Bhutan can be entered either by land or by air. Druk Air, the National Airline and Bhutan Airlines (a private Airline) operates regular flights to/from Paro to Delhi, Kolkatta, Bagdogra, Guwahati, Gaya and Mumbai in India, Kathmandu in Nepal, Bangkok in Thailand and Singapore. By surface, entry into Bhutan is possible through southern border towns of Phuentsholing, Samtse, Gelephu and Samdrup Jongkhar. Thimphu is about 5 hours drive from Phuentsholing.
Map of Bhutan:
Driving Distance from various points of West Bengal to Phuntsholing, Bhutan
|From West Bengal||To Bhutan||Approx Time||Distance|
|Bagdogra (Airport)||Phuntsholing||5 Hours||165 Km|
|Siliguri (NJP Railway Station)||Phuntsholing||4 Hours||150 Km|
|Darjeeling Hill Station||Phuntsholing||6 Hours||227 Km|
|Gangtok (Sikkim)||Phuntsholing||7 Hours||230 Km|
|Kalimpong||Phuntsholing||6 Hours||179 Km|
Indian Nationals travelling to Bhutan do not need prior to travel Visa approval. Voter Identity Card or Passport with more than six months validity however is required for presentation at the immigration during entry, to obtain an entry permit along with a copy of passport size photograph and a copy of your passport or VIC.
Bhutan Government with the aim to provide efficient and better services to every tourist visiting Bhutan and with the country’s “High value, low volume” tourism policy, all tourists are charged a Sustainable Development Fee of Rupees 1200 per night per person (other Nationals are charged USD 200 per person per night). Since January 2017 an online visa system has been introduced for Indian Nationals, so all visitors booking their tour with a local tour operator can get hassle free online permit provided they have valid passports.
Documents required for Permit:
- Passport with validity of at least six months or Voter Identification Card and birth certificate for children if they do not have passport.
- Insurance for the duration of travel in Bhutan.
- A copy of passport photo (digital photo if you are applying online)
Bhutan’s climate is quite unpredictable. The weather can vary dramatically from place to place and day to day. In Thimphu and Paro valleys, the winter daytime temperature averages 16 degrees Celsius during clear days and drops well below freezing point during the night. The fluctuations are not so great during the summer and the daytime temperature rises to mid-twenties Celsius
From May to September, cotton clothes are sufficient, plus a woolen sweater or light jacket. From November to the end of April, however, you will need very warm clothes. Comfortable sports shoes are also recommended. Mountain boots are not necessary unless you are trekking.
Bhutanese delicacies are rich with spicy chilly and cheese but are normally tempered to the taste of the visitors. All our hotels and Restaurants offer delicious Indian, Chinese, Continental and Bhutanese cuisine. Hotels normally serve a mixture of vegetarian and non-vegetarian items on buffet system, however pure vegetarian and Jain meals are also served on request and prior information. We at Chen-Ray Travel & Tours know very well about the food habits of our Indian guests especially from Jain community.
The Bhutanese currency is called Ngultrum (Nu.) and is at par with Indian Rupee. Major Credit cards like Master Card and Visa are accepted by most of the hotel and business establishments. ATM cards of SBI, Punjab National Bank and few other Banks can be used as well. Indian Rupee is acceptable all over Bhutan however it is also advisable not to carry Rs 1,000/- and Rs 500/- denomination currency notes.
The official language of Bhutan is Dzongkha and a large number of dialects are spoken. English has been the language of educational instruction since 1964 and is widely spoken. Also locals at popular tourist destinations understand and speak Hindi.
Bhutan is very safe destination with lowest crime rate in the world. In general you will find Bhutanese people very warm, hospitable, helpful and friendly.
You can photograph almost everywhere in Bhutan. The people are highly photogenic and everyone seems to wear a smile. However, very often the Bhutanese are camera shy so use your discretion at all times and when in doubt ask verbally or by gesture. Also while photographing Dzongs (fortresses), monasteries and temples, please check with your guide.
The Bhutanese authorities strictly monitor export of any religious antiquities of any kind from the kingdom. Personal electronic devices and reasonable amount of cigarettes and alcohol are permitted into the kingdom.
Tipping is not included in our tour prices and it’s at your discretion.