Welcome back to the last Buddhist Kingdom

Snow-capped mountains, babbling brooks, aromatic pine glades, colourful prayer flags whispering in the breeze – these are the scenes, scents, sounds of spirit-stirring Bhutan. Explore this extraordinary destination in any season; no matter the time of year, wonders always await. Hike from hilltops to lowlands, exploring a river-carved landscape dotted with dzongs, where saffron-robed monks practice Vajrayana Buddhism and everyday life is defined by the pursuit of peace and harmony.

Guardians of Peace

Initiated by His Majesty the King Last year, the DeSuung programme was launched with a mission in readying and empowering every eligible citizen in the Kingdom of Bhutan to play their role in nation building, to enhance the spirit of volunteerism and to undertake charitable work. De (pronounced ‘bde’) means peace or tranquility, and Suung (‘Srung’) is the act of protecting.

Amankora had 68 members of its team especially chosen by His Majesty and the government to train as volunteers, helping to distribute fresh food to village households and share fresh vegetables and eggs from Amankora’s gardens with neighbouring communities.
Amankora, Bhutan - Cultural Sites, The Tiger's Nest

Orchards and optimism

Over the last year, Amankora’s teams planted small orchards of fruit trees at each of the five lodges. The trees were planted on an auspicious day and their annual blossom will signify and celebrate new life and hope.

While borders have been closed to Bhutan, Aman’s teams have also had more time to dedicate to local causes. This has included assisting in the rebuilding of the Wangdue Dzong temple and fortress in Punakha, which was almost entirely destroyed in a fire; regular clean-ups of forested areas and the hoisting of new prayer flags in sacred spots in Thimphu, as well as the delivery of food and essentials to the monks and caretakers of the legendary Tiger’s Nest on the mountainside near Paro.

An invitation to travellers

As Bhutan’s borders reopen, the land reawakens in the summer sun, its hillsides coming alive with a multicolour carpet of flowers. Amankora celebrates the return of life and hope with an invitation for travellers to enrich themselves by giving their time to the communities around each lodge. 

A Quest for Happiness

For every stay of seven or nine nights booked this summer, Amankora will gift the guest an additional two or three nights respectively, allowing them to immerse themselves in Bhutanese life by actively contributing to local causes.

Activities might include teaching and reading to children at a Thimphu orphanage and women's shelter; sharing skills with young people with learning disabilities; caring for elderly monks at the retirement home in Punakha – built by an Aman guest in 2014; laying water supply pipes to remote homes in Paro; helping the monks of Bumthang digitise their archives; or conducting repairs to a remote meditation centre in Gangtey.

Woven into a rich cultural itinerary, these unique experiences will enable guest to pursue their own route to peace, while at the same time becoming a pathway to happiness for others.

Five lodges for four seasons

 

A country of only a few hundred thousand people, Bhutan has always carefully limited the number of travellers across its borders. The oldest of Aman’s five lodges, Amankora Paro, was the first international hotel to open in Bhutan and – along with the four lodges that followed – has pursued an enduring commitment to the surrounding communities in the years since. Mountain streams run through the 24-suite hideaway in Balakha village, just half an hour from the international airport.

 

The next lodge, Amankora Gangtey, is a low-slung escape where contemporary design meets age-old organic materials, and the views of the valley and monastery remain timeless.

 

Amankora Punakha, once a summer palace, looks out over Mo Chhu, the Mother River, and dzong-inspired Amankora Thimphu comprises 16 suites perched on a hilltop just outside the capital, home to Bhutan’s royal family. Experienced as a circular pilgrimage over mountain and forest, these five lodges uncover the natural wonders of Bhutan and immerse travellers in its unique culture.

 

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Amankora Experiences Amankora Bhutan

365 days of happiness

Bhutan was the first nation of the world to measure its success, not by the strength of its economy, but by the happiness of its people. Its widely celebrated Happiness Index befits a country unlike any other – a wild, spiritual and majestic mountain kingdom where tranquillity reigns and everything is off the beaten track.

The best time to visit is anytime. In the highest valleys, a wintery charm endures at elevations above 4,500 metres whereas lower altitudes remain warm year-round.

Visit in spring and summer, and the Himalayas are covered with wildflowers; come in autumn, and discover a landscape of the vibrantly changing colours.

During the depths of winter, the sacred black-neck cranes return to Bhutan’s cobalt skies, which, after nightfall, segue into spectacular starscapes.

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No request is too great and no detail too small. We are also here to assist you before your trip begins.