we both found the trip to be “very satisfying”. This was our first trip to Bhutan, and one day it would be lovely to return to explore the country more.
Person Name Donald J S & Amy B
From New York City, USA
Travelled with us on we both found the trip to be “very satisfying”. This was our first trip to Bhutan, and one day it would be lovely to return to explore the country more.
Travelled Date Oct 23,2008
Guide Karma Lethro
Dear Kinga & Chimi, We hope that you are both well and it was a pleasure to meet you. Thanks again for the very kind gift of the kira, it was a lovely thought. We’re now safely back in New York, going through our photographs of our trip and recalling the wonderful time which we enjoyed in our time there. It has taken us a little longer than planned to provide you with feedback, but we hope that this is still useful to you both.We considered it best to provide you with our consolidated feedback via e-mail, and we believe we’ve covered all of the requested feedback areas from the questionnaire which you provided us with.
Staffs: During the Pre-trip; Ugen in Minnesota Office was exceptionally helpful and very responsive to all of our questions. He was invaluable in planning our itinerary. We were provided with adequate information prior to departure and our few last minute questions were responded to efficiently.Both Karma and Gudu met us on arrival and instantly made us feel welcome. Karma was a very good guide – he was very knowledgeable, answered our queries, carried out the itinerary as planned, and was flexible when required to be so. He was punctual and always looking to help us enjoy and get the most out of our trip.Gudu was also always punctual and drove very safely on some difficult roads. The vehicle was quite comfortable for the two of us, though we did get a bit more comfort from the jeep we had on day 1 of the tour, before we switched to the WindHorse van.
Itinerary: With the time we had available, the itinerary worked well for us. We felt that we covered a lot of ground and a lot of sights each day, without feeling that we were particularly rushed at any time. We found the detail contained in the itinerary to be very useful – we liked the short paragraphs on each of the sights that we were visiting. We were able to add to this by using our own Lonely Planet guidebook and also, of course, Karma’s knowledge.
Accommodation: In Paro, the Gangtey Palace was our favorite hotel of the trip. It had a great location and we loved the traditional style of the accommodation. On our second night there we were put in the suite (Room 212), which was a beautiful room. The only downside to this was that there appeared to be some unseen opening in the room to the outside, such that we were inundated by mosquitoes for the night. Hot water was available and breakfast / dinner standard was acceptable, As a side note, Karma was helpful in arranging the hot stone bath for us here, which was an excellent experience. In Punakha, we stayed in the Zangdopelri hotel. The location and views were excellent, but we found the cleanliness of both the room bed linen and towels and of the table cloths / napkins to be really poor. Myself and Amy have both traveled widely and are well used to staying in accommodation which is not necessarily “Western” standard, however, we both believe that basic hygiene standards should be met, regardless of location. Breakfast and dinner options were okay. The bathroom was old, but functional. In Thimphu, the Hotel Riverview was in a decent location, a short walk from the main town center. We ate only breakfast here as we dined out both evenings, and the standard was the best of the trip. The hotel and rooms were functional, rather than being particularly “Bhutanese”, but we understood this is a “modern” hotel. Our room was clean, but we did struggle to get any constant supply of hot water to shower with. For all hotels, the staff service was good and friendly and we were well looked after with an endless supply of tea!
We believe the above covers most of the main points of feedback, but please e-mail us with any follow up questions that you have, if you there’s something you’d like our thoughts on.
Once again, thank you for all of the WindHorse team’s assistance, both before and during our tour. We had a wonderful time and will be recommending to our friends that a visit to Bhutan is a unique experience. In all, to answer one of your questionnaire questions, we both found the trip to be “very satisfying”. This was our first trip to Bhutan, and one day it would be lovely to return to explore the country more.
Bhutan Tour Sept 22, 2008