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My recent trip to Bhutan with Soul Trips was undoubtedly an expensive venture

My recent trip to Bhutan with Soul Trips was undoubtedly an expensive venture, considering the daily spend, visa fees, and airfare. It is not possible to visit this country unescorted and there has to be a guide and a driver assigned. (Even if you are 1 person) Booking and paper work was settled very quickly by Sangay. It was fuss-free and he responded to our queries promptly. The premium price tag was justified by the exceptional service and experiences provided by the company. One of the standout aspects of our trip was the excellent guide arranged by Soul Trips. Suraj, our guide stood out for his attentiveness and proficiency in English. He not only efficiently managed the standardized itinerary, which seemed common among various travel companies but also enriched our journey with stories about the places we visited. Perhaps it was winter, but some evenings concluded as early as 5 pm. There is a standardized dinner time of 7-9 pm as well. Instead of dropping us back at the hotel directly, our guide took time to show us around town showed us less touristy areas to shop at before dinner. There is limited choice for meals. Everything, from seating arrangements to menu choices, was pre-determined. While this rigidity may appeal to certain travellers, it left little room to experience the authentic local cuisine. The predominantly Westernized palate of the meals was explained by our guide, who mentioned that most travellers cannot handle the local cuisine. However, our guide went above and beyond to accommodate our(my) preferences, even making special requests for local delicacies to be served at the side. The experience of sampling authentic, spicy Bhutanese dishes, like chilli and cheese, was a highlight. The planning of the entire trip, from accommodations to transportation, was a luxurious experience. The spacious and beautiful hotels, along with the provision of comfortable cars with assigned driver, contributed to the overall sense of a truly private and exclusive exploration of Bhutan. It was nice to communicate without a language barrier, (not sure if it was a good thing for our guide), but the long drives allowed for lots of questions and exchanges to happen. It was nice to learn about the way of life of regular folks in Bhutan, topics like education, politics, etc... Super illuminating. Towards the end of our trip, we chose to dine out instead because the hotel did not allow the drivers and guides to dine with guests. We ran into some issue regarding the differing exchange rates of large and small USD notes, but the experienced guide from Soul Trips swiftly resolved the issue amicably. Bhutan is a beautiful and pristine country with breath-taking landscapes. Tiger's Nest was what we came for but we left with alot more than that, the Dzongs are amazing, the people are beautiful, and more importantly the local food is quite good. (This farm-to-table-table place). When Bhutanese say their food is spicy, just take their word for it, but personally it was a level that was still manageable. Soul Trips delivered a luxurious and well-organized trip through Bhutan. They had a standard programme, but the guides were accommodating and tied in unique experiences (Like shopping but avoiding places that charges tourist prices, having a side game of archery after lunch, sampling the local moonshine and tasting beers at a local brewery.) and outstanding service that made the expense worthwhile.

  • Marcus Liew

    December 2023
  • From

  • Guide
    Suraj Gurung (Soul Trips)

  • Hotel
    Namgay Heritage, Namgay Heritage, Namgay Heritage

  • Rating

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