Our journey to Paro from Thimphu was very scenic. On both sides of the road, there were a number of old disintegrating buildings, I read somewhere that the Bhutanese consider a house inauspicious to move into once all of the people living in that house die. Hence, the house is left vacant and eventually just falls apart.
The cleanliness and beauty of Bhutan is also something I loved. Unfortunately, we get to see less of that in India…
Personally, I found Paro to be an even better and more amazing experience than Thimphu. I have always preferred more calm and quieter places over the ones buzzing with activity. Paro provided me with that happiness and contentment that I relate few places with.
If you’re travelling to Bhutan, my suggestion would be that you stay in Paro for sure! It’s a quaint little town which will bowl you over with its beauty. On our first day here, we went crazy over food and tried lots of new dishes – Kewa Datshi (I loved this!) and many more. We also visited the museum here which was shifted to another building after a fire broke down some years ago and destroyed the earlier building.
There wasn’t much to see at the museum but the view from where it was situated was beautiful. We also visited Rinpung Dzong after the visit to the musuem. The place is majestic, however do make sure you have full sleeved clothing on. I had a T-shirt on when I reached this place and since I had no jacket or scarf that I could use to cover my bare arms, I wasn’t allowed to enter. So, I waited for my friend to first take a round of the place and then come out to give me his jacket. Only after which I could enter The walk from the Dzong to the Paro Chhu river nearby is pretty, try walking down to it if possible. Also a walk next to the river is something I will strongly recommend! The river is beautiful and it’s soothing to walk next to it and observe the people of Paro and the scenery around.
We saw some interesting paintings and art around the city too 🙂
The next day was very eventful. We forgot to pack any breakfast for ourselves the previous night and had to leave early morning for a trek to the Tiger Monastery. As we thought there will be a couple of shops from we will be able to buy something to eat before the trek begins, we didn’t worry about it much. Once we reached the place from where the trek starts, however, we were disappointed. There were no shops here, not even to buy water from.
So we began our trek hungry and with hardly any water bottles. I didn’t carry my camera to this trek as the aim was to keep as less stuff with us as possible since we had to climb a lot plus we already had our jackets with us. We were completely exhausted and our stomachs were grumbling like anything by the time we reached half way.
Halfway through the trek, there is a cafeteria. We were looking forward to it. By then, the guys had left us behind and there were only 2 of us extremely hungry girls pulling ourselves ahead somehow. The guys had some biscuits in their bags but since they climbed much quicker than us and disappeared along with them and the water bottle, we had nothing with us. As the cafeteria is extremely expensive, we only ended up purchasing several water bottles here and nothing else.
If you’re going on this trek, do take some refreshments along and definitely eat something and go. By the time we had covered three-fourth of the way to the monastery, we were half dead because of hunger and exhaustion. However, we ended up speaking to this amazing Bhutanese man who when he found out we were terribly hungry gave us some super tasty cheese sandwiches and a piece of boiled potato. What an awesome person! I wish I had taken down more of his details. I had noted down his name somewhere but I lost that 😦 Turned out we had a few things in common including the city – Dehradun where he’d studied and my family lives. It’s people like this who when you meet once in a while reinstate your belief in humanity and goodness.
Anyway, we completed the entire trek in around 6-7 hours including the times we sat down to rest and craved for food 😀
The next day we left for home – India. I wish I could have stayed in Bhutan for longer. I loved this country. It is beautiful, peaceful and Indian money can be used here easily 😀
If you’ve not visited this country, do go here for sure! And if you can afford it (I’m considering you’re travelling from India), take a flight till Paro (the only international airport in the country), you’ll get to see the Himalayas and I have heard they look beautiful from above ❤
Bhutan was a lovely experience. Although I lost two important things here – one of my earrings (which had more of an emotional value than monetary) and my wallet, complete with all my cards (debit, pan card, driving license), photos and obviously money; I also lost another – my heart! It’s a beautiful country with a very interesting and unique culture. All this makes it a must visit. And while you’re there please do keep an eye out for a light brownish Baggit wallet with a dark brown bow on top, it might just be mine! 😛