Experience

Wellness & World Wonders in Bhutan and India

Sometimes we all just need to hit reset. To take a step back, take a deep breath in – and let go. Sometimes, the only way to do that is to get away – and that’s where we come in. We’ve spent years looking for the best ways to relax and recharge and nowhere has left us more invigorated than the Indian Subcontinent. In Bhutan, the air positively hums to the tune of monks chanting and prayer wheels being spun. Then, in India, there’s the home of yoga, ancient wonder and religious offerings. So, to really put you at ease, we’ve devised the perfect 11-night escape where you’ll join local monks for daily prayers and blessings in Bhutan before hopping across the border to get ahead of the crowds and visit the Taj Mahal at sunrise and find peace in the Himalayan foothills at the world-class wellness retreat, Ananda.

After a quick overnight pitstop in Delhi, your discovery begins onboard one of the world’s most scenic flights. Flying over the Himalayas, on a clear day, views can extend as far as the mighty peak of Everest. Touch down amid the mountains of Paro, before jumping in a chauffeur-driven car and heading to Bhutan’s capital; Thimpu.

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Mountain High, Valley Deep

A sense of calm will wash over you as soon as you arrive at your hotel for the next two nights, Six Senses Thimpu. Featuring striking minimalist design and a state-of-the-art spa reflecting the spirituality of your surroundings, slip into a state of serenity. Spend the next few days exploring this unique capital city as you take a stroll up to Tashichho Dzong, hike into the hillside temples of Cheri and Wangditse before joining local monks and pilgrims for the daily prayers at the Memorial Chorten. Cap it all off with a visit to the architecturally-striking Changangkha Lhakhang Temple where many parents will bring newborn children in the hope of receiving an auspicious name from the monks.

When in Bhutan

The next two nights will be spent at Six Senses Paro. Equally as jaw-dropping as its Thimpu sister property, you’ll feel right at home. Before checking in, we’ll take you on a scenic detour to Chele La Pass. A 13,000ft high mountain road, home to one of the country’s oldest shrines, stop off here and tie a prayer flag to flutter in the wind forevermore. Back down the valley, turn your hand to Bhutan’s national sport of archery, before visiting a local temple for a special blessing ceremony. An early start tomorrow will then see you off on one of the country’s most iconic treks. Balanced on a cliff-edge, past cascading waterfalls and Buddhist holy sites, you’ll come to the incredible Tiger’s Nest. Take some time exploring this unique monastery before heading back down to where a traditional hot stone bath and cup of local butter tea will be waiting.

India’s World Wonder

Leaving the spiritual hillsides of Bhutan behind, you’ll return to India where after a quick overnight in Delhi, you’ll catch an early morning train down to one of the country’s most iconic cities; Agra. Home to the Taj Mahal, you’ll begin your discovery of his city of wonder from The Oberoi Amarvilas. Just 600-metres from the UNESCO World Heritage Site, you need only look out your bedroom window for stunning views of the Taj. Get to know the city’s intricate history with a privately guided tour of Agra Fort before waking early tomorrow to beat the crowds and visit the Taj Mahal at sunrise. It’s a truly magical time to visit as delicate rays of light dance across the marble to project a shimmering reflection on the still waters of the surrounding ponds.

A Restful Retreat

Leaving the wonder of Agra behind, you’ll then head north to the Himalayan foothills of Dehradun. Spend your final four days breathing in the fresh mountain air and discovering a sense of inner peace from the luxurious Ananda. The wellbeing programmes here are some of the immersive around, as you spend time with expert yogis, spa cuisine chefs and meditative guides to find harmony between body and soul. For that added touch of spirituality, we can also arrange for you to visit the city of Rishikesh on the banks of the Ganges. Quieter and lesser-known than Varanasi, you’ll get an authentic glimpse of the importance of the river in Hinduism as you attend an Aarti worship ceremony at dusk. A spiritual experience like no other, it brings about a sense of enormous well-being.

Feeling calm and collected, it’s then time to leave the peace of the Himalayas behind as you return to the real world.

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