Amankora Punakha is centred round a large compound with a traditional Bhutanese farmhouse built by a former Chief Abbot as a residence from which to oversee the surrounding paddy fields and fruit orchards. This three-storey building now houses the common guest areas of the lodge, with the dining room on the ground floor and the upper floors providing ample room for relaxation and a traditional altar room for prayers and meditation. The courtyard is used for al fresco dining and relaxation in the warmer months.
Next to the courtyard is a tea pavilion, the former kitchen of the summer palace. Beyond this is the two-storey spa, with two treatment rooms, a steam room and changing areas on the ground floor and a yoga or meditation room on the upper level with wonderful views of the surrounding fields.
The eight suites are located in three rammed-earth buildings set in an orange orchard with views over the fields and the Punakha Valley beyond.
While here guests can enjoy walks and treks in the scenic Punakha Valley, including a visit to the impressive Punakha Dzong, a monastery fortress at the confluence of the Pho Chhu and Mo Chhu rivers. Punakha was Bhutan's winter capital for 300 years until Thimpu became the official capital in the 1950s and has some interesting architecture. Between the months of September and May it is possible to go white water rafting in the Punakha Valley.
Photos courtesy of Amankora Punakha
Open: Amankora Punakha is open all year.
Location: Amankora Punakha is situated in one of the lowest lying valleys in Bhutan, at an elevation of 1,300 metres. It is about four and a half hours drive from Paro.
Rooms: There are 8 suites, all with a combined lounge and bedroom plus a large bathroom. Suites also feature a wood-burning stove, perfect for cooler days.
Activities: Guests can take excursions in the Punakha Valley, including a visit to the impressive monastery fortress of Punakha Dzong. Punakha town has numerous temples and monuments which can be visited. White water rafting is possible between the months of September and May in the Punakha Valley.
Facilities: The lodge has a dining room, relaxation rooms and a courtyard. There is a separate tea pavilion. The spa offers a range of treatments (pay locally) and includes a steam room and a yoga room.
Dining: Meals are taken at communal tables.
Children: Children of all ages are welcome.
Health: We recommend malarial prophylactics for travel to the low lying districts of southern Bhutan.
Communication: There is no internet access at Amankora Punakha.