Known as the last remaining Himalayan kingdom, Bhutan is an awe-inspiring country with an unusual charm. In this Buddhist nation, a traveller gets to explore many monasteries scattered all over the country. In the recent times, Bhutan has emerged as a coveted tourist destination in Asia. The first time you land into this country, lush greenery will welcome you as Bhutan is 60 percent covered with forests. The great Himalayas, rice-field landscapes, monasteries with superb architecture and an attractive culture; all make Bhutan an irresistible destination.
Western circuit - pleasantly beautiful
Bhutan has been divided into three tourist circuits - western, central and eastern. The western circuit is most popular comprising six districts - Thimphu, Paro, Haa, Wangdue Phodrang, Punakha and Gasa. The capital city Thimpu is abode of the royal family. Tashichho Dzong (fortress), National Memorial Chorten, Buddha Dordenma Statue, Folk Heritage Museum, Simtokha Dzong and Thimphu Tshechu festival are major attractions of the city. One of the widest valleys, Paro is a beautiful place famous for the iconic Taktsang Lhakhang monastery, Dzongdrakha Temple, Kila Gompa, National Museum, Drugyel Dzong and Paro Tshechu festival. The smallest region Haa with its unspoiled forests and mountain peaks is perfect for mountain biking and hiking. Wangdue Phodrang is noted for Phobjikha Valley, Gangtey Monastery, Dargay Gompa and cultural festivals. In addition, Punakha Valley in Punakha and Gasa Dzong, Laya and Luhana villages, religious monuments and splendid nature in Gasa will completely spell-bind you.
Central circuit - cherishing a royal heritage
The central circuit consists of Trongsa and Bumthang districts. Trongsa is politically important while Bumthang houses most ancient and significant monasteries of Bhutan like - Kurje Lhakhang, Tamshing Lhakhang and a sacred lake Mebar Tsho. Trongsa Dzong - ancient seat of Bhutanese royals, Ta Dzong - the watchtower, Thruepang Palace, Kuenga Rabten Palace and Chendebji Chorten in Trongsa are popular among tourists. The entire central Bhutan is embellished with amazing natural beauty. Other prominent tourist spots are Jakar, Gelephu, Sarpang and Zhemgang.
Eastern circuit - offering pristine beauty
Districts like - Mongar, Lhuntse, Trashiyangtse, Trashigang and Samdrup Jongkhar - fall under Bhutan’s eastern circuit. The region is replete with spectacular natural beauty and mostly frequented by adventure junkies. Mongar Dzong, Zhongar Dzong, Dramitse Lhakhang, Aja Ney and Yagang Lhakhang in Mongar; Lhuntse Dzong, Kilung Lhakhang, Jangchubling Monastery and Dungkar Nagtshang in Lhuntse are notable sites. The diverse culture in Trashiyangtse, Trashigang Dzong in Trashigang and the three-storied temple Zangdopelri in Samdrup Jongkhar are worth mentioning.
Spirituality & wellness - an ultimate experience
From meditation to hot spring therapy, Bhutan is an ideal destination to get an absolute health. There are many centers, hermitages and hotels offering meditation and retreat tours. Hot springs which are locally called Tshachus are spread all over the country. The medicinal properties of these hot springs are helpful in curing various ailments such as body aches, arthritis and sinuses. The Gasa Tshachu, Chubu Tshachu, Dur Tshachu, Duenmang Tshachu and Gelephu Tshachu are famous hot springs catering to scores of medical tourists across the world.
Adventure tourism - embark on a thrilling journey
Bhutan is a leading destination offering many activities to adventure travellers. Cycling, kayaking, rafting, rock climbing and trekking are major adventure sports taken up by tourists. Rafting and kayaking are organised on Wang Chhu, Sunkosh, Puna Tsang Chhu, Mangde Chhu, Kuri Chhu and Dangme Chhu rivers; whereas Punakha, Druk Path, Jomolhari Laya Gasa, Nabji Korphu, Gangtey and Bumthang are famous treks.
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