Bhutan – the Land of the Thunder Dragon & Downstream Cruise
14 Nights
Price on Request
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Cruise & land prices are per person in a Superior Cabin (without balcony)

Airfare: Please call for special roundtrip airfares

Internal flights: Additional £775 per person

Single Supplement: please call for further details Visa: A valid passport and entry visa are required for travel to India. Please consult with your Consulate for more information

To upgrade to a higher category, add per person:
Superior Cabin (with private balcony) – additional £291
Suite (with private balcony) – additional £1039

At A Glance

What's Included

  • Pre cruise accommodation on a bed & breakfast basis
  • Life enriching tours and excursions
  • All entrance fees
  • All pre-cruise tours including Thimphu, Punakha Dzong Fortress, Taktsang Monastery Paro and more
  • Local village visits
  • Dhansiri boat safari
  • Entrace and tours of Kaziranga National Park
  • Tea estate visit
  • Jute mill tour
  • Majuli Island excursion
  • Buffet breakfast & lunch on board
  • A'la Carte dinners on board
  • Complimentary tea, coffee and bottled water during the cruise
  • Luxurious air conditioned cabins on board

What's Not Included

  • Gratuities.
  • International & domestic air fares.
  • Expenses caused by factors beyond our control like delays, political disturbances, taxes, lost luggage, etc.
  • Personal expenses such as laundry, telephone/fax calls, alcoholic beverages, camera/video fees, medical expenses, airport departure tax, travel insurance etc.
  • Any other services not mentioned in the inclusions.
  • Any further tax levied by the government of India
Day 1
Arrive Kolkata

Arrive at Kolkata International Airport where you will be met and escorted to your hotel. Overnight at hotel. (No meals)

Day 2
Kolkata / Paro by Flight & drive Paro / Thimphu (65 kms / 2 hrs)

Today you take a flight to Paro. The journey into the Himalayas reveals breathtaking views of the world’s highest peaks. Upon arrival, you will be met by your Bhutanese tour director and driven to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan. As afternoon turns to evening, visit Tashichhodzong, the beautiful medieval fortress/monastery. Overnight at the hotel. (B, L, D)

Day 3

The morning takes you on a sightseeing tour of Thimphu. Visit the National Library which has a vast collection of ancient Buddhist texts. Later, drive to the Painting School, famous for traditional thangkha paintings. You also visit the Traditional Medicine Institute, where centuries-old healing methods are still practiced. Explore the Textile and Folk Heritage Museum, a fascinating testimony to Bhutanese culture. After lunch enjoy the Handicrafts Emporium before driving to the Memorial Chorten, the stupa built in memory of Bhutan’s Third King. Overnight at hotel. (B, L, D)

Day 4
Thimphu / Punakha (Approx. 77 Kms / 3.5 hours)

With a short stop en-route at the Dochula pass, you drive to Punakha and check into your hotel. Later, visit the Punakha Dzong, the 17th century fortress which has had an important influence on modern Bhutan. Stop at a local market, before seeing the newly built stupa at Khamsum Yulley Namgyel Chorten. Drive to the nearby town of Wangduephodrang and visit the local market. The district is famous for its bamboo products, slate and stone carvings. Overnight at hotel (B, L, D)

Day 5
Punakha / Paro (Approx. 136 km/ 5 hours)

After breakfast, begin your journey back to Paro via Simtokha Dzong, which houses a school for religious studies. Arrive in Paro and check into your hotel. In the afternoon, visit the Ta Dzong, the National Museum of the Bhutan which holds a fascinating collection of art, artifacts and Bhutan’s exquisite postage stamps. Walk down the trail to visit Rinpung Dzong. Overnight at hotel. (B, L, D)

Day 6

After an early breakfast, leave for an excursion to the Taktsang Monastery. Non-Buddhists are not allowed inside the monastery however you can look on from a view point nearby. The hike to the view point is about 5-hour round-trip. This afternoon, drive north to the ruins of the Drukgyel Dzong. Visit a nearby Bhutanese Farm House which offers a good insight into the lifestyle of the local people. On the return, stop at the Kichu Lhakhang, one of the oldest and most sacred shrines in all of the Kingdom. Overnight at hotel. (B, L, D)

Day 7
Paro / Kolkata

This morning drive to Paro airport to board your flight to Kolkata. Upon arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Enjoy a guided tour of Kolkata including a visit to the Victoria Memorial, St Paul’s Cathedral and Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity. Overnight at hotel. (B)

Day 8
Jorhat, India

Transfer to the airport and board your flight to Jorhat (flight via Guwahati). On arrival at Jorhat airport, you will be greeted with smiling faces and a packed lunch, before driving to Neamati Ghat to board the MV Mahabaahu. Once you have checked into your cabin, gather for the essential safety briefing and sailaway. During this time, the team on board will encourage you to scan the river for a fleeting sight of the Gangetic Dolphins. As the evening comes, enjoy a welcome dinner and an educational talk about ‘Sibsagar and the Ahom people of Assam’. Overnight onboard MV Mahabaahu. (B, packed L, D)

Day 9
Sibsagar, India

After an early breakfast, start the day-excursion to Sibsagar, the ancient city and capital of the Tai-speaking Ahoms who arrived in the 13th Century from the north-east. ‘Sibsagar’ literally means ‘the ocean of Lord Shiva’ as it is built around a huge man-made water tank ordered by the Ahom Queen. You will explore the Shiva Dol, believed to be the tallest Shiva temple in India; the Talatal or Kareng Ghar, the Palace of the Ahom Kings; and the Rang Ghar, an amphitheatre which also held important meetings for the royals and their guests. After the tour of the town, drive to a tea estate and enjoy a traditional Assamese lunch with a family who have been involved in the teamaking industry for around a century. Return to the ship by sunset and enjoy a relaxed evening in

Day 10
Majuli Island, India

Start the day with the option of yoga or a walk along the swamps to catch sight of various birds including owls, eagles, storks and kingfishers. During breakfast, sail towards Majuli Island. On arrival, you will enjoy a talk about ‘Majuli’, the largest river island in the world, and an interesting cultural performance by Satriya singers and dancers. Next, drive to Kamlabari Satra to witness the Vaishnavite priests dancing to the rhythm of cymbals, drums and chanting in the temple premise. Savour a hot lunch on board and sail towards the nearest Mishing Village. The Mishing People live on the bank of the river in raised houses. Afterwards MV Mahabaahu heads towards Dhansiri Mukh. At this time, there will be a talk on ‘Assam, its geographical location & importance’. The evening will be spent under the stars on a deserted island. Overnight onboard. (B, L D)

Day 11
Dhansiri Boat Safari

Sail towards the Eastern Range of Kaziranga for a river safari. Enjoy breakfast and a talk about the ‘Brahmaputra and the life that surrounds it’. Whilst exploring in the tender boats, you may be able to spot the deverse wildlife along the water’s edge - this will, of course, be dependent on whether conditions,. Return for lunch and the afternoon brings a cooking demonstration by the chef followed by a talk on ‘Tea, Silk and Jute in Assam.’ Enjoy dinner on board and gather around a bonfire onshore. Overnight onboard. (B, L, D)

Day 12
Weaver’s Village at Bishwanath Ghat/Sail to Silghat

Attend an interesting talk on ‘Kaziranga and the wild life in India’ this morning, before heading to the shores of Bishwanath Ghat. Enjoy a walk through the village, meeting the local weavers, and see how this suburban village thrives. Afterwards, sail on for the next couple of hours and enjoy a relaxed lunch before you arrive in Silghat. Take a short drive to the Kaliabore tea estate, where you will watch the women pick tea leaves and discover the process behind producing Assam Tea. Returning to the ship, stop at a Jute Mill to understand how the Jute fibre is made into eco-friendly gunny bags. Enjoy a cultural evening on the ship, an early dinner and retire for the evening. Overnight onboard. (B, L, D)

Day 13
Kaziranga National Park, India

It’s an early start today as you drive out towards the Kaziranga National Park. The park is not only home to the fantastic greater one-horned rhino but as many as 180 more mammals including wild elephants, tiger, deer, buffalo and a rich variety of birds. You will get the opportunity to experience a once-in-a-lifetime elephant-backed safari as you go in search of these animals. After breakfast in Kaziranga, drive on to Bagori, the Western Range of the park, swap the elephants for a jeep and continue your explorations. Later, return to MV Mahabaahu for a leisurely lunch and a relaxed afternoon. The evening features a talk on ‘Kamakhya, the Occult and Peacock Island’ and is followed by a traditional Assamese dinner. Overnight onboard. (B, L, D)

Day 14
A Village Visit/Peacock Island

Yoga and breakfast are followed by the ship lifting anchor and heading towards an island that is occupied by a Muslim community who are involved in extensive farming. After visiting the village, return to the ship for lunch and sail towards Peacock Island, home to some golden langurs. Later, sail towards Pandu Port and anchor at a jetty. Get ready for the Farewell Dinner ‘AlvidaBhoj’ and enjoy a relaxed evening. Overnight onboard. (B, L, D)

Day 15
Guwahati, India

Enjoy a relaxed breakfast onboard whilst the crew organises your transport to the Kamakhya Temple - situated on the Nilachal Hill in the western part of Guwahati city in Assam. This Hindu Temple is devoted to the eternal feminine - the goddess of desire whose name is Kama Khya. It is an important pilgrimage destination for general Hindu and especially for Tantric worshipers. Bid farewell to your fellow passengers as you prepare for your onward flight. (B, packed L)