Nabji Korphu Trek

Duration: 10 nights/ 11 days, Elevation: 1,500m
Highest Camp1,500m
Best Seasons: October – April
StartTongtongphey (Trongsa)
Finish: Reotala (Trongsa)

This one week trek offers a short, easy and enjoyable journey around scenic Trongsa Dzongkhag. The climate is warm and pleasant as the trail stays between 1000-1500m in altitude and there is a wide array of flora and fauna observable along the route including the rare Golden Langur, Red Pandas, Himalayan Black Bears, Rhesus Monkeys, Rufous-necked Horn bills and Clouded Leopards.

Hikers on this trek will have plenty of opportunity to experience traditional rural life as they will spend nights in the villages of Nabji, Korphu and Nyimshong. Nabji is an idyllic village surrounded by verdant paddy fields and the villagers of Korphu are famed for their hospitality. 

 Day 1: Arrival in Paro, Paro to Thimphu (65 km-1.5 hours)

Arrive in Paro by druk air, the only national carrier. The flight offers you beautiful view of mountains and landscapes. Upon arriving the Paro Valley and after completing visa formalities, you will be met by Gawaling Tours & Treks’ representative at the airport. We will then drive to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan for sightseeing.

Day 2:  Thimphu to Trongsa (199 km-8 hours)

We will have early breakfast and then drive to Trongsa, a district in central Bhutan. The journey would take us 8 hours by car. First we make a gentle climb to Dochula Pass (3050m). Next, descend to Wangdiphodrang and cross over the Pelela Pass (3300m). On clear weather, we should be able to see the view of a chain of mountains bordering Tibet to the north. Overnight in a hotel.

Day 3: Trongsa to Tongtongphey to Jangbi village (Total distance: 7-9.5 kms, 3-4 hours, altitude range 1,000m – 1,350m)

After an early breakfast at your hotel, you could afford some time to strut around the Trongsa town, combining it with a visit to the Dzong and also the Ta Dzong. A 2 hours’ drive from the town along the Zhemgang highway brings you to the start of the Trek, Tongtongphey. You could also augment your itinerary along the way, with a visit to Kuenga Rabten palace, an important heritage in Bhutanese history. 

Day 4: Jangbi village to Kudra village (Total distance: 13-14.5 kms, circa 6 hours, altitude range – 1,350m – 1,500m)

The morning allows you to further interact with the Monpas. Before you proceed, you could also pay a visit to the orchid garden that fences about 75 different kinds of orchids till your thirst for botanical photography gets satiated. The hike to Kudra provides a nuance of jovial atmosphere because this part of the trail meanders along stone imprints of Guru Rinpoche’s footprints, dagger and phallus, festooned by stories that espouse Guru’s praxis. En route, you traverse another small Monpa village called Lekpogang, after which, the campsite in Kudra is just an hour’s walk. The campsite offers a bird’s-eye-view of Nyimshong village and also the Zhemgang town.

Day 5: Kudra village to Nabji village (Total distance: 11-14 kms, circa 5-7 hours, altitude range – 1,500m – 1,300m)

You wake up with the distant call of the Rufous-necked horn bill. This part of the trek is a collage of streams, waterfalls and thick forests that will give you an invigorating feeling of being out in the wild. The Great Himalayan Squirrel, Rhesus Mecaques, and small snakes are often spotted along the trail. Unseen but present, are Himalayan black bear, Red pandas, tigers, Clouded leopards et cetera. Nabji is a beautiful village where paddy fields seem to circumambulate the clustered houses.

Day 6: Nabji village to Korphu village (Total distance: 11-14 kms, circa 5-7 hours, altitude range – 1,500m – 1,300m)

En route to Korphu, the Nabji temple is located in the middle of the paddy fields. Inside, there remains a stone pillar on which Guru Rinpoche, while traveling through Bhutan in the 8th century, brought consensus between the warring kings: King Sindha Gyelp of Bumthang, and King Noeche, by imprinting their thumbs on each side of the stone. A unique festival is celebrated sometime in early January at the temple grounds. Korphu is situated on a mountaintop at an altitude of 1,500m.

Day 7: Korphu village to Nimshong village (Total distance: 11-12 km, circa 4-6 hours, altitude range – 1,500m – 1,300m)

The hike from Korphu to Nyimshong is the pleasant and arguably the best birding spot which can boast a bird list of more than 395 species. The elusive Rufous Necked Hornbill has its nesting holes adjacent to the trail. The walk is mixed with waterfalls and, streams and cantilever bridges. The evening brings you to Nyimshong, a village with its reticent architecture and lifestyle

Day 8: Nimshong village to Trongsa town (Total distance: 5-6km, circa 2 hours, altitude range – 1,300m – 1,000m)

If you are lucky, the Golden Langurs will lead you to the exit. You descend down to the Mangdi River again to see some Herons and River-lapwings. An hour’s steep ascend to the road and your driver will drive you back to Trongsa.

Day 9: Trongsa to Punakha (142 km-6 hours)

After breakfast, drive towards Punakha. On reaching Punakha, we begin our explorations of Punakha valley with a visit to Punakha Dzong, located between two rivers. It serves as the winter residence for the central monastic body. Next, visit Wangdiphodrang Dzong built in 1638 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal and then take a hike to Chimi Lhakhang, the monastery dedicated to Lama Drukpa Kunley ” Divine Madman” knows for his outrageous behavior. Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 10: Punakha to Paro (142 km-3.5 hours)

After breakfast drive to Paro, en-route Thimphu.  Afternoon, visit Ta Dzong (watch tower) that houses the National Museum. The museum has an interesting collections of different costumes and thangkas from various parts of Bhutan. After Museum visit, Kichu Lhakhang, one of the two oldest monasteries built in Bhutan by the King of Tibet, Songtsen Gampo in the 7th century.

Day 11: Departure

After breakfast drive to the airport for departure.

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