I`m still amazed by what I was able to experience. I´ve never expected anything like this. It was one of the best countries I´ve seen and experiences I´ve made. I`m very grateful I was able to do this journey.
A big Kadrinchhe la to you and to Wind horse for putting this together for me. I always felt it`s very professional and I know it was the best choice for me to chose Wind horse. I already recommended Wind horse to some other friends and people.
The Itinerary For me, everything was just perfect. Even though the schedule was quite tight from the way I used to travel, I never felt in a hurry or that I´m missing something. I felt like I was able to see the most important parts and getting a good feeling for every place we`ve been. I liked that we had 2 nights in Haa at the beginning and 3 nights in Bumthang at the middle of the journey. It gave me some more time to experience more and to rest. And those 2 actually where my favourites – probably also because they were a little more remote places. I loved the Haa Valley and most of it the Chele La Pass – it was so impressive to see the snowy himalayan peaks, to talk with monks preparing for a puja and just standing there in the middle of hundreds of prayer flags.
It seemed like we were always at the perfect time at the right places. I think it just happened (like everything else in Bhutan) – but this I loved the most: At every sight or place, even the most famous ones like the tiger`s nest, we were there when almost nobody else was.
For the Tiger`s Nest we just went after noon so when we went up everyone else came down (cause most of them started in the morning). So by the time we reached the Tiger`s Nest only a few people were there and on the way back we were almost the only ones. Even in Bumthang and at the festival, I was so surprised to feel and see the importance of this festival to the locals and that the festival is for the bhutanese and not the tourists (like it`s happening in some other countries).
Most important for me were the hikes, the spiritual life and to be more off the beaten tracks – I got all of this. We were even able to do more hikes then in the itinirary.
Thanks to my Guide Pema I was able to get more off the beaten track. We got in touch with many locals, we visited his sister and lama cousin. That was so special.
In general, the range was quite big. From very simple to very nice. Again, everything was perfect for me the way it was. Just some more detailed Feedback for you, that might helpful for other guests:
Just as I told you, after my long flight the Haa Homestay was a littel tough for the first night with the cold nights and no shower. But in the end, even this was perfect for a real bhutanes start. I also loved that, besides the nice bhutanese family there, I was able to meet lovely tourists who stayed there as well.
My highlight was the Mountain Lodge in Bumthang. I think it was one of the nicest hotel rooms I ever stayed (I think I got one of the best rooms with windows to every side and spectacular views). The only minus was the same westernized toast/egg-breakfast for 3 mornings.
The Gangtay Guesthouse in Phobjikha wasn`t the best. For me it was fine for this 1 night and I know you gave it to me because it`s so near to the monastary, which was perfect (I was there completely alone with the monks in the morning – that was very special). Maybe just for future tourists it`s not the best choice. There I was fighting the most with the cold night. Another couple who arrived at the same time changed the accomodation because they didn`t like it at all and we changed the place for dinner because the guides said the kitchen didn`t look too good.
For the YT Hotel in Phunaka: it was the hotel with the worse wifi (and of course there I really needed it to arrange some things for Nepal), the rooms were simple and the army started very early with some training which was very close and very loud. The food was very good there and I liked it was a smaller hotel.
The Hotel in Paro where we met (I forgot the name) was also very nice.
Guide (Pema) and Driver (Thinley)
I`ll start with the Driver Thinley, cause he impressed me the most. He is only 22 but so responsible and the best driver I`ve ever had. I was very glad you prepared me for this tough road from Bumthang to Phobjikha and also other tourists told me it will be very tough. So in the end I didn`t think it was too bad 🙂 I Actually had a much worse bus ride in Nepal. Anyway, Thinley did an amazing job on that road, I felt very safe with him.
The only thing to mention is that he is very shy to speak english, but I think it`ll get better the more tours he is doing, he is still young.
Pema was a very good guide. He managed everything great and was very caring. On our flight to Bumthang I found out it was his very first flight. He was so grateful that you gave him the chance to do this. This was also very special for me – so thank you for letting him fly with me and giving him this opportunity.
Actually this was the thing I was worried about a little since I never did a organized tour before where I needed to be with guide and/or driver all the time. After getting used to it in the first days I appreciated it a lot. I didn`t have to think about anything – that`s why it was probably one of my most relaxing travel so far.
The first days I had some problems with the altitude. I know how it feels like from previous travels, but maybe it`s good to inform tourists, who don`t know how it`s like. Of course the Guides don`t know how it feels since they’ve been growing up there.
It was very nice to see you in person. Thanks for taking that time and thanks for the book – I`m still reading it and love it. Takes me back and let`s me think about ways to be back in Bhutan 🙂