Guwahati airport for flight to next destination.

GALLERY

TOUR PLACES

Below are the places that are visited on this specific tour

EXTENSION TOUR

An Extension tour to Kaziranga and Nameri national parks is recommended after this tour. Please ask us for details.


HOW CAN I HELP?

We will be more than happy to answer all your queries and assist in all the ways possible. Our dedicated team and local knowledge will make your visit a memorable one. Please write to us for any questions you have and we will reply you soon.

 

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