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Hope, Faith and Happiness

ParoBhutan
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Go just for the experience
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WoWs
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Story by
Mila Lopez
I am completely fascinated by Buddhist prayer wheels. Our guide tells us that we should walk clockwise, turning the wheel and chanting, “Om Mani Padme Hum”. “Will that give me extra strength to climb up to the Tiger’s Nest monastery tomorrow?”, I ask him. “Absolutely”, he says earnestly. Well, at least one of us has faith, I think to myself.
Paro Taktsang - or Tiger’s Nest monastery - hangs off a cliff at a dizzying 10,240 feet over the Paro Valley. It’s a 5 hour climb, punctuated with lunch. Not too tough, as it turns out. I must be fitter than I think. But the guide reminds me - “See, I told you so”.
The hike (including getting to the trailhead) takes about 6-7 hours, depending on how much time you spend at the monastery. 4 miles round trip on a wide dirt trail. At the halfway point is a cafeteria - and for most people, getting to this point is the toughest part of the hike. Beyond this, both the scenery and the difficulty of the climb are in your favor.