To restrict the number of tourists, they had minimum expenditure amount fixed. This is a conscious effort to minimize the impact of tourism on the culture and environment. We all had noticed in some or other part of the world how things got spoiled after the intensive tourist flow. This is a really good step to save the art, culture, and environment of the tiny Himalayan nation. I followed the below itinerary for my bhutan travel -Day 1: Flight from Delhi to Paro
Our flight departed at 06.30 AM from Delhi and we reached Paro at 09.30 AM. We could not sleep properly due to early morning flight, so after check in we rested for a couple of hours. Afterward, we went to local market, which is made in traditional style and consist of shops on both sides of the road. Travel to Bhutan & Ist day in ParoDay 2: Paro to Thimphu drive (70 kms | 2 hours)
After early breakfast, we visited National Museum of Paro before driving for Thimpu.
We visited Buddha viewpoint, Memorial Chorten and Takin Zoo in afternoon.
Our hotel was at the beginning of market & in front of Archery ground with the beautiful view. Due to its convenient location we walked around in market whenever we had time and did some window shopping in evening or had something in cafes 😛
Day 3: Thimphu Sightseeing
This day was totally dedicated to local sightseeing, we visited Painting School, National Library, Textile Museum. Must see places in & around Thimpu and Punakha
Finally we did some real shopping in evening.
Day 4: Thimphu – Punakha – Thimphu (137 kms/ 4 hours)
We drove to Punakha and on the way stopped at Dochula pass, here we spend some time roaming around 108 Chortans and monastery.
In Punakha we visited Punakha Dzong, Pho chuu, Mo Chuu rivers and finally went to a nearby village for lunch.
Day 5: Thimpu – Paro (70 kms | 2 hours)
After breakfast, we started our drive to Paro.
From Paro, we went to Chele La Pass and then visited Drukgyal Ruin Dzong.
Day 6: Paro
This day was dedicated for Tiger nest trek, we went after breakfast and returned before evening.
In evening I watched cultural programs arranged in the hall of our hotel for us. Paro – Photo blog and Some Details
Day 7: Departure from Paro to Delhi by 05.00 PM flight
We had half a day with us so, we went to Paro Dzong and Paro Chuu.
After lunch, we left for Paro airport to board the return flight.
Things to remember during Bhutan travel –
* Bhutanese currency is Ngultrum and the same value as Indian rupee. Even Indian rupee and USD are widely accepted. Credit Card facilities are extremely limited and international ATMs are limited in Thimpu, so it’s advisable to carry cash during Bhutan travel.
* Time is six hours ahead of GMT, 30 minutes ahead of India, one hour behind Thailand.
* Bhutanese dress modestly. Short skirts and shorts are generally not worn in public. When visiting temples, monasteries and Dzong then wear trousers or long skirt, smart top. Hats, sunglasses, sleeveless tops, shorts and short skirts are not permitted.
* Always carry a woolen or jacket while traveling even in summers because sometimes weather gets extremely cold or windy, we had this problem while we visited Chalela pass but fortunately we were carrying Jacket.
* Bhutanese people are religious and most of them follow Mahayana Buddhism (Kagyu tradition).
* English is widely spoken in urban areas.
* When entering an inside a prayer hall in Dzongs or Monasteries, remove shoes outside and photography is prohibited inside temples.
* When passing by Chortens, Mani walls or prayer flags, pass by clockwise.
* Smoking is prohibited in the public areas.
* Bhutanese people respect and consider their king and queen next to God, keep this in mind.
* All foreigners except for citizens of India, Bangladesh, and Maldives must obtain a visa before visiting. Foreign tourists must use a licensed Bhutanese tour operator pre-arrange their visa and book their holiday. A daily fee is charged, which is $250 a day during high season and $200 a day for low season + 30 USD.
* This amount is a minimum spend and covers the basic expense of stay, food, and transport in Bhutan.
* Road from Thimpu to Punakha has many twists and turn if you get motion sickness then take the medication in advance.
* Wear comfortable shoes for the trek to Tiger Nest.
* Most restaurants prepare food after you place an order, so be patient because it can take 25-40 minutes.
Travel by Drukair, which flies from different Indian cities, Thailand, Nepal, Singapore and Bangladesh.