Laya Lingshi Trek 17 days

This 17-day trek, though rigorous is quite popular because it traverses a great cross section of Bhutan as it winds from the Paro valley in Bhutanese middle hills, up to Laya and Lingshi in Northwest Bhutan which are situated above 13000 feet.

This is off the beaten trail, not many trekkers take this  way into Laya, though one of the most culturally and ecologically pristine regions in the long arc of the Himalaya. The scenery along the way, passing the elegant Mount Chomolhari is awe-inspiring with views of alpine landscape with snowcapped mountains and mirrored crystal lakes dotted with yak hair tents of the migratory yak herders.

The trek begins after a short drive to the trailhead and passes through rhododendron forests and the Soi valley, home to Blue Sheep, Takin and Musk Deer, to Jangothang for unobstructed views of Mt. Chomolhari (24,000 ft.) and Mt. Jichu Drake (22,880 ft.) and on to the region of Lingshi, Bhutan’s highest administrative region. Heading north west from Lingshi we cross the Shinche La, the highest point of our trek at 16,420 ft. and trek towards the village of Laya which is located at the foot of Mt. Gangchen Ta (22, 290 ft.) affording us a good view of Mt. Masang Gang (23, 602 ft.)

Spend a day at Laya where the women wear long yak-hair costumes and strange, conical hats quite unique in Bhutan. Descend to Gasa and its hot springs where you can soak away the rigors of your trek before ending the trek at Tashithang and driving back to Thimphu and Paro.

This trek is truly off-the-beaten-track to remote villages where tourists are rare sights and a unique opportunity to witness first hand Bhutanese culture in this remote corner of an already remote country.