12-Day Jumolhari Trek

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Tour type

Tour Level: High Level

Tour Comfort: Standard

Tour Period: 12 Days

Tour Highlight

  • Experience fabulous views of snowcapped mountains such as Jomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tserimgang
  • Camp overnight at the base of Mount Jumolhari
  • Hike up to the famous Taktsang Monastery, perched on a cliff 900 metres above the valley floor
  • Gain insight to Bhutanese culture at the National Library and Folk Heritage Museum
  • View precious works of art and cultural artefacts at the National Museum

tour details

The ’12-Day Jumolhari Trek’ highlights the great diversity that the Bhutanese landscape has to offer and the cultural wonders within its cities. First, visit several of the country’s most important museums, monuments and religious sites that showcase incredible art and artefacts. Then, experience a 7-day trek through beautiful pine, oak and spruce forests then continuing through snowcapped mountains and high pastureland where yak herders graze their animals.

Upon arriving at the Paro International Airport, your guide will wait for you and welcome you with a traditional greeting scarf or ‘khadar’. After that, you will be escorted to your hotel to freshen up and then taken for a short sightseeing tour around Paro.

First, visit Rinpung Dzong, an administration centre and a modern school for monks. Built in 1645, it was once used to defend the valley against Tibetan invaders. Next, visit the Ugyen Pelri Palace in a secluded wooden compound south of the river. It is designed after the Second Buddha’s celestial paradise, Zangtopelri, one of the finest examples of Bhutanese architecture.

Continue to one of the best natural history museums in South Asia, the National Museum. Its collection of precious works of art and fantastic costumes, armour and other handcrafted objects provide a snapshot of the rich cultural traditions of Bhutan. There is also a gallery dedicated to exquisite pieces of thangkas. The evening is free to allow you to leisurely visit the town of Paro.

Dinner and accommodation at a hotel in Paro.
Enjoy an early breakfast and then take a brief drive to the trail leading to the Taktsang Monastery, one of the holiest sites in the country. Also known as ‘Tiger's Nest’, it is famous for clinging precariously to a cliff 900 metres (2,600 feet) above the Paro Valley. The climb will take approximately three hours to complete. Lunch will be served during the return hike to the road point.

In the afternoon, visit a local farmhouse and see firsthand how rural Bhutanese live. The farmhouses are very decorative, built and painted in a classical three-storey style. The ground floor is used for cattle and the top floor is used for drying hay whilst the family lives on the middle floor.

Dinner and accommodation at a hotel in Paro.
The 17-kilometre trek starts with a short downhill walk at from Drukgyel Dzong an altitude of 2,580 metres. Then the trail climbs gently through rice terraces and fields of millet and then later through apple orchards and forests. Afterwards, the valley widens and you'll reach the army post of Gunitsawa at 2,810 metres, the last stop before Tibet. Continue upwards until we reach our overnight campsite just beyond Sharma Zampa. The trek will conclude after roughly six hours of hiking at an altitude of 2,900 metres in a meadow surrounded by trees.

Dinner and outdoor camping in Shana.
The trail again follows the Pa Chu (Paro River), ascending and descending through pine, oak and spruce forests. After crossing a bridge to the left bank of the river, we'll stop for lunch. Then, continue along the river, climbing upwards through a rhododendron forest and crossing the river once more before reaching the campsite after seven or eight hours of trekking at an altitude of 3,750 metres.

Dinner and camp in Thanthakha.
The path ascends for a while until the army camp, then it follows the river above the tree line, from which you can enjoy stunning views of the surrounding peaks. Hot lunch will be served at a yak herder’s camp followed by a short walk from into the valley, which then takes us to our campsite at Jangothang with superb views of Jomolhari and Jichu Drake. We’ll trek a total of 19 kilometres before reaching our campsite at an altitude of 4,040 metres.

Dinner and overnight camp in Jangothang.
This trail follows a gentle stream for half an hour and then crosses a bridge to the right bank. Begin climbing the first ridge, enjoying breathtaking views of Jomolhari, Jichu Drake and Tserimgang. The trail then goes across a fairly level valley floor until climbing up to the Nyele La Pass at 4,700 metres. Then, gradually descend, enjoying a panoramic view of the mountain peaks and Lingshi Dzong until we reach our campsite at an altitude of 4,000 metres. The total trekking for the day is 18 kilometres for roughly seven to eight hours.

Dinner and camp in Lingshi.
The trail begins with a gradual climb to a small white chorten on a ridge above the camp and then turns south to the Mo Chu Valley. Continue along the west side of this mostly treeless valley, climbing steadily a short distance above Mo Chu. Then, cross the river and go on a steep climb for two hours to reach Yeli La. On a clear day, you can see Jomolhari, Gangchenta, Tserimgang and Masagang from this pass. Then the trail descends alongside a stream to a rock shelter in a cliff face and then to our campsite in a meadow with a chorten at an altitude of 4,100 metres. The total trekking for the day is 22 kilometres for roughly nine hours.

Dinner and camp in Shodu.
Our path follows the course of the Thimphu Chu, descending through rhododendron, juniper and mixed alpine forests filled with stunning views along the way. Stop along the riverside and enjoy a hot lunch. Afterwards, the trail gradually inclines to the ruins of Barshong Dzong near where we'll camp for the night at an altitude of 3,600 metres. The total trekking for the day is 16 kilometres for roughly seven hours.

Dinner and camp in Barshong.
Today's 15-kilometre hike begins with a gradual descent through a dense forest of rhododendron, birch and conifers before dropping steeply to meet the Thimphu Chu. The trail continues to run along the left bank of the river, climbing over ridges and descending into gullies where side streams run down into the river. The final stage of the trail leads a climb around a cliff face high above the Thimphu Chu and then opens up to pastureland where we'll camp for the night at 3,600 metres.

Dinner and camp in Dolam Kencho.
This 3-hour hike begins along a trail that winds in and out along the side valley above the Thimphu Chu, making a long ascent through a forest of conifers and high altitude broadleaf species to a mountain pass at 3,510 metres. The trail then drops steeply down to the river, following it southward to the road head at Dodena at an altitude of 2,600 metres. Bhutan Travel Bureau transport will meet us here and then drive to Thimphu.

Dinner and accommodations at a hotel in Thimphu.
After breakfast, enjoy a day of sightseeing in Thimphu. Begin with a visit to the National Memorial Chorten depicting the Buddhist faith in the form of paintings and statues. You will also visit the 12th-century Changangkha Temple and Drubthob Monastery housing the Zilukha Nunnery. Continue to the School for Arts and Crafts where students are taught the 13 types of Bhutanese art as well as the National Library, which is home to a collection of Bhutanese scriptures dating back to the 8th century. Next, visit a fascinating replica of a medieval farmhouse at the Folk Heritage Museum, which has a collection of typical household objects, domestic tools and equipment that were used by rural families during the mid-19th century.

In the early evening, depart for Paro.

Dinner and accommodation at a hotel in Paro.
Enjoy your last breakfast with your guide and then ride back to the Paro International Airport and board your onward flight. Tashi delek!


  • All private transfers, Hotel accomodation and transportation inclusive of taxes during the entire tour
  • Meals as stated in the programme B= Breakfast, L= Lunch & D= Dinner
  • Transfers and tours with English-speaking guides in private air conditioned vehicles
  • All entrance fees as mentioned in the programme
  • Mineral water available in the vehicles
  • Visa fees at US$40 per person


  • Domestic airfare (quoted separately, if requested)
  • International airfare to / from Lao (quoted separately, if requested)
  • Optional tours
  • Surcharges for other language guides
  • Surcharges for Lao Pimai (New Year)
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Personal expenditures, such as drinks, souvenirs, laundry, camera fees, communications, postage, gratuities, etc.
  • Meals and services other than mentioned in the programme
  • Drinks with meals
  • Compulsory gala dinners during festive seasons and peak season surcharges which will be advised at the time of booking or when available
  • Early check-in and late check-out at hotels, if not mentioned in the programme
Tour code: JLT12

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