Travelling a few extra miles and pushing the stereotypical geographical boundaries, enable you to feel the intrinsic nature of a place in the true sense. It was during our stay in Thimphu, we were offered to do cycling in the countryside of the capital city of Bhutan. What better way to be in the lap of nature when you have the luxury of exploring it at your own pace.
As the car moved away from the capital, the landscape started changing slowly, from a bustling city to a more scenic and solitude surrounding. With the curvaceous road, the gushing Wang Chu River became our constant companion.
It took approximately 30 minutes in covering 15 km to reach the base point of TANGO AND CHERI MONASTERIES. Very few travelers opt for a day’s hike to these monasteries, which are located right at the top of the hills, overlooking the valley. Though, it looked quite inviting to trek to the monasteries, but due to our fixed itinerary, it was not possible.
The sound of the river and the fluttering prayer flags on that wooden bridge definitely makes you stop there to appreciate the beauty of the surrounding.
After spending a few minutes strolling around that area, my fellow travelers started riding the cycles allotted to us.
Though me and one of my fellow traveler friend (Manjulika) opted to take a walk, instead of cycling. It turned out to be the most exclusive and enthralling experience of the entire trip.
Me and Manjulika Pramod
We started walking through the dense forest along with the unstoppable Wang Chu River. I enjoyed this whole process of slow travel, soaking in the beauty of pristine nature. It was rather blissful.
Every few kilometers, we used to meet our fellow travelers who were cycling and took pit stop here and there. Catching up with them, resting and again starting our journey was absolute fun. I also crossed path with a few locals.
While they were a bit surprised seeing us, I could only appreciate their presence at that time. The best part of the walk was the luxury of time. Though while exploring this remote part of Thimphu , it seemed as if everything was at standstill.
The presence of abundant stupas, and the painting of Guru Ringpoche on the rock not only reminded me about the deep rooted belief in Buddhism of the people of Bhutan, but it certainly paints Bhutan as one of the most sacred countries as well.
While walking and talking endlessly, we lost track of the actual road that led to the city. We got stuck near the wooden bridge, from where there were two roads leading to two different directions. With no idea about the roads and no one to even guide us, we looked completely clueless. At that moment, I tried talking to one of the Bhutanese old woman, who was crossing the bridge to go to the other side.
But unfortunately we both could not understand a single word due to our language barrier. After my failed attempt to communicate, we decided to cross the bridge to find out the right direction towards the city and luckily a few meters ahead, we met the rest of the group who were waiting for us. It was undoubtedly a memorable take away from that day.
The walking trail not just took me to the most secluded and unspoiled part of the capital , but introduced me to the unseen Thimphu. What I saw was nothing less than a painting.
Check these blog posts on Bhutan here
My Trip to Bhutan was planned and sponsored by Bhutan Bookings.
- Always go with a local to explore the offbeat part of Thimphu.
- Wear comfortable and appropriate clothing while walking , trekking or cycling there.
- Carry water bottles.
- Pay respect to their religious sentiments.
- Don’t create noise.
- Don’t litter the place.
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