Paro is flooded with natural beauty. Its well preserved traditional Bhutanese houses add to the beauty of the place. The valley is dotted with countless sacred sites and amazing attractions. The valley’s geographical constitution also offers choices for adventurists to explore a multitude of activities like trekking, hiking and many more. Among all the amazing things to do and see in Paro, we have listed the 10 most popular ones.
Tiger’s nest or Taktshang Monastery is located in Paro valley and is considered as one of the most popular attractions in Bhutan. Legend has it that a great Buddhist master Guru Padmasambhava rode atop a flying tigress to where the monastery stands today. He is said to have meditated in a cave for many years. A hike to this monastery is a must do activity for every visitor to Bhutan. Hikers are driven to the base of the monastery where horsemen with their horses await their arrival. The hikers can then choose to either hike till the monastery or even hire a horse and ride to the monastery. But if you are healthy enough to walk then hiking through lush pine forest on the well-maintained trail will provide the best experience. Also, once at the top, you can enjoy the panoramic view of the whole Paro valley below. The monastery is located at 900 meters off of the ground. The most amazing feature of the monastery is that the monastery has been built on a bare cliff.
Beautiful two storied traditional houses lined up in a row of two; stretched along the 100 meters main road makes up the Paro town. The town bags the title of being the most beautifully preserved towns in Bhutan. While storefronts have been fashioned into a modern-day style, the body of the house remains old and boasts of traditional architectural design. Handicrafts shops and decent Cafés are plenty in this part of town. The handicraft shops have some really amazing collection of souvenirs, trinkets or gifts to be taken for your loved ones back at home or simply something for yourself to remember Bhutan by. The cafés serve some decent coffee to go with some yummy pastries and after all coffees and cakes make everything better.
Paro Rinpung Dzong is located close to the Paro International Airport. A traditional cantilever bridge takes the visitors over the Pa Chu to the magnificent fortress. Although in olden times, fortresses were built as defense forts to fight invaders, now they are used as the district administrative office and the resident for the monk body. The fortress was initially named Rinchengpung Dzong which means a fortress built on a heap of jewels. The fortress now is known as the Rinpung Dzong which is the shorter version of its initial name. The popular Paro Tshechu is also held at its courtyard. The amazing architecture of the fortress has made it one of the most popular attractions in Paro.
The national museum is located just right above the Paro Rinpung Dzong. It was initially built as a watchtower to protect the Dzong in 1649. Watchtowers in ancient times were built as circular structures. The tower has now been turned into a national museum and is a major tourist attraction. The museum has some really interesting ancient artifacts on display including old Thangka paintings, pots, and pans from the 17th century, antique guns along with some rare things like stone ax dating back to Stone Age and an egg laid by a mule etc.
Paro is a beautiful valley dotted with traditional two-storied houses. It offers its guests with the opportunity to experience authentic Bhutanese village life. Spending a night at a homestay can be the best way to experience a typical village life in Bhutan. Some engaging activities include cooking and sampling local traditional food with the family of the house, learning how to play local games like archery and traditional dart. Some prefer strolling along the pretty paddy fields around the village and some enjoy trying their hand at farming. The best part about the homestay is at day end you can request the family for a hot stone bath session. The hot stone bath is the perfect way to unwind and relax after an adventurous day.
Anyone wishing to travel to Bhutan must book their tour with an authorized travel agent in Bhutan according to the tourism policy of Bhutan. Travel agents of your choice will help you with the visa processing and all the other necessary documentation. You are required to make an advance payment of your booked tour which is set on a daily tariff of $250 per person/per night during peak seasons and $200 during lean seasons. The tariff rate includes a 3-star accommodation, three meals a day, all ground transportation and an English speaking tour guide along with a driver.