I and my wife visited Tiger's Nest on June 9, 2008. It was on the final lap of a ten day trip to Bhutan. We used ponies to climb. The ponies know the way and require minmum leading from the horse owner. The pony seemed to trot through the edge of the winding path up the hill. It is certainly steep at times. The Lonely Planet guide does not give a full impact of the steepness and the difficulty in climbing at such heights when the air is thin. I would not recommend any one to climb unless he or she is used to cimbs at such altitutdes.
We halted at the cafeteria for tea. This is at a place beyond the midway spot.. This trek took 45 minutes by pony. The Tigers nest Monastrey is visible from the cafe. It is at a distance and seemed to be perched on the edge of a cliff. One wonders how any one reached there and built anything so far back in the past.
We resumed our climb throgh ponies. We did not feel any difficulty in this climb. The ponies halted a short distance from Tigers nest after anoter 20 minutes of ride and we had to walk thereafter. There are ascents and descents of great steepness. My wife and I found it dificult. We are touching 50 years of age and are not atheletes. It was close to one p.m.- their one hour lunch time. We had permits for entering the monastrey. So my wife sat on the steps out of exhaustion and I went inside and saw dieties. They are impressive statutes and leave an impression in our minds.
The waterfall outside the monastrey is impressive too. We cannot go near it. The view from all agles is great.
The return trip we took by walk only. It is slippery and I fell once. We felt that trekking shoes rather than walkng shoes are needed. The descent too slightly over an hour. We had lunch at the cafeteria at 2.30 pm. After resting for fifteen minutes, we started trekking down. We reached the base almost an hour later.
Many visitors go up to he cafe and return. I would not recommend it. If you go that far, then climb the rest and go to the monastrey. Get the permit in advance and get a good guide to describe the background and legends.
If any one goes to Bhutan, then he or she should definitely visit this place.. I am not able to up load my photos as the are still not organised. I will try to do so later if it is possible.
Do write to me if you want any suggsetions or inputs.
For the background, we are from India and the hill we climbed is not something we have not seen in India. What is different is the altitude and the monastrey..
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