Enjoying The Seasons

Bhutan can be enjoyed in any season even though the climate is extremely varied and therefore difficult to generalise due to the dramatic altitude differences of the land and the influence of the north Indian monsoons. However it can be broadly categorised as follows:

Spring starts early March and lasts till May. The weather is ideal, truly a spectacular time with rhododendron blooms peaking in March and April.

Summer is June to August and with it comes heavier falls of rain in the afternoons resulting in lushed green meadows, gushing rivers and streams and cascading waterfalls.

Autumn is September to November and is characterized by bright, sunny days and some early snowfalls at higher elevations. Himalayan vistas are at its best in October. Autumn is also when most of the festivals (Tshechus) take prominence.

Winter sets from late November to February. It is coldest in December and January with snowfalls common above elevations of 3,000m. Paro (where the international airport is located) and Thimphu (the capital) normally experience only light dustings of snow.

Peak seasons are Spring and Autumn, so March to May and September to November are the busiest months for tourist arrivals. Some congestion is to be expected at major tourist attractions and sights.

Enjoying Places of Interest – 1 Day Tour

Tiger’s Nest:

The hike to Taktshang Monastery (Tiger’s Nest) is an unforgettable experience thanks to its unique location and the views of surrounding majestic mountains and emerald green valleys. The main peculiarity of the monastery is its isolated location perched on the edge of a cliff. It is only accessible by mountainous paths – so wear good hiking shoes. The remote location of the monastery makes it amazingly beautiful and unique, that is why it is a must visit for all first timer visitors to Bhutan. After the hike, there are many good reasons to celebrate:  We completed it, we walked off 2,600 calories it was exhilarating, it was a picture that was worth a thousand words,  we persevered and accomplished it.

“WALKING IS A MAN’S BEST MEDICINE” ~ HIPPOCRATES

 

Haa Valley:

Another exploration of a scenic part of Bhutan often missed in favour of the more iconic landmarks of Paro, Thimphu and Punakha is Haa Valley. This valley located further west of Bhutan and the Paro District has snow even in early spring and so you can get  treated to a fresh fluff of snow and a snowball fight. The valley also offer great treks like Haa Valley-Saga-La- Drugyel Dzong Trek and Haa Valley-Nub Tshona Patta Sho-Rigona Trek.

“IN EVERY WALK WITH NATURE ONE RECEIVES MORE THAN HE SEEKS.” ~ JOHN MUIR

 

Tango Monastery:

This hike takes about  40 minutes to an hour to reach it but it is a good preparation for  Tiger’s Nest (most Bhutanese guides would bring you here first before Tiger’s Nest for reasons of acclimatization). It sits at an elevation of 2,600m above sea level, and the trail is easy to follow as there is a well laid concrete path to the monastery which is now the Buddhist College of Bhutan. Photo opportunities are plentiful with young novice monks but be advised to seek their permission before snapping away.

“ALL THE WORLD IS MADE OF FAITH, TRUST, AND PIXIE DUST.” ~ J.M. BARRIE, PETER PAN

 

Talakha Monastery:

This is another exhilarating hike which starts from Simtokha Dzong and the trail goes through apple orchards . The main challenge is that much of the 9km walk comprises 700m ascent; however you’d be handsomely rewarded with stunning views of Thimphu Valley and the Himalayas. At the top, an elevation of 3,050m above sea level, it can be very windy and chilly but young monks play kind hosts with hot tea and yummy biscuits (the cold weather likely plays a big role in whetting your appetite and makes everything including the humble cream cracker tastes soooooo scrumptious). If you are not up to the entire challenge, drive part of the way on a newly constructed road and then set off on foot.

“OUR FEET ARE OUR BODY’S CONNECTION TO THE EARTH.” ~ ANDREW WEIL