- Bhutan Visa
- Currency in Bhutan
- Weather & Climate of Bhutan
- Language on Bhutan
- Restaurants and Meals/ Foods in Bhutan
- Hotels and Accommodation in Bhutan
- Best Bhutan Tour Packages
Bhutan stands out as a premier and beloved travel destination in South Asia, beckoning tourists in search of mental and spiritual respite. Known as the 'Land of the Thunder Dragon', this serene nation is characterized by its sparse population, pristine environments, and a harmonious bond shared amongst its people.
Despite its compact size, Bhutan offers a rich tapestry of attractions. Each location promises awe-inspiring experiences, set against the backdrop of tranquility and unparalleled natural beauty.
The ease of exploring this Himalayan paradise is another feather in its cap. With straightforward procedures and accessible information on visas, entry protocols, transportation, and accommodations, Bhutan ensures a seamless journey into its heart, where grandeur and simplicity beautifully coexist.
Bhutan, renowned for its dedication to sustainable and eco-friendly initiatives, holds tourism as a cornerstone of its economy. Recognizing the potential and value of tourism, the Bhutanese government ensures that acquiring a Bhutan Visa is a seamless process. This effort reflects Bhutan's commitment to promoting responsible tourism while preserving its rich heritage.
Every traveler, with the exception of nationals from India, Bangladesh, and Maldives, must secure a visa to explore the pristine landscapes of Bhutan.
How to Obtain a Bhutan Visa
To be eligible for a visa, travelers need to pre-book their journey through a licensed Bhutanese tour operator or international travel agencies such as Luxury Holiday Nepal that have ties with these certified entities. When planning your trip, ensure that you're associating with licensed tour (LHN) operators to guarantee a smooth visa application process.
Necessary Information and Documents for the Bhutan Visa Application:
- Full name
- Passport Number
- Passport's Issue and Expiry Date
- Place where the passport was issued
- Date of Birth
- Permanent Address
- A digital scan of your passport (JPEG format recommended)
Bhutan Tourist Visa Fee
Bhutan Visa Fee: In accordance with the guidelines set by the Department of Immigration, the fee for a Bhutanese Visa stands at US$ 40.
Bhutan Tourist Visa Extension
Extending Your Stay in Bhutan: For those enchanted by Bhutan's beauty and wish to prolong their stay, the visa extension process is straightforward. Inform your travel agency of your intent, and they'll handle the necessary procedures. As of August 2020, the visa extension fee is Nu. 500, which is roughly equivalent to US$ 6.8.
In conclusion, Bhutan's visa policies and procedures underscore its emphasis on fostering responsible and sustainable tourism. As you embark on your journey to this Himalayan kingdom, ensure all details are meticulously attended to for a memorable and hassle-free experience.
For Bhutan Visa info, check the Article: Bhutan Visa info
Currency in Bhutan
The official currency of Bhutan is the Ngultrum (Nu). Unique to Bhutan, the Ngultrum holds the same value as the Indian Rupee, thanks to a close economic relationship between the two nations.
Apart from the Ngultrum, Bhutan has provisions to transact in the United States Dollar (US$) and the Indian Rupee. These currencies are frequently used in the country, especially in the tourism and trade sectors.
For tourists and businesses, exchanging money is a hassle-free process. The country has various banks and exchange counters that are licensed and authorized by the Royal Monetary Authority of Bhutan, the nation's central banking institution.
Major Banks in Bhutan
- Bhutan National Bank (BNBL): A prominent bank offering a range of financial services including loans, deposits, and international banking.
- Bank of Bhutan (BOBL): Established as a joint venture between the government and Chartered Bank of India, Australia, and China, it's one of the oldest in Bhutan.
- Druk PNB Bank: An associate of the Punjab National Bank in India, it provides a broad spectrum of banking services in Bhutan.
- T Bank Bhutan: A relatively newer addition, this bank focuses on providing modern banking solutions.
- Bhutan Development Bank: Originally set up to provide rural financing, it has now diversified into a full-fledged commercial bank.
Foreign Currencies Accepted for Exchange in Bhutan
While Bhutan is welcoming of many foreign currencies, the following are the most commonly accepted ones for exchange:
- U.S. Dollar (USD)
- Pound Sterling (GBP)
- Euro (EUR)
- Japanese Yen (JPY)
- Swiss Franc (CHF)
- Hong Kong Dollar (HKD)
- Canadian Dollar (CAD)
- Danish Kroner (DKK)
- Australian Dollar (AUD)
- Swedish Krona (SEK)
- Singapore Dollar (SGD)
When visiting Bhutan, it's a good idea to carry a mix of currencies. While major establishments in cities accept cards and other forms of electronic payment, having Ngultrum on hand is essential, especially in more remote areas. Always remember to exchange money through licensed entities to ensure you get the correct rates and to maintain the legality of your transactions.
Weather & Climate of Bhutan
Nestled in the heart of the Eastern Himalayas, Bhutan's climate is a harmonious blend of geographical factors and its altitude. This balance crafts a unique and diverse weather experience that varies from subtropical warmth to alpine coldness, all within a relatively small geographical area.
Latitude Meets Altitude: Despite being on the same latitude as warmer regions like Miami and Egypt, Bhutan’s altitude plays a dominant role in shaping its climate. The towering Himalayan mountains and deep valleys contribute to the varied microclimates experienced within short distances.
Regional Climate Dynamics:
- Southern Bhutan: The southern belt, adjacent to India, boasts a subtropical climate. Humidity is higher here, and the region experiences warmer temperatures along with lush plains and rolling hills.
- Central Bhutan: As one ascends, the climate transitions to a blend of subtropical and temperate. The central region has higher valleys and mid-sized mountains, which can reach altitudes up to 5,000 meters. This results in cooler temperatures and a mix of forests and alpine meadows.
- Northern Bhutan: Dominated by the towering Himalayan peaks, the north experiences an alpine climate. Snow is prevalent here year-round, with many areas remaining largely inaccessible due to the rugged terrain and cold conditions.
Spring (March to May): Nature awakens in a burst of colors as flowers bloom across the valleys and hills. Temperatures are moderate, making it a favored time for tourists.
Summer (June to August): Marked as the monsoon season, summer brings with it heavy rainfall, especially in the south. The central and northern regions also receive rain but to a lesser extent.
Autumn (September to November): The rains recede, giving way to clear skies and mild temperatures. The landscape is painted in golden hues as leaves change, making it another peak tourist season.
Winter (December to February): The mercury dips, with the north experiencing heavy snowfall. The central and southern regions witness cold, clear days and cooler nights, ideal for those seeking tranquility and pristine landscapes.
Cities and their Climate:
- Thimphu & Paro: Both cities, being in the heart of Bhutan, have a temperate climate. Rainfall averages around 800mm annually, with distinct seasonal variations. Winter sees temperatures between -3°C to 12°C, while summer ranges from 13°C to 25°C.
Bhutan is a climatic masterpiece, where tropical warmth gracefully melds with mountainous chill, offering a distinct experience that is as enchanting as its cultural and natural beauty.
Also, Read Best Time to Visit Bhutan.
Language on Bhutan
The heart of Bhutan's cultural and linguistic identity lies in its official language, Dzongkha. Rooted in the nation's history and traditions, Dzongkha not only plays a pivotal role in daily communication but also in religious and governmental contexts.
While Bhutan is home to a rich tapestry of regional languages, Dzongkha stands out as the National Language, acting as a unifying thread across diverse communities.
However, as Bhutan opened its doors to the world and sought to establish a global presence, another language started gaining prominence - English. Today, English is not only widely spoken but is fluently used by a significant portion of the Bhutanese population. Given its widespread use, especially in academic, business, and the tourism sector, English has been recognized as the second official language of Bhutan.
For visitors, this dual linguistic capability offers a unique experience. While they can immerse themselves in the authentic Bhutanese culture through interactions in Dzongkha, the prevalence of English ensures easy communication, making their journey comfortable and enriching.
Restaurants and Meals/ Foods in Bhutan
Bhutan, a country steeped in tradition and culture, offers a culinary landscape that's as rich and varied as its heritage. Immersing oneself in the flavors of Bhutan provides an authentic taste of its history and way of life.
Traditional Bhutanese Dishes
- Ema Datshi: Often hailed as Bhutan's national dish, this delightful blend of chilies and cheese encapsulates the heart of Bhutanese cuisine.
- Other beloved local dishes include Kewa Datshi (potato and cheese), Shamu Datshi (mushroom and cheese), Shakam Ema Datshi (dried beef with chilies and cheese), Shakam Paa (dried beef), Phaksha Paa (pork with chilies), Juma (Bhutanese sausages), and Jashu Maru (spicy chicken curry), to name just a few. Dishes like Mo: Mo (dumplings), Lom (fermented radish leaves), Hoentay (dumplings with buckwheat cover), Khatem (bitter gourd), Jaju (soup), and Goen Hogay (cucumber salad) showcase the diversity of Bhutanese fare. For those looking for staple foods, Tshampa (roasted flour), Puta (buckwheat noodles), and Khur Le (pancake) are must-tries.
A word to the spice-averse: Bhutanese cuisine is known for its fiery flavors, with chili playing a central role in many dishes. If your palate leans towards milder tastes, be sure to request less spice when placing your order.
International Cuisines in Bhutan
While Bhutan's traditional meals are a gastronomic adventure in themselves, the country's culinary scene also caters to international palates. From Continental to Chinese, Nepalese to Japanese, and French to Mexican - Bhutanese restaurants offer an array of global cuisines. Whether it's Indian biryanis, Spanish tapas, Italian pastas, or any other global delight, Bhutan ensures every culinary desire is satiated.
In essence, Bhutan's culinary landscape is a beautiful blend of traditional flavors and global influences, ensuring a delightful gastronomic journey for every visitor.
Also Read: Multiple flavor of Bhutan
Hotels and Accommodation in Bhutan
Bhutan, with its serene landscapes and rich cultural tapestry, has rapidly grown as a sought-after travel destination. While it's still in the phases of development, the accommodation scene in Bhutan offers a broad spectrum, ensuring that every traveler finds a place that fits their comfort and budget.
While Bhutan might be small in terms of population, it certainly doesn't compromise on luxury. Several international hotel chains have recognized the potential of Bhutan's tranquil charm and have established luxury properties in the country. These establishments offer world-class services, ensuring that guests experience the best of Bhutanese hospitality combined with global luxury standards.
For those who prefer a blend of comfort and affordability, Bhutan boasts a wide array of 4-star and 3-star hotels. These accommodations often provide a perfect fusion of traditional Bhutanese aesthetics with modern amenities. They offer a cozy and authentic experience, making them a favorite choice for many travelers.
The major cities and towns, such as Thimphu and Paro, house a myriad of accommodations that highlight the essence of Bhutan. From traditional Bhutanese architecture to home-cooked meals, these places allow visitors to truly immerse themselves in the local culture.
Whether you're seeking opulent luxury or a more intimate experience of Bhutanese traditions, the country's accommodation landscape is ready to welcome you. It's always advisable to book in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons, to secure your preferred choice of stay.
Best Bhutan Tour Packages
Bhutan is more popular for the tour than any other thing to do. The large number of places to visit and explore and the spectacular experience of natural exploration wrapping the unique cultures is more fascinating. Some of the most popular tour packages for Bhutan are as follows:
If you are looking for a tour package of Bhutan, please click here.