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Bhutan travel guide - Travel S helper


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Bhutan, formally the Kingdom of Bhutan, is a sovereign landlocked state in South Asia’s eastern Himalayas. Bhutan is bounded to the north by China and to the south, east, and west by India. It is divided from Nepal by the Indian state of Sikkim to the west, and from Bangladesh by the Indian states of Assam and West Bengal to the south. Thimphu is the capital and biggest city of Bhutan, whereas Phuntsholing is the country’s financial hub.

Bhutan’s King is known as Druk Gyalpo, which translates as “Thunder DragonKing.” The geography of the nation ranges from lush subtropical plains in the south to sub-alpine highlands in the north, with peaks rising over 7,000 meters (23,000 feet). Gangkhar Puensum, Bhutan’s highest peak, is also a strong contender for the world’s tallest unplanned mountain.

Bhutan has significant cultural connections with Tibet and is situated on the Silk Road, which connects China and the Indian subcontinent. Until the early 17th century, its realm was made up of tiny fighting fans. Lama and the military commander Ngawang Namgyal, the first Zhabdrung Rinpoche, unified the area at the time and created a distinct Butan identity. Bhutan established diplomatic ties with the British Empire around the turn of the twentieth century. Bhutan signed a friendship pact with newly formed India in 1949, during the advent of Chinese Communism and its spread in Tibet. Under the fourth Druk Gyalpo, the state broke free from its historical seclusion. Bhutan transitioned from absolute monarchy to constitutional monarchy in 2008, and conducted its first general election. In the same year, the fifth Druk Gyalpo took the throne. Bohemian democracy arose as a nonpartisan system.

Bhutan, a UN member, has diplomatic relations with 52 nations and the European Union, but not with the five permanent members of the UN Security Council. It has a strong strategic relationship with its neighbor, India. He established the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). He is also a BIMSTEC member. Bush’s economy is mostly reliant on hydroelectric power plant exports. Bidar has the highest per capita income in SAARC, behind only the Maldives.

Bhutan | Introduction

Bhutan is a culturally and environmentally distinct nation. It is the world’s last Buddhist monarchy, located high in the Himalayas. It has pioneered the concept of gross national happiness, in which progress is evaluated by a holistic approach to well-being rather than simply GDP. Ema Datshi is the national cuisine, and chilies are considered vegetables. Green chilies are combined with a Bhutanese cheese sauce to make Ema Datchi. It is still considered to be a Third World nation since most of the country is still devoted to subsistence farming. The soil is generally fertile, and the population is tiny. Furthermore, the present generation receives free education, and all residents enjoy free, although limited, medical care. Tobacco products are not for sale, and smoking in public places is against the law.

Tourism, hydropower, and agriculture are the Kingdom’s major sources of revenue.

While traditional culture is largely maintained, the country’s openness to television and the Internet in 1999 had a significant effect, and contemporary culture is mostly concentrated in pubs and snooker halls. As a result, there is little or no indication of high-quality modern art, theater, or music.

Bhutan’s culture is mostly Buddhist, with Dzongkha as the national language (though there are regional variants, such as Sharchopkha, the main language in eastern Bhutan), as well as a uniform clothing code and architectural style. The Ngalops and Sarchops, often known as Western and Eastern Bhutanese, and the Lhotshamphas (Southern Bhutanese), a Nepalese Gurkha heritage race, make up the majority of Bhutanese. The NGALOPS are mostly made up of Bhutanese who live in the country’s western regions. Their culture is quite similar to Tibet, their northern neighbor.

Gross National Happiness

This philosophy was developed by King Jigme Singhai Wanchuk, who recognized that ordinary economic prosperity did not always translate into a meaningful and happy society after receiving a modern education in India and the United Kingdom. As a result, soon after its deterioration in 1974, the young monarch started to reconsider his plan to create a new set of rules to manage the nation. These concepts take shape over time, culminating in the establishment of the GNH indicator in 1998. The GNH stands for “gross national happiness,” and it is defined by four goals: increased economic growth and development, preservation and promotion of cultural heritage, environmental sustainability, and good governance. While the GNH concept is highly regarded globally and draws tourists, visitors should be aware that the concept is still in its infancy and that there is little evidence of GNH in the country.

On July 19, 2011, 68 nations joined Bhutan in sponsoring a resolution titled “Happiness: Towards a Holistic Approach to Development,” which was unanimously approved by the 193 members of the United Nations General Assembly. The Royal Government of Bhutan held a conference on “Happiness and Well-being: Determining a New Economic Paradigm” on April 2, 2012, at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, in response to this resolution. This conference marked the beginning of the next stages toward realizing the vision of a new economic paradigm based on sustainable development that successfully combines economic, social, and environmental objectives. Butan continues to advocate resolution and aggressively promotes the idea worldwide as a result of this resolution.


Bhutan’s climate varies from north to south and valley to valley depending on height, despite the country’s tiny size. It is continuously covered with snow north of Bhutan, near the Tibetan border. The majority of Bhutanese cities (Ah, Paro, Thimphu, Wanda, Trongsa, Bumtang, Trashi Yangtse, and Lunze) have a European climate. Winter lasts from November to March in this city. Punah is an anomaly since it is situated in a low valley with scorching summers and mild winters. South Bhutan, near the Indian border, has a subtropical climate that is hot and humid. While the monsoon wreaks havoc on northern India, it has little effect in Bhutan. Individual souls are typically more humid during the summer months, especially at night. The driest season is winter, while spring and fall are nice.

In contrast to Western Europe, there are four distinct stations with identical units. The temperature in the extreme south varies from 15 degrees Celsius in the winter (December to February) to 30 degrees Celsius in the summer (from June to August). Temperatures in Thimphu range from -2.5°C in January to 25°C in August, with 100 mm of precipitation. The average temperature in high-altitude regions is 0° C in the winter and may reach 10° C in the summer, with an average of 350 millimetres of precipitation. The amount of precipitation varies greatly depending on altitude. The average amount of rain falls differently in different parts of the country.


Bhutan is situated on the eastern Himalayan southern slope, between Tibet Autonomous Region in the north and the Indian states of West Bengal, Sikkim, Assam, and Arunachal Pradesh in the west and south. It is located between the latitudes of 26 and 29 degrees north latitude and the lengths of 88 and 93 degrees east latitude. The area is mostly made up of steep and high mountains that are traversed by a roaring watercourse, which forms deep valleys before draining the Indian plains. The elevation ranges from 200 meters in the foothills south to more than 7000 meters in the highlands. Bhutan’s remarkable diversity of biodiversity and ecosystems is due to its enormous geographical diversity, which is combined with a wide range of climatic circumstances.

The East Himalayan mountain forests and meadows that reach glaciated heights with a very cold environment on the highest peaks make up Bhutan’s northern area. Most peaks in the north rise over 7,000 meters above sea level; Bhutan’s highest point is the Gangkhar Puensum, which stands at 7,570 meters (24,840 ft) and is the world’s tallest unclimbed mountain. In the Drangme Chhu Valley, when the river crosses the Indian border, the lowest point is 98 meters. Snow-capped rivers run across this area, creating alpine valleys with pastures managed by a low population density of nomadic shepherds.

In central Bhutan, the Black Mountains serve as a watershed between two main river systems: Mo Chhu and Drangme Chhu. Fast-flowing rivers have formed deep canyons in the lower mountainous areas, while the peak of Black Mountain is 1500 to 4925 meters above sea level. Bhutan’s central mountain forests are made up of subalpine coniferous forests at higher altitudes in the eastern Himalayas and deciduous Himalayan forests at lower altitudes. Bhutan’s forest output is dominated by forests in the central area. Bhutan’s major rivers, the Torsa, Raidak River, Sankosh, and Manas, run through this area. The central highlands are home to the bulk of the inhabitants.

Shiwalik Hills in the south are covered with thick subtropical subtropical deciduous forests, alluvial basins, and mountains up to 1500 meters above sea level. The slopes give way to the Duars subtropical plain. The majority of duars are located in India, with a 10- to 15-kilometer stretch leading to Bhutan. Bhutan’s dukes are split into two groups: north and south duars.

Rugged topography, dry porous soil, thick foliage, and rich animals define the Northern Duars, which border the Himalayan foothills. Southern Duars has a fairly rich soil, thick forest, mixed and freshwater springs, and heavy savannah grass. Mountain rivers pour into the Brahmaputra in India, nourished by either melting snow or monsoon rainfall. According to Ministry of Agriculture data, the nation had a forest cover of 64 percent in October 2005.


Bhutan ratified the Rio Convention on Biological Diversity on June 11, 1992, and became a signatory on August 25, 1995. It then developed a National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan, which has undergone two modifications, the most recent of which was accepted by the convention on February 4, 2010.


Bhutan has a diverse primate population, including uncommon species such as the golden langur. An Assamese macaque variation, Macaca munzala, has also been recorded, which some authorities believe to be a distinct species.

The Bengal tiger, clouded leopard, sullen bear, and lazy bear all dwell in the south’s lush tropical lowlands and green woods. Gray langur, tiger, gora, and serow may be found in mixed coniferous, broad-leaved, and pine woods in the temperate zone. The Himalayan black bear, red panda, squirrel, sambar, wild pig, and barking deer all have homes in fruit trees and bamboo. The snow leopard, blue sheep, marmot, Tibetan wolf, antelope, Himalayan musk deer, and the takin, Bhutan’s national animal, all live in the alpine environments of the vast Himalayas in the north. The endangered wild water buffalo may be found in limited numbers in southern Bhutan.

Bhutan is home to over 770 different bird species. Bhutan’s list of birds has just been updated to include the endangered white-winged duck.


Bhutan is home to about 5,400 plant species. Fungi are an essential component of Bhutan’s ecosystems, with mycorrhizal species providing forest trees with the mineral nutrients they need to thrive, and breakdown of wood and litter species recycling natural resources.


In a thorough study of global biodiversity performed by the WWF between 1995 and 1997, the Eastern Himalayas were recognized as a global biodiversity hotspot and are among the world’s 239 most remarkable ecoregions.

Bhutan is seen as an example for aggressive conservation efforts by Conservation International, based in Switzerland. The Kingdom has been recognized internationally for its dedication to biodiversity preservation. This is reflected in the decision to conserve at least 60% of the forest area, designate over 40% of the territory as national parks, reserves, and other protected areas, and designate another 9% of the land as biodiversity corridors connecting the protected areas. An vast network of ecological corridors connects all of Bhutan’s protected territory, allowing wildlife to freely traverse the country. The environment has been put in the heart of the country’s development plan, which is the middle ground. It is not regarded as a sector, but rather as a collection of issues that should be addressed in the context of Bhutan’s overall development strategy and backed up by legislative authority. Environmental requirements are mentioned in many parts of the country’s constitution.


In 2015, Bhutan had a population of 770,000 people. Bhutanese people are on average 24.8 years old. For every 1,000 women, there are 1,070 males. Bhutan has a literacy rate of 59.5 percent.

Ethnic groups

The Ngalops and Sarchops, who are known as western Bhutan and eastern Bhutan, respectively, make up the majority of Bhutanese. The lhotshampa, or “Bhutan southerners,” are a diverse tribe with mostly Nepalese origins. They were said to make up 45 percent of the population in 1988, and included immigration from the 1890s to the 1980s, resulting in a heated dispute with Bhutan for housing, language, and dress rights. As a consequence, there has been a huge exodus from Bhutan (both forced and voluntary), leaving hundreds of thousands of people stateless in refugee camps in Nepal.

The NGALOPS are mostly made up of Bhutanese who live in the country’s western regions. Its culture is inextricably connected to Tibet’s. The Sharchops, the main group, have historically followed the Nyingmapa lineage of Tibetan Buddhism rather than the recognized Drukpa Kagyu lineage. There were numerous mixed marriages between these tribes in recent times, thanks to better transit facilities. Marriages between Bhutanese Lhotshampas and Bhutanese general society were encouraged by the government in the early 1970s, but in the late 1980s, the Bhutan government forcibly removed approximately 108,000 lhotshampas from their homes, seized their property, and put them into refugee camps.


According to estimates, between two-thirds and three-quarters of Bhutanese people practice Vajrayana Buddhism, which is also the official religion. Hinduism is practiced by around a quarter to a third of the population. Other faiths account for less than 1% of the population. Although the present legal system essentially protects religious freedom, proselytizing is banned by a royal government decree and a court interpretation of the constitution.

Bhutan became a Buddhist country in the seventh century. Songtsän Gampo (reigned 627–649), a Buddhist convert from Tibet, ordered the building of two Buddhist temples at Bumthang, in the heart of Bhutan, and Kyichu Lhakhang (near Paro), in the Paro Valley.


Bhutan’s economy, while being one of the world’s smallest, has expanded significantly in recent years, with an increase of 8% in 2005 and 14% in 2006. Bhutan had the world’s second-fastest economic growth in 2007, and the second-fastest in the world in 2008. 22.4 percent is the rate. This was mostly due to the start-up of the massive Tala hydropower project. Bhutan’s per capita income was $2,420 in 2012.

Agriculture, forestry, tourism, and the export of electricity to India are the mainstays of Bhutan’s economy. For 55.4 percent of the population, agriculture is their primary source of income. Subsistence agriculture and livestock are the most common agricultural activities. Crafting is a minor homework assignment, particularly weaving and religious art for native altars. Building roads and other infrastructure has been challenging and costly due to the mountain-to-mountain terrain.

Bhutan has been unable to profit from substantial commercialization of its goods due to this and its lack of access to the sea. Bhutan has no trains, although under an agreement reached in January 2005, Indian Railways intends to link southern Bhutan to its vast network. Bhutan and India struck a free trade agreement in 2008, enabling Bhutanese imports and exports to pass via India. India’s markets are free of tariffs. Bhutan maintained economic ties with Tibet until 1960, when an influx of refugees forced it to shut its border with China.

The industrial sector is in its early stages, and although domestic production accounts for the majority of output, bigger businesses are being pushed, and certain sectors like as cement, steel, and ferroalloys have emerged. The majority of development projects, such as road building, rely on Indian labor. Rice, peppers, dairy products (some yaks, mostly cows), buckwheat, barley, tubers, apples and citrus, and low-level maize are among the agricultural products. Cement, wood products, processed fruits, alcoholic drinks, and calcium carbide are among the industries.

Bhutan has lately made advances in the technology industry, particularly in the fields of green technology and Internet/consumer commerce. Thimphu TechPark opened in May 2012 in the capital, and the Bhutan Innovation and Technology Center began new activities (BITC).

More over 100,000 individuals earn more than $100,000 each year, yet just a handful employees get taxed. Bhutan’s inflation rate was projected to be about 3% in 2003. Bhutan has the world’s biggest economy, with a gross domestic product of roughly $ 5.855 billion (adjusted for purchasing power parity). The country. The globe. The PPP per capita income is about $ 7,641, which is 144. Although the government receives $ 407.1 million in income, it spends $614 million. The Indian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, on the other hand, funds 25% of household spending.

Bhutan’s exports were 128 million euros, primarily in the form of energy, cardamom, gypsum, timber, crafts, cement, fruits, jewels, and spices (2000 estimated). Imports, on the other hand, total 164 million euros, resulting in a trade imbalance. Fuels and lubricants, grain, equipment, cars, materials, and rice are among the most significant imported commodities. Bhutan’s primary export market is India, which accounts for 58.6% of the country’s total exports. The two largest export partners are Hong Kong (30.1%) and Bangladesh (7.3%). Bhutanese-Chinese commerce is virtually non-existent due to the closure of the Tibet border. Bhutan’s main import partners are India (74.5%), Japan (7.4%), and Sweden (7.4%). (3.2 percent ).

Things To Know Before Traveling To Bhutan


  • US Dollar, The United States dollar is commonly accepted. Bhutanese money is solely required for personal expenditures and the purchase of minor souvenir goods.
  • Credit Cards Most ATMs in Bhutan, the most of which are located in Thimphu and Paro, now accept Visa MasterCard and Visa Maestro.
  • Money exchange. Major hotels and banks exchange major currencies.
  • ATM. ATMs that accept foreign cards such as Visa and MasterCard are operated by the major banks. However, since the service isn’t always dependable, it’s a good idea to have some extra cash on hand.
  • Western Union Money Transfer, Thimphu Post Office is a post office in Thimphu, Bhutan. Customers’ personal accounts cannot be used to make payments, although this facility may accept money from abroad.

The Royal Monetary Authority of Bhutan has issued a notice prohibiting the use of Indian 500 and 1000 rupee notes, despite the fact that Indian money is legal tender in Bhutan. Nonetheless, as of October 2009, most people accept the 500 rupee note. Because the aforementioned notes are not accepted by government-owned businesses, it is recommended to carry enough money in Bhutanese currency or in the form of Indian 100 rupee notes. Also, keep in mind that it is unlawful for foreign nationals to import and export Indian rupees to and from India.

How To Travel To Bhutan

By plane Bhutan's sole airport, Paro International Airport (PBH), is situated in the southwest of the country, near the capital, Thimphu. Druk Air, runs two planes (two airbus) that travel to Bangkok, Thailand; Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bodh Gaya / Gaya, Bagdogra, Guwahati, India; Kathmandu, Nepal; Dhaka, Bangladesh; and Singapore. Bhutan...

How To Travel Around Bhutan

Road permits are needed to travel throughout Bhutan, and there are checkpoints in most places east and north of Timbu where you must provide these papers to proceed. When applying for a visa, your local tour operator is in charge of route permits. The immigration office in Thimphu issues...

Visa & Passport Requirements for Bhutan

Bhutan is a one-of-a-kind location with one-of-a-kind regulations. Before visiting Bhutan, the majority of visitors will need to acquire a visa. The Tourism Council of Bhutan will issue visas upon receipt of full payment for your holiday, with set rates starting at US $ 200 per person per day. The...

Destinations in Bhutan

Cities in Bhutan Thimphu - The capital cityJakar - Administrative city to the north and birthplace of Buddhism in Bhutan.Mongar - One of the largest cities in eastern Bhutan.Paro - The location of the international airport and Taktsang Monastery.Punakha - Former winter capital of Bhutan. It hosts the Monastic Body...

Accommodation & Hotels in Bhutan

Hotels may be found in all cities connected by highways, but the quality varies greatly. Five-star rooms are only accessible in Paro, Jacar, Punaka, Gangtey, and Thimphu. International grade hotels are usually situated in tourist regions or large towns. It's worth noting that the hotel prices mentioned in the city's...

Things To See in Bhutan

The majority of visitors take "culture excursions" that take them to significant locations. Popular tourist sites include Paro, Thimphu, Punakha, Wangdue, and Jakar. Further afield, the unexplored region of Gangung (bird paradise, great wildlife) and East Bhutan are just now becoming accessible to tourists. This is the place to...

Things To Do in Bhutan

Trekking:Bhutan is a popular trekking destination, but treks are usually tough since there are no facilities to stay or dine in the higher areas, necessitating the carrying of all food and camping equipment. The ideal seasons for a stroll are autumn and spring. The roads are excessively muddy in...

Food & Drinks in Bhutan

Food in Bhutan Rice is a basic item in every meal; historically, red rice was used, but white rice is now widely used as well. The kitchen includes vegetable or meat meals prepared with chili and/or cheese. The main flavor in Bhutanese cuisine is chile. This tiny red spice is eaten...

Money & Shopping in Bhutan

Woven cloth. Bhutanese handwoven fabric is prized throughout the globe, and it may be found stitched on clothes, rugs, and carpets.Yathra. A brightly colored woven cloth composed of wool and dyed with natural hues. Jackets, purses, rugs, and tapestries are made from it, and it is sold in parts...

Festivals & Holidays in Bhutan

Tshechu ("tenth day") celebrations are an important event in Bhutan, and they are held every year in different temples, monasteries, and dzongs throughout the nation. The Tshechu is primarily a religious celebration held on the tenth day of a lunar calendar month, which corresponds to Guru Rinpoche's birthday (Guru...

Traditions & Customs in Bhutan

Bhutanese people hold the monarch and previous king in high regard. It's a good idea to keep this in mind while conversing with locals.Sacred objects. Turn the prayer wheels clockwise and put mani stones, stupas, and other religious objects with your right side closest to the object. Sitting atop...

Internet & Communications in Bhutan

Bhutan's international dialing code is 975. In most hotels throughout the country, WiFi is easily accessible. Wi-Fi is available at most cybercafés. Most major cities offer cybercafés, but they are costly and the internet connection is sluggish. If you require a connection for work, please make sure your travel agency...

Language & Phrasebook in Bhutan

Dzongkha. The official language of Bhutan and the mother tongue of the majority of people living in western Bhutan.Sharchopkha. Eastern Bhutanese is the major regional language.Bumthangkha. Similar to Sharchopkha, which is spoken in Bumthang.Nepali. The Nepali language was spoken by the majority of those on the border.English and Hindi. The majority...

Culture Of Bhutan

Bhutan has a rich and distinct cultural history that has mostly remained untouched owing to the country's seclusion from the rest of the world until the mid-twentieth century. The country's culture and traditions are one of the major draws for visitors. Bhutan's Buddhist history is firmly ingrained in the...

History of Bhutan

Although no record of this period exists, stone tools, weapons, elephants, and the remnants of huge stone buildings show that Bhutan was populated as early as 2000 BC. Historians believe that between 500 and 600 AD, the state of Lomon (literally, "Southern gloom"), or Monyul ("Dark Land," a reference...

Stay Safe & Healthy in Bhutan

Stay Safe in Bhutan While drug addiction, gangs, and violence are all too prevalent in cities, these crimes mostly impact locals and very seldom, if ever, visitors. Bhutan is, in reality, one of the safest tourist destinations in the world. Thimphu's police force is very active, and they continue to patrol...



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