Kipchu Dorji

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 WT 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.

Upcoming Trips:

Bhutan: The Chomolhari Trek, October 4-16, 2015
Festivals of Bhutan, November 6-15, 2015

Client Testimonials:


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. Kim M., Phoenix AZ
Hiker’s Bhutan
Kipchu must be the dean of Bhutan trip leaders. He was exceptional in every aspect you could think. Susasn M., Pittsburgh PA
Hiker’s Bhutan
Kipchu Dorji has a great sense of humor, patience, and modesty—the best guide I’ve ever had. Ann D., Santa Fe NM
Hiker’s Bhutan
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. Alix B., New York NY, Bhutan: The Chomolhari Trek Kipchu was gentle, but firm, tactful, and so caring. A very wise man with a lovely sense of humor. Lorian J., Mamaroneck, NY
Hiker’s Bhutan
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. Joel J., Mamaroneck, NY
Hiker’s Bhutan
Kipchu made this trip an experience I will never forget. He is charming, knowledgeable, and warm. Joanne L, Long Beach CA
Hiker's Bhutan
We’re such fans—what can I say! Susan C., Florence, MA 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. Karen M., Danbury, CT
Hidden Bhutan
Kipchu's attention to details, vast knowledge, and patience really made the trip. Bee Y., Brussels, Belgium
Hidden Bhutan
Kipchu was fabulous and a terrific representative for his country. Scot R., Dalhart, TX
Festivals of Bhutan
Kipchu was a marvelous guide. He was extremely well organized, very knowledgeable, attentive to all our needs and requests, and a charming person. Julia K., Bend, OR
Festivals of Bhutan
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. Melodie M., Seattle, WA
Festivals of Bhutan
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. Ellen K., Boulder, CO
Hiker's Journey to Bhutan