Yoga and Soul Tour of Bhutan

Yoga and Soul tour of Bhutan (via Kolkata, India)
A small group tour led by Lindsey Porter
Yoga Instructor | Author | Podcaster | Founder of Yoganuu.com
Advocate for Mental Health and Wellbeing
25th April to 6 May 2020 (11 nights/12days)

This once in a lifetime trip to Bhutan will weave regular yoga practices (physical, meditation practices and more, all optional) in with visiting this sacred Buddhist kingdom located on the eastern side of the Himalayas nestled between China and India. With a population of c.800,000, Bhutan is one of the smallest countries in the world but one with a big commitment to conservation, happiness and sustainability. You will experience and explore its monasteries, dzongs (fortresses), dramatic landscapes including valleys alive with flowers in bloom, wildlife and local culture. Including a two-hour teaching on Buddhist spiritualism by a Bhutanese Lama. Our journey will take in three cultural centres of Bhutan with a short stay both ways in the colonial city of Kolkata, India.

Lindsey Porter

Your tour is led by Lindsey Porter, based in Scotland, an Akhanda Hatha and Curvy Yoga qualified yoga teacher with 13+ yoga teaching years. Lindsey is passionate about sharing the benefits yoga can bring to all minds and bodies. She is a Tutor for Yoga Scotland, co-founder of an international yoga podcast series listened to in over 70 countries (voicesofyoga.com), is a published author (debut book: ‘Whirlpools, yoga and the balance of life’ and has been published in the Huffington Post, Yoga and OM Yoga magazines. She is a Signatory and champion of the Mental Health Charter for Physical Activity & Sport in Scotland. Lindsey has been awarded a “Woman of Inspiration” award on the 2019 Honours list by the Association of Scottish business women and shortlisted for the UK Rising Stars 2019 Award. With a background of 20 years managing international projects in Financial Services, she has worked and travelled extensively – you will be in good hands to make this a deeply enjoyable journey. Find about more about your group leader, Lindsey at  yoganuu.com

 

Lindsey Porter
The Itinerary
DAY 1: SATURDAY, 25 APRIL 2020 TO KOLKATA (FORMERLY CALCUTTA) INDIA

Departure UK by Emirate airlines to Kolkata via Dubai.
UK departure points include Glasgow, Manchester, Newcastle, Birmingham and London Gatwick.

DAY 2: SUNDAY, 26 APRIL 2020 KOLKATA, INDIA

Arrive Kolkata 08:15. Transfer to Hotel Astor – a modern hotel which blends old world charm with new age luxury in the heart of the city.
After settling in during the morning we will take an afternoon tour of the city taking in some of the magnificent architecture and history.

Overnight at Hotel Astor

Dinner included

DAY 3: MONDAY, 27 APRIL 2020 TO PARO, BHUTAN

There will be an option for some gentle morning yoga practices.
We will then fly from Kolkata to Paro by Druk Air arriving into Paro mid-afternoon. Transfer to the hotel to settle in. Paro is at an altitude of 2,200 meters/7,200feet.
In the afternoon we will visit the Bhutan National Museum, enjoying the impressive views of the city and its cultural displays. The museum built in 1649 was originally used as a fort to protect the city.
There will be an option for some gentle evening yoga practices in the Garden, weather permitting.

Overnight at Hotel

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included

DAY 4: TUESDAY, 28 APRIL 2020 PARO

After an early breakfast, we will drive to Chelela Pass for breathtaking views at nearly 4,000m (13,000ft) altitude of the Jomolhari and Jichudraki Himalayan mountains. We will aim to take some time for a meditation & yoga amongst the spiritual backdrop of the prayer flags (subject to weather conditions).
After refreshments we will drive down to a further viewpoint to enjoy the spectacular view of the Haa valley. We return to Paro for lunch in a local restaurant in town.
In the afternoon we will visit Kichu Lhakhang, the 7th Century temple built by the Tibetan king, Thrisong Detsen. The temple is older than the Mahayana Buddhism which was introduced in the 8th Century.

Overnight at Hotel

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included

DAY 5: WEDNESDAY, 29 APRIL 2020 PARO

With an early breakfast and start we will undertake the demanding but highly rewarding trek to the Tiger Nest or Tagtsang monastery (3000m /9500 ft). An eight-century temple built by Guru Rinpoche where legend says flew here on a tiger to subdue a demon affecting the wellbeing of the local people. It is said that visiting the temple will enhance your spiritual happiness. The walk is uphill and through the steep slopes, it provides some of the greatest views of the temple and Paro valley. The actual distance one way is only 3.5km however, due to steep ascent and altitude the trek takes almost the whole day. A good level of fitness is required or there is the option to enjoy the lower surroundings.
Option to participate in a meditation in the Guru Tshengay Lhakhang (Eight manifestation of Gururinpoche)
Tea & lunch will be served enroute.
After the trek we will experience the unique Bhutan tradition of a stone and herbal bath in a rural setting, great for relaxation and wellbeing.
Return to the hotel for dinner and relaxation.

Overnight at Hotel

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included

DAY 6: THURSDAY, 30 APRIL 2020 TO THIMPU

After breakfast we will drive to Thimphu the capital city of Bhutan and visit enroute Tamchhok Lhakhang a charming iron bridge built in 1433 by Thangtong Gyalpo, a famous Tibetan Iron Chain Bridge builder who built 108 iron bridges throughout the Himalayas. Paro is at an altitude of 2,300 metres/7,500feet.

Check in at the hotel for lunch and rest.
In the afternoon we will visit Buddha Point one of the largest Buddha statues in the world at 169 feet /51.5 meters, completed in 2015. Inside the Buddha is a 7 storied temple which houses 100,008 eight inches smaller Buddhas and 25,000 gilded 12 inches Buddhas. It is surrounded by 943 acres of blue pine forest.
Option to enjoy a meditation inside the Buddha.
We will take a short walk to Kuensel Phodran Park for Thimphu Valley Views and a cup of tea or coffee.
There will be an option for some evening yoga practices.

Overnight at Hotel

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included

DAY 7: FRIDAY, 01 MAY THIMPU

There will be an option for some morning yoga practices.
After breakfast, we will start the day journeying to Zilukha to have the view of Trashichodzong, a magnificent temple. From here you can also see the small palace of the 5th king of Bhutan and see how the dzong is used by the monks and central government. Afterwards we will move on to visit a park to see Bhutan’s national animal the Takin and some art and craft centers to learn more about the Bhutanese traditions.
Lunch will be served at the Folk Heritage Museum Canteen. We will also take in the Folk Heritage Museum which gives very good perspective of traditional lives of Bhutan. Visit the National Textile Museum initiated by Ashi Tshering Pem wangchhuck, one of the four queens of the 4th king where traditional weaving techniques and designs are exhibited. You can also see women weaving the dresses and various vegetable dying methods are also displayed.
Free time to visit the Craft bazaar and Handicrafts Emporium.
In the afternoon we will experience a 2 hour teaching by a Bhutanese Lama either at his residence or in a temple on Buddhist Spiritualism.
Return to the hotel for Dinner and relaxation.

Overnight at Hotel

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included

DAY 8: SATURDAY, 02 MAY 2020 TO PUNAKHA

After breakfast we will drive to Punakha travelling through Dochula and descending down to visit Chemi Lhakhang a temple built in 1499 by Drukpa Kunley’s cousin in honor of subduing demoness at Dochula with his “magic thunderbolt of wisdom”. The visit is 20-minute walk from the road point along the terraced rice fields.
We will then continue to our hotel in Punakha and lunch here. Punakha is at an altitude of 1,200 meters/4,000feet.
In the afternoon we will visit Punakha Dzong known as the most beautiful dzong in the country. It has one of the best representations of paintings and building works and contains murals depicting the life history of Buddha.
We will hold a meditation inside the shrine.
There will be an option for some evening yoga practices.

Overnight at Hotel

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included

DAY 09: SUNDAY, 03 MAY 2020 PUNAKHA

There will be an option for some morning yoga practices.
After breakfast we will drive to Phobjikha with a lunch stop en route. We will arrive Gantey Gonpa, built in 1613 by grandson of Pema Lingpa who was the reincarnation of Pema Lingpa. It is used as the Buddhist institute for Pedling tradition and higher Buddhist studies. It is also the seat of present Gangtey Trulku, the body emanation of Pedmalingpa.
Option for a meditation inside the monastery.
In the afternoon we will take a 90 minute Nature Trail through the beautiful forests and wetlands of the Phobjikha valley.This valley is the only wetland closely associated with the protected black necked cranes of Bhutan.
Return to the hotel for Dinner and relaxation.

Overnight at Hotel

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included

DAY 10: MONDAY, 04 MAY 2020 TO PARO

There will be an option for some morning yoga practices.
At leisure until lunch. Drive after lunch return to Paro for dinner and relaxation.

Overnight at Hotel

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included

DAY 11: TUESDAY, 05 MAY 2020 TO KOLKATA, INDIA

Early morning transfer from to Paro airport for your flight to Kolkata by Druk Air Transfer to Hotel Astor. Rest of the day at leisure.

Overnight at Hotel Astor

Dinner included

DAY 12: WEDNESDAY, 06 MAY 2020 TO UK AIRPORTS VIA DUBAI

International departure from Kolkata by Emirate Airlines, arrive Dubai at 13:10 connect to UK regional airports.

Yoga And Soul Tour Of Bhutan

Tour Cost

The cost per person sharing a twin or double room£3690.00
Single room supplement £358.00
Cost Includes:
  • International flights in economy class on scheduled Emirate airlines via Dubai.
  • International flights between Kolkata-Paro-Kolkata.
  • Accommodation in sharing twin, double or single room with private facilities as mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Meal Plan: Full board arrangements in Bhutan. Breakfast and dinner in Kolkata.
  • A stone herbal bath in Paro.
  • All transfers and sightseeing by a private small coach.
  • Entry fee for monuments and places of interest.
  • Bhutan visa fee and Tourism Development fee
  • Services of a local English-speaking guide.
  • Services of Lindsey Porter – Yoga teacher
  • Teaching by a Bhutanese Lama
  • 100% protection of your payment by our ATOL & ABTA licenses.
Cost Does Not Include:
  • Visa fee for India. E-tourist visa is now available for India. After you have booked the tour, we will send you a step by step guide how to apply for an online visa for India.
  • Travel Insurance. Foreign office advises all overseas travellers to have a comprehensive travel insurance policy in place before departure. You may wish to take a quotation for your insurance from the link below: https://tagconnect.brokersure.com/step1?tr=indus_tours
  • Yoga Mat: please bring your own mat with you.
  • Any expenses of a personal nature
  • Tips and gratuities during the trip.
E :- enquiries@soulofindia.com          Call Us: 020 8901 7630
  • If you wish to book this tour, please complete the booking form, sign and e-mail it to us. A non-refundable deposit of £400.00 per person is needed at the time of booking. Balance payments will be due 8 weeks before departure. You can make the deposit payment by debit card or electronic transfers to our bank. Our bank details are on the booking form. Bookings are confirmed on first come first served basis.
E :- enquiries@soulofindia.com          Call Us: 020 8901 7630
  • It includes comprehensive medical and repatriation cover
  • It provides cover for your whole trip
  • It covers you for all activities
  • It covers all your pre-existing medical conditions
  • Keep your Policy Number and Insurer’s 24-hour Emergency Number handy with you
  • If you wish to book this tour, please compete the booking form, sign and e-mail it to us. A non-refundable deposit of £500.00 per person is needed at the time of booking. Balance payments will be due 8 weeks before departure. You can make the deposit payment by debit or credit card or electronic transfers to our bank. Our Bank details are on the booking form.

    To get a competitive quote for comprehensive travel insurance click here