Jigme Dorji National Park
Visit Bhutan’s second largest national park — the Jigme Dorji National Park and be awed with its thriving flora and fauna, along with its a couple of cultural and economically significant sites.
Nature-lovers would love to explore the large and thriving Jigme Dorji National Park, which was named after the late Jigme Dorji Wangchuck. It is the second largest national park in the country, occupying almost the entire Gasa District and including the northern areas of Thimphu District, Paro District, Punakha, and Wangdue Phodrang Districts. Established in 1974 and covering an area of 4,316 square kilometres, it spans all three climate zones in the country and ranges in elevation from 1,400 to over 7,000 metres. Aside from being home to approximately 6,500 people in 1,000 households, the park is also a sanctuary to 37 known species of mammals. Some of which are endangered, threatened, or vulnerable species, such as the takin, snow leopard, clouded leopard, Bengal tiger, bharal, or Himalayan blue sheep. At the same time, it is also the only park in the country where the national symbols of takin (animal), blue poppy (flower), raven (bird), and cypress (tree) co-exist together.
Aside from nature and wildlife, the Jigme Dorji is also home to Mount Jomolhari and Mount Ditchu — which are both worshipped as homes of the local deity. The historically important fortresses of Lingshi Dzong and Gasa Dzong can also be found here. Other nature sites worth noting include the Lunana and Laya Gewogs, which are the sites for some of the most notable and precarious glaciers in the country. These gewogs can be found in the northern Gasa District part of the national park.
The Jigme Dorji National Park can be found in the districts of Gasa, Paro, Punakha, Thimphu, and Wangdue Phodrang.
Opening Days and Hours
The park is open from Monday to Friday, from 09:00 to 17:00.
Entry Fee and Bookings
Entrance to the park is free.
How to Get There
- You can fly into Bhutan via the country’s sole international airport in Paro.
- Travel via bus or taxi from Paro to Thimphu. You can then rent a car and drive to the national park.
- Backpackers/solo travelers
- Group of friends
Time to Spend
You can explore the national park in 6 to 8 hours.
Popularity and Best Time to Go
You can visit the national park as soon as it opens to maximise the activities you can do and the sites you can visit. You can also opt to camp out in the park.
- Hike the trails
- Visit fortresses Lingshi Dzong and Gasa Dzong
- Visit nature sites: rivers and mountains
- Wildlife watching
You can opt to buy enough food and meals for your visit.
- Gasa Hotspring
- Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Temple
- Bhutan Takin Preserve
You can opt to camp out in the national park or stay in hotels in Thimphu. Options include Hotel Kisa, Jigme Suites, and Hotel Norbuling.