Bhutan is traditionally known as Drukyul, hence the country is often poetically known as the ‘land of the thunder dragon’. This small Himalayan kingdom is wedged between the vast territories of Tibet to the north and India to the south and it straddles an important continental divide, where the Buddhist culture encounters the largely Hindu and Nepalese culture of the subtropical Duars.
Acutely aware of the linguistic, ethnic and social problems that this culture clash has engendered in neighbouring Sikkim and in distant Ladakh, the successive kings and royal government of Bhutan have sought to maintain national unity by preserving their unique cultural heritage, which underpins sustainable economic development, and has as its objective ‘gross national happiness’. Bhutan’s success in accepting modernization while preserving the best of its traditions may hopefully serve as a model for Tibet’s own future development.
Take a trip through Bhutan, one of the most intriguing, rarely-visited and unique countries on the planet.
Time difference: Bhutan is 6 hours behind New Zealand (7 hours during daylight saving)
Visa Required: Yes
Currency: Bhutanese Ngultrum (BTN)
Tel Code: +975
Official Language: Dzongkha
Main Religion: Buddhism