Kipchu Dorji, whose name translates to “Calm Water Thunderbolt,” was born in the village of Katsho in Bhutan’s little-visited Haa Valley. Kipchu attended Dr. Graham’s School in Kalimpong, India, and completed his professional training back in Bhutan, with studies in Buddhist iconography, culture, history, and botany. When Bhutan’s doors were first opened to outsiders in the late 70’s, Kipchu was at the frontier as one of the first official guides to his country. In addition to his decades of experience as a Trip Leader, Kipchu has also traveled to England and Nepal for advanced trek leadership training. He has led countless trips throughout Bhutan since 1985, certainly earning the rank of one our most experienced—and beloved!—Trip Leaders. Kipchu shares the rhythm of daily life in Bhutan with his travelers, through personal welcomes in villages and farmhouses and tastes of the traditional Bhutanese food (be careful—the national favorite, chili-yak cheese ema datse, is fiery!). Equally appreciated for his caring nature, deep wisdom, and attention to detail, Kipchu leads our remote treks, hiking trips, and cultural adventures, and when he’s not on the trail, you’ll likely find him visiting his farm in Haa, practicing archery, or birdwatching with his children.
One of the best guides we have ever had.
Fantastic guide, super knowledgeable, easy going, organized and very relaxed and intuitive about the needs of the group.
Kipchu was most pleasant and accommodating for all of the groups needs. He and his team pleasantly exceeded expectations.
Kipchu is a mature and very knowledgeable trip leader with outstanding English and deep knowledge of his country.
We could not have asked for a better trip leader than Kipchu. He was extremely knowledgeable and provided great insight into the nature of Buddhism and the history of Bhutan. He is obviously well known throughout the country, and was greeted with great warmth by many of the locals at every location we visited.
How do I even begin? We have had many many wonderful tour guides in many different parts of the world, but Kipchu Dorji is truly in a class by himself. His unflappable patience, his serene optimism, his endless store of knowledge about all things in Bhutan, and his overall gentle presence will be something that I hope to carry with me for the rest of my life. I consider it a great and wonderful blessing that we were able to spend 10 days with this enlightened human being. As incredible as the scenery, festivals, and hikes were, my personal absolute favorite aspect of this trip was getting to know Kipchu.
Kipchu was absolutely a treasure. He was knowledgeable about everything Bhutan (culture, history, religion, flora, and fauna). He was kind and helpful and a truly delightful person.
Kipchu was first-rate and I felt privileged to have him as our trip leader. He also knew so much that I felt at ease in asking him any question.
Kipchu was a marvelous guide. He was extremely well organized, very knowledgeable, attentive to all our needs and requests, and a charming person.
Kipchu was fabulous and a terrific representative for his country.
Kipchu's attention to details, vast knowledge, and patience really made the trip.
Kipchu is one of the best guides I have had throughout my travels—extremely professional with attention to detail and true warmth and care. I will never forget how special he made this trip for our group.
We’re such fans—what can I say!
Kipchu is the best trip leader I have ever traveled with. He brought the local culture to life, making things easy to understand, and he has a wonderful calm spirit and great sense of humor.
Kipchu must be the dean of Bhutan trip leaders. He was exceptional in every aspect you could think.
Kipchu Dorji has a great sense of humor, patience, and modesty—the best guide I’ve ever had.
Kipchu Dorji is a gracious and mindful host and guide, with great attention to detail. He has an easy interaction with staff and guests alike.
Kipchu was gentle, but firm, tactful, and so caring. A very wise man with a lovely sense of humor.
Kipchu made this trip. Wise, caring, thoughtful, and sensitive. One of the best trip leaders I’ve had in the seven walking trips I’ve taken.
Kipchu made this trip an experience I will never forget. He is charming, knowledgeable, and warm.