The pristine Himalayan wilderness of Central Bhutan hosts a wealth of the kingdom’s most diverse and fascinating flora and fauna. Explore a mystical land of dragon-inspired fortresses captivated in folklore and legend, where indigenous tongues celebrate endangered species and rolling alpine hills give way to glacial mountain ranges.
On the edge of the Black Mountain National Park lies the vast glacial valley of Phobjikha, with fields of marshland, potato crops and dwarf bamboo. Yak-herders inhabit the mountains, Himalayan black bears roam the hills, and the locals speak ‘Henke’. Observe the miraculous sight of migratory black-necked cranes circling the Gangtey Monastery, an event celebrated with masked dancers at a three-day festival.
East of Phobjikha, the gateway town of Trongsa (“new village”) perches in the mountains, linking eastern and western Bhutan. Marvel at the Trongsa Dzong, its staggered levels resembling a flying dragon, and once the home of kings.
Heading further east, the mountainous district of Bumthang (“beautiful field”) combines four beautiful valleys: Ura, Chumey, Tang and Choekhor. It’s a land brimming with rich heritage and legacy, with myths of hidden sacred scripts and auspicious fortresses. Visit the restaurants of Jakar, try the locally farmed apple juice, or shop for woven wool – the Chumey valley is renowned for it.