Tour Company Offers Opportunity to Trek to Remote Eastern Bhutan

Travelers will have a rare opportunity to trek remote Eastern Bhutan, an area just opened to tourists.

The Tourism Council of Bhutan announced on June 16, 2010, the opening of remote valleys of Eastern Bhutan – Merak and Sakten. A select group of travelers will be among the first to trek in this region by joining a tour with Wanderlust and Lipstick founder, Beth Whitman.

This co-ed 17-day journey in October begins in Northeast India, where participants will experience jungle safaris, by jeep and by elephant, before entering the tiny kingdom of Bhutan. The trek into Merak and Sakten will transport the travelers back in time as they explore an untouched land of tradition and mystery. This adventure to the Land of the Thunder Dragon also includes visits to traditional monasteries and temples, including iconic Tiger’s Nest, glimpses of some of the world’s highest peaks, and the opportunity to witness a traditional Bhutanese festival in Mongar.

Bhutan is one of the last remaining frontiers of discovery. This trek will allow travelers to hike through villages populated with a cultural group of highlanders known as the Brokpa, and to experience firsthand the traditions and customs they have retained in this far-flung corner of Eastern Bhutan.

“We applied for permits to Merak and Sakten in 2009 and have been hoping the government would allow us entry,” Whitman said. “Now it appears that we really will be among the first to get a glimpse of this remote area.”

Whitman will be the tour leader and a Bhutanese guide will accompany the group, providing insight into the country’s culture, architecture and environment as well as sharing details on how Buddhism is integral in making Gross National Happiness the cornerstone of their daily life.

Whitman is the author of the Wanderlust and Lipstick guides for women travelers, the publisher of and now leads tours to Bhutan, India, Vietnam and Cambodia.

This co-ed tour is limited to twelve people and at press time is more than half full. The cost is $5,750 and includes in-country transportation, accommodation and all meals.

For the full itinerary, go to

Karen Rubin


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