traveltips

Travel Tips - Bhutan

Time Zone

GMT + 6 hours

Language

The official language of Bhutan is Dzongkha, but Hindi is widely understood throughout the country.

Staff at airlines, railway, telecommunication counters and offices are usually fluent in English. Most direction signs usually have an English version too.

Religion

Although Buddhism is the official religion of Bhutan and is practised by almost three-forth of the population, Hinduism comes second with almost one-forth of the population practising it. Apart from these, few Bhutanese also practise Bon, Christianity and Islam.

Currency

The units of Bhutanese currency are the Ngultrum and Chhetrum (100 Chhetrum equal 1 Ngultrum). Paper money is in denominations of Nu.1, Nu.5, Nu.10, Nu.20, Nu.50, Nu.100, Nu.500, and Nu.1000. Coins are in denominations of Ch.20, Ch.25, Ch.50 and Nu.1.

Tipping

Tipping is not customary, but it is appreciated nevertheless.

Weather

For full details, please see Best Time to Go.

Health

For up to date information on latest health and vaccination recommendations, please contact your doctor.

Electricity

220 – 240 V

Photography

Bhutan has breathtaking sights in the form of its verdant landscape, buildings of unique architecture and people who are colourfully attired, thus making the country one of the most photogenic in the world. However, while photographing the locals, it is always advisable to seek permission first. Photography is prohibited in certain religious establishments, but most Dzongs (fort or fortress) and Goembas (monastery) allow photography from outside. It is also advisable to avoid taking pictures of military installations. 

Arrival and Departure Formalities

All visitors must have valid passports stamped with current visas.

Local Customs

Avoid smoking while visiting the religious establishments in Bhutan, like, dzongs, temples and Monasteries. It is advisable to not point a finger at a sacred object or place as such an action may be considered disrespectful.

Local Food

Food in Bhutan constitutes of a variety of meats, like beef, pork, yak and chicken. Locally produced cheese is also a popular ingredient in their cuisines. Apart from these, there are ample of options for vegetarians. Indian and Chinese cuisines are popular among tourists and are available in a few restaurants in Thimphu. 

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