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Bas Naus

Being born in the lowlands of Holland, my passion for mountains may not seem logical. However, my parents took me to the European Alps before I could barely walk and I can't remember any family holiday we didn't spend in the mountains. By the time I was 15 years old I would hitchhike to the south of France and spend the entire summer rock climbing in the Provence with friends.

As a teenager, this gave me an ultimate feeling of freedom, joy, and adventure. And every time I get a chance to go to the mountains - whether it is the Alps or the Himalayas - I still get this same feeling. During my early twenties I started studying Tibetan Buddhism and after completing a degree in Ecology it was time to make a life-long dream come true: see the highest mountains on earth. So I booked a ticket to Delhi and traveled for a year in the Himalayas. My life was never the same after that...

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"Wind Horse Tours tries to facilitate travel experiences in Bhutan in the broadest way possible. Of course most of the trips we organise for our guest would involve cultural sightseeing, dayhikes and/or trekking. But there is really a lot more to Bhutan you would think. If you are interested in things like birding, nature, meditation & buddhism, traditional medicine, textiles, Gross National Happiness; or in activities like biking, rafting, motor cycling... we always try to find a way to give our guest what they want to see or do. With nearly 20 years of experience in Bhutan we feel confident that we can organise exactly the holiday you want."

How did you get involved in travel?

"After coming home from my trip to the Himalayas, the only thing on my mind was how to go back there as soon as possible. So instead of applying for an office job as an ecologist I applied for a job as a tour leader, and the next years I spend leading trekking groups in Nepal, Tibet, India and Bhutan. I was lucky to see many beautiful places and remote corners of the Himalaya, but what I also learned during this time is that it were the people around me - both locals as well as the tourist I was guiding - who really touched my heart. My 'clients' were telling me: "this is the most beautiful place I have ever seen", and the local people would tell me: "thank you so much for visiting our home". Then only I realized how rewarding a 'career' in tourism can be. Enriching peoples lives by offering amazing travel experiences, and enriching local peoples lives by giving them a means of livelihood. After a couple of years of guiding I started working in the office with a large Dutch trekking company and soon after that I joined Wind Horse Tours in Bhutan. And by now I know for sure that I would never wanna do anything else!"

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"I love the overwhelming silence of these majestic Himalayan mountains, just sitting somewhere and quietly gazing at a distant peak. For me, similar feelings pop up when I visit buddhist temples. I remember visiting Kyichu Lhakhang, one of Bhutan's oldest temples, and sitting there on the old wooden floor. Everything came together in that moment. For me, the people of the Himalaya are very inspring. They are kind, friendly, hospitable, humble, pure, strong, and easygoing. And their religion encourages them to develop their mind in such a way. When I was sitting in Kyichu Lhakhang I could feel this tiny spark of clarity in my mind of who I am and how I want to be as a person. That felt even more special than any Himalayan mountain view I ever saw."

Featured trips & expertise

Hiking along the Bhutanese Himalaya
Bhutan Trekking Tour - 14 Days

Take in the best Bhutan has to offer, from culture to mountain scenery. Visit the impressive dzongs of Thimphu and Punakha, see the real Bhutanese countryside, and set off on day hikes before embarking on the arduous 7-day Jomolhari camping trek. Soak in the world of stunning snow-capped mountains, takins, Himalayan vultures, and even encounter the elusive snow leopard.

School kids in Thimphu valley
Bhutan Family Adventure - 8 Days

With customs and traditions still going strong after centuries and an environment rich with diversity, Bhutan is a country that is completely unique. On this journey you will explore the wonders of Western Bhutan from the ancient capital of Thimphu to the spectacular Dochu La Pass and semi-tropical valley of Punakha. Take in the great Himalayan views and experience Bhutanese family life before hiking to the famous Taktsang, a hike light of any Bhutanese adventure.

Rinpung Dzong in Paro valley
Western Bhutan & Phobjikha - 7 Days

Longing for an adventure that's truly off the beaten track? This immersive, culturally rich tour of western Bhutan is just the thing. Fall in love with the capital, where ancient traditions go hand-in-hand with modern life. Explore the beautiful glacial valley of Phobjikha. And don't miss out on a mountain hike to a peaceful monastery.

Bhutan Birding Trip - 9 Days

Perfect for nature-lovers, this nine-day excursion into western Bhutan will take you to both well-known and off-the-beaten-track birding zones in search of Bhutan's 770+ avian species. Fall in love with this wild country - where 72% of the land is covered in forests - and its colorful, majestic wildlife.

View of the Himalayas from Dochu La Pass
Highlights of Bhutan - 5 Days

The kingdom of Bhutan remains one of the last unspoiled gems of the Himalaya. Closed to foreign visitors until the 1970s, Bhutan has an amazingly preserved traditional Buddhist culture uniquely blended with modern sensibilities. On your five-day journey, you'll visit monasteries, fortresses, and enjoy stunning views as you hike through the mountains.

bikers in Phobjikha Valley, Bhutan
Bike Tour of Bhutan - 15 Days

Get an inside look at the fascinating culture of Bhutan on this two-week cycling adventure. Closed to foreign visitors until the 1970s, the Buddhist kingdom offers a glimpse into the past with exquisitely preserved traditions, monuments, and natural wonders. You'll traverse the story-book landscape of this Himalayan gem, experience authentic rural life, and visit the cultural highlights.

Recent trip reviews for Bas

carole

Bhutan, Bhutan - May 13 - May 31, 2018

Traveler: carole c. - Local specialist: Bas Naus

Overall, the trip was fantastic and I am truly grateful that you suggested India before Bhutan. However, the hotel in Delhi was superb. They upgraded us to a fabulous room the the 2nd and 3rd times that we were there which was lovely. Our guides in India were fine. I do have a couple of suggestions....I think we could have done with 1 night in Rathombore. We saw 1 tiger on all our safaris, although others saw many more...just lucky. We really liked Jaipur and maybe should have had 2 nights... read more

Overall, the trip was fantastic and I am truly grateful that you suggested India before Bhutan. However, the hotel in Delhi was superb. They upgraded us to a fabulous room the the 2nd and 3rd times that we were there which was lovely. Our guides in India were fine. I do have a couple of suggestions....I think we could have done with 1 night in Rathombore. We saw 1 tiger on all our safaris, although others saw many more...just lucky. We really liked Jaipur and maybe should have had 2 nights there instead. Darjeeling. Bhutan was really spectacular...we loved it. But there are some suggestions...It was a long drive to the Probjika Valley and we were not excited about it. The hotel was pretty bad and after we hiked a bit and saw Karma the crane, we were ready to leave. We thus stayed only 1 night and went back to Thimphu and stopped for a long hike en route. This was fine. We enjoyed trekking around Paro. However, our trip to Tigernest on May 29 was the same day as a major Buddhist holiday. Could not stand the idea of hiking in the crowds so we convinced out guide to substitute another trek We went to Tigernest about 3PM and started walking up as hordes of Indians were descending. Our guide tried to convince us to stop...turned out he and driver did not have a hotel to stay in and I think they were mostly worried about where they would be. The previous night they had to stay in Thimphu and I think they were anxious about getting back....Not clear to me why they had not booked their own rooms when they new the schedule. They did try to be accommodating to us and were very concerned that we were "happy," although there is no question that they would have preferred we just look at the Tigernest from the highway rather than climbing up. I had a difficult time separating what was convenient for them from what was in our interest. As an example, they left us at Paro airport at 7AM for the 9:30 flight. I realize that it is important to be early but that was really very early...we were the first to check in.

Bas Naus, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hi Carole,
Thanks for taking the time to post a review for your trip! Glad to hear that overall your trip was fantastic. Great that you enjoyed your visit to India , Sikkim and Bhutan. I addressed some of the things you mention here already in my email. Also, I will also talk to our guide to see what happened on the Tiger's Nest hike and after that I will come back to you. Thanks for travelling with us and see you again some time at kimkim! Best regards, Bas.

Richard

Richard masla bhutan , Bhutan - Apr 18 - Apr 24, 2018

Traveler: Richard M. - Local specialist: Bas Naus

Our group of 4 just returned from a 7 day tour of Bhutan. From the beginning of my contact with Bas, to touring the amazing countryside of Bhutan with Sonam and Tawa (guides from Bhutan). My experience was phenomenal, two thumbs up for the curtosy, kindness and professionalism of all the staff.

Bas Naus, local specialist, responded to this review:

Dear Richard,
So glad to hear your experience was phenomenal! We are delighted to hear you enjoyed your visit to Bhutan as well as our service. Thanks for your kind words also, we appreciate it! All the best to you and see you again some time!
Bas.

Tom

Trip to bhutan, Bhutan - Mar 31 - Apr 5, 2018

Traveler: Tom L. - Local specialist: Bas Naus

I have traveled a lot--around 130 countries--and I almost never use an organized tour. I thought I didn't like them. But this trip changed my mind. Mr. Pema, my guide, was impeccable, as was my driver, Mr. Ugee. They anticipated my every need, were beautifully friendly and polite and quite interesting people. I felt like I was traveling with friends. Mr. Pema was very skillful and knowledgeable as a guide to both the sites and the culture, and we had philosophical as well as historical... read more

I have traveled a lot--around 130 countries--and I almost never use an organized tour. I thought I didn't like them. But this trip changed my mind. Mr. Pema, my guide, was impeccable, as was my driver, Mr. Ugee. They anticipated my every need, were beautifully friendly and polite and quite interesting people. I felt like I was traveling with friends. Mr. Pema was very skillful and knowledgeable as a guide to both the sites and the culture, and we had philosophical as well as historical conversations of some depth. Windhorse made all the arrangements painless, kept in touch just enough, and everything, top to bottom, was perfectly done. The wifi in hotel rooms, as it is in many countries with a similar economic base, left something to be desired, but that was outside their control, and I'm sure it will continue to improve as the tourist infrastructure continues to grow. My only wish was that I had been able to stay longer and go further into the country.

Bas Naus, local specialist, responded to this review:

Dear Tom,
Thanks for sharing this with us! Great to hear you had a nice trip to Bhutan with us. We are also glad to hear that our guide and driver changed your perspective on organized tours! Very nice that you enjoyed their services as well as their company and having conversations with them. If you ever plan to come back for a longer stay, we would be more than happy to host your trip again. All the best to you and see you again some time!
Bas.

Hamilton

Snow leopard photography, Bhutan - Jan 30 - Feb 8, 2018

Traveler: Hamilton L. - Local specialist: Bas Naus

Our journey in the mountains of Bhutan was richly rewarding. A gift not wrapped in paper but bound instead in the thread of discovery and the characters we were blessed to encounter along the way. A journey of reflection and life in focus - so generously mentored by the welcoming will and inspiring talents of the Bhutanese people, Like our fabulous guides Yonten and Pema, who helped us climb higher..beyond....as each new step took our breath further away. Thank you!

And also thank you to... read more

Our journey in the mountains of Bhutan was richly rewarding. A gift not wrapped in paper but bound instead in the thread of discovery and the characters we were blessed to encounter along the way. A journey of reflection and life in focus - so generously mentored by the welcoming will and inspiring talents of the Bhutanese people, Like our fabulous guides Yonten and Pema, who helped us climb higher..beyond....as each new step took our breath further away. Thank you!

And also thank you to all our amazing crew and the nine ponies ... especially camera pony!
Everyone we encountered helped make our expedition an experience that will long be remembered as an outstanding example of living in the moment..

Thanks to Bas at Kimkim for making the arrangements so easy and to Wind Horse for organising everything on the ground. Thoroughly enjoyed this Bhut-Camp!

Bas Naus, local specialist, responded to this review:

Dear Hamilton,
Thanks for your kind words! So nice to hear you had a rewarding trip and that you were inspired by the people you met and by our guides and crew. Hope you will cherish your memories from Bhutan for a long time. I am sure the pictures you took will help with that, curious to see your work!
Thanks for visiting Bhutan with us, we were delighted to host your trip!
All the best, Bas.

Bhutan trip for nat, Bhutan - Jan 6 - Jan 10, 2018

Traveler: Nat Y. - Local specialist: Bas Naus

Trip was better than we could have ever expected. The entire process from the first messages with Bas till the fairwell hugs with tashi and Jigme at the airport and everything in between was beyond words! Tashi as a guide is phenomenal, can’t fault him. And Jigme was his perfect side kick. Nothing was too hard for the boys. Thank you for a wonderful trip!

Bas Naus, local specialist, responded to this review:

Hi Nat, thanks for your kind words. It was an honor to host your trip to Bhutan! Thanks for visiting! Bas.