Tour of the Dragon Travel Package



    Tour of the Dragon Travel Packages
    Travel Packages for the 268K mountain bike event; Tour of the Dragon (TOD), are a unique opportunity to encounter the race and country from an ‘insider’s’ perspective. As a consultant to the TOD and the Bhutan Olympic Committee (BOC) and a past competitor of the TOD, Terri Schneider is intimate with Bhutan and the TOD course. She has customized your Travel Package specifically for this event while showcasing the beauty and cultural intrigue of western and central Bhutan.

    YOUR COMPLETE PACKAGE:
    Race and travel package designed just for the TOD. All inclusive package once you touch down in Paro, Bhutan. Race volunteers and those just along for the fun are all welcome!

    TRAVEL WITH AN EXPERT:
    Travel packages designed by Terri Schneider, endurance athlete, coach, leader of Expedition Bhutan, advisor to the Bhutan Olympic Committee (BOC), co-creator, sponsor and International Liaison of the Bhutan International Marathon (BIM) and participant and advisor of the Tour of the Dragon (TOD).


    Your 10-Day or 7-Day Tour of the Dragon Package Includes

    1. Potential Tours and Hiking Tours of; Dochula Memorial Site, Thimphu Dzong, Trongsa Dzong, Bumthang Dzong as well as several other temples and monasteries
    2. Hiking excursion to the stunning Taktsang ‘Tigers Nest’ Monastery and picnic lunch (10-Day Tour)
    3. Shopping and additional cultural tours in Thimphu
    4. Local English speaking and licensed tour guide throughout entire trip – hand picked by Terri
    5. Detailed travel gear list, customized for this trip
    6. Much more detailed information on traveling in Bhutan from an experienced expert
    7. Safe location to store your travel bike case during the tour and race
    8. Organization of bike rental, as needed, for the TOD (rental cost is additional)
    9. Transport of bike to start of the TOD
    10. Puja ceremony for our group at a local monastery—for a safe trip and successful Tour of the Dragon event (10-Day Tour)

    All land costs once you touch down in Paro which include:

    1. Airport transport from and to Paro airport
    2. All land transport once in Paro
    3. Visa Fees, travel fees and permits to temples and monuments
    4. All government travel tariffs
    5. All hotel accommodation (for hotel upgrades, contact Terri)
    6. All meals from arrival in Paro until departure from Paro

    TOD Package Does NOT Include:

    1. Race entry fees
    2. Bike rental or bike travel costs
    3. Any hotel or food costs en route to and from Paro, Bhutan
    4. Additional tips for local staff
    5. Personal drinks, snacks, laundry, alcohol and gifts
    6. Subsequent lodging beyond nights listed in itinerary
    7. Travel insurance (highly recommended) for this trip
    8. Charges incurred as a result of delays beyond the control of Terri Schneider and the Tour of the Dragon
    9. All flights to and from Paro, Bhutan.

    If you wish to pay directly with a bank transfer, credit card, PayPal, check or cash, please contact terri@terrischneider.net to make arrangements.

    IMPORTANT Payment, Cancellation and Additional Travel Information:

    1. Travel Package payments are paid in full 6-weeks prior to the date of arrival in Bhutan. It takes, at minimum, one month to process your Bhutanese visa.
    2. Due to limited flights per day, in order to get a flight into Paro on the date you wish, it is highly advisable to book this trip 2-3 months in advance. DO NOT DELAY.
    3. If flights are delayed due to weather conditions you are responsible for all food, accommodation and transportation costs prior to arriving in Paro.

    Booking Terms & Cancellation Policy
    Cancellation: A full refund, minus a $200 handling fee, can be given if cancellation is made on or before May 1, 2017. A 50% refund can be given if cancellation is received between May 2 and June 10, 2017. There are no refunds available after June 11, 2017.
    ——————————————————————————–
    You will NOT pay booking fees.
    Once you book this trip, we’ll send you much more information on completing your travel plans, what to bring, and what to expect when traveling in Bhutan.



    TOD 10-Day Itinerary

    Land Dates in Bhutan: August 26 – September 4, 2017

    Day 1: Arrival to Paro, Bhutan, and Transport to Paro Hotel.

    If the skies are clear you’ll be treated to some breath taking views of the highest peaks in the world including Mt. Everest, Makalu and Kanchenjunga. Paro stands at 7,500 ft. above sea level. You’ll be met by our Bhutanese hosts who will transfer you to our hotel in Paro. After lunch you’ll have the day free to wander, organize your bike, go for a ride, do some shopping or rest. Dinner and overnight in Paro.

    Summary:

    1. Airport pick up – transport to Hotel, Paro
    2. Lunch in Paro
    3. Hotel in Paro
    4. Dinner in Paro

    Day 2: Excursion to Taksang Monastery, Paro

    Today we’ll experience one of the highlights of your trip in Bhutan with an excursion to view the spectacular Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest) Monastery. After breakfast in Thimphu we’ll drive through Paro to Satsam Chorten and from there a do a two hour trek up to the viewpoint of the monastery. The trail climbs through beautiful pine forest, many of the trees festooned with Spanish moss, and an occasional grove of fluttering prayer flags. We stop for a rest and light refreshments at the Taktsang Jakhang (tea house) and then walk a short distance until we see, clearly and seemingly within reach, Taktshang Monastery. The first part was built around Guru Rimpoche’s meditation cave in the 1684 by the Penlop of Paro, Gyaltse Tenzin Rabgay. This incredible monastery clings to the edge of a sheer rock cliff that plunges 900 meters into the valley below. Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava (Guru Rimpoche), the tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan, flew here on the back of a flying tiger, Dorji Drolo, said to be his favorite consort. Lunch is served at the completion of the trek.

    Drive to Thimphu to spend the rest of the afternoon resting, sightseeing or shopping. Dinner and overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Paro
    2. Tea at Taktseng Overlook
    3. Picnic lunch at finish of Taktseng trek
    4. Dinner in Thimphu
    5. Hotel in Thimphu

    Day 3: Short ride, puja ceremony, sightseeing and shopping in Thimphu. Finalize bike gear for race.

    We’ll start the day with a short ride to loosen the legs before we head to one of the lovely monasteries perched atop a Thimphu Valley peak for a morning puja ceremony—for a safe trip and successful race. Then there are lots of sight seeing options in Thimphu! In-town options include a visit to the 169 foot Buddha Dordenma, the largest upright Buddha in the world, overlooking the entire Thimphu valley and the National Memorial Chorten built in 1974 in honor of the late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk. Or, visit the National Library, stocked with ancient Buddhist manuscripts, and the Handicraft School where traditional art is still kept alive through instructions in the art of painting Thangkas (sacred Buddhist religious scrolls). After lunch, you can check out the Traditional Medicine Institute where medicines are prepared according to ancient practices, and to Lungtenzampa to observe the Royal silversmiths and a Bhutanese paper factory at work. Other highlights include shopping for souvenirs in the shops of Thimphu.

    This will be our last day to store bike cases, rent bikes or acquire any last minute bike gear at local bike shops prior to our drive to the start line. Celebration Dinner in Thimphu at ZaSa Restaurant and overnight at the hotel in Thimphu.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Thimphu
    2. Lunch in Thimphu
    3. Celebration Dinner in Thimphu at ZaSa restaurant
    4. Hotel in Thimphu

    Day 4: Drive from Thimphu to Trongsa area via Dochula Pass.
    Approximate driving time: 7 hours.

    We’ll get an early start to a long day of driving by first heading over the most well known pass in Bhutan, Dochula Pass, located about 30 km away from the capital of Bhutan, Thimphu. The 108 chortens at Dochula were built by one of the Queen Mother’s to honor the Bhutanese soldiers who were killed when fighting the Indian rebels in 2003. Though Bhutanese have wanted to build these chortens to mark the victory of the Bhutanese army, the King has rejected this offer and instead uses the chortens to commemorate the deceased. Just before the long horse shoe descent and ascent into Trongsa we’ll catch a view of the impressive Trongsa Dzong perched on a cliff-side across a huge chasm. This Dzong is one of the most magnificent works of traditional Bhutanese architecture in the country. The Dzong was originally built in 1644 and enlarged at the end of the 17th century.

    Once we leave Thimphu on our drive to the start line of the TOD, we will be heading backwards on the TOD course, so you will have an opportunity to experience the course in full, within the comforts of our bus.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Thimphu
    2. Drive to Trongsa
    3. Lunch Enroute
    4. Dinner in Trongsa
    5. Hotel in Trongsa

    Short ride, drive from Trongsa to Bumthang, the start area of the Tour of the Dragon.
    Approximate driving time: 2 hours.

    We’ll start the day with a short ride to stretch our legs. On our drive we can relax and enjoy more of the TOD route and Bhutan’s stunning geography. Our final driving destination, Bumthang Valley and the sprawling town of Jakar, is the location of the start of the Tour of the Dragon. Our final day of driving is geographically and culturally interesting as we move through several villages and as the vegetation changes up before opening into a broad and long valley. It is rare to find large quantities of flat land in Bhutan and Bumthang Valley harbors a large portion of it.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Trongsa
    2. Drive to Bumthang
    3. Lunch in Bumthang
    4. Dinner in Bumthang
    5. Hotel in Bumthang

    Day 6: Short ride and sightseeing in Bumthang. Race prep, pre-race briefing.

    Today we have most of the day to prep for the race, go to the pre-race briefing, meet with His Royal Highness, the President of the Bhutan Olympic Committee, walk around town, sightsee at the Bumthang Dzong, check out the local beer or cheese maker shop and nap.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Bumthang
    2. Lunch in Bumthang
    3. Dinner in Bumthang
    4. Hotel in Bumthang

    Day 7: Rest day in Bumthang

    Race bag pick up, then rest in preparation for late night start of the upcoming event.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Bumthang
    2. Lunch in Bumthang
    3. Dinner in Bumthang
    4. Hotel in Bumthang

    Day 8: TOUR OF THE DRAGON START! Finish line in Thimphu.

    The race starts at 2:00AM on this day.

    1. Light meal at the hotel prior to race start.
    2. Ride from Bumthang to Thimphu
    3. Dinner in Thimphu
    4. Hotel in Thimphu

    Day 9:  Rest day and touring in Thimphu.

    Today is our last day to shop or view a Thimphu highlight that we missed on our prior day here. Lots of options available.

    1. Breakfast in Thimphu
    2. Lunch in Thimphu
    3. Celebration Dinner in Thimphu at ZaSa restaurant
    4.  Hotel in Thimphu

    Day 10: Paro Departures

    1. Breakfast in Thimphu
    2. Transport to Airport

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    TOD 7-Day Itinerary

    Land Dates in Bhutan: August 28 – September 3, 2017

    Day 1: Arrival to Paro, Bhutan, and Transport to Paro Hotel.

     If the skies are clear you’ll be treated to some breath taking views of the highest peaks in the world including Mt. Everest, Makalu and Kanchenjunga. Paro stands at 7,500 ft. above sea level. You’ll be met by our Bhutanese hosts who will transfer you to our hotel in Paro. After lunch you’ll have the day free to wander, organize your bike, go for a ride, do some shopping or rest. Dinner and overnight in Paro.

    Summary:

    1. Airport pick up – transport to Hotel, Paro
    2. Lunch in Paro
    3. Hotel in Paro
    4. Dinner in Paro

    Day 2: Drive from Thimphu to Trongsa area via Dochula Pass
    Approximate driving time: 7 hours.

    We’ll get an early start to a long day of driving by first heading over the most well known pass in Bhutan, Dochula Pass, located about 30 km away from the capital of Bhutan, Thimphu. The 108 chortens at Dochula were built by one of the Queen Mother’s to honor the Bhutanese soldiers who were killed when fighting the Indian rebels in 2003. Though Bhutanese have wanted to build these chortens to mark the victory of the Bhutanese army, the King has rejected this offer and instead uses the chortens to commemorate the deceased. Just before the long horse shoe descent and ascent into Trongsa we’ll catch a view of the impressive Trongsa Dzong perched on a cliff-side across a huge chasm. This Dzong is one of the most magnificent works of traditional Bhutanese architecture in the country. The Dzong was originally built in 1644 and enlarged at the end of the 17th century.

    Once we leave Thimphu on our drive to the start line of the TOD, we will be heading backwards on the TOD course, so you will have an opportunity to experience the course in full, within the comforts of our bus.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Thimphu
    2. Drive to Trongsa
    3. Lunch Enroute
    4. Dinner in Trongsa
    5. Hotel in Trongsa

    Day 3: Short ride, drive from Trongsa to Bumthang, the start area of the Tour of the Dragon.
    Approximate driving time: 2 hours.

    We’ll start the day with a short ride to stretch our legs. On our drive we can relax and enjoy more of the TOD route and Bhutan’s stunning geography. Our final driving destination, Bumthang Valley and the sprawling town of Jakar, is the location of the start of the Tour of the Dragon. Our final day of driving is geographically and culturally interesting as we move through several villages and as the vegetation changes up before opening into a broad and long valley. It is rare to find large quantities of flat land in Bhutan and Bumthang Valley harbors a large portion of it.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Trongsa
    2. Drive to Bumthang
    3. Lunch in Bumthang
    4. Dinner in Bumthang
    5. Hotel in Bumthang

    Day 4: Short ride and sightseeing in Bumthang. Race prep, pre-race briefing.

    Today we have most of the day to prep for the race, go to the pre-race briefing, meet with His Royal Highness, the President of the Bhutan Olympic Committee, walk around town, sightsee at the Bumthang Dzong, check out the local beer or cheese maker shop and nap.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Bumthang
    2. Lunch in Bumthang
    3. Dinner in Bumthang
    4. Hotel in Bumthang

    Day 5:  Rest day in Bumthang – Race prep, pre-race briefing, sightseeing and touring in Bumthang.

    Race bag pick up, then rest in preparation for late night start of the upcoming event.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Bumthang
    2. Lunch in Bumthang
    3. Dinner in Bumthang
    4. Hotel in Bumthang

    Day 6: TOUR OF THE DRAGON START! Finish line in Thimphu.

    The race starts at 2:00AM on this day.

    Summary:

    1. Light meal at the hotel prior to race start.
    2. Ride from Bumthang to Thimphu
    3. Dinner in Thimphu
    4. Hotel in Thimphu

    Day 7: Paro Departures.

    Summary:

    1. Breakfast in Thimphu
    2. Transport to Airport

    Booking Terms & Cancellation Policy

    Cancellation: A full refund, minus a $200 handling fee, can be given if cancellation is made on or before May 1, 2017. A 50% refund can be given if cancellation is received between May 2 and June 10, 2017. There are no refunds available after June 11, 2017.

    book

    You will NOT pay booking fees.

    Once you book this trip, we’ll send you much more information on completing your travel plans, what to bring, and what to expect when traveling in Bhutan.