Dubbed as the happiest country on Earth, Bhutan is one of those magical places that delivers a genuine and authentic experience reserved for the undiscovered destinations of this world. Tucked between India and Tibet and resting at the foothills of the Himalayas, Bhutan is bound to offer its visitors spectacular views at every step.
The remote glaciated Gangtey Lodge provides a perfect springboard to Himalayan adventures with world-class luxury to return to at day’s end. Travelers can experience the unique adventures of Gangtey Valley with the Gangtey Lodge thrill-seeking 3-day itinerary, aimed at the intrepid traveler. Whether it’s mountain biking or hiking, spiritual experiences or complete relaxation, Gangtey Lodge has it all covered.
The 12 beautifully appointed guest rooms, each with their own cozy fireplace and spacious private bathroom, reflect the rich cultural heritage with warm fabrics and earthy tones. Heated hand cut stone floors and deep bathtubs next to wood burning stoves complete the sense of luxury and coziness. The stunning main lodge subtly captures the vibrancy of Bhutanese artwork and monastic design, complimented by the murals and carvings created local artists and masons reflecting images and landscapes from the valley.
Start your day with breakfast at the lodge, followed by a day of relaxation at the lodge or a walk down to the Gangtey monastery, just 5 minutes away from the Lodge, as you have probable traveled far to get here.
But not too much relaxation as you have an afternoon mountain bike ride in the Gangtey Valley let by the guide, Namgay, who will show you the best areas to catch the beautiful sunset. Once you’ve got your workout in, come back to the lodge to enjoy a delicious dinner on the outdoor patio.
This is the day when things really start kicking into gear so make sure you eat a hearty breakfast before getting in the car to drive to Pele La Pass and begin the 3-4 hour Longtey Hike to Gangtey. The hike takes you through a wild rhododendrons forest and offers spectacular views over Gangtey Valley.
For lunch, enjoy a carefully curated picnic at a remote meditation hut followed by a traditional game of archery against some of the lodge staff.
At the end of the day of adventure and discovery, guests are invited to experience a Bhutanese hot stone bath, a traditional Bhutanese Dotsho, at Gangtey Lodge Bhutan’s new Hot Stone Bath House and a sixty minute massage. After such an active day, you deserve some relaxation.
The treatment starts with a foot scrub for a gentle exfoliation, followed by a luxurious de-stress massage, using warm aromatic oils. Your muscles are continuously massaged along with gentle stretching, which encourages you to relax and assists in toxin removal from the body. Relieving physical and mental stress transmitted in daily life, this therapy offers renewed energy and encourages repair and renewal to all systems of the body. The massage will be followed by a Traditional Bhutanese hot stone bath which is meticulously prepared by heating river rocks over an open fire and then sprinkled with local medicinal plants and herbs from the valley. It is believed that the heat from the water, the minerals released from the rock and the local herbs all combine to produce medicinal benefits for joint pains, stomach disorders, arthritis, hypertension and many other minor diseases.
Don’t forget to ask for a glass of champagne to enjoy with your views of the Gangtey Valley below.
Wake up before sunrise to bike down to the valley floor and watch the Black-necked Cranes wake up from roosting. The Black-necked Cranes of Bhutan are the most mysterious and the last of the 15 species in the world to be discovered. They are endemic to the Tibetan Plateau and migrate to lower altitudes, in autumn and winter). Phobjikha Valley is one of the best places for bird-lovers to spot this amazing species with over 10% of the world’s total population gathering there. The Black-necked Crane is revered in Bhutan as a symbol of longevity and the annual migration is a cause for great celebration, as residents mark the passing of another year against the arrival of these famously long-living birds.
Following breakfast, take a morning Gangtey Trail Hike down to Khewa Lhakhang. Visit the black-necked crane center and monastery on the drive back up. The Black-necked Crane center performs invaluable work in ensuring the protection of their roosting areas, educating the locals & tourists of the importance of the cranes to the valley and in providing care & shelter for an injured Black-necked Crane, Karma.
In the afternoon, cycle up to Lawela Pass and enjoy the sun setting over the snow-capped Himalayas before returning to the lodge for yet another delicious dinner.