Bhutan Travel Information

In the 8th century, a Tantric master called Guru Rinpoche bought Buddhism in the country with unwavering blessing. As a result, the majority of people in Bhutan follow Mahayana Buddhism. Furthermore, in the 17th century, the great scholar Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel visited and unified the country with the Dual foundation system. There were many establishments of fortress mainly to protect from Tibetan invasion and also used for administration purposes.

There were peace and tranquility in the country. However, after the death of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel, there were continuous power struggles among the high-rank official for the post of temporal rulers.  There were also threads from Tibet in the North and British, British, and India in the south. As a result of continuous civil wars, the country got fragment, and there were no peace and happiness for the people. Finally, however, the country was once again unified by Desi Jigme Namgyel.

In addition, Desi Jigme Namgyel's son, Gongsa Ugyen Wangchuk, proved his capability, farsightedness braveness. Therefore, the people of Bhutan unanimously elected Gongsa Ugyen Wangchuk as the first hereditary king of Bhutan in 1907, which revived peace, prosperity, and happiness.

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History of Bhutan

Bhutan has a unique history with its political and past intertwined. It is the only country that has never been conquered or occupied. The Monpas were the first inhabitants, and the Tibetan monks brought Buddhism to Bhutan in the 9th century, which became deeply embedded in their culture. Its medieval history is well-documented, but recent events have shaped its identity. Ngawang Namgyal, a Lama hailing from western Tibet, rose to power in the 16th century and valiantly protected the kingdom of Bhutan against three separate Tibetan invasions. This momentous event marked the inception of Bhutan's history as an independent and sovereign nation.

Bhutan had a hereditary monarchy in the 20th century. Jigme Dorji Wangchuk implemented reforms that helped Bhutan break free from its isolation, including the establishment of the National Assembly in 1953. Jigme Singye Wangchuk ruled Bhutan for over three decades, bringing significant changes to the country, including the adoption of a new constitution in 2008. He abdicated his powers as king in 2006, passing the throne to his son, Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuk. Today, Bhutan stands out as a vibrant and unique nation that continues to evolve with its distinctive attributes.

People of Bhutan

Bhutan has three ethnic groups: Sharchops from eastern Bhutan, Ngalops from Tibet, and Nepalese in the south. With a strong emphasis on Gross National Happiness, the people of Bhutan are predominantly Buddhist. The country is known for its unique traditional clothing like the Gho and Kira and stunning architecture characterized by Dzongs. Archery is the national sport and the people are renowned for their warm hospitality that makes visitors feel right at home.

Flora & Fauna

Bhutan is very rich in biodiversity. Untouched forests cover more than 70% of the country. Possessing rich plants and trees became home to varied species of animals and birds. In addition, Bhutan boasts about 300 species of medicinal plants and about 46 species of rhododendrons. Some familiar sights for the visitors are the Magnolias, Junipers, Orchids, Gentian, the Blue Poppy, the national flowers, and tropical trees such as pine and oaks.

Despite Bhutan's landscapes, geographical diversity, and favorable climatic conditions, this tiny kingdom has incredible biodiversity and a great ecosystem. There are more than 770 species of birds, 200 mammals, and 5400 plant species.


Bhutanese architecture is unique globally, consisting of multicolored wood frontages, small arched windows, and a sloping roof.  Western Bhutanese structures are constructed from wooden frames and materials, namely wattle and duals interior walls, rammed exterior earth walls, stone and earth retaining walls. No plans are drawn up, nor are nailed or iron bars allowed in the construction.

The architect of ordinary houses varies according to the location and elevation and also of raw materials. Although bamboo houses are typical in the southern latitudes, most people build two-storied houses, where upper floors are reserved for chapels and guest rooms. There is usually ample space between the roof and walls for air to pass and often dry animal skins and chilies.

The Arts & Craft

Bhutan's art and craft is defined as the art of Zorig Chusum (Zo – the ability to make, Rig – science or Chusum-thirteen). The great 15th-century terton Pema Lingpa is traditionally credited with introducing the arts into Bhutan. In 1680, the 4th Druk Desi (Secular ruler) Gyalse Tenzin Rabgye was finally categorized into thirteen arts and crafts. Papermaking, Black Smithing, Clay art, Painting, Bronze Casting, wood, slate and stone carving, woodturning, woodworking, Weaving, silver and goldsmithing cane, and bamboo work, and Needlework.

In order to preserve the traditional arts and crafts, which represent the spirit and identity of the Himalayan kingdom, the royal government of Bhutan established the national institute of Zorig Chusum in Thimphu in 1974, and another in the east, Trashi Yangtse institute for Zorig Chusum established in 1974. Every year, hundreds of trainees pass out from these two institutes. Moreover, they are a vital part of preserving and promoting the arts and crafts of Bhutan.


Bhutan's unit of currency is Ngultrum (Nu), which equals 100 Chetrum. Since Bhutanese currency is pegged Indian Rupee, Ngultrum in Bhutan has the same value as Indian Rupee. Therefore, travelers can exchange cash from Banks in Bhutan and their hotels with the help of travel agents.

American dollars, pound sterling, French or Swiss francs, German marks, Chinese Yuan, and Japanese yen are accepted currencies.


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Bhutan Travel Information

Visa & Formalities

  • All foreign citizens, except for those from India, require a visa to enter the country.
  • There are three passes through which foreigners can enter the country: Phuentsholing, Gelephu, and Samdrup Jongkhar.
  • If your visa application is approved, you will be issued a visa clearance letter.
  • The visa clearance letter must be presented at the port of entry, where it will be stamped into your passport, allowing you to enter the country with ease.
  • During your stay, all the visitor will be charged a daily Sustainable Development Fee (SDF).