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Intro


YOUR Adventure

Awaits

BOOK YOUR TRIP TODAY


 

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Intro


YOUR Adventure

Awaits

BOOK YOUR TRIP TODAY


 

 

OUR STORY

Our home, Panbang, is a remote community in south central Bhutan with a population of about 1500 people.  It lies in the heart of sub-tropical biodiversity richness, adjacent to Royal Manas National Park (RMNP).  The park is Bhutan’s first protected area and was established in 1966.  With an area of about 1057 square kilometers, RMNP is home to over 86 different mammal, 365 bird and 900 plant species. Asian elephant, tiger, golden langur, clouded leopard, and gaur are some notable wildlife you can find in Manas.

 The region our community lies in is also known as lower Kheng, in Zhemgang district. Until recently, our people practiced slash and burn agriculture and moved around the slopes in search of fertile and new land to grow crops such as maize and millet. It was only during the fourth five-year plan (1976-1981) that enough paddy fields were created to encourage sedentary agriculture. Present day settlements in Panbang arose after that.

Lower Kheng is not only rich in wildlife, but also home to Bhutan's largest river basins, the Mangde Chhu and Drangme Chhu basins. As Bhutan becomes a coveted destination for nature tourism, we saw the need to preserve our sacred land and all that it has to offer. We also saw a business opportunity that would allow us to remain in our village, gainfully employed. Elsewhere in Bhutan, the youth are flocking to urban centers, looking for a better life and abandoning their rural homes. This has led to overcrowding in the cities and severe cases of youth unemployment. We could not be part of the problem. So, eleven of us put our heads together, closed our eyes, and launched the first ever community-based rafting company in Bhutan. We love the river, and we love to show you the rich natural and cultural heritage of Panbang. We call ourselves the River Guides of Panbang!

Our Expertise

All our river guides are professionally trained and certified in whitewater rescue and safety.  We accord the highest priority to the safety of our guests. Our guides have also undergone nature and eco-guide training under experts from the Ugyen Wangchuck Institute for Conservation and Environment (UWICE). As locals, we are well versed in the rich cultural heritage of lower Kheng. We are also responsible members of our community highly committed to conserving the natural beauty and sanctity of our surrounding mountains, valleys and rivers.

Our Service to our Community

The River Guides of Panbang is Bhutan's first community based rafting company that specializes in high quality, environmentally responsible ecotourism. We arrange rafting trips, wildlife safaris, jungle drives, naturalist walks, and overnight stays at our Jungle Camp. 

Come explore Bhutan with us!

 
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Bio


Raft To Live

Bio


Raft To Live

Where is Panbang?

Panbang is located adjacent to Bhutan's first national park, Royal Manas National Park.  We are fortunate to be living in nature with forests and rivers, which are home to endangered golden langur, Asian elephant, water buffalo, gaur, Rufous necked hornbill, pygmy hog, Bengal tiger, clouded leopards, and many wild cats. We work closely with Royal Manas National Park to promote eco-tourism in Bhutan.

 
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Raft to Live


PANBANG RIVERS WITHOUT MOTORS

Raft to Live


PANBANG RIVERS WITHOUT MOTORS

Packages


Packages


First Time River Rafting?

If you have never experienced a rafting trip or slept outdoors, its never too late, many of our guests are also first timers. Our River Expeditions makes it easy to have an unforgettable adventure whether this is your first time rafting or you are an experienced river runner.

Many of our guests experiencing a whitewater rafting trip for the first time have many similar concerns. What if they don't have any prior experience? They are nervous about sleeping in the outdoors. They wonder what it's like to ride the whitewater rapids, how much time will be spent on the raft everyday day and so forth.


Is Rafting Experience Required?

Previous rafting experience is not required for any Panbang River trips. Every rafting trip with RGP has been designed to be comfortable and accessible to most anyone. However, some trips may be more suitable for your first time. See our list of packages for best first time rafting trips at the bottom of this page.

 


Whitewater Rafting Levels of Difficulty

All rivers are rated on a "class" scale to help you determine the size and technicality of the whitewater. Many of our guests are in search of more moderate whitewater-simply to relax and soak up the beauty of the scenery. Others are looking or more intense whitewater.

 

LEVEL 1-CLASS I RAPIDS:

Moving water with small waves that tug at the boat - it’s a relaxing way to spend the day. Each of our trips has some stretches of calm class I water, creating a pleasant break between rapids.

LEVEL 2-CLASS II RAPIDS:

Easy rapids, waves up to three feet tall that are readily seen, and wide channels that can be discovered without scouting. Some maneuvering is required during this little rock and roll.

 

LEVEL 3-CLASS III RAPIDS:

Waves up to four feet and narrow passages that send the boat shimmying and water gushing over its sides. Plenty of excitement.

LEVEL 4-CLASS IV RAPIDS:

Long, challenging rapids, narrow passages, turbulent water that requires precise maneuvering and sends hearts racing.


CHOOSE YOUR EXPERIENCE

First Time Whitewater Rafting Trip

 

Rafting Over Drangme River.

Name of River Stretch - Hi Manas!
Time - 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.
Trip Duration - Full Day
Transport - Drive to the cross village (Sonamthang, Thinleygang, and Lhaling) of 5 miles from Panbang hub.
Paddling  - The river is very gentle. it is suitable for family. Encounters only few class 2 rapids.
Activities -  River rafting, kayaking, swimming, and bird watching.
Seasons - All time favorable but severe weather in monsoon (June and July). 


Multi Day Trip Over Drangme River

 

3 Days Trip Over Drangme River

Name of the River Stretch - Dungsam - (easy access).
Time - 8:30 am departure to Nganglam.
Trip Duration - Two days, one night.
Transport - One day drive to Nganglam (Yangbari)
Paddling - Several hard-hitting rapids such as "RGP fall" will quench your whitewater rafting excitement.
Trip Highlight - One night camp with delicious Bhutanese cuisine made by locals. We guide you from the tourist trails to many beautiful lowlands of Royal Manas National Park.
Activities - River rafting, kayaking, swimming, beach camps, and bird watching.
Seasons -  All time favorable but severe weather in monsoon (June and July).


Whitewater Rafting Trip in Upper Mangde River 

 

Upper Mangde River Stretch

Name of River Stretch - Gushing Gateway
Time - 12 pm to 4:30 pm.
Trip Duration - Half Day
Transport - 45 minutes drive from Panbang towards Pantang.
Paddling - 90 Minutes of Non-stop Class 3+ rapids.
Trip Highlights - It is the most popular rafting adventure. The rides are bumpy, fast and filled with breathtaking views of Royal Manas National Park at the right and on left, we can see the typical Khengpa Village settlement.
Activities - River rafting, kayaking, swimming, Bird watching.
Seasons - All time favorable but severe weather in Monsoon (June and July).


Whitewater Rafting Trip in Lower Mangde
River

 

Lower Mangde River Stretch

Name of River Stretch - Leylang Waterfall Beauty"
Time - 12 pm to 4:30 pm
Trip Duration - Half Day
Transport - 30 minutes drive from Panbang to Pantang.
Paddling - 1hr 30 min of Non-stop Class 3+ rapids
Trip Highlights - Begins with a unique sight of the gorgeous twin waterfall in the region. Next to the twin waterfall, there is a natural swimming pool for swimming and expert canoeing in this spot.  Witness the spectacular view of the mightiest Mangde River with stunning gorges and abundant wildlife in this remote jungle. 
Activities - River rafting, Kayaking, Swimming, and Bird watching
Seasons - All time favorable but severe weather in Monsoon (June and July).


Full Day Trip to Mangde River

Mangde River - Full Day Trip

Name of the River Stretch - Aieelaa Tshagoo
Time - 8:30 am to 4:30 pm
Trip Duration - Full Day
Transport - From Gongphu (Panbang Highway) towards Pantang
Paddling - Non - stop rafting in class 3+ rapids with good recovery points.
Trip Highlights - Visit and interact with Pantang Community; includes a healthy Bhutanese cuisine for lunch next to the beautiful view of the mighty waterfall. 
Activities - River rafting, kayaking, swimming, and bird Watching.
Seasons - All time favorable but severe weather in monsoon (June and July).


Lower Kheng Cultural Eco Tour

Trip Duration - 5 days 4 nights.
Difficulty level - Normal
Destination - Lower Kheng, Zhemgang, Bhutan.
Highest elevation - 800m
Highest Camp - 800m - 1000m
Number of People - 16
Best Season - Best throughout the year except monsoon (June to August).
Trip Starts - Tingtingbi Trip Ends - Panbang
Trip Route - (Entry) Tingtingbi > Gongphu > Mamung Trong > Pantang > Shillingtoe > Chengarzam > Panbang.
Activities included in this Trip - Village hiking, visit farm house, whitewater river rafting, cycling, river camps, camp fire with Cultural dance and bird watching.

Witness the Art and Culture of Kheng

Khengpas are the original inhabitants of Zhemgang. For many years, the region remained closed to tourism. Recently, a small part of Zhemgang was opened for bird watching and the opened region has become the jewel of tourism in Bhutan.

 Zhemgang offers the taste of unspoiled rural life of the Khangpas. They will surprise you with their animist traditions. The shamanistic practices, locally known as Bon are common here. Khengpas are adept artisans and are known for their bamboo products like wine containers, baskets, matted bamboo carpets and other cane products.