Phunaka, BhutanPhunaka, Bhutan

Phunaka valley – hiking along a path our guide did not yet know

I open an eye. Twilight outside. Dawn is slowly giving changing the pitch black outside into a grayish. Getting lighter by the minute.

It’s early morning. My eyes are still adjusting after waking up. But the sounds outside reveal, we are at the country side. Forest close by.

I slept very well on the mattress on the floor in a farmhouse in the Phunaka valley. There is already some activity outside. Time to get up…

Breakfast on the “terrace”

Our guide Tenzin is already helping our host to setup the breakfast tables outside. A bit improvised, but what a view over the valley. Clouds slowly lifted while the sun is coming up.

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Trongsa, BhutanTrongsa, Bhutan

Trongsa – travelling back in time into a valley going crazy

I saw excitement, sparkling eyes and at the same time a reverent expression in the face of our guide Tenzin, when he spoke to a local monk in a monastery at the entry of the Trongsa Valley. It was joy, but not just joy. Maybe a little similar to a small boy waiting at Christmas Eve to be allowed to see the tree with all the candles and the strong believe that Santa is about to bring some presents…

The big excitement: the blessing

So what was this all about? β€œA blessing is being held at the Dzong tomorrow.” was the explanation. β€œIs this blessing something special to the people?” I wanted to know. β€œYes, very special! The monk is very famous. There will be a lot of people. It will be difficult to park the car.” Difficulties to park the car seems to be a global topic, even in a remote valley in Bhutan. β€œNo problem at all to walk. Will it still be possible to visit the Dzong then?”. Since the Bhutanese people are very open to visitors, it did not seem to be any problem at all. So we were curious.

The next morning, the atmosphere was somehow busy but at the same time very calm and patient.

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Gangtey valley, BhutanGangtey valley, Bhutan

Gangtey valley, farmhouses and a special walk to another festival

The city of Thimphu faded away behind us. We set off to explore the countryside of Bhutan.

Roads are always spectacular in this mountainous country. But today leads us above the Dolchua pass. 108 stupas in the front. The horizon dotted with several 7000+ meter high snow-capped mountains.

Arriving at the highest point of the road, we see the stupas. But where are the mountains?

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