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Bhutan

BHUTAN TOURS

Bhutan tours were only opened to tourists in 1974 and its policy of 'high value low numbers tourism' ensures that relatively few travellers have visited Bhutan since. The country's unique philosophy of promoting 'Gross National Happiness' and entrenched Buddhism, combined with extremely friendly people and beautiful Himalayan scenery makes it a place like no other.

We run regular small group Bhutan tours and treks throughout the year. Several of these Himalayan Kingdom expeditions are timed to fit in with some of Bhutan's famous Tsechus (festivals) and we always try and visit the huge weekend market in the capital Thimphu.

Try our Bhutan tours today

Our team will be delighted to assist you with your travel arrangements for your Bhutan holidays. Although it is possible to enter overland from India, most people will fly into Bhutan with the national airline Druk Air from Delhi, Kathmandu, Bangkok or Singapore.

Druk Air flights do not connect with the international flight system, so at least one night in one of these cities is normally required at either end of your Bhutan tour. We are happy to arrange both your Druk Air flights and accommodation in any of these cities to help you connect your Bhutan tour with your main international flights. Please check the extension options shown on the tour or contact us for details and advice if required.

Knowing when to go on a Bhutan tour is important, we've created a handy guide which tells you when is the best time to go.
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Group Departure Dates

5 Tours | From $1990 p/p

-10%
Map Map

Duration:

8 Days

Country(ies):

Bhutan

Tour Type:

Small Group

Group size:

Min: 2 | Max: 12

Meals:

B- 7, L - 6, D - 7

Highlights:

Tiger's Nest monastery, Punakha & Paro Dzongs, Phobkikha Valley, Thimphu market, Buddhist culture


   From

$1990(p/p)

$2210

Duration:

9 Days

Country(ies):

Bhutan , Nepal

Tour Type:

Small Group

Group size:

Min: 2 | Max: 12

Meals:

B- 9, L - 4, D - 4

Highlights:

Kathmandu's temples & stupas, Paro Dzong & National Museum, Thimphu tours, Buddha Point, Dochu La Pass, Punakha Dzong, Tiger's Nest monaster...


   From

$2065(p/p)

Duration:

12 Days

Country(ies):

Bhutan , Nepal

Tour Type:

Small Group

Group size:

Min: 2 | Max: 12

Meals:

B- 11, L - 5, D - 6

Highlights:

Kathmandu's temples & stupas, Paro Dzong & National Museum, Thimphu weekend market, Dochu La Pass, Punakha Dzong, Phobjika Valley, Taktshang...


   From

$2950(p/p)

Duration:

13 Days

Country(ies):

Bhutan

Tour Type:

Private

Group size:

Min: 2 | Max: Any

Meals:

B- 12, L - 12, D - 12

Highlights:

Walk up to Taktshang monastery, Druk Path Trek, Thimphu weekend market, Dochu La Pass, Punakha & Wangdue Phodrang Dzongs, Bhutanese food & c...


   From

$3950(p/p)

Duration:

14 Days

Country(ies):

Bhutan

Tour Type:

Private

Group size:

Min: 2 | Max: 8

Meals:

B- 16, L - 16, D - 16

Highlights:

Birdwatching in Bhutan (Himalayan Monal, White bellied heron, Black necked crane, Satyr tragopan and many more), traditional Bhutanese life ...


   From

$6340(p/p)

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Is it safe to visit Bhutan?

Bhutan is a very safe destination to visit and crime is minimal.

What is the official currency of Bhutan?

The ngultrum is the official currency of Bhutan and it is subdivided into 100 chhertum.

When is the best time of the year to visit Bhutan?

October to December is the best time of the year to visit Bhutan, as the air is clear, and the temperature is mild. January and February are much colder and dry. The weather is pleasant in April and in late spring rhododendrons fill the valleys.

What to wear in Bhutan?

The dress code in Bhutan is fairly formal for the locals and visitors. When entering the monastery or temple, you should wear long sleeved tops, trousers or long skirts. It is also a good idea to dress in layers as the temperature can vary during the day.

Is the tap water safe to drink in Bhutan?

The tap water is not safe to drink in Bhutan, so you should stick to bottled mineral water, which is readily available in hotels, restaurants and shops.

TOUR REVIEWS

I purchased my rid tour as part of a group coupon. Is obituary hesitant but my tour was great. The staff at Encounters were professional and helpful. I had a lot of questions but no one made me feel like a pest. Good experience.
I always wanted to go to Morocco and I finally got to go last September. I'm glad I chose this tour group. They were professional and attentive. Good times!

Encounters Travel did such a superb job in organizing this tour. I had never heard of them before going on the Maldives Magic tour, however now I will recommend them to friends/family and use them for my future planned trips.
Our tour is what made the trip that much more memorable. Rather than being plopped at a westernized resort, we were able to get a taste of how the locals live, eat and entertain themselves. We stayed in quaint guesthouses on the islands amongst the locals, ate authentic Maldivian cuisine (one day even with a Maldivian family who made us breakfast), and viewed a traditional dance/singing performance which was absolutely delightful. This was a trip of a lifetime that I will never forget.

My contact with Encounters representative was a pleasure, she answered my questions promptly, provided a quotation and changed it quickly when different flights were preferred. Both by e-mail and phone the response was very timely.

The trip was excellent and very well run, we have no complaints it was exactly as we expected.The guide was knowledgable and courteous, it ran on time and accommodation was fine.We have no complaints and have now booked again to go to India.
The trip was as above and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, all destinations were as expected and lived up to our expectations.We went with the idea of visiting Turkey and especially Gallipoli which achieved our goals.The historical part of thetrip was very well done and memmorable.

Anthony has been amazing throughout my planning of my tour. He has been very quick in replying to my emails and always answering with everything I wanted to know. I look forward to hopefully planning my next trip through him next year!

ratings

Bhutan Country Guide

Bhutan Country Guide Flag

Factfile


Time: GMT+6
Dial Code: +975
Area: 38,394 km²
Elevation: The lowest point in Bhutan is Drangme Chhu, 97m (318 ft.) | The highest point in Bhutan is Gangkhar Puensum, 7,570m (24,836 ft.)
Population: 817,054 (2018)
Capital: Thimphu
Governemnt: Constitutional monarchy
Language: Dzongkha

Bhutan, officially the Kingdom of Bhutan, is a landlocked country in South Asia. Situated in the Eastern Himalayas, Bhutan is bordered by Tibet Autonomous Region of China in the north, the Sikkim state of India and the Chumbi Valley of Tibet in the west, the Arunachal Pradesh state of India in the east, and the states of Assam and West Bengal in the south.

The country is geopolitically in South Asia and is the region's second least populous nation after the Maldives. Thimphu is the capital of Bhutan and the largest city, while Phuntsholing is its financial centre.

Bhutan has never been colonised and has remained independent for centuries. The distinct national identity of the Bhutanese state is based on Buddhism. The National Assembly of Bhutan is a part of the bicameral parliament of the Bhutanese democracy.

The dramatic landscape of Bhutan includes verdant subtropical plains in the south and sub-alpine Himalayan mountains in the north. The highest mountain in Bhutan is Gangkhar Puensum - one of the highest unclimbed mountains in the world.

Bhutan maintains diplomatic relations with 52 countries and the European Union. The government is a parliamentary democracy and the head of state is the king of Bhutan. Bhutan is also known for inventing the concept of Gross National Happiness.

The climate in Bhutan is influenced by elevation and the country experiences five distinct seasons: summer, monsoon, autumn, winter and spring. There is diverse wildlife in Bhutan with rare species such as the golden langur.

Highlights

  • Phobkikha Valley - an expansive U-shaped glacial valley where the black-necked crane resides.
  • Thimphu market - a farmer's weekend market selling organic vegetables, fruits, spices and herbs.
  • Dochula Pass - a mountain pass in the Himalayas on the road from Thimpu to Punakha.
  • Kyichu Lhakhang - a significant Himalayan Buddhist temple part of a network of 12 other temples.
  • National Museum of Bhutan - a historic cultural museum in Paro displaying over 3,000 works of Bhutanese art.
  • Druk Path trek - one of the finest short treks following an ancient trading route over high mountain passes.
  • Archery ground in Paro - this archery ground is still used for traditional archery today.
  • Trashi Chho Dzong - an elaborate Buddhist monastery and fortress on the northern edge of Thimphu

Tips

  • Bring a hat, sunglasses, sun cream and lip balm for the strong Himalayan sun.
  • Time your visit during a festival as these colourful spectacles are worth witnessing.
  • You can haggle in most shops, but don't expect more than a 10% discount.
  • You don't have to tip in restaurants and hotels, but you should tip your guide.
  • Before taking photographs inside monasteries or at religious sites, ask for permission.
  • The roads in Bhutan are winding so bring medication if you are prone to motion sickness.
  • Tuesdays are considered the national 'dry day' as the sale of alcohol is prohibited.
  • Many of the locals are fluent in English as that is the medium of education.

VIDEO FEATURE

Our video features aim to bring our adventure tours to life in a way that no photo can, giving you a great taste of the destination.

POSTS FROM OUR BLOG

Need some travel inspiration or looking for some handy travel tips? Our blog provides excellent insight into our travel destinations - from tour updates to country guides, packing lists to little known things to do, you'll find it all in our travel blog.

https://ucarecdn.com/371e1b76-4214-44ca-88bf-9aa5616277ec/ By: Martin Hosie 2016-01-04 20:00:00

Bhutan Travel Guide

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The Kingdom of Bhutan is both small and remote, tucked away in the mighty Himalayan mountain range between India and China.

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https://ucarecdn.com/a9343fad-36e3-4125-8af8-38176c0262d1/ By: Danniell Saunders 2011-11-24 20:00:00

Kathmandu: Among the Mighty Himalayas

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Landlocked 2,000-year-old Nepal is surrounded by China and India.

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