Embrace Bhutan Cultural Tour
Gangtey | Bhutan
11 Nov 2019 | Mon
Day 05 of 13
Gangtey Nature Trail – Black Necked Cranes
Earlier in the day (before lunch) we got to admire the beautiful far-away views of Phobjikha Valley from our awesome picnic vista near Gangteng Monastery.
Gangtey Nature Trail Map
After lunch, we got to visit those views up close with a hike on Gangtey Nature Trail. Our weather was perfect, with deep blue skies with bright white clouds sprinkled throughout.
Vast Green Meadows and Farmland
The beginning of the trail was a short distance from our picnic area. It began with a gradual descent through a clearing surrounded by large pine trees. When we reached the bottom of the first section, to our left was a series of vast green meadows and farmland that span all the way to the edge of the mountains (a beautiful sight).
We continued walking on a dirt road path that followed through Semchubara Village where the farmland setting continued (with beautiful farmhouses, rustic barns, cows on pasture land, unique rock walls separating land plots, community stupas, and prayer flags). We crossed a few streams that flowed openly across the road path.
Dense Pine Forest To Overlook
Once we reached the end of the village area, the trail transitioned into a dense pine forest. This section was very peaceful and quiet.
Over time the trail started following the edge of the forest where we could catch glimpses of the magnificent Phobjikha Valley below. We continued walking until the trail opened up into an impressive observation point overlooking the Phobjikha Valley (small covered sitting area and large prayer flag display).
This was the first viewing area of the famous black-necked cranes. This valley is very wide, and the cranes tend to be located in the center (creek/marsh areas) so a good pair of high-powered binoculars are needed to see the black-necked cranes.
After spending time at the black-necked crane’s observation point, the group continued on the Gangtey Nature Trail, following along the edge of the valley. This part of the trail provides many opportunities for taking photos of the amazing Phobjikha Valley.
Once we reached the bottom of the valley, we were near the end of the trail. This area is used as farmland and has many cows grazing about. In some spots, the ground is very marsh-like (with small creeks and streams) and required wooden walkways to cross.
Once we reached the end, our van and driver were waiting to pick us all up. We now take a short ride across the street to visit Black-Necked Crane Education Center.