Neykor - A Journey of Spiritual Immersion in Bhutan

5.0 / 5.0 2 Reviews ( Read Reviews )
  • Meditation by River

    Meditation by River
    Day 4 - Afternoon meditation by the Tashithang riverside

  • Buddha Point

    Buddha Point
    Giant sitting Buddha overlooking Thimphu

Who is this trip for?

Bhutanese are often considered the happiest people in the world. Would you like to learn more about how they handle stress? What is the role of meditation in your daily life and how can it help you? Why do Bhutanese hang beautiful colorful prayer flags all over the country? We have the trip just for you!

Your only chance to join a tour led Dr Karma Phutso, an imminent thought leader on Bhutan and Buddhism. He led just one tour last year and will only be leading one tour this year.

A special program led by Dr Karma Phuntsho, author of 'History of Bhutan', who completed his Tibetan Buddhist monastic training in Bhutan and India before he joined Balliol College, Oxford, to read Sanskrit and Classical Indian Religions.

About Dr Karma Phuntsho

Dr Karma Phunto is the author of History of Bhutan, the most complete tome on the history of Bhutan. He completed his study in Oxford and is the first Bhutanese Oxbridge Fellow. His dissertation was published in a book entitled Mipham's Dialectics and the Debates on Emptiness. His main interest is the preservation and promotion of Buddhist and Bhutanese culture. He has spent the past few years digitizing Buddhist manuscript and leading Lounden Foundation.

(Dr) Lopen Karma Phuntsho is the Director for Shejun Agency for Bhutan’s Cultural Documentation and Research. He was a Research Associate at Department of Social Anthropology and Spalding Fellow for Comparative Religions at Clare Hall, Cambridge University and a researcher at CNRS, Paris. Dr Phuntsho finished full Tibetan Buddhist monastic training in Bhutan and India before he joined Balliol College, Oxford to read Sanskrit and Classical Indian Religions. He received a D.Phil. in Oriental Studies from the University of Oxford. He was also a visiting fellow at Harvard, a lecturer at Ngayur Nyingma Institute, Mysore and acting abbot of Shugbseb Nunnery, Dharamsala before he joined Oxford.

Dr Phuntsho’s earlier works were in Buddhist philosophy, epistemology, Tibetan language and religion. His current researches focus on Bhutanese historiography, socio-cultural changes in Bhutan and intervention through education, books and manuscripts in the Buddhist Himalaya and the exploration and preservation of Bhutan’s cultural heritage. He is a leading expert on Bhutan and the author of several books and numerous articles. He founded the Loden Foundation, a charity to promote education and entrepreneurship in Bhutan.

Find out more about Dr Karma Phuntsho here.

Day 1

     Day 1 : Welcome to Bhutan

Elevation 2,320 m     Weather in Paro

Welcome to Bhutan, The Land of the Thunder Dragon, and the Land of Gross National Happiness.

Neykor means pilgrimage in Dzongkha - ney [གནས] refers to a place or holy place, kor [སྐོར།] means to go around. Be welcomed by Dr Karma and allow him to introduce the outline of the programme. During the trip, we will be having daily morning meditation and breathing exercise and after dinner discourses on various topics related to Buddhism.

Today, we will visit Kyichu Lhakhang followed by a meditative session on Bodhicitta and Cultivation of the Right Intention around Drukgyal Dzong.

Discourse I: Introduction to Buddhism.

Day 2

     Day 2 : Bhutanese Monastic Arts & The Three Phases of Buddhism

Elevation 2,320 m     Weather in Thimphu

Travelling to Thimphu, we will stop along the highway to visit various Dzongs where Dr Karma will detail their site history and explain Bhutanese Monastic Arts. Prayer and meditation will be conducted at Tashichodzong (Thimphu Dzong). 

Discourse II: The Three Phases of Buddhism. 

 

Day 3

     Day 3 : Punakha & Mahayana Buddhism and Bodhicitta

Elevation 1,300 m     Weather in Punakha

Visit Punakha Dzong, the former seat of power of Bhutan and capital city. Immerse yourself in her grandeur as you sit mindfully and observe.

Discourse III: Mahayana Buddhism and Bodhicitta.

 

Hotels:

Day 4

     Day 4 : Tantric Buddhism

Elevation 1,300     Weather in Punakha
As we continue our trip in the winter warmth of Punakha, also the winter palace of the Je Khenpo of Bhutan (Chief abbot), we will visit Khamsum Yule Namgyal. Afternoon meditation by the Tashithang riverside. 
 
Discourse IV: Tantric Buddhism.

Hotels:

Day 5

     Day 5 : Interdependence, Non:self and Emptiness

Elevation 1,300     Weather in Punakha
Visit the mystical cliffside temple of Beyul Langdrak, another majestic temple much less know to the outside world and quite truly off the beaten track. A 75 minute hike to reach the temple and we will meditate upon Guru Rinpoche in her chambers. 
 
Discourse V: Interdependence, Non-self and Emptiness.

Hotels:

Day 6

     Day 6 : Paro & Carrying on Daily Practice

Elevation 2320     Weather in Paro
As we near the end of the programme, we will drive back to Paro from Punakha tracing the route we have driven and return to the resort hotel of Nak-Sel. 
 
Discourse VI: Carrying on Daily Practice.

Day 7

     Day 7 : Depart Paro for Singapore

Elevation 2320     Weather in Paro
We bid a fond farewell and depart Paro for Singapore on KB500. We hope by now you would have made some new friends and also kept many photos and beautiful memories of Bhutan! And we look forward to seeing you again in this beautiful land of endless Enchantments! Tashi Delek!
What's Included

Suitable Months
  • Travel Date: 20-26 December 2015
Prices

  • From USD 3,988 per person

What's Excluded

Our Guarantee

Guaranteed Visa approval. We have yet to disappoint a single of our travellers in term of Visa issuance.

Your choice of hotels will be confirmed for your inspection before your arrival. We only book you on hotels which we love and would love again.

We will be happy to change your guide, driver or vehicle on the first two days of arrival in Thimphu if you are not satisfied with our selection. Drop us a note and our hospitality team be on the spot to assist you.

We’re here to help. Our world-class member services team is available by phone or email — there's no automated system or call center; you'll communicate with a real person.

From 3,988USD
  

Frequently Asked Questions


Do we need to have basic knowledge on meditation or Buddhism?
You don't have to have any basic knowledge on these but you should have interest in knowing more about these two broad areas.

Recent Customer Reviews 5.0 / 5.0 ( Read Reviews )


100.0 % of Our Travellers Recommend This Travel Plan

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Alison Tay
Alison Tay
Singapore, Dec 2014

It was a real privilege to have Dr Karma take us on this Neykor tour. His ability to synthesize the history and complexities of the various schools of Buddhism to a comprehensive level yet interesting for the layman is incredible. This would be a good introduction for anyone with an interest to understand what really is Buddhism even if (actually, especially if) you are not a Buddhist.

The tour was a good mix of both learning and leisure. We were taken off the beaten track to places where we would otherwise not have access to as a normal tourist.

The winter month was ideal as the sunny blue skies were great for pictures and the evenings were spent indoors over good food and company (and reflection/contemplation).

We had an amazing group made up of different nationalities but everyone ha

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Pam
Pam
Singapore, Dec 2014

Hi Cipto,

Bhutan is a beautiful country as most people would agree. But to me, not only is she beautiful, the people I met on this trip reminds me how life can be simple and yet happy. From the driver, "joker" as he is nicknamed (I find him so happy go lucky, always smiling, pleasant & encouraging) to Ugyen (who is ever so attentive, kind and patient) to the hotel owner at Hotel Lobesa (whos service is excellent), to the holy Lamas at the Monasteries (who had cooked a meal for us - I would love to reciprocate in future), I take away from this trip the beautiful memories of these people and the friends I made who are my fellow pilgrims. I came on this trip without any expectations and left with very little expectations as I hope it will remain as beautiful and sacred as it is

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