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Arrival in Paro

Paro Travel Blog

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View of the Himalayan mountains from a distance

Flight from New Delhi to Paro was to depart at 5am in the morning but we were already at the airport by 2am waiting for the Druk Air counter to open and to get our seats on the left side of the plane. Being the second in the queue, we got what we wanted and the next three hours were spent trying to catch some sleep in the noisy airport with uncomfortable seats.

The two hours flight to Paro was by far my most enjoyable flight. It was still dark when the plane took off in Delhi. As we progressed towards Paro, the horizon lit up from a golden line of sunrise to a crystal clear blue sky and then the Himalayan mountains came into sight. First the lower peaks and then flying past the 8,000m peaks including a clear view of the mighty and majestic Mount Everest.

Lhotse Peak (8,514m) on the left side
Being a great lover of mountains, I really appreciated the opportunity to see that magnificent view.

“If you see us flying extremely close to the mountains on the descent, don’t worry - this is the normal procedure.”

The pilot’s voice crackled on the plane’s public address system as we approached Paro.

The plane seemed to aim straight for one of the mountain faces and then made a wicked left turn to approach the narrow flatland of Bhutan’s Paro valley. The plane landed perfectly at Paro Airport - Bhutan sole’s air field and one of the most beautiful in the world. Mountains straddle the landing strips and the airport building in traditional Bhutanese style which looks more like a temple!

Clearing immigration was an eye opener.

Mount Everest with its north ridge on the right side. Lhotse on the left side
There was no computer at the immigration, only yellow folders segregated by alphabets where the approved tourist visas were retrieved and verified before the passports were stamped and being allowed into the country.

As we drove through downtown, it was a feast for the eyes to see almost all the Bhutanese people dressed in their colourful traditional costumes, Gho for gents and Kiras for ladies. The mood everywhere was light and happy as the entire week was public holiday due to the annual major event - Paro Tsechu (Festival) which had attracted tourists from worldwide.

We joined the locals at the festival ground for the Day 4 event - The Dance of the Lord of Death & His Consort. It is believed that merit is gained by attending these religious festivals and the dances invoke the deities to wipe out misfortunes, increase luck and general personal wishes. It was quite interesting to see the festival.

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View of the Himalayan mountains fr…
View of the Himalayan mountains f…
Lhotse Peak (8,514m) on the left s…
Lhotse Peak (8,514m) on the left …
Mount Everest with its north ridge…
Mount Everest with its north ridg…
Approaching Paro Airport
Approaching Paro Airport
Arrival in Paro Airport with mount…
Arrival in Paro Airport with moun…
Paro Airport building
Paro Airport building
Druk Air
Druk Air
Druk Air logo
Druk Air logo
Monk on festival ground
Monk on festival ground
Paro Festival
Paro Festival
4th Day of Paro Festival - Dance o…
4th Day of Paro Festival - Dance …
Paro Tsechu - Day 4 Dance
Paro Tsechu - Day 4 Dance
Bhutanese at the festival ground
Bhutanese at the festival ground
Leaving festival ground
Leaving festival ground
Rinpung Tzong & Taa Tzong
Rinpung Tzong & Taa Tzong
Paro
photo by: Kanya