Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations
19.10.2016 - 19.10.2016 21 °C
For some reason I find it difficult to sleep in. The expectation for the day ahead gets me up and going - I only wish I could bottle this and take a dose each day when I get home. We have the packing routine down pat by now and after another lovely breakfast at the Dhensa Resort, we are on the road by 8.30am. I didn't feel that the road had improved but at least this time it was not raining.
Could not resist another stop at Dochu La pass as we both loved the views and wandering around the memorial chortens. Naturally there were a few more photos taken just in case we missed something the first time through.
Nearing Thimphu we made a short stop to visit the Simtokha Dzong, said to be the first dzong built in Bhutan. Strategically built on a projecting ridge with deep gullies, the Simtokha Dzong overlooks the Thimphu Valley.
Reaching Chuzom where the Paro Chhu and Wong Chhu meet, we stopped and walked over the bridge spanning the rivers. Because Bhutanese traditions regards such a convergence of rivers as inauspicious, there are three chortens here to ward off evil spells in the area. Each chorten is in a different style – Bhutanese, Tibetan and Nepali. Whilst waiting here, I witnessed my first Bhutanese road accident, a minor incident thankfully.
It was not long until we arrived in Paro where we stopped first for lunch. Today's restaurant was pretty ordinary which is more the norm than the exception. In fact, we have been very disappointed with a lot of the meals we have been served. The lack of choice being the biggest annoyance and we wished we could just have a simple sandwich or hamburger on some days.
Following our lunch we toured the National Museum, which didn't do much to spark my imagination although the views from its location at the top of a hill were impressive. Next stop was Paro Dzong, a quick tour here, interesting history but I was feeling too weary by this stage to take it all in.
Arrived at the Kichu Resort and went to check in. The room we had requested was not available and they allocated us the worst room in the resort - Room 23 - which not only faces the most ordinary wall, but is right by the highway - the two things we had wanted to avoid. There were several rooms not yet occupied but they refused to let us move to one of them. Thankfully our travel co-ordinator from Enchanting Travels contacted us when she found out about the situation and somehow we were finally able to move to a better room with a garden view. Turns out another guest disliked the hotel so much that they refused to stay here.....maybe we should have done the same. Whilst our room was in a better location, it was still very ordinary and had seen better days. Thankfully it had a reasonably comfortable bed and running water.
We cut our losses and headed for the bar before dinner. Several other groups congregated here and it made for a convivial atmosphere. Tonight's buffet was mostly Indian dishes and we found it very good. We returned to our room following dinner to prepare for tomorrow's hike to the Tigers Nest Monastery, praying for good weather for what we hoped would be the highlight of our tour.