India: Arrival in Kolkata
Today you’ll be collected from the airport in Kolkata and transferred to a charming hotel packed with character in the city centre. Your room is comfortable and tastefully decorated, and you’ll very quickly feel at home. The rest of the day is free for you to explore Kolkata at your own leisure, enjoying the warm temperatures and delicious food of West Bengal. Why not visit the Kali Temple or grab some world famous food?
Bhutan: A Taste of Thimphu
Today you’ll travel to your comfortable hotel in Thimphu. Your hotel is right in the heart of the city, walking distance from souvenir shops, bars and cafes. Thimphu is an interesting city which encapsulates Bhutan’s juxtapositions of old and new and reputedly the only capital city without traffic lights. In the evening you’ll head out to a local restaurant to cook up your own traditional dinner.
Bhutan: Warm Welcomes & the Mighty Dzong
Now it’s time for a glimpse of life in the Bhutanese countryside. After crossing the prayer-flag laden pass of Chelala you’ll arrive amongst the lush greenery of the Punakha Valley where you’ll spend the night in a small hotel just outside the town. The next day you’ll walk through rice fields and visit one of the most beautiful monasteries in the country; the Punakha Dzong.
The colourful towers and white walls of this characteristic building form a striking contrast to the emerald green scenery and turquoise rivers. Next you’ll travel by car into Bhutan’s countryside, arriving at a local bed & breakfast late in the afternoon. This is where you’ll spend the night. The accommodation is simple and functional and you’ll have your own private room. This is a real opportunity to get a glimpse of Bhutanese village life.
Bhutan: Winding Trails to Tiger's Nest
On arrival in the charming town of Paro you’ll be taken to your typical Bhutanese hotel. You’ll have plenty of time to explore the town and try your hand at a spot of archery. After your first night you’ll begin your hike to Tiger’s Nest Monastery perched on the side of a 3000m cliff. A holy atmosphere pervades the area where only the creaking of prayer wheels and occasional gust of wind can be heard.
India: Rhinos and Tea Leaves
Sip on local tea and spot the Great Indian One-Horned Rhinoceros in Assam. Sleep in a jungle lodge, take a jeep safari and stay with a leading planter family amidst endless tea hills. Assam is a rarely-visited region of India, rich in natural beauty, wildlife and more tea than you could ever imagine. During this trip, you’ll spend one day on safari in Kaziranga National Park, scouring the floodplains for tigers, monkeys and sambar deer in the early morning light. Next, you’ll head for Jorhat, the second largest city in Assam, to learn all about the local art of tea planting, picking and drinking on the slopes of the surrounding tea hills.
India: Colour and Culture in Kolkata
You’ll return to the same hotel in Kolkata that you stayed in earlier. The following morning you’ll be picked up by your guide in an air-conditioned car. You’ll head out on a tour of the city, visiting all the main sites, including BBD Bagh and St. John’s Church. Next, you’ll head to the Hoogly river and see the famous bridge before ending the tour at the colourful flower market. Here, you’ll see locals trading and get a real insight into daily life here. At the end of the afternoon, you’ll be dropped back at your hotel where you’ll spend another night.
A peek at your accommodation