Bhutan: A Himalayan Idyll

Apr 24 - May 7, 2020
$9,890per person, twin share (land content only). $1,695 supplement for sole use of a hotel room.

Tour Leader

Zara Fleming
  • Tour Info
  • Inclusions
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In the mountain kingdom of Bhutan, progress is measured in Gross National Happiness, not wealth, and mass tourism is not welcome. This philosophy, together with ancient traditions and a pristine environment in the foothills of the Himalayas, create a unique travel destination which appeals equally to the mind, the eye and the spirit. For centuries Bhutan existed in self-imposed isolation and has only recently opened to visitors.

Our 14-day ADFAS tour takes you across the country at a gentle pace, visiting remote mountain monasteries, examining local arts and crafts and marvelling at the scenery. UK-based tour leader Zara Fleming is a highly experienced tour leader to this destination, and her expertise is known to Australian ADFAS members from her popular lecture tours here. Zara will unlock Bhutan’s secrets, increasing your enjoyment and understanding. Her local contacts will ensure experiences that are beyond the reach of most travellers.


  • Magnificent Himalayan scenery with remarkable flora and fauna, including Rhododendrons which are native to the region
  • Centuries-old traditional culture – ranging from archery to monasticism – rooted in Buddhist practice and still authentically practised today
  • The deep spirituality of the Bhutanese people, whose outlook on life is very different from westerners
  • Traditional arts and crafts, including weaving, painting and architecture


  • The Takstang (Tiger’s Nest) Monastery, Bhutan’s most famous site, perched on the side of a cliff 3000 ft above the Paro Valley
  • Bhutan’s 17th century fortresses, or ‘dzongs’, scattered across the country
  • The Tashichoe Dzong in the capital Thimpu, one of the most spectacular buildings in Asia
  • Revered Buddhist painting and sculpture in shrines, monasteries and galleries
  • The dramatic Dochu La pass (3140 m), with its magnificent views of the Eastern Himalayas
  • The valleys of Bumthang, cradle of Bhutanese civilization

A detailed itinerary for this tour is available. Click on the link above to view or download.

Your Tour Leader

Zara Fleming is an art historian, exhibition curator\ and lecturer specialising in the art and culture of Tibet, Bhutan, the Himalayas and Mongolia. She has 30 years’ experience travelling to Bhutan.


Days 1-3: Arrive Paro and tour the 17th century Rinpung Dzong before heading to Thimphu, the capital.

Days 4-5: Enjoy great scenery as we cross the Dochu La Pass to the Punakha Valley, our base for two nights.

Days 6-7: More fine mountain scenery as we drive to Trongsa, situated on a steep ridge and offering spectacular views.

Days 8-9: Enjoy traditional life in the Bumthang area.

Days 10-14: Return to Paro via Wangdi. We’ve saved the best until last: the temple of Dungtse Lhakang and the Tiger’s Nest Monastery.

A detailed itinerary for this tour is available. Click on the link above to view or download.

Getting There

We recommend flying to Bangkok, with an overnight stop before joining a Druk Air flight direct to Paro. Please contact us for quotes.

Tour Inclusions

What is included in the tour price? 
Unless otherwise stated in the itinerary, our tours include the following:

  • Any flights mentioned in the itinerary that take place during a tour
  • Land travel by private air-conditioned coach. Where appropriate public transport is also used for short distance travel on some tours
  • All accommodation in hotels or apartments as stated in the itinerary
  • Breakfasts, lunches and dinners specifically stated as included in the itinerary
  • Drinks at welcome and farewell meals. Other meals may not have drinks included
  • Background talks on tour, site notes and online resources
  • Services of tour leader throughout tour
  • All entrance fees to sites mentioned in the itinerary
  • Local guides at some sites
  • Tips for drivers, local guides and restaurants for included meals

Airport Transfers

Tours begin either at the arrival airport or the first hotel, depending on the itinerary. If you have booked your international flights with Academy Travel and arrive before the tour commences, we will provide airport to hotel transfers to the closest main city on your arrival, and to the closest airport at the end of the tour. These may be either individual or group transfers.

What is not included in the tour price?
Open-age tours do not include the following:

  • Return international/domestic air travel unless those flights take place during the tour
  • Special taxes and airport levies that can only be paid in cash at the destination. We will advise you of these charges (if any) before you depart
  • Costs involved in obtaining visas for countries visited, where required
  • Travel insurance. We require all participants to have comprehensive travel insurance. A typical policy for one of our tours will cost from $160 upwards, depending on your age, pre-existing medical conditions, the countries you are visiting and the overall length of your trip
  • Lunches and dinners not specifically mentioned as included in the itinerary
  • Personal expenses such as laundry and phone calls
  • Costs associated with any activity mentioned as “optional” in the itinerary, or any suggested free time activity

Booking conditions

You will be asked to sign an acknowledgement of these conditions when you book a place on a tour.


A deposit of $500 per person is required to confirm your booking on a tour. Final payment of the tour fee, insurance and any additional travel will be due 60 days before departure.

Cancellation Fees

If you decide to cancel your booking the following charges apply:

  • More than 60 days before departure: $500*
  • 60-45 days before tour start: 25% of total amount due
  • 44-15 days before tour start: 75% of total amount due
  • 14 days or less before departure: 100% of total amount due

*This amount may be credited to another ADFAS Travel tour within 12 months of the original tour you booked.

Unused Portions of the tour

We regret that refunds will not be given for any unused portions of the tour, such as meals, entry fees, accommodation, flights or transfers.

Travel Insurance

ADFAS Travel requires all participants to obtain comprehensive travel insurance. We offer a comprehensive policy with a reputable insurer if required.

Passport and Visa

A valid passport is required for all international travel. If you do not hold an Australian passport you may require a re-entry permit. Some countries require a visa to be issued before you depart Australia. We will advise you of all passport and visa requirements, but it is your responsibility to ensure that you meet passport and visa requirements before you depart.

Will the tour price change?

If the number of participants in a tour is significantly less than budgeted, or if there is a significant change in exchange rates ADFAS Travel reserves the right to amend the advertised price. If this occurs you will be given the option of cancelling your booking and obtaining a full refund. If an ADFAS Travel tour is forced to cancel you will get a full refund of all monies paid.

Will the itinerary change?

Occasionally circumstances beyond the control of ADFAS Travel make it necessary to change airline, hotel or to make slight amendments to daily itineraries. We will inform you of any changes as soon as they occur.

Final Payment

Full and final payment for the tour, airfare travel, insurance and any additional travel you book is due 60 days before departure. Payment may be made by bank deposit, cheque, cash or credit card. Please note there is a surcharge for payments made by credit card.

ADFAS Travel reserves the right to decline the booking or terminate the holiday of any traveller.

Online Booking

Bhutan: A Himalayan Idyll Apr 24 - May 7, 2020

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    A non-refundable deposit of $500 per person is required to confirm your place on tour

Register your Interest

A detailed itinerary for this tour is not yet available, and as such we're not accepting bookings for this tour at this time. If you would like to be notified when places become available, please register your interest. We will email you an itinerary as soon as it’s available.

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Online Booking

Apr 24 - May 7, 2020
$9,890per person, twin share (land content only). $1,695 supplement for sole use of a hotel room.

Tour Leader

Zara Fleming


View or download a detailed itinerary for the ADFAS Bhutan tour April 2020 itinerary


Tour Consultant

For further information or to secure a place on this tour please contact:

Kathy Wardrop 02 9235 0023
or 1800 639 699 (Outside Sydney)
(outside Sydney)