Bhutan - Travel Information
ClimateBhutan lies in the Central Himalayas, between China to the north the Indian states of Assam and West Bengal to the south and east, and Sikkim to the west with a total area of about 47,000 square kilometers.
Spring (March to May) has warm Day and cool nights. With June begins summer and the day temperature shoots up to 27 - 29 °C. Come July, the rain starts continuing till mid-September. The autumn months of September to November are ideal for trekking with clear skies and mild weather. In December temperature falls, although the Day will still be warm. The nights, however, are cold with temperature often falling below zero.
LanguageBhutanese speak a variety of languages but Dzongkha is the national language and one of the most widely spoken language. English is also a medium of communication and most Bhutanese speak English. Communicating in English especially with the people in the urban areas and the towns will enhance your knowledge on Bhutan.
CommunicationThe country has a good network of telecommunication facilities. Almost every town has an internet cafe and IDD calling booths from where you can log on to and send messages home and to your loved ones. Also most hotels in Thimphu and Paro have internet access. Mobile (cell) phone is also widely used with international roaming facilities.
In 2003, Bhutan introduced it's first Cellular Service by Bhutan Telecom known as B-Mobile, and now it serves all part of the country. By now, it provides the user to use GPRS, EDGE, 3G allowing the subscriber to make Vedio Calls, MMS, and many other multimedia services. In May 2008, The Tashi Groups of Company launched the second Cellular Service known as TashiCell.
ElectricityAll major towns are well connected with electricity that runs on 220/240 volts with round hole two-pin and three-pin power outlets. Our energy is clean and green energy generated by hydro power.
The country is divided into twenty administrative units called dzongkhags. The larger dzongkhags are further divided into sub-district called dungkhag. A group of villages are grouped to form a constituency called gewog and administered by a gup, who is elected by the people
Food and DrinksBhutanese food is a tantalizing blend of hot Himalayan flavours. Northern Indian cuisine mixes with the chillies of the Tibetan plateau and traditional recipes from Bhutan 's villages to create sizzling and memorable tastes. Chanterelle mushrooms, apricots, asparagus, a wide variety of chillis and a host of spices grow in abundance in Bhutan 's valleys.
These spices, fruits and vegetables are prepared with beef, chicken, pork, and dried yak or with each other to make dishes that resemble elements of both Chinese and Indian cuisine. Bhutanese dishes are traditionally served with ample portions of indigenous red rice. The food prepared for tourists is tempered to western taste. The tourism authority imported the knowledge of selected European hotel experts to improve the quality of food and beverage
ClothingDue to wide range of temperature and climatic conditions, it is advisable to bring appropriate clothing. From May to September normal traveling cloths plus a light woolen sweater or a light jacket and a light walking boots are sufficient. From November to end of April on the other hand, you will need very warm cloths including underwear or woolen tights to wear under trousers, thick socks, strong boots and down jacket.
You will be offending people if you walk around in skimpy or tight fitting clothes. Although there are normally opportunities to wear skirts or loose trousers, men should not wear singlets. During visit of monasteries, dzongs and other religious sites, you should not wear shorts and hats.
Travel/Medical InsuranceThe Royal Insurance Corporation of Bhutan has initiated a travel and medical plan solely for our visitors. Hence it is important that you get detailed information about the insurance scheme from your travel agents here in Bhutan. You may also visit the web site at www.ricb.com.bt
Bhutan’s currency is the Ngultrum (Nu.) that is at par with the Indian rupee. It is however recommended that you carry travelers’ cheque or cash, preferably American Express and US dollar instead, as the ATM facilities for foreign currency is limited to just few towns including the capital city Thimphu. Visa and American Express credit cards are also widely accepted.