Do I need a visa to enter Bhutan?
With the exception of visitors from India, Maldives and Bangladesh all other visitors to Bhutan need a visa. International tourists wishing to enter Bhutan require a visa which must be pre-arranged through a license Bhutanese Tour Operator or one of their international partners. Visa clearance must be obtained through a tour operator prior to travel.
How much does the visa cost?
For International tourist visas, a cost of USD $40 applies. This can be paid in advance to your tour operator or travel agent.
Do I need to use a tour operator to book my travel?
It is a government regulation that you must use a license Bhutanese Tour Operator to book your travel to Bhutan or one of their international partners.
How do I get to Bhutan?
At present only Drukair and Bhutan Airlines operate to Bhutan.There are a number of airports where you can fly into Bhutan:
- Thailand : Bangkok - Paro(Bhutan) - Bangkok (via Kolkatta) : Daily Flights
- Nepal : Kathmandu - Paro - Kathmandu : Daily Flights
- India : Delhi - Paro - Delhi : Daily Flights
- Singapore : Singapore - Paro - Singapore (via Kolkatta) : 02 Flights per week
- Bangladesh : Dhaka - Paro - Dhaka : 04 Flights per week
Also, there are three land border crossings which you can travel into the kingdom overland. All crossings are along the Indian border only - Phuentsholing, Gelephu and Samdrup Jongkhar. All travel arrangements to Bhutan must be made through a local tour operator.
What does the $200/$250 per day minimum daily package include?
The $200 per day (regular season) and $250 per day (high season) package includes a minimum of 3 star accommodations, costs for food, all tickets for attractions, an experienced guide and transportation (with driver) within the country. Also included in the price is a $65 per day Sustainable Development Fee that goes towards free education, free healthcare, poverty alleviation and sustainability fund to preserve the natur. All of these services will be arranged by your tour operator.
Is there a limit on the number of tourists that can enter Bhutan each year?
There is no limit on the number of tourists admitted into the country each year. In order to protect our culture, traditions and natural environment, the government has adopted a strict policy of “High Value, Low Impact Tourism”. This policy is aimed at attracting discerning tourists that will respect the unique culture and values of the Bhutanese people while also providing the visitors with an unforgettable one of a kind experience.
What precautions do senior citizens need to take while traveling to Bhutan?
Bhutan is an extremely safe country for tourists and senior citizens can travel worry free in this small peaceful kingdom. Since much of Bhutan lies at a high elevation, seniors need to be aware of the possibility of suffering from breathing issues, especially if they have a history of heart problems. Please consult with your doctor regarding medication before visiting Bhutan.Also seniors are advised to travel in groups and carry sufficient supply of prescribed medicines
Is there anything for children to do in Bhutan?
A trip to Bhutan can be a real eye opener for kids of all ages. The sheer beauty aside, there is much to do for families in Bhutan. There are many short treks available like the Taktsang which can easily be done by kids, the dramatic changes in landscape is sure to keep them entertained. There are also plenty of museums with programs especially designed to keep little minds busy and informed. Apart from that there is the 13 Art School engaged in teaching children a wide variety of ancient arts and crafts. Apart from these, Bhutan is also richly endowed with beautiful parks that aim to stretch the minds and bodies of all, big and small.
Any safety concerns that I should be aware of while traveling to Bhutan?
Bhutan measures the wealth of the nation on the basis of Gross National Happiness, there is a lot more emphasis on quality of life rather than quantity. All this means that the government is very vested in ensuring the well-being of its citizens, all of which translates into low crime rate and a very safe country for tourists.
Are there any emergency assistance numbers helpful for tourists in Bhutan?
For any emergency assistance and to reach the Bhutan police please dial 113. For ambulance services please dial 112 in Bhutan.
When is the best time to visit Bhutan ?
Due to the vast differences in altitude, the climate is extremely varied. Every season has its own charm and things to offer.
Spring(March to June) and Autumn (September to December) are the ideal time to visit Bhutan, the air is fresh with clear blue skies. In late spring, the famous rhododendrons bloom spectacularly, flooding the valleys with colours. Likewise, the terrace paddy fields and trees turn gold in Autumn. There are also festivals held in different regions in these two seasons.
January and February are colder with occasional snowfalls, the climate remains dry and pleasant. July and August are Summer (Monsoon season). The weather is warm with rain during the day or several overcast days in a row.