Location: Jakar and Chumey Gewogs (Bumthang), Drakten Gewog (Trongsa)
Season: April-May and October-November
Duration: 4 days; start at Wangdicholing Palace and end at Kuenga Rabten Palace (or vice versa)
Tourist Profile: healthy/fit; young or old; enjoys moderate hiking/walking combined with sites and stories on history and culture
The highlights of this trek will be Wangdichholing Palace in Bumthang and Kuenga Rabten Palace in Trongsa. The trek follows along the path used by Bhutan’s Royal Family in the past.
Day 01: Wangdicholing Palace-Domkhar Tashichholing Palace.
The trek begins from Wangdicholing Palace (2600m) in Bumthang with a gradual ascend towards Jakar dzong, and further to Kikila pass (3948m). You could make a visit to the historical Wangdicholing Palace and Jakar dzong depending on time at your disposal.
After about four and a half hours trek from Wangdicholing, you will reach Seou Zheysa (Lunch Spot), which was the actual lunch spot used by the Royal Family in the past.
The campsite (Makhagthang) on the banks of Duegang Chhu is a three hour downhill walk from Kikila and stands at an elevation of 2908m. It is just about half a kilometer from Domkhar Tashichholing Palace.
Day 02: Domkhar-Jamsapang
The hike begins with the crossing of Duegang Chhu after which the trail is mostly uphill. A climb for about three and a half hours will take you to Dungmai Jab, located at an altitude of 3678m. This will be your lunch spot.
After walking for about two hours uphill from the lunch spot, you will reach Jamsapang, which stands at an elevation of 4019m. Tungli La (pass) is just a few minutes away from the campsite.
Day 03: Jamsapang-Bjobshisa
The day begins with a slight ascend towards Tungli La (4039m). From here, one can feast on the beauty of the snow peaked Black Mountains sandwiched between Bhutan’s southern foothills at the left and the greater Himalayan range at the right.
The trail from Tungli La is a gradual descend leading you to your lunch spot. Another two hours brings you to the third campsite, Bjobshisa, a place used by local cattle herders during the summer/monsoon season.
Day 04: Bjobshisa-Kuenga Rabten Palace
Descending all the way, the trail from Bjobshisa to Kuenga Rabten Palace takes about four hours. The Palace was the winter residence of the Second King and his junior consort and stands at an elevation of 1774m. At the back of the Palace is an ideal camping ground overlooking the valley and Mangde River.