|Bhutan often revered as the ‘Land of the
Peaceful Dragon’ is still regarded as one of the last ‘Shangrilas’
in the Himalayan region because of its remoteness, it’s spectacular
mountain terrain, Varied flora and fauna its unique ancient Buddhist
monasteries. It is in the relatively unexplored pockets of Asia which
allows only limited number of discerning travelers to enter the country
in order to protect its fragile environment and culture.
Bhutan a purely Buddhist Himalayan Kingdom is unsurpassed in its
scenic majesty and vibrant culture. The kingdom shares with Nepal
the world’s greatest concentration of mountains and living
heritage of Buddhism. The fifty minutes flight from Kathmandu to
Paro can truly be described as a flight into fantasy. During the
flight a first hand close up view of Mt. Everest, Mt. Kanchenjunga
and other famous peaks become reality. Biweekly flights between
these two kingdoms have made easier travel to the long isolated
Dragon Kingdom of Bhutan.
Drukpa Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism is the state religion but
the Nyingma School is also well represented in the central and eastern
The monsoons start in mid June and lasts until the end of September.
The climate within the mountains varies greatly according to precipitation
and wind conditions. In the Duras plain and up to 1500m. the climate
is sub-tropical with high humidity and heavy rainfall. The climate
of mid-mountain belt varies, such that low-lying parts of Punakha,
Mongar, Tashigangs and Lhuntse have cool winter and hot summers,
whereas the higher valleys of Ha, Paro, Thimpu, Tongsa and Bumthang
ranging from 2,500 – 4,500m. endure a temperate climate with
cold snowy winters and somewhat cooler summers.
||Bhutan lies between
890 and 920 E and 270 and 280 N
||30 minutes ahead
of Indian Standard Time. 6 hours
ahead of GMT
||There are two
main population groups in Bhutan: the Drukpa (67% of Tibetan
and Monpa origin) and
Lhotsampa (30% of Nepalese origin).
The rest 3% comprise of indigenous tribal groups
Such as Toktop, Doya and Lepcha of SW Bhutan
|Spring is rhododendron season in Bhutan. The mountain-sides
all over the country are ablaze in shades of red and orange. Days
are warm but nights are still cold. As the monsoon rises from the
Bay of Bengal, spring turns to summer and three months of heavy monsoon
rains. Arguably the loveliest time of the year in Bhutan, autumn brings
clear skies & warm days.
In 1995, the per capita income was estimated at US $ 500 with the
annual growth at 5%. Although these figures places Bhutan among the
least developed nations the country is unlike others within that category
as no famine, little malnutrition, good housing, exists. Over 91%
of the populations depend on agriculture and livestock rearing which
together account for some 50% of GDP, despite the fact that only 2%
of the land is arable.
The National currency is Ngultrum (Nu) 100 Chetrum = 1 Nu. Exchange
rate is approximately US $ 1 = Nu. 42.75 (1999) Indian Rupees circulate