Luxury Travel to Punakha
Capital of Bhutan and seat of the government until 1955, the little town of Punakha still enjoys a serene and regal ambience from its stately days. Found in a fertile valley at a relatively low 1,200 metres above sea level, come here for warm, sultry days filled with history, trekking and culture – with the grand temple, Punakha Dzong, deemed the star of the show.
Sitting on the confluence of two chief Bhutanese rivers, Punakha Dzong has been fully restored to its original splendour and so considered one of the country’s most striking ancient fortresses. Housing many precious relics, its whitewashed exterior contrasts beautifully with colourful sacred murals and carved wooden balconies and windows, making it one of Bhutan‘s most photogenic landmarks.
The unspoilt nature of fruit trees, flourishing rice fields and distant Himalayas adds to Punakha’s beauty spots and can be explored on idyllic hiking, cycling and river rafting tours.
When to go
The best time to visit is from October to May when the climate is mainly dry and sunny.
What to do
- Visit Punakha Dzong, Bhutan's most photogenic ancient fortress
- Trekking, cycling and river rafting
Itineraries including Punakha
Accommodation in Punakha
Here are some of our travel designers' favourite options
Six Senses PunakhaThe Punakha Six Senses, affectionately known as the Flying Farmhouse sits high on the hillside, the raised building overlooking the valley, pine forests, streams and fluttering prayer flags below. This is a truly beautiful lodge that harnesses a rustic charm, echoing its rural surroundings. The main building of the hotel is built of sandstone, flagstone floors, grey tiled pitched roofs and wooden beams. Inside the contemporary design is simple yet welcoming. Large picture windows bring the outside, inside and the warm tones of the wood panelled walls and wooden furniture give a welcoming feeling. Architecturally there are some outstanding features within the lodge, including the elevated restaurant and curved heated swimming pool below, making the lodge standout as somewhere very special. Log burners are situated throughout the property, so although this valley is known for its warm climate, the chill of the night is kept at bay with the roaring of the fires. The lodge has 16 suites and 3 large villas, perfect for groups or families. All the rooms have outside terrace areas and the villas come with their own private pool and living spaces. The communal areas of the lodge include the living room and lounge and the exceptional Ari restaurant that serves up inspired cuisine, influenced by both international and Bhutanese flavours. The restaurant is situated indoors but there’s also an outside dining area where fires burn late into the night so that guests can spend the evenings under the stars. The Six Senses spa and wellness centre is a haven of rejuvenation and relaxation. There are three treatment rooms, a gym, two meditation huts and yoga facilities. The outside heated pool, curved and raised is a wonderful place to relax or enjoy some exercise with stunning views.