Bhutan Snow Leopard Trek

An expedition to Chomolhari, Laya, and Gasa

  • A high-elevation Himalayan trek with unrivaled rewards: a hiker's heaven, a botanist's paradise
  • Authentic encounters with the Laya people, semi-nomadic yak-herders
  • Chance sightings of bharal (blue sheep) and possibly the elusive snow leopard
Cheli Pass Bhutan with GeoEx
Trip Type: Scheduled Departure
Trip Length: 19 Days
Activity type(s): Trekking, Cultural Tour
Trip Extensions: Angkor Extension
Laos Extension

This Himalayan adventure is unique, rigorous, and extraordinarily rewarding. We journey along Bhutan’s northwestern border with Tibet, reaching a high-elevation area ventured to by fewer than 300 visitors each year. During our 14-day, pack-animal supported trek, there are crystalline streams, stunning alpine landscapes, old-growth rhododendron forests, and chance sightings of bharal (blue sheep) and elusive snow leopards.

After acclimatizing with a hike to Taktsang Lhakhang, the cliff-clinging monastery, we embark on our trek from Drukgyel Dzong in the Paro Valley. Shadowing the Tibet border, we hike to Bhutan’s revered Chomolhari peak on a path described by the trip leader as having “precipitous towering ridges on each side, bonsai pines adorning the riverbanks, and thick carpets of moss laid to the skies.” We take a couple of rest days to appreciate the glorious summit and to visit with Laya people, the semi-nomadic yak herders of the region. Upon concluding the trek in Goem Damji, just north of Punakha, we’re rewarded with a soothing dip in Gasa Tsachum hot springs. Finally, in thrilling contrast to our last fortnight’s surroundings, we explore the small city of Thimphu, a jostling jubilee of Bhutanese treasures such as traditional weavings, silverwork and the thangka paintings, before returning to Paro.


More on veteran trip leader
Tandin Gyeltshen,

Why trust GeoEx for your trek

Chomolhari Bhutan Tibet trek map

Itinerary at a Glance

  • Day 1: arrive in Paro
  • Day 2: hike to Taktsang Lhakhang
  • Day 3: start trekking, camp in Shana
  • Days 4 & 5: on to Soi Thangthanka and Chomolhari base camp
  • Day 6: rest day in Jangothang
  • Days 7–12: trek to Lingshi, Chebisa, Shomuthang, Robluthang, Limithang, and Laya
  • Day 13: rest day in Laya village
  • Days 14 & 15: hike to Chamsa and Gasa hot springs
  • Day 16: end trek in Goem Damji, drive to Punakha
  • Day 17: by road to Thimphu, visit Chimi Lhakhang
  • Day 18: drive to Paro, explore
  • Day 19: depart.