A tour from Nepal to Bhutan.



Changunarayan Temple- Kathmandu.

The British couple Mr. Stephen John Tewkesbury and Ms. Angela Frances Tewkesbury recently flew back to their country after spending the wonderful vacation at Nepal and Bhutan which was arranged by Explore Himalaya.

Samari Homestay.

Samari Home stay.

The couple arrived to Nepal on November 11, 2012. They had the sightseeing around Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur for couple of days. They visited Pashupatinath Temple, Boudhanath, Changhunarayan Temple and the Durbar Squares of three cities. They drove to Nuwakot and Samari on November 14 and November 15 respectively for the home stay program. On November 16, the couple headed to Pokhara and had the wonderful sightseeing around the city the following day. November 18, the flight brought them back to Kathmandu.Pokhara.

Pokhara, during the bright sunny day.

November 19, they had arrangements to fly to Paro. Paro is a historical city in Bhutan with the Rinpung Dzong fotress- monastery which was built in the beginning of tenth century. Next day on November 20, they had sightseeing tour around Paro. On November 21, they drove to Bhutanese capital Thimpu via Phunka. After the short excursion around the city and on the way, the next day the couple was escorted back to Paro for the flight back to Kathmandu. On November 23, they boarded the plane to Kathmandu. After enjoying a free day at Kathmandu the couple took the departure from Kathmandu on November 25.


Rinpung Dzong- Paro.

Thimpu, Bhutan.

Pics: Explore Himalaya.

Explore Himalaya arranges the smooth and adventurous tours in Nepal, India and Bhutan.


Nepal and Bhutan Trip

Donatella Zucconi and Mauro Baffigi from Italy, originally contacted us showing their interest in doing the Beijing-Lhasa train and further Lhasa-Kathmandu overland trip. However, their plan was not fulfilled because of the sudden change in Tibet visa rule where 4 persons of same nationality was required in order to obtain the visa. Although, they could not visit Beijing and Lhasa, they set up for the Nepal and Bhutan trip for the first time.

Rhinos at Chitwan National Park

We organized the 15 days Nepal and Bhutan trip which the clients immensely enjoyed. Though this is the first visit to these countries, they found it ‘absolutely comfortable and feel as we were at our home and thanks to Explore Himalaya which did everything perfect’.

Deer at Chitwan National Park

The trip was followed by the Jungle safari in Chitwan added more color and Donatella told to us ‘being around the animals in Chitwan was the most memorable time in her life’ as she was fond of animals.

Takin, the national animal of Bhutan

Bhutan touched their heart and they enjoyed the trip to Bhutan very much. They described:  ‘Bhutan is a country like no other else in the world just particularly its happiness philosophy and its uncontemplated landscapes. Apart from the tough job of hiking, the visit to ‘Tiger Nest’ was the most beautiful part of our trip.’


The Tiger Nest in Paro

Both of them were very satisfied with the services of our guide and our supported staffs and thanked us for organizing the great trip.

Punakha Dzong in Punakha

Buddha Point in Thimpu

Taa Dzong in Paro

Photo: Donatella Zucconi

Bhutan Trip

Bhutan figures in Lonely Planet’s Top Ten Countries for 2012

If you take reviews from travel guides seriously than take a read. Lonely Planet  has chosen Bhutan as one of the Top Ten destinations for 2012. The international travel guide recommends a wildlife jaunt to Bhutan’s newly opened (to tourists) Royal Manas National Park as a perfect getaway this year. Joining the Top Ten list are countries way off the beaten  tourist trail like Uganda, Myanmar, Jordan, Cuba, New Caledonia and Ukraine.

Lonely Planet's Top Ten countries for 2012


Bhutan (Pic: Lars Gundersen)

Travel to Bhutan with Explore Himalaya


Bhutan Tour 1

We, Explore Himalaya organized a short trip for Chantal Erica Landert and Ernst Leuenberger to Bhutan, the country popularly known as “Land of the Thunder Dragon” from 15th-17th March 2012. Both of them flew to Paro from Bangkok and drove to Thimpu, the capital city of Bhutan. In Thimpu, they visited ‘The National Library’, Zorig Chusum: Commonly known as Arts & Crafts School or Painting School, Kings’ memorial Chorten and Trashichhodzong.

Next day, they drove back to Paro for their excursion to ‘Taktshang Lakhang’, also known as ‘The Tiger Nest’. This is the must visit place of Paro and undoubtedly one of the most famous of Bhutan’s monasteries which is around 5 hours hiking in total.  Their excursion was followed by the visit of Ta Dzong and Rinung Dzong in Paro.

The Tiger Nest

They were completely satisfied with the level of our service and wish to stay longer in their next visit to Bhutan. Here is what they told us regarding the trip:

“The trip to Bhutan was great! Excellent sights, hotels, food, weather, and our guide and driver were very professional and very good company. They looked very good for us!

Next time we should for sure stay longer, and if we plan a next tour to Bhutan we will contact you again.”


Bhutanese Farmers rely on tourism to save the endangered Black-Necked Cranes

Phobjikha Valley, the largest wetland area in Bhutan and the habitat of the endangered Black-Necked Crane, is the venue of the Black-Necked Crane Festival. A brainchild of Bhutan’s Royal Society for the Protection of Nature, the festival is a major tourist attraction and sees the active participation of local farmers. The festival is organized to boost local economy and to discourage farmers from using chemical fertilizers which would destroy the Black-Necked Cranes habitat.Held every year in the month of November, the festival showcases traditional masked dances, Black-Necked Cranes courtship dance and other cultural programmes. Villagers are paid 150 Ngultrum (around USD 3) for participating in the festival.
The Black-Necked cranes which are considered sacred by the Buddhists, migrate to Bhutan from Tibet every winter.


Travel to Bhutan – The Land of the Thunder Dragon with Explore Himalaya

Bart Jordans – Writer & Trekking Guide

What will you do if you have travelled widely, traversed the Himalaya and love the mountains? If you are wise enough, maybe, you will think of smart ways to share your experiences.

Meet writer and intrepid traveller Bart Jordans, who has done just that. A widely travelled man, Bart has found a smart way to share his travel experiences. He has written guide books and is a regular guide leading trekking groups up the Himalayan mountains for than 25 years now. When not busy traipsing on the hills and mountains, Bart spends  time with his family, selling outdoor gear in a trekking shop and writing. He has already published a trekking guide on Bhutan for Cicerone and presently writing about Everest region’s  Khansung Trek.

Bart Jordans

Bart, who works as a group leader for Kipling Travels (Explore Himalaya’s partner agency in Denmark), led a trek to Everest Base Camp recently. He dropped in at our office after he returned to Kathmandu. Not to let an opportunity for a good write-up to slip by, I put forward a couple of questions to the expert himself.

A Dutchman who lives in Denmark, Bart first visited Nepal in 1984. He admitted that the country has changed a lot since then. Speaking about the changes he says, “There’s always the good old day as they say. You always remember how it was in ‘84. It was a lot more quiet and that’s what you miss now. But of course you can’t stop it. If more and more people come, more people can enjoy the Himalaya. In 1984 there were just three-four areas which were open (for tourists) but now many more areas are open and so the tourists have also spread. Of course its not everywhere as busy as you would think, still an Everest trek is busy.”

A widely traveled man, Bart has led treks not only to Nepal, but in Bhutan, Tibet, India and Pakistan as well. Asked where it is easier to travel to, he replied, “It’s easier here (in Nepal) if you fly. Travelling by road is also getting better, but if you fly that’s easier. All the services, like helicopters, it’s amazing. So you feel very safe here. On my trek, unfortunately, we had to order two helicopters. But it’s so easy to do. If the weather is okay, you could get the helicopter in no time. So that’s safe, which is not the case in many other countries in the Himalayas. It’s much more difficult.”

To people who have not visited Nepal, Bart’s advice is :

“ Come out here! Take an adventure and don’t sit on your chair back home and only watch television. Get up there! You know, its not that expensive and you will enjoy it. And if you are just a little bit more clever enough , you don’t get sick. Just listen to people who advise and the same is important with the altitude.If you plan to come out to the Himalayas for trekking, try to have those extra days for acclimatization. I think its also important to go with a big, known company because the back-up is very good. The back-up in cases of emergency , all the internal flights, the hotels –  it makes so much easier!”

Buddha Air to fly to Bhutan from August 23rd

From 23rd August 2010, Buddha Air, a private Nepalese airline company, is all set to operate direct flights from Kathmandu to Paro in Bhutan .The airline will be operating four flights a week- on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, using 18-seater Beech 1900D aircraft.

Plan your trip to the ‘Dragon Kingdom’ with Explore Himalaya

PATA Reports a Surge on International Arrivals to South Asia

According to a study conducted by Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA)on the international visitor arrivals for the first quarter of 2010,arrivals to South Asia grew by 17% year-on-year in the first quarter.Arrivals growth was very strong for Nepal (+30%), the Maldives (+21%) and Bhutan (+57%) during the first three months of this year.The destinations of Southeast Asia also reported strong growth with a collective gain of 16% year-on-year in the first quarter. This was boosted by double-digit growth in international arrivals to Cambodia (+10%), Indonesia (+15%), Myanmar (+39%), Singapore (+20%), Thailand (+28%) and Vietnam (+36%).