After hydroelectricity, Bhutan’s second biggest income is tourism. Therefore, when you travel here, you are directly participating to the county’s economic growth.
Just to clarify: there is a daily price to be in Bhutan (200-270$ per person per day, depending on the season). At first, this price may seem outstanding, and of course, it makes for an expensive trip (backpacking not being allowed). But this daily tariff includes: your guide, driver, car, all meals, hotels (3-stars), and activities (some are extra, like rafting). In order to be able to obtain the visa, you must go through a Bhutanese travel agency and once you have organized your trip, they will apply for your visa.
Firstly, determine how many days you want to be in Bhutan. Many travel agencies will have itinerary examples according to the amount of days you will be in the country. However, it is important you know what kind of traveller you are, and request your preferences to your travel agent so they can arrange them for you. In our case, we are very active and need hikes and outdoor activities and this was adjusted accordingly. If you are not used to having a guide with you when you travel, I suggested these types of activities so you don’t feel accompanied the whole time.
Keep an open mind
Bhutan is different from many places in the world in many ways. From their political system to the ways they preserve their culture, it is the sum of everything that make this place so special. Of course, some questions may arise and bring interesting debates. But keep an open mind, and be respectful as you challenge some of these questions with your guide. Eat with your hands, learn words like “hello” and “thank you” and always smile.
I read about this trek in the Lonely Planet and it was in the “off the beaten track” suggestions. Since we love trekking, and we didn’t have time for a 5 day trek in Bhutan, I thought this was a great option since it was one night and two days. The second day ends at the Tiger’s Nest monastery, one of Bhutan’s highlights.
I will break down each day and give you the amount of kilometres we walked. The amount of time you walk per day depends on how in shape you are!
Day 1: You start your walk in the morning and walk through beautiful forests. Enjoy the flowers and trees. You take a break for lunch by a small monastery and continue upwards to the base camp (located at 3800m). The camp had amazing food, beds, and views.
Total upward elevation gained: 1200m
Total amount of kilometres walked: 8km
Day 2: After breakfast, leave early in order to walk down the mountain. You will see several monasteries on your way down. And then, you get a spectacular view of the Tiger’s Nest monastery. What is special about this trek is that you can see the monastery from above, what others do not get to see. You walk down to Tiger’s Nest, visit the monastery early with little crowds, and then walk all the way down to the main entrance.
Total amount of kilometres walked: 10km.
Things to bring (you don’t need much since it’s one night and you get a comfy and warm bed to sleep in)
- Trekking clothes (1 pant, 1 or 2 tshirts, 2 pairs of socks, hat)
- Comfortable shoes or trekking boots
- Warm clothes and a rain jacket
- Camera and something to do (book, playing cards etc).
If you enjoy nature, camping, and trekking, I DEFINITELY suggest this trek!
For any travel information check out: http://www.jambayangtravel.com