The Crazy Tourist

Home » Travel Guides » Bhutan » 15 Best Places to Visit in Bhutan

15 Best Places to Visit in Bhutan

Bhutan is the original land of smiles (sorry Thailand!). With a national manifesto that’s based on cumulative, community happiness and cohesion, the country has only recently stepped out of the shadows. And while it can still be difficult to get visas and permits to travel here, the treasures that await really do make the admin worth all the bother.

In the east, soaring villages hide between the clouds and the mighty peaks of the Himalaya. In the west, towns dress the valley bottoms with whitewashed dzongs (traditional Bhutanese fortress-monasteries). Meanwhile, totemic Buddhist relics and revered sites of ancient gurus can be found in the hills, high-perched monasteries cascade from the summits, and there are trekking trails so wonderful you’ll hardly believe they’re real. So, no matter if you’re a culture vulture, a history lover, or just a budding adventurer pining for one of the world’s less trodden corners, you can rest assured that beautiful Bhutan has you covered!

Lets explore the best places to visit in Bhutan :

1. Taktsang

Tiger's Nest of the Paro Valley.

Cut straight into the vertical rises of the Bhutanese mountains just north out of the charming town of Paro, the breathtaking rooms of the Taktsang monastery are perhaps the most-photographed and legendary in the entire Himalayas.

First constructed in the late 17th century, the site marks the fabled spot where Guru Padmasambhava is said to have meditated for three whole years.

Today, the revered Guru is hailed as Bhutan’s patron, and the figure who brought Buddhism to the nation.

Visitors come and explore this fascinating story between the precariously-perched cloisters and golden-topped prayer rooms of Taktsang: the awesome so-called Tiger’s Nest of the Paro Valley.

Rinpung Dzong

Paro sits nestled in the heart of a wide valley at the western end of the Bhutanese Himalaya.

A handsome place whose paved roads and neatly-painted, half-timbered cottages belie its modern construction (Paro was largely rebuilt in the 1980s, with all the work adhering to the traditional architecture of the region), it’s home to the whitewashed rises of the great Rinpung Dzong.

Part monastery, part fortress, this great citadel of timber-topped walls is one of the finest examples of military-religious architecture in the country.

Above it is where travelers will find the National Museum of Bhutan, hidden in an old watchtower on a hill.

Trongsa Dzong

When it comes to Bhutan’s whitewashed dzong complexes, there are few that can live up to the sheer size and breathtaking beauty of the Trongsa Dzong.

Yep, this colossal medley of half-timbered halls and high-perched prayer rooms makes its home on a craggy outcrop above the Mangde River.

It was once the ancestral seat of the Wangchuck dynasty, who are now the royal family of Bhutan.

And while the mechanics of state have largely moved to Thimphu, this great palace still holds great political and religious importance, and displays a mosaic of gorgeous 15th and 16th-century architecture typical of the region.

Changangkha Lhakhang

Straddling the meanders of the Raidak River in its own little crack in the middle of the western Bhutanese Himalaya, Timphu is a curios place.

With its ancient temples and monastery complexes it oozes with age-old Buddhist charm, while the recent arrival of motorized traffic and modern business gives it the energy and flair of a new capital.

Landmarks abound too, from the 15th-century Changangkha Lhakhang to the grand bronze effigy of Sakyamuni Buddha with its views over the mountains.

Also, don’t miss the colossal Trashi Chhoe Dzong, which is now the home of Bhutan’s government.

Bumthang District

Small and sleepy Jakar sits in the midst of the impossibly-beautiful Choekor Valley – an area hailed as Little Switzerland for its sweeping vistas of fir forests and alpine hills.

A religious center, and the gateway to the eastern beauties of the Bumthang District, it’s peppered with gorgeous whitewashed monasteries.

Atop the town, the great Jakar Dzong keeps watch, representing one of the largest fortified monasteries in the country, while sites like the Kurje Lhakhang below tell stories of the 8th-century Indian master Guru Rinpoche, who helped bring Buddhism to this far-flung corner of the mountains all those centuries ago.

the Palace of Great Happiness

Encompassed by sweeping valleys of rice paddy and agricultural terraces, the onetime capital of Punakha is around three hours by car from Thimphu.

Every traveler who makes it here, deep in the heart of the Himalayan range, will instantly be drawn to the huge complex of the Palace of Great Happiness.

This is one of the most iconic buildings in all of Bhutan, and the winter residence of their national Buddhist order.

Surrounding this are clutches of traditional farmer hamlets, like the enchanting adobe town of Ritsha, which ooze rustic character and come dotted with earthy teahouses touting curries.

7. Gangteng

Gangteng Monastery

The great Gangteng Monastery emerges from the cascading fir and spruce forests of the Wangdue Phodrang District in central Bhutan.

It’s unquestionably one of the most revered religious sites here, known for its veneration of the terchen king Pema Lingpa – one of the country’s great spiritual patrons.

Located on a high bluff of stone that pokes up above the town of the same name (Gangteng Village) the great monastery is a real wonder to behold.

Check out the carved timber frontispieces and the glowering garuda gargoyles, all before hitting the famous trekking trails of the greater Phubjika Valley – the stomping ground of the rare black crane.

8. Trashigang

Trashigang

The oriental end of the high-perched Lateral Road that runs right through the heart of Bhutan, Trashigang can be found sat up on the peaks above the meanders of the Drangme Chhu River.

Perhaps the most important town in the eastern districts of the country, it’s topped by its very own breathtaking dzong: a medley of gilded roofs and whitewashed walls that sits high above the forest canopies and over the alpine valley bottoms below.

In the center itself, visitors will discover an earthy folk bazaar, where all the stalls and sellers crowd around an elaborate public prayer wheel.

9. Bumthang

Bumthang

Known to locals by its official name – the Chokhor Valley – the word Bumthang (which actually refers to the whole of central Bhutan) has become the de facto moniker of this stretch of mountains in the northern reaches of the country.

Home to a series of truly impressive monasteries, it’s actually one of the top destinations to come and witness traditional dzong architecture.

You can start with a trip to the mighty walls of Jakar Dzong, before casing out the nearby monastery of Tamshing Goemba.

Then, there are more mysterious religious sites in Shinyer Village, not to mention the traditional arts and crafts center of Chhumey – the place to buy Himalayan wool!

10. Phuentsholing

Indian border gate

Sat right on the edge of the mountains, where the great phalanx of Himalayan peaks begins to rise against the Indian border, thriving little Phuentsholing is one of the most up-and-coming cities in Bhutan.

Made rich thanks to its ease-of-access and close connections to the town of Jaigaon in West Bengal, it’s a center for trade and selling.

Markets pepper its middle, while there’s a distinctly built-up character to the looks of the place – you’re not likely to see so many concrete structures and paved roads anywhere else in the country! Phuentsholing is also a great place to see the Indian border gate, and the relaxed patrols that are common there.

11. Wangduephodrang

Wangduephodrang

Another breathtaking mountain town shrouded by the chiseled peaks of the Himalaya, another mighty dzong fortress from the 17th century.

Yep, Wangduephodrang has its own monastery-citadel complex, which can be found glowering down on the small town from its misty shelf in the middle of the peaks.

Unfortunately, the whole structure suffered immensely after a destructive fire in 2012. Reconstruction projects on the site are still underway, although it remains a great stopover on the Lateral Road between the Phobjikha Valley and Bumthang.

Mongar

One of the favored stepping stones in the east on the way to the provincial hub of Trashigang, Mongar occupies its own hilltop on the plateau of the Bhutanese Himalaya.

Visitors enjoy eye-wateringly wonderful views from the get-go, with sweeping valleys and wide mountain massifs dressed in fir unfolding on all sides.

Add to that Mongar’s reputation as an educational center, and its lively daily marketplace, which bursts with woven goods and organic lemon oils, and it’s easy to see why so many folks opt to linger a while.

13. Lhuntse

Lhuntse

Lhuntse (or Lhuntshi as it’s also known) is another jewel of eastern Bhutan.

Hidden in a steep-sided valley of verdant green woods and mist-clad summits, its setting is pure drama.

And then there’s the pint-sized dzong at its center, which rises on an escarpment of wooded rock like some mighty palace out of Game of Thrones.

However, that half-timbered citadel is just a part of the attraction, because Lhuntse is also known for its accomplished local wool products, and as a fine jumping off point for the trekking trails that weave through the mountains to the villages of Gangzur and Khoma – both pictures of rustic Bhutanese life.

14. Kilung Lhakhang

Kilung Lhakhang

Tiny little Kilung Lhakhang is just a speck on the map.

Sat nestled between the verdant Himalaya close to aforementioned Lhuntse, it’s an off-the-beaten-track place to say the least.

However, there’s a deep and fascinating history to learn about here, with a revered chain mall relic that is said to have performed miracles.

The very location is also worth seeing, with the town spilling over the ridges in a medley of old Tshanglas homes and tin-roofed concrete builds.

In all, it’s a fascinating picture of backcountry Bhutan!

Tang

Tang is the hardest-to-get-to section of the aforementioned Bumthang Valley; a place of beautiful greenery and fir-peppered hillsides, where a smattering of awesome Buddhist relics continues to magnetize monks and intrepid travelers alike.

The Mebar Tsho (or the so-called Burning Lake) is one of the great treats here, being a location associated with the miracles of Pema Lingpa back in the 14th century.

The museum at Ogyen Choling is also worth a visit, where there are collections of local crafts and preserved living quarters of age-old Buddhist monks to help unravel the deep connections between this nation and its religious faith.

15 Best Places to Visit in Bhutan:

  • Phuentsholing
  • Wangduephodrang
  • Kilung Lhakhang

Asia Odyssey Travel Logo

Most Beautiful Places in Bhutan

Bhutan , a place where thunder dragons whisper amidst ancient dzongs and monasteries, a place where happiness is all about spiritual life rather than material wealth. Bhutan itself is a must-visit place itself in the world. So what are the Places to Visit in Bhutan?

The breathtaking Himalayan landscape and the famous Tiger's Nest in Paro can be found in the western part of Bhutan. In the central region of Bhutan, you'll find fertile valleys and traditional Bhutanese fortresses known as dzongs. The eastern region of Bhutan, on the other hand, is renowned for its lush rainforests and tranquil villages. And black-necked cranes dance in Phobjikha 's glacial embrace. Hike through rhododendron forests, trek to Chomolhari's snow-kissed peak. Phobjikha and Chomolhari are among The Most Beautiful Places in Bhutan .

Bhutan, a place of enchanting beauty and happiness, is ready to welcome you. Check out "The Places to Visit in Bhutan" with this list of 10 Best Places to Visit in Bhutan ! See how Happiness shines in all the most beautiful places in Bhutan!

Content Preview

triangle

1. Tiger's Nest: The Most Iconic Place in Bhutan

Bhutan's most iconic place to visit, the Tiger's Nest, majestically soars 3,120 (10,233 feet) meters above the Paro Valley. The Tiger's Nest, named after the legend of Guru Rinpoche flying to this location on a tigress, is a place of mystique . The monastery's unique architecture, with four main buildings clinging to the cliffside, offers a mesmerizing sight.

Highlights: A Place of Sacred Pilgrimage

As a sacred pilgrimage site, Tiger's Nest is a place that holds significant spiritual value . Visitors can light butter lamps, spin prayer wheels, and soak in the serene atmosphere. This iconic landmark, perched on a cliffside, is a beautiful architectural marvel and a sacred Buddhist pilgrimage site, symbolizing Bhutan's rich cultural heritage.

Things to Do: Hike to Get the Most Beautiful View

The Tiger's Nest Monastery Hike offers breathtaking views of the Paro Valley and the Himalayas. Explore its temples, halls, and courtyards, and witnessing the colorful Tsechu Festival if you're lucky enough to visit during this annual event. These experiences make Tiger's Nest the best place to visit in Bhutan.

For more details on Tiger's Nest Tiger's Nest Monastery .

Bhutan Places

2. Thimphu: A Place That Perfectly Fuses Past and Present

Nestled within the grandeur of the Himalayas, Thimphu , the lively capital of Bhutan , is a place presents a harmonious mix of stunning landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and an intriguing peek into the everyday life of Bhutanese people. As the nerve center of the Bhutan's political, economic, and spiritual activities, Thimphu buzzes with a dynamic energy. In the meantime, the place exudes a traditional allure and extends a warm welcome to its visitors, making it a captivating place for those seeking a unique travel experience.

Highlights: Center Place & Center Stage in Bhutan

Tashichho Dzong : As one of the best place to visit in Bhutan, this majestic fortress-monastery, situated on a hill with a panoramic view of the Thimphu River, is a significant site. The place is the home of the Bhutanese government and the King's throne room. The grand architecture of this Bhutanese place, embellished with detailed carvings and paintings, is a reflection of the artistic prowess of Bhutan.

Buddha Dordenma : This enormous Buddha Shakyamuni statue, located on a hill, is not just a spiritual landmark but also a symbol of peace and prosperity in Bhutan. The vistas from this place are truly awe-inspiring, particularly at sunrise, making it a must-visit place in Bhutan.

National Folk Heritage Museum : This museum is a place where you can dive deep into Bhutan's rich cultural heritage. It displays traditional Bhutanese textiles, masks, handicrafts, and artifacts, offering visitors a comprehensive understanding of Bhutan's cultural diversity and history.

Other Best Places to visit in Thimphu : Memorial Chorten, Changangkha Lhakhang, Takin Preserve, Dechen Phodrang, Clock Tower Square, Paper Factory, National Library, Motithang Takin Preserve, Postal Museum.

For more details on Thimphu Attractions 10 Best Places to Visit in Thimphu .

icon

4 Days Highlights Bhutan Group Tour: Paro & Thimphu - Happiness is a Place Hike

5 Days Western Bhutan Tour with Haa Valley

6 Days Bhutan Group Tour: Paro, Thimphu & Punakha (Western Golden Triangle)

Thing to Do: Cultural Tradition & Grandeur Nature at Bhutan Capital

Hike to Tango Monastery : This beautiful monastery, one of the best places to visit in Bhutan, is nestled on a cliffside. It offers breathtaking views of the valley and provides a unique insight into the lives of monks, making it a must-visit spot in Bhutan.

Thimphu Tshechu : Experience this lively Thimphu Festivals in September, one of the best times to visit Bhutan. It showcases vibrant dances, traditional music, and performers in masks, offering a rich cultural experience.

Trekk the Druk Path : Druk Path in Bhutan treks through stunning Himalayan vistas, past glacial gems and lush forests. Experience Bhutan's natural beauty! Starting Place could be either Thimphu or Paro.

Bhutan Places

3. Paro: Bhutan's Crown Jewel Place

Serving as Bhutan's only international air gateway, Paro is the fist best place to visit for travelers seeking cultural immersion amidst the majestic peaks of Bhutan. Paro is a place that offers an unforgettable experience with its vibrant Festivals , stunning treks, and ancient monasteries perched precariously on cliffsides.

Highlights: Bhutan's Best Place Right After You Land in Airport

  • Paro Taktsang Monastery (Tiger's Nest) : This iconic monastery, Tiger's Nest Monastery , perched precariously 3,000 meters, or 9842.52 feet above the valley on a cliffside, is Bhutan's spiritual landmark and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It's a must-visit place in Bhutan.
  • Kyichu Lhakhang : Immerse yourself in the ancient aura of this 7th-century temple, one of the oldest in Bhutan. Marvel at the architectural wonder and the sacred Jowo Shakyamuni statue, believed to be brought by Guru Rinpoche. It's one of the best places to visit in Bhutan.
  • National Museum : Delve into the rich cultural heritage of Bhutan at this museum. It houses artifacts, thangkas (religious paintings), and exhibits showcasing Bhutanese traditions and lifestyle. It's a place that offers a glimpse into the best of Bhutan's culture.
  • Paro Airport : A unique and intriguing Place, a gateway to Bhutan. While it may not be a typical tourist spot, its stunning location, challenging landing, cultural significance, and beautiful architecture make it a noteworthy stop on your journey.

Other Places to Visit in Paro includes : Rinpung Dzong, Chele La Pass, Kyichu Lhakhang, Tachogang Lhakhang, Drukgyel Dzong, Jangtsa Dumtseg Lhakhang.

Things to Do in Bhutan's First Best Place for Traveler

  • Shop at Paro Craft Market : Discover unique souvenirs and handicrafts, from intricately woven textiles to hand-painted masks, at the bustling Paro Craft Market. It's a place to visit for the best shopping experience in Bhutan.
  • Try Archery : Experience the thrill of Bhutan's national sport at an archery range and test your skills against the locals. It's one of the best activities to try when you visit Bhutan .
  • Trek to Chomolhari Base Camp : Embark on a challenging yet rewarding Jomolhari Trek to the base camp of Chomolhari, a sacred mountain offering breathtaking views of the Himalaya . It's the best trekking place in Bhutan for adventure enthusiasts.

Bhutan Places

4. Punakha Dzong: Most Beautiful Dzong in Bhutan

Constructed in 1637-38 by Ngawang Namgyal, Punakha Dzong is a place that served as the administrative heart of Bhutan until 1955. This Dzong in Punakha holds a special place in the hearts of Bhutan's royal family, having been the best venue for the wedding of King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Jetsun Pema. A visit to Punakha Dzong offers a glimpse into the grandeur of Bhutanese tradition, with its massive, inward-sloping walls, few windows, and a broad band of red ochre crowning the structure, making it one of the best places to visit in Bhutan.

Highlights of the Best Dzong to Visit in Bhutan

  • Intricate Woodcarvings & Murals: Marvel at the detailed woodcarvings and colorful murals throughout the dzong, showcasing the best of Bhutanese artistic heritage.
  • Grand Dzongkhag Courtyard: This place, the former administrative center, now housing government offices and a museum, depicting Bhutan's history.
  • Utse Courtyard: Being home to the sacred Machen Lhakhang temple, adorned with exquisite murals and statues, radiating a serene spiritual aura, Puanakha Dzong would be one of the most special places in Bhutan, and the most essential Dzong in Bhutan.
  • Other Best Places to Visit in Punakha: Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten, Chimi Lhakhang , Punakha Suspension Bridge, Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup Lhakhang, Jigme Dorji National Park, Dochula Pass, Ritsha Village

7 Days Punakha Festival Tour Bhutan ( Drubchen & Tshechu Feb. 17-21, 2024)

7 Days Thimphu Tshechu Festival of Bhutan Bhutan (Sep. 13-15, 2024)

7 Days Paro Tshechu Festival Tour of Bhutan (March 21-25, 2024)

Best Things to Do at Punakha Dzong

  • Visit Tsechu Festival: If your visit coincides with the vibrant Tsechu Festival (Usually in February or March), enjoy colorful masked dances, traditional music, and a festive atmosphere. It's the best cultural experience in Bhutan.
  • Guided Tour: Embark on a guided tour for insightful narratives about the dzong's architecture, history, and significance. It's the best way to learn about this place.
  • Climb the Watchtower: Ascend the watchtower for breathtaking panoramic views of the Punakha Valley and the confluence of the Mo Chu and Pho Chu rivers. It's the best viewpoint in Bhutan.
  • Mo Chu River Rafting: Embark on an adrenaline-pumping white-water rafting adventure on the Mo Chu River amidst the stunning Himalayan scenery.

Bhutan Places

5. Wangdue Phodrang: The Place with Glorious History and Natural Scenery

Nestled amidst the lush valleys of western Bhutan, Wangdue Phodrang , formerly known as Wangdi, offers a unique blend of historical charm, stunning scenery, and vibrant culture. It was once the Bhutan's second capital and holds a significant place in Bhutan's past. Here's an overview of what awaits you in Wangdue Phodrang:

Highlights of Wangdue Phodrang: Nature Allure, Historical Sites

  • Wangdue Phodrang Dzong: This imposing fortress-monastery, one of the best places in Bhutan, is perched on a ridge overlooking the Punatsang Chhu and Dang Chhu rivers.
  • Punatsang Chhu River & Pho Chhu River: Enjoy the serene beauty of the Punatsang Chhu River, a must-visit place in Bhutan, with its turquoise waters and lush riverside trails ideal for hiking and picnicking, river rafting.
  • Wildlife Haven: Spot diverse wildlife like the golden langur, Himalayan black bear, and even the elusive red panda in the region's protected areas, making it one of the best places for wildlife spotting in Bhutan.

Embrace the Unspoiled Nature: Discover Sustainable Lifestyle at Haa Valley

Birding at Phobjikha Valley: 8 Days Bhutan Tour with Phobjikha Valley (Nature & Birding)

Embrace Majesty of Jomolhari: 11 Days Bhutan Jomolhari Trek Tour

Best Things to Do in Wangdi: A Place to Embrace Wildlife

  • Visit Festivals and Celebrations: Witness the vibrant colors and sounds of Bhutanese festivals like Tsechu, featuring masked dances, music, and traditional attire. It's one of the best cultural experiences in Bhutan.
  • Visit Dochula Pass: Take a scenic drive or bike ride through the Dochula Pass, offering stunning views of the Himalayas and the iconic 108 chortens (Buddhist monuments) built in honor of Bhutanese soldiers. It's one of the best places to visit for breathtaking views in Bhutan. Find out Best Things to Do in Bhutan .

Bhutan Places

6. Bumthang: A Place Teeming with Cultural Fascinations

Bumthang, the best place to visit in central Bhutan for Culture Exploration , The place stands as a tapestry of ancient monasteries, vibrant culture, and breathtaking natural beauty. Here's a glimpse into this enchanting region:

Highlights of Bumthang, Divine History Preserved in Nature

Sacred Valley: Bumthang, considered a sacred valley in Bhutan, is Bhutan's spiritual powerhouse, housing some of the country's oldest and most revered Buddhist temples and monasteries.

Kurje Lhakhang: Visit this revered monastery where Guru Rinpoche meditated, its cave adorned with stunning murals and statues. It's one of the best places to visit in Bhutan.

Red Panda Habitat: Spot the elusive red panda, Bhutan's national animal, in the protected areas of the valley. It's the best place for wildlife spotting in Bhutan.

Other Places to Visit in Bumthang: Jambey Lhakhang, Kurjey Lhakhang, Swiss Farm, Trongsa Dzong, Bumthang Valley, Red Panda Trek, Ura Bumthang Trek, Choekhor Valley.

Best Things to Do in Central Place in Bhutan

Yak-Caravan Trek: Embark on a unique journey through the valley alongside yak caravans, learning about their traditional role in Bhutanese life. It's one of the best activities to do in Bhutan.

Visit Local Family via Homestays and Farm Stays: Immerse yourself in local life by staying with a family in a traditional homestay or farm stay, savoring Bhutanese cuisine and hospitality. It's the best way to experience Bhutanese culture.

Visit Swiss Cheese Plantations: Visit the unique Swiss cheese plantations, home to a vast network of caves used for mushroom cultivation. It's one of the best places to visit for food lovers in Bhutan.

Bhutan Places

7. Trongsa: Original Place for Bhutan Royal History

Trongsa , nestled amidst towering mountains in Bhutan, is the central administrative hub and one of the best places to visit. It boasts a rich history, strategic significance, and a unique blend of cultural flavors, making it a most important place in Bhutan. Here's a glimpse into this captivating place:

Highlights of the Best Place to Visit in Bhutan

Wangchuck Dynasty: Trongsa, the seat of the Wangchuck dynasty for centuries, has shaped Bhutan's political landscape. The ancestors of Bhutan's current royal family ruled from Trongsa Dzong, playing a crucial role in unifying the country.

Trongsa Dzong: This imposing fortress-monastery, perched on a cliff overlooking the Mangde Chhu River, is a stunning example of Bhutanese architecture. It's one of the best places to visit in Bhutan for Bhutan's history.

Traditional Wooden Houses: Wander through the charming town of Trongsa, lined with traditional wooden houses adorned with colorful flags and intricate woodwork. It's one of the most beautiful places with work of top-notch craftsmen in Bhutan.

Other Top Places to Visit in Trongsa: Chendebji Chorten, Yutong La Pass, Korphu Village, Nabji Lhakhang, Semji Village, Threupang Palace, Kuenga Rabten Palace, Mangdue Foot Trail.

Best Things to Do in Bhutan: Unveil the Bhutan Dynasty in Trongsa

Trek the Chorten Trail: Follow the scenic Chorten Trail, lined with 108 chortens (Buddhist monuments), offering breathtaking views of the valley and a peaceful atmosphere. It's one of the best activities to do when you visit Bhutan.

Visit Trongsa Museum: Learn about the region's rich history and culture at the Trongsa Museum, housing artifacts and exhibits from the Wangchuck dynasty era. It's one of the best places to visit in Bhutan for history enthusiasts.

Bhutan Places

8. Gangtey: Valley of Cranes and Serenity

Gangtey , a picturesque village in the heart of Bhutan, is nestled amidst the stunning Phobjikha Valley. This place is a haven for nature lovers, culture enthusiasts, and seekers of spiritual serenity, making it one of the best and most beautiful places to visit in Bhutan. Here's a glimpse into this captivating destination:

Highlights of the Serene Retreat Place

  • Phobjikha Valley : Immerse yourself in the breathtaking beauty of the Phobjikha Valley, a potential UNESCO World Heritage Site . The lush meadows, glacial lakes, and soaring mountains paint a picture of pristine tranquility, making it one of the most beautiful places in Bhutan.
  • Gangtey Monastery : Visit the majestic Gangtey Monastery, perched on a hilltop overlooking the valley. This Nyingma Buddhist monastery offers a peaceful atmosphere and stunning views, making it one of the best places to visit in Bhutan.
  • Other Top Places to Visit in Gangtey : Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup Nunnery, Chendebji Chorten

Best Things to Do in Most Beautiful Landscape in Bhutan

  • Visit Black-Necked Cranes : Witness the graceful dance of the black-necked cranes, Bhutan's national bird, who migrate to the valley every Winter , creating a mesmerizing spectacle. It's one of the best experiences in Bhutan.
  • Hiking and Cycling : Explore the valley's hidden trails, encounter diverse flora and fauna, and soak in the panoramic views on foot or by bicycle. These are some of the best activities to do when you visit Bhutan.

Bhutan Places

9. Haa Valley: Not the Most Famous Place, yet a Must-visit

Haa Valley, nestled amidst the pristine mountains of western Bhutan, is a most beautiful place that offers a tapestry of breathtaking landscapes, vibrant culture, and ancient traditions. Often referred to as the " Land of Happiness ," Haa is the best place to visit for a unique and authentic Bhutanese experience away from the usual tourist crowds . Here's a glimpse into this hidden gem:

Highlights of Bhutan's Hidden Gem

  • Traditional Villages : Wander through charming villages like Haa Dzongkhag, Katsang, and Lhakhang Gewog, where time seems to stand still and traditional customs thrive. These places, while lesser-known, are some of the best places to visit in Bhutan.
  • Alpine Paradise : Immerse yourself in the breathtaking beauty of the Haa Valley, characterized by snow-capped peaks, lush meadows, and cascading waterfalls. It's one of the most beautiful places in Bhutan.
  • Other Places to Visit in Haa : Haha Lhakhang, Wangchuk Tsho (Chewang Chhidling), Katsang Chhunzom Bridge, Ugyen Pelri Palace, Dobong Monastery, Gewang Village, Lhakhang Karak, Taktsang Monastery

Best Things to in Most Beautiful Place in Bhutan with Unspoiled Nature

  • Hike through Chele La Pass : Hike or drive through the iconic Chele La Pass, offering panoramic views of the Himalayas and a glimpse into the lives of nomadic herders. It's one of the best activities to do when you visit Bhutan.
  • Dive in Deep to Hidden Valleys : Discover lesser-known valleys like Kabji Chhu and Gakil Chhu, offering untouched beauty and a chance to encounter local communities. These are some of the best places to visit in Bhutan for foot-on-the-ground travel experience.

Bhutan Places

10. Mount Chomolhari: Sacred Place for Pilgrims and Travelers alike

Mount Chomolhari, also known as Jomolhari, is a majestic peak straddling the border between Bhutan and Tibet, China. With its towering presence at 7,314 meters (23,997 ft), it's no surprise that Chomolhari is one of the best and most beautiful places to visit in Bhutan , holding a special place in the hearts of adventurers and locals alike.

Leisure Trail: 8 Days Bhutan Tour with Stunning Light Hiking in Western Bhutan

Most Popular Trek: 11 Days Bhutan Highlights with Most Popular Trek - Druk Path Trek

Challenging Trek: 11 Days Jomolhari Trek Embrace Majesty of Jomolhari

Highlights of the Mountain Place to Visit in Bhutan

  • Stunning Scenery: Chomolhari's snow-capped peak dominates the landscape, offering breathtaking views from various vantage points in both Bhutan and Tibet. It's one of the most beautiful sights in Bhutan.
  • Glacial Delights: Surrounded by glaciers and icefalls, Chomolhari creates a dramatic and awe-inspiring atmosphere, especially during the spring when the ice melts and waterfalls cascade down the mountainside. It's one of the best natural spectacles in Bhutan.
  • Diverse Flora and Fauna: The region around Chomolhari is home to a rich variety of plants and animals, including rhododendrons, blue poppies, yaks, marmots, and even the elusive snow leopard. It's one of the most beautiful places in Bhutan for wildlife spotting.

Best Things to Do at Bhutan's Sacred Mountain

  • Visit Sacred Mountain itself: Chomolhari is considered a sacred mountain by both Bhutanese Buddhists and Tibetan people. It is believed to be the abode of one of the Five Tsheringma Sisters, powerful protector goddesses. Visiting this place is one of the best spiritual experiences in Bhutan.
  • Trek the Pilgrimage Route: The Jomolhari Trek , a challenging route leading to the base camp, is also a spiritual journey for many pilgrims. It's one of the best activities to do when you visit Bhutan.

Bhutan Places

Tips for Best Places to Visit in Bhutan

  • As you prepare for your adventure to the most beautiful places in Bhutan, it's crucial to arrange your tours with licensed guides well in advance, especially during the high seasons from March to May and September to November. Here's How to Visit Bhutan in general.
  • Upon landing at Paro Airport, make sure to obtain your visa. Keep in mind that some of the best places to visit in Bhutan, such as the Phobjikha Valley, might necessitate special permits. It's advisable to confirm this with your tour operator.
  • While discovering the places to visit in Bhutan, opt for eco-friendly Bhutan Hotels , strive to reduce waste, and travel light. Bhutan greatly values sustainable tourism!
  • When photographing the best places to visit in Bhutan, always seek consent before taking pictures of locals, particularly children. Honor the no-photo rules in monasteries and during festivals.
  • Mountain weather can be capricious, so adopt a flexible Altitude . Be ready for potential alterations to your schedule and pack clothing for all types of Bhutan Weather .
  • When visiting the most beautiful places in Bhutan, take a break from technology. Set your phone aside and soak in the peacefulness of Bhutan. Engage with nature, introspect, and interact with the local community.
  • Finally, think about engaging a professional travel agency. They can assist with permit procedures, Visa and Bhutan Tourist Tax , offer insights into the culture, and tailor your experience in the attractions places to visit in Bhutan. Have a fantastic trip!

How to Plan Your Bhutan Journey

To Visit the very essence of Bhutan allow at least 3-6 days to cover the major cities and attractions including Paro , Thimphu , Punakha . If you prefer a more detailed guide

Check detailed guide on How to Visit Bhutan .

  • 5 Days Iconic Bhutan Tour to Paro, Thimphu & Punakha - Highlights of Bhutan >>
  • 6 Days Bhutan Essence Tour to Paro, Thimphu, Punakha & Phobjikha Valley >>
  • 6 Days Bhutan Culture Tour to Paro, Thimphu, Punakha - Insider Culture Trip >>

Uncover Bhutan's rich culture and hidden gems. Explore Gangtey, Haa, Bumthang, and more in the Land of Happiness!

  • 8 Days Ideal Bhutan Tour: Slow-paced & In-depth Travel >>
  • 10 Days Impressive Bhutan Wonders Tour: Exploring History, Spirituality & Hiking >>

Bhutan Places

Find serenity in the footsteps of royalty: Wander the paths treasured by the King of Bhutan, where untouched beauty whispers tales of peace. Hiking Tours >>

  • 4 Days Best Bhutan Tour Package with Tiger's Nest Hike >>
  • 8 Days Bhutan Tour with Stunning Light Hiking in Western Bhutan >>
  • Bumthang Cultural Trek - 11 Days Bhutan Trekking Tour to Bumthang >>

Want to truly capture the spirit of Bhutan? Plan your trip around a lively festival and join the celebrations! When you see the joy and magic flowing through the land, you'll understand why it's called the "Land of Happiness."

  • 7 Days Paro Tshechu Festival Tour of Bhutan (March 21-25, 2024) >>
  • 7 Days Thimphu Tshechu Festival of Bhutan Bhutan (Sep. 13-15, 2024) >>
  • 7 Days Punakha Festival Tour Bhutan ( Drubchen & Tshechu Feb. 17-21, 2024) >>

For Traveler in Bhutan, luxury whispers a different tune. It's the embrace of inner peace, the serenade of tranquility, the hushed elegance of a spiritual retreat. It's a grand symphony of calmness, a state of mind untouched by the everyday mundane. This is the true Luxury Hotels you won't find elsewhere. So, let your journey begin here.

  • Intimate Getaway, Spark Romance : 7 Days Como Uma Bhutan Luxury Tour >>
  • Mixed Vibe, Premium All the Way: 7 Days Bhutan Luxury Tour - Le Meridien & COMO Uma >>
  • Serene Valley, Share Universe with Wildlife Creatures 8 Days Luxury Tour with Gangtey >>

Bhutan is Also a Perfect Destination for Loving Couples. From "I do" to "Happiness Forever".

  • 7 Days Bhutan Wedding & Honeymoon Tour: Love & Happiness >>

Travel with AOT, Your Journey to Happiness Starts Here

Bhutan Place to Visit

In Bhutan , where clouds dance with prayer flags and mountains pierce the sapphire sky, your soul finds its melody. Hike through emerald valleys kissed by cool mountain mist, where ancient dzongs whisper secrets of the past. Dance with masked deities beneath a tapestry of stars, their vibrant costumes echoing the hues of spring wildflowers. Here, happiness blooms like rhododendrons on sun-drenched slopes, leaving you forever changed, a symphony of memories forever playing in your heart.

Asia Odyssey Travel has been actively introducing Bhutan to the world, opening up an amazing journey for those who seek a unique trip to Bhutan. With AOT's experienced Bhutan Local Team and our professional travel consultantteam, we offer comprehensive services as your outstanding travel agency . Moreover, we act as a reliable travel companion on your journey to inner peace and happiness . Plan your lifetime Bhutan journey with AOT. Contact us now, let's embrace happiness in Bhutan together!

If you have any questions about this article, please contact us by submitting the following form and we'll immediately get back to you.

Ask Us for More Information

icon

Related Travel Articles

bhutan country tourist places

  • Why Druk Heritage
  • Curated & Flexible Travel
  • 11 Days Classic Bhutan
  • 7 Days – Thimphu Festival
  • 7 Days In Beautiful Bhutan
  • The Lost Trail of Brigdungla, in Bumthang Valley.
  • Bhutan Self-drive Experience
  • Bhutan Golf Tour
  • The Ancient Kingdoms Adventure
  • Druk Path Trek
  • Jomolhari Trek with Karma
  • Bhutan’s Spiritual Odyssey
  • Perspective
  • Made In Bhutan
  • Bhutan Diary

bhutan country tourist places

Top 40 Places to Visit and Things to Do In Bhutan

bhutan country tourist places

Fill the thrill today, visit Bhutan

Monasteries from the past, vibrant Festivals, distinct culture & heritage, landscapes that take your breath away, food that is delicious, spirituality of the highest order – It’s no surprise that Bhutan, a once-remote kingdom, has been named Lonely Planet’s Top Country to Visit in 2020.

Bhutan is divided into 20 dzongkhags, or districts. The number of districts you visit will be determined in part by the number of days you have in the nation. On a typical 5-day trip to Bhutan, you will be able to visit the districts of Thimphu, Punakha, and Paro. If you have 7 days to explore, you can go further to the charm of Gangtey, and if you have 10 days, you can travel to central Bhutan to see the magnificent Bumthang and serene Trongsa.

Speak with one of Druk Asia’s friendly travel consultants, and we’ll put together the best itinerary of the various places to visit in Bhutan based on your interests.

The following are some of the best things to see and do in Bhutan.

bhutan country tourist places

Known for its breathtaking natural beauty and unique culture, Thimphu is the administrative capital and largest city of the scenic kingdom of Bhutan

Thimphu, Bhutan’s capital and largest city, is located in the western region of the country. Thimphu is also the country’s political and economic hub, housing the majority of the country’s important political structures. Many locals from rural areas migrate to Thimphu in search of work. This vibrant city has a rustic charm and has a lot to offer to all travellers.

#1 Buddha Dordenma

bhutan country tourist places

The Buddha Dordenma is located atop a hill in Kuenselphodrang Nature Park and overlooks the Southern entrance to Thimphu Valley

In Bhutan, Buddha Dordenma, also known as Buddha Point, is a must-see. This 51.5 meter-tall sitting Buddha statue is one of the world’s largest sitting Buddha statues. The Buddha Dordenma statue is composed of solid bronze and gilded with gold paint, and it contains all of the 125,000 smaller Buddha sculptures that have been placed within it; 100,000 of them that are 8 inches tall, and 25,000 of them that are 12 inches tall. Visitors can enter a magnificent meditation hall with gold-painted pillars and a statue of the four-face Buddha. 

While Buddhist murals are artistically painted on the walls. You may also get a good view of Thimphu city from Buddha Point, one for your instagram feed.

#2 Tashichho Dzong

bhutan country tourist places

Discover your new trip, explore the capitals fortress

Tashichho Dzong (fortress), often known as Thimphu Dzong, is a magnificent monument located in Thimphu’s northern district. The throne room and offices of the king, the secretariat, and the ministries of home affairs and finance are all housed in Tashichho Dzong, which has been the seat of the government since 1952. 

Tourists are not permitted to see the Royal and government buildings, but they are welcome to visit the monastery and marvel at the dzong’s magnificent architecture. The Bhutanese national flag, which is fluttering proudly outside the dzong, is one of the first things you’ll notice when you arrive. 

If you visit Bhutan between April and July, you will be greeted with a length of vibrant rhododendron blooms along the pathway. If you arrive in March, you could be lucky enough to view the cherry blossoms!

#3 Jungshi Handmade Paper Factory

bhutan country tourist places

The Jungshi handmade paper factory uses traditional methods to produce the authentic Bhutanese paper known as Deh-sho

Pay a visit to the Jungshi Handmade Paper Factory to see how deh-soh, or Bhutanese paper, is manufactured. These deh-soh papers are made in the traditional way, which has been passed down through the years. This old craft is one of Bhutan’s thirteen traditional handicrafts that are still being practiced today. 

The papers are made from the bark of the daphne and dekap trees. Deh-sho papers were first employed in monasteries for woodblock printing, manuscripts, and prayer book writing.

This is an ancient craft that you can try your hand at. Other items, such as stationery and greeting cards, can be found to create one-of-a-kind mementos.

#4 Shopping at The Craft Gallery

bhutan country tourist places

A showroom/sales outlet for the products of Bhutanese artisans

Visit The Craft Gallery, a store in Thimphu town, for the best Bhutanese items you’ll discover in Bhutan. The two-story boutique displays some of the finest works of art created by local craftspeople. The Craft Gallery is a project of Queen Mother Sangay Choden Wangchuck’s Gyalyum Charitable Trust.

The Gallery aims to give a sustained stream of revenue to the artists in addition to promoting high quality Bhutanese products. As a result, by purchasing from the Gallery, you are directly supporting non-profit organizations and local craftsmen.

Shawls, honey, needlework products, jewelry, and textiles are among the many local products available. If you’re looking for a one-stop shop for souvenirs for friends and family back home, this is definitely the place to go.

#5 Royal Textile Academy

bhutan country tourist places

The nation’s first institution dedicated to the conservation of Bhutanese textiles

Bhutanese weaving is an important component of their culture and history. You may learn about the textile tradition, numerous weaving styles, and the subtleties of Bhutanese textiles at the Royal Textile Academy. You will be able to see the various intricate designs seen on Bhutanese textiles as well as learn about the patterns that originated in various areas.

You will be able to appreciate the magnificent traditional costumes, Kira and Gho, that the villagers wear on the street after touring the center.

#6 Simply Bhutan

bhutan country tourist places

an interactive ‘living’ museum that gives a quick introduction to various aspects of traditional life in Bhutan

Simply Bhutan is an interactive museum that provides a wonderful guided tour of various facets of traditional Bhutanese living. This place is a great place for your induction to Bhutan.

For example, you’ll learn how to dress in traditional Bhutanese clothing, how to distill ara (rice wine), and enjoy some local butter tea while watching a local dance performance. You’ll also discover how they build their gorgeous homes out of rammed earth.

This museum’s infrastructure mostly depicts old Bhutanese architecture. The museum’s structure is made from reusing old wood, door and window frames, and other elements from demolished houses. Unlike other museums, where you are not permitted to touch or photograph the objects, you are free to do so here.You can also take part in archery and the local dart game known as Khuru .

You will also have the opportunity to meet Pema Tshering, a gifted foot artist with cerebral palsy. Pema does his wood carving and painting with his foot at a little shop inside Simply Bhutan. If you encounter him, don’t be shy about saying hello and supporting his work; he will undoubtedly greet you with his beautiful smile!

#7 Folk Heritage Museum

bhutan country tourist places

The Folk Heritage Museum dedicates itself to connecting people with the rich Bhutanese Folk heritage and rural history through exhibits, demonstrations, educational programs and documentation of Bhutanese rural life

The Folk Heritage Museum is housed in a three-story typical house from the nineteenth century. Visitors can see traditional Bhutanese lifestyles and artifacts in a typical household at the museum. In a typical Bhutanese home, you’ll find a collection of household products, tools, and equipment.. 

The museum perfectly replicates the rural location and atmosphere of a traditional household, with paddy, wheat, and millet fields, a traditional water mill with mill stones that is over 150 years old, and traditional kitchen gardens and hot stone baths that are famous throughout the country. After the visit, you will definitely have more information regarding the  local culture, customs and traditions.

#8 Motithang Takin Preserve

bhutan country tourist places

The takin, Bhutan’s unusual national animal

The Takin Preserve is a wildlife reserve area for Takin, the national animal of Bhutan. It’s also commonly known as the Takin Enclosure/Takin Zoo. The mini zoo was converted into a preserve when it was found that the Takin refrained from inhabiting the surrounding forest even when set free. 

The declaration of Takin as the national animal was based on a local myth dating back to the 15th century. Takin, a gnu goat that resembles an ox but is more closely related to a sheep, is supposed to have been created by the great Tibetan saint Drukpa Kunley, also known as the “Divine Madman.”. For most locals, Takin is said to be one of the most queer-looking animals that they have ever seen.

Tips : After visiting the Takin Preserve, request for your guide to bring you to the BBS Tower. Just a 5 to 10 minutes drive to the upper part of the road will lead to Sangaygang BBS (Bhutan Broadcasting Station) Tower at 2,685 meters. There you can have a splendid bird’s eye view of the entire Thimphu town. You will get to see a lot of colourful prayer flags surrounding the BBS tower.

#9 Centenary Farmers Market

bhutan country tourist places

The Thimphu market sells local produce and produce from India.

The Centenary Farmers Market in Thimphu, often known as the weekend market, is Bhutan’s largest domestic market. Farmers used to sell their produce in the open air under rows of tents before the market opened in 2008. Now it’s a two-story structure with over 400 stalls that allows farmers from all over the country to display their produce while also encouraging others to support local agriculture.

On Thursday and Friday, vendors from all across the region arrive in Thimphu and stay till Sunday evening. During these three days, when the market is most active, is the ideal time to examine the market. It’s also a great way to meet locals and learn about the ingredients used in Bhutanese cuisine.

#10 Bhutan Postal Museum

bhutan country tourist places

The postal museum captures the story of the evolution of communication, transportation and postal services in Bhutan

The Bhutan Postal Museum houses the world’s largest photo book and the strangest collection of Bhutanese stamps, which would pique any philatelist’s interest. There are five galleries in the museum that trace the development of the Bhutanese postal system, from the earliest mail runners to Bhutan’s often unusual and highly collectable stamps.

One of the coolest things to do in Bhutan is to get your own legal stamps from the General Post Office for 500 ngultrum (about 7 US dollars). Contains 12 stamps with a total value of 30 Ngultrum, 45 Ngultrum and 50 Ngultrum.

Go ahead to pick up some postcards and start sending some greetings and share some Bhutan love with your family and friends! Imagine the pleasant surprise of your family and friends when you send them a postcard with your face on the stamp!

#11 National Memorial Chorten

bhutan country tourist places

one of its most iconic monuments in the region

The National Memorial Chorten is a prominent stupa constructed in 1974 in honor of His Majesty Jiqme Dorji Wangchuck, the father of modern Bhutan and the country’s third king. With its golden spires and bells, the stupa is a conspicuous landmark in the middle of Thimphu city. The Memorial Chorten, also known as the Jangchub Chorten, is a Tibetan-style chorten with a classical stupa pattern and a pyramidal pillar crowned with a crescent moon and sun.

The distinctive feature of the chorten is the outward flaring of the rounded part giving it a pyramidal shape of a vase. Do always remember to circumambulate in a clockwise direction while you are there as with any religious structures in Bhutan. You can see many elderly Bhutanese hanging out near the large prayer wheels, catching up with one another or offering prayers with the prayer beads clutched on their hands.

#12 Dochula Pass

bhutan country tourist places

The pass is a popular location among tourists as it offers a stunning 360 degree panoramic view of the Himalayan mountain range.

At an elevation of 3,100 meters, the Dochula Pass connects Thimphu with Punakha. The eldest Queen Mother, Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck, created 108 memorial chortens or stupas in honor of 108 Bhutanese soldiers who died in the struggle against Assamese militants in 2003. It is one of the must-see places to visit in Bhutan.

Near the monastery is a small shrine called Druk Wangyal Lhakhang, which was established in honor of Bhutan’s fourth king, His Majesty Singye Wangchuck, who spearheaded the combat that led to the country’s victory.A Dochula Druk Wangyel Festival is conducted yearly on December 13th in the open area in front of the temple to commemorate the occasion.

This scenic spot is definitely a photography haven for the photo enthusiasts. If you are lucky and the sky is crystal clear, you can even see the gorgeous himalayan mountains from the pass including Gangkar Puensum, the highest mountain in Bhutan.The temperature will be particularly cold throughout the winter season, so remember to bring your jacket! The pass may even be snow-covered at times.

#13 Have a drink and chill at Mojo Park

bhutan country tourist places

The place has great live music with cheap food and alcohol

If you’re wondering if there’s nightlife in Bhutan, Mojo Park is one of the most popular pubs, attended by both locals and visitors. If you want to sit out with some chilled beers and watch local live musicians, this unassuming pub provides a pleasant atmosphere.

Craft beers, cocktails, and mojitos are also available. The pub sits in the heart of Thimphu and is open seven days a week, even “dry Tuesdays,” when the sale of alcoholic beverages is prohibited. If music and mingling are your thing, make your way to Mojo Park for a fantastic night in Thimphu.

bhutan country tourist places

The main district/dzongkhag for rice production

Punakha was the capital of Bhutan and the seat of government until 1955, when it was relocated to Thimphu. Punakha is also the main district in Bhutan for rice crop production. When visiting Punakha, you will be met by stunning views of paddy fields and rice terraces. The district’s beautiful landscapes and historical sites make it one of the most popular tourist destinations.

#14 Chime Lhakhang (Fertility Temple)

bhutan country tourist places

Chimi Lhakhang, a dedication to Lama Drukpa Kuenly who subdued a demoness with his mighty penis.

Chimi Lhakhang (also known as Chimi Lhakhang or the Fertility Temple) is one of Bhutan’s must-see attractions! Tourists and couples from all over the world come to seek fertility blessings at the temple. This holy temple is affiliated with Drukpa Kuenley (“the Divine Madman”), a prominent Tibetan saint noted for his odd and unconventional teachings that challenged preconceived notions of Buddhism.

He is famous for guiding others to enlightenment and subduing demons with his phallus. For these reasons, you see phalluses as a symbol all over the country, from souvenirs to wood sculptures and wall paintings.

You would normally start your stroll from Sopsokha Village, where you can see shop buildings in traditional Bhutanese architecture, before reaching the temple. A few handcraft businesses provide phallic symbol souvenirs in a variety of colors, styles, and sizes! To reach the entrance of the monastery, you will have a pleasant 20-minute journey from the village, passing through a vast mustard and paddy field.

#15 Pho Chu Suspension Bridge

bhutan country tourist places

a masterpiece of engineering work dating back to the era of Zhabdrung Ngwang Namgyal in 1637

If you’re not afraid of heights, the Punakha suspension bridge, Bhutan’s longest suspension bridge, is a must-see. It’s the ideal place to shoot all your OOTD photos with lush green slopes as backgrounds. The 160-metre-long bridge spans the vast and turbulent Pho Chhu River.

Traditionally, the bridge was built to allow the lamas of Punakha Dzong to access the surrounding villages. Admiring mother nature while standing on the bridge with the wind brushing at you and the fluttering prayer flags brings an indescribable sensation of tranquility and peace.

#16 Punakha Dzong

bhutan country tourist places

Punakha Dzong was built at the confluence of two major rivers in Bhutan, the Pho Chhu and Mo Chhu, which converge in this valley.

This majestic dzong (fortress) is the country’s second oldest and largest dzong. It was once known as Pungtang Dechen Phodrang Dzong, or “The Palace of Great Happiness.” Because of its stunning design and historic history, the Punakha Dzong is one of Bhutan’s major attractions.

Before being relocated to Tashichho Dzong in Thimphu, the monument served as the seat of the Bhutan Government. In fact, until 1955, the Punakha district served as Bhutan’s ancient capital. In 2011, the stronghold hosted the royal wedding ceremony of the fifth monarch, His Majesty Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, and Queen Jetsun Pema.

If you visit Bhutan in May, you will be able to see some spectacular jacaranda blooms in the fortress courtyard. The dzong is also situated between the Pho Chhu (female) and Mo Chhu (male) rivers, making it extremely picturesque and insta worthy.

#17 Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup Nunnery

bhutan country tourist places

perched on a hilltop overlooking the beautiful Punakha valley and Wangduephodrang valley.

The courtyard of Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup Nunnery overlooks the magnificent Punakha and Wangduephodrang valleys. The nunnery was built to serve as a college for the training of nuns, and it now houses approximately 120 nuns. The two-story complex is a showcase of Bhutanese architecture at its finest, skillfully built by local artisans.

The structure also serves as a meditation center for nuns and teaches them life skills such as Thangka art, embroidery, tailoring, and sculpting. You can participate in meditation sessions and watch the sisters’ spiritual practices at the nunnery. The temple also has Bhutan’s highest Avalokiteshvara statue, measuring 14 feet tall. At the enclosure, there is also a striking chorten resembling Nepal’s Boudhanath Stupa.

18. Whitewater rafting in Punakha

bhutan country tourist places

The rugged, untamed waterways of Bhutan will not disappoint the adventurous seekers

If you are an adrenaline junkie or thrill seeker, you can try the whitewater rafting in Punakha. It’s a great pastime to enjoy with your friends and family. You will be rafting along crystal clear rivers and will be able to see the majestic Punakha Dzong as you pass by.

Rafting requires no prior experience as long as you don’t mind getting a little wet at the end. Everyone, including young children and grandparents, can enjoy white water rafting. What better way to spend a vacation than soaking in Bhutan’s gorgeous scenery on a raft while taking images that will last a lifetime!

bhutan country tourist places

Paro is known for its beautiful religious sites and this blue temple has to be the most beautiful of them all

Paro is a significant district in Bhutan with many sacred sites and historical buildings. It is also where the one and only international airport for the country is located. It is the perfect blend of ancient and modern charm.

#19 Taktsang Monastery (Tiger’s Nest)

bhutan country tourist places

Paro Taktsang (Dzongkha: སྤ་གྲོ་སྟག་ཚང་, also known as the Taktsang Palphug Monastery and the Tiger’s Nest), is a sacred Vajrayana Himalayan

This prominent Bhutanese monument is well-known around the world! In fact, a visit to Bhutan is believed to be incomplete without a trip to this spectacular temple towering 2,600 feet above the valley floor. Seeing this magnificent monastery for yourself will make you wonder just how this architectural miracle was accomplished in the 16th century! 

Depending on your fitness, the walk up and down Tiger’s Nest might take anywhere from 3.5 to 9 hours. It is best to start your hike early in order to escape the midday heat. For a smooth hiking trip, remember to pack light and comfy shoes. And, of course, enjoy the breathtaking scenery along the route and snap plenty of photos to capture your experiences!

Many locals of all ages, including toddlers as young as two years old, will be seen ascending the Tiger’s Nest. Parents with newborns on their backs or the elderly with walking sticks are common sights. They will undoubtedly act as an incentive for you to make your way to the summit!

#20 Paro Dzong

bhutan country tourist places

Paro Dzong, officially known as Rinpung Dzong, ‘Fortress of Heap of Jewels” was built in 1644 under the order of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal

Paro Dzong, also known as Rinpung Dzong, or “Fortress of the Heaps of Jewels,” is a well-known monument in the Paro district. You can also see it when your flight arrives at Paro International Airport.  The dzong was built in 1644 under the instruction of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel. 

It was previously utilized as a fort to defend Paro valley against Tibetan incursions. This ancient fortress is closely situated near Paro town and is easily accessible. It now contains the monastic body as well as the district government offices, as do other dzongs.

Thousands of people travel to the courtyard of the dzong in their best clothes to participate in the annual Paro Tshechu (masked dancing festival), which is normally held in March.

Paro Dzong was also used in scenes from Bernardo Bertolucci’s 1993 film Little Buddha.

#21 Kyichu Lhakhang

bhutan country tourist places

One of Bhutan’s oldest temples was purportedly built to halt a giant female ogre from preventing the spread of Buddhism across Tibet

Kyichu Lhakhang (also known as Lho Kyerchu or Kyerchu) is Bhutan’s oldest and most magnificent temple. It is also regarded as one of Bhutan’s most beautiful worship destinations and a precious pearl. Prior to the renovation, the original temple was claimed to have been built overnight and was a small monument. This magnificent temple has a rather quiet and serene atmosphere that promotes a contemplative space.

You will undoubtedly feel more calm and relaxed after visiting this sacred sanctuary. Many elderly people can be seen circumambulating the temple whilst spinning the prayer wheels. Outside the courtyard, there is also a mystical orange tree that is claimed to give fruits all year!

#22 Experience Hot Stone Bath at Aum Choden Homestay

bhutan country tourist places

Hot Stone Baths are an ancient Bhutanese tradition and are a popular form of medicinal practice

Showering oneself with a hot stone bath is perhaps one of the most authentic Bhutanese experiences you can have in the Land of the Thunder Dragon! Aum Choden Homestay is a 108-year-old two-story traditional Bhutanese residence. It exudes a rustic appeal that will leave you feeling rejuvenated.

Those who choose to immerse themselves in the local culture may soak in a medicinal hot stone bath. Locals typically soak in hot stone baths once or twice a week, and it is believed that the hot stone bath has healing effects.

Stones are roasted over a fire and placed in a wooden bath tub. Some medical conditions, such as stomach aches, hypertension, arthritis, or joint pains, can be treated by a medicinal hot stone bath.Aside from hot stone baths, there are activities such as archery, darts, trying on traditional costumes, Gho and Kira, and watching demonstrations of Bhutanese food.

#23 Chele La Pass

bhutan country tourist places

the highest motorable point in Bhutan, sitting 3,988 metres (13,083 ft) above sea level

Chele La Pass, at 3810m (13,000ft), is Bhutan’s highest mountain pass, located between Paro and Haa valley. The route to the pass takes you through either the Paro or Haa valleys, both of which are densely forested. If you’re fortunate and the skies are clear, you can see Mount Jomolhari, Jichu Drake, and other peaks from the pass.

The greatest time to visit Chele La pass is in the spring, from March to June, when lovely rhododendrons greet you along the way. However, during the winter season, you may enjoy breathtaking views of the snow-capped mountains. The breathtaking mountain views and lush green valleys will undoubtedly captivate you.

bhutan country tourist places

Haa Valley is cozily nestled amid the lofty mountains of Western Bhutan. Surrounded by the districts of Paro, Chhukha and Samtse

Haa is one of Bhutan’s most beautiful and unspoiled areas, with undisturbed natural beauty. It is one of Bhutan’s smallest districts and least populated valleys. Haa is also known as the Hidden Land of Rice Valley. If you’re seeking a peaceful getaway, Haa valley is a terrific place to unwind and embrace some tranquility.

#24 Exploring Haa Valley

bhutan country tourist places

Haa is a narrow valley at the height of 9000ft but a very peaceful place

You can take a walk along the Haa Chu river, which passes through the valley’s heart. Haa valley also has a couple of wonderful picnic sites and is a great spot to go bird watching. You will also go through Bhutanese villages, across rice fields, and see traditional wooden dwellings. Rice, barley, and wheat are the main crops grown in Haa valley.

Haa valley is also a hiker’s and trekker’s paradise, with some of the best trekking and mountain biking routes organized around this area. The Haa Summer Festival, which is normally held in July, is one of the most popular festivals for the Haa tribes, nomads, and residents.

Gangtey / Phobjikha valley

bhutan country tourist places

The wonders of Phobjikha valley

Gangtey, also known as Phobjikha valley, is a U-shaped valley with breathtaking views and an abundance of yaks that travel from higher altitudes in search of warmth from the freezing weather. Including its bright blue skies and chilly weather, winter is the ideal time to visit Gangtey. The weather can also be rather severe at times.

Make sure to pack some thick winter clothing to keep you warm. Aside from winter, Gangtey is also a great spot to visit in the spring (March – May) because of the gorgeous blooming in the valley and the wonderful weather conditions.

#25 Experience Black-necked Cranes Festival

bhutan country tourist places

They are the subject of Bhutanese folktales and songs, and are painted on the walls of temples throughout the country

The black-necked cranes festival is held every year on November 11, which also happens to be the birthday of the fourth king, His Majesty Jigme Singye Wangchuck. It’s a spectacular event organized in the courtyard of Gangtey Goemba (Monastery) to commemorate the arrival of the endangered and majestic bird from the Tibetan Plateau.

The black-necked cranes are among the world’s rarest cranes, and they migrate to the Phobjikha valley throughout  the winter months from October to February. The black-necked crane is cherished as a sign of longevity, and it is honored and safeguarded by local people.

The black-necked crane festival is one of Bhutan’s most well-known events, showcasing Bhutanese cultural history through masked folk dances and songs while also raising awareness about conservation issues.

#26 Gangtey Goemba

bhutan country tourist places

an important monastery of Nyingmapa school of Buddhism, the main seat of the Pema Lingpa tradition

Gangtey Goemba, also known as Gangtey Monastery, is a lovely temple located on a mountaintop with breathtaking views of Phobjikha Valley. Pema Lingpa, one of Bhutan’s most famous treasure finders, constructed the shrine in 1963.

Not only do residents visit this humble and simple temple, but black-necked cranes can be seen circling it clockwise three times a year (when they arrive and before they depart from their winter residence). How sacred and mystical!

#27 Gangtey Nature Trail

bhutan country tourist places

immerse yourself in the alluring beauty of the Phobjikha Valley

In comparison to Tiger’s Nest, the Gangtey Nature Trail is a comparatively easy 4km hike. It takes 1.5 to 2 hours to finish and is one of the most popular options for tourists who prefer taking leisurely walks in nature. It also begins immediately below the Gangtey monastery, making it one of Bhutan’s shortest nature routes.

The journey will take you downwards through the pine forest to Semchubara, a small traditional village. The road will continue through the valley’s principal marshes before arriving at Khewa Lhakhang. You’ll be travelling through some of the valley’s most beautiful scenery. You can also see majestic black-necked cranes flying across the valleys if you visit during the winter season.

#28 Ten Khor Yuetshe Trek

bhutan country tourist places

ideal for those who wish to soak up the quaint surroundings of the Phobjikha Valley in a relaxed manner

This stroll takes you through a cluster of beautiful rural villages at a leisurely pace. As you travel through the stunning valleys and vast open plains of Bhutan, you will be able to observe traditional Bhutanese rural life. This trail is slightly longer than the Gangtey Nature Trail, and it will take you about 2-3 hours to complete.

Instead of following the path leading down the valley, this trail continues on a dirt road upwards into the first left side valley, where it will lead you into Jangchu Kemba Village. From there, you’ll descend through the marshland at Khewa Lhakhang on a path that takes you to charming settlements.

Bumthang literally translated as ‘beautiful field’ is one of the most historic districts in Bhutan where some of the oldest and most venerated Buddhist temples are founded including Jambay Lhakhang.Bumthang, commonly known as Jakar, is a central Bhutanese district. Buddhism was introduced to Bhutan for the first time here.

The district comprises four valleys: Chokhor, Tang, Chhume and Ura. Bumthang is also famous for the production of wheat, buckwheat, dairy products and potatoes. You can witness plenty of apple orchards and dairy farms.

#29 Kurjey Lhakhang

bhutan country tourist places

Three ancient temples, the Guru Lhakhang, Sampa Lhundrup Lhakhang, and Ka Gon Phor Sum Lhakhang, are enclosed by 108 chorten walls and nestled on the side of a hill. This vast temple complex is immersed with religious importance. The upper level of Kurjey Lhakhang has 1000 tiny statues of Guru Rinpoche, which serve as the main attraction.

 It is also said that behind a wall on the floor leads to a meditative cave that is prohibited for public access where Guru Rinpoche meditated for three months in the 8th century. Near the temple’s entrance is a massive cypress tree that is said to have sprouted from Guru Rinpoche’s walking stick.

#30 Jambay Lhakhang

bhutan country tourist places

According to legend, this temple was one of the 108 temples built in a single day by Tibetan King Songtsen Goenpo in 659 AD to pin down the body of a demon. According to legend, Tibetan King Songtsen Gampo constructed a series of temples around the Himalayas to help pin down the various parts of the ogress.

Four of them were built to pin down her shoulders and hips; four more on the elbows and knees; and four to hold down her hands and feet. It was believed that Jambay Lhakhang was built to pin down the left knee of the ogress. The one storey complex is famous for its annual festival Jambay Lhakhang Drup as much as for its legends. The festival is held to honour Guru Rinpoche who consecrated the Jambay Lhakhang temple.

#31 Jakar Dzong

bhutan country tourist places

 a picturesque location overlooking the Chokhor valley; the current structure was built in 1667.

The Bumthang district’s dzong is Jakar Dzong, also known as Jakar Yugyal Dzong. It’s in the Chamkhar (Chokhor) valley of Bumthang, on a ridge above Jakar town. The name Jakar refers to a white bird, therefore Jakar Dzong is known as the Fortress of White Bird. A white bird is supposed to have flown and perched on the ridge where Jakar Dzong is located. This was interpreted by a lama as a good omen.

 Traditionally, the Dzong played an important role as the fortress of defence of the eastern districts. It was also the seat of the first king of Bhutan.In comparison to other fortresses in the country, the fortress has two distinguishing traits. The Utse (central tower) is 50 meters tall, and the castle includes two parallel walls, united by reinforced towers, that give water to the population in the event of a siege.

#32 Burning Lake Mebar Tsho

bhutan country tourist places

one of the most sacred sites in the region as it is related to the renowned religious treasurer (Terton) Terton Pema Lingpa

This beautiful freshwater lake is also a popular attraction in Bumthang. This picturesque lake is surrounded by colourful prayers flags and there is a small altar dedicated to Pema Lingpa, the famous treasure revealer. It is said that Pema Lingpa jumped into the lake and re-emerged with a chest and a scroll of paper with a butter lamp on his hand. The locals also offer butter lamps at the lake during special occasions. 

There are also stacks of tsa tsa (small conical clay moulds) that can be found around the lake area. Tsa tsas are believed to carry spiritual power and are often engraved with Buddhist symbols and sometimes contain human ash or bone. Each tsa-tsa is an ancient prayer for the well-being of a beloved human – living or departed. The locals believe that these miniature stupas evoke the same powers as the largest stupas. You can also see tsa tsas outside the fortresses, chorten or temples.

#33 Bumthang brewery and cheese factory

bhutan country tourist places

Take a sip of the famous red panda beer – Hefeweizen style beer brewed by Bumthang Brewery, Ltd. in Bumthang, Bhutan

The micro-brewery and Swiss Farm in Bumthang was founded by a Swiss national, Fritz Maurer in 1996. Fritz married a Bhutanese and went on to set up the first of its kind brewery in Bhutan, producing draught beer, apple cider, wine, apple brandy and juice. This is also the brewery that produces the famous Bhutan beer “Red Panda Beer”, an unfiltered, preservative free brew. The beers are prepared in an old school manner. 

Aside from the brewery, there is also a swiss farm that produces a variety of swiss cheese and is the only commercial cheese factory in Bhutan. Fritz Maurer is also credited for the introduction of the use of modern farm equipment, green technology that is fuel efficient and smokeless wood stoves that are widely used in Bumthang and Bhutan today. Both the brewery and cheese factory are located next to each other, so feel free to pop over for some beer and cheese when you are in Bumthang.

#34 Yathra weaving centre

bhutan country tourist places

art of weaving is a profound metaphor for understanding the workings of the universe and our place in it

Yathra is a colourful wool weaving with intricate patterns native to Chumey valley in Bumthang. Traditionally, every household in Chumey owned a backstrap loom and young girls were taught how to weave. Yak and sheep wool were used for the weaving due to the thick fabric that is ideal for the cold weather in Bumthang.

You can see women skillfully weaving the intricate designs on their backstrap loom at the Yathra Weaving Centre in Zugney and witness the dyeing of wool using natural dyes. The women in communities weave throughout the year as it is their main source of income. Thus, yathra products are uniquely souvenirs from Bumthang.

bhutan country tourist places

Trongsa provides a strategic central location to control Bhutan and for centuries it was the seat of the Wangchuck dynasty of penlops (governors)

Trongsa, formerly known as Tongsa, is the capital of Trongsa district located in central Bhutan. Historically, Trongsa district is one of the most important districts as it was the headquarters for the eastern region and the seat of the Trongsa governor.

#35 Trongsa Dzong

bhutan country tourist places

The Trongsa Dzong, which was built in 1644, used to be the seat of power of the Wangchuck dynasty before they became rulers of Bhutan in 1907

The magnificent trongsa dzong is easily noticeable from anywhere in town. This historic fortress was established in 1644 and served as the home of the Wangchuck Dynasty before they became Bhutan’s rulers in 1907. Historically, the King of Bhutan first became the Trongsa Penlop (governor) before becoming the Crown Prince.

This magnificent dzong, built on a spur above the Mangdi Chuu river canyon, is Bhutan’s greatest stronghold. The dzong is one of the most outstanding in the country due to its scale, strategic position, and grand architecture.

Other things to do in Bhutan

#36 trying out bhutanese traditional costume, kira and gho.

bhutan country tourist places

The national dress of Bhutan is called the gho for men and kira for women. It was introduced during the 17th century by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel to give the Bhutanese a unique identity

Everywhere you walk in the country, you will see natives proudly wearing their traditional clothes. It’s no wonder that many visitors to Bhutan wish to bring home a set of Kira or Gho as a souvenir.

During your trip, you can learn to wear the traditional costumes, Gho and Kira and find the best spot for a photoshoot session. Though it is said that getting a bad shot in Bhutan is impossible! It doesn’t matter where you point your camera, you’re guaranteed to get a postcard-worthy shot.

*If you are travelling with Druk Asia, you will be given a set of traditional costumes upon your arrival. The costume is to be returned to your guide at the end of the trip.

#37 Have a game of archery

bhutan country tourist places

Archery in Bhutan is a local and distinctive martial art that has been used for both fun and fighting for centuries

Archery was made the national sport in Bhutan 1971 when Bhutan became a member of the United Nations. Archery is a huge element of Bhutanese culture, and you can always find guys playing archery with their mates all around the nation.

If you want to practice archery, just let your guide know and he or she will be able to fit this into your schedule. There are numerous locations in Bhutan where archery can be practiced.

#38 Indulge yourself in Bhutanese Food

bhutan country tourist places

 Bhutanese cuisine is influenced by Chinese, Tibetan and Indian culture. Don’t be surprised to see mountains of rice being served

When you visit Bhutan, you should prepare your stomach to savor the delicious Bhutanese cuisine. Bhutanese people adore chilies, so if you enjoy spicy food, rejoice! Because Bhutanese take their chillies seriously, you’ll be offered ema datshi (chilli cheese) virtually every day.

Ema datshi is also Bhutan’s national dish. Even if you aren’t a fan of spicy foods, you should give it a try at least once! After that, you might want to hydrate yourself with some butter tea. Other cheese dishes include kewa datshi (potato cheese) and shamu datshi(mushroom cheese).

Shakam (dried beef), phaksha paa (sliced pork), ezay (chilli condiment), and vegetables such as ferns, turnip, spinach, pumpkin, and radish are all traditional Bhutanese foods. Vegetarian food is also easily available throughout the country.

#39 Attending a Tsechu (masked dance festival)

bhutan country tourist places

Tshechu are annual religious Bhutanese festivals held in each district or dzongkhag of Bhutan on the tenth day of a month of the lunar Tibetan calendar

Festival season is unquestionably one of Bhutan’s biggest events. The Mask Dance Celebration, also known as Tshechu, is Bhutan’s most important religious festival.It is held annually in the monasteries and dzongs from all the 20 districts in the different months of the year to honour Guru Rinpoche who brought Buddhism to Bhutan in the 8th century. A Tshechu typically lasts for four or five days. 

It is observed on the tenth day of the Tibetan lunar calendar, which corresponds to Guru Rinpoche’s birthday. As a result, the exact dates of the Tshechu differ from year to year in different areas. The most popular Tshechu for tourists are in Paro during spring (Feb – May), as well as in Thimphu and Bumthang during autumn (Sep – Nov).  Thousands of residents will be dressed to the nines in their finest attire for the celebration.

40. Trekking in Bhutan

bhutan country tourist places

Bhutan trekking or tours will take you on a journey through the country’s ancient history

Bhutan is undoubtedly a paradise for hikers and trekkers as it is home to many breathtaking mountains. Due to the excellent climate, spring is the most popular season for trekkers to visit Bhutan. You can also go trekking in the winter if you want to avoid the crowds and have a more solitary experience.

Bhutan’s Himalayan mountains include Jitchu Drake, Jomolhari, Kangphu Kang, and Gangkhar Phuesum(the world’s highest unclimbed mountain) . The following are some of Bhutan’s most popular trekking trails.

Would you be interested to learn more about Bhutan, you can msg or call us on whatsapp and our travel advisor (+975 1714 0163) will be glad to assist you answering all your questions and guide you in planning your ideal getaway to Bhutan with us.

On arrival in Bhutan, your personal local english speaking guide will be there to receive and welcome you. You will be greeted by our traditional handwoven colorful scarves and a free sim card with an internet package so you can call your friends and family to say you have arrived in one of the happiest countries in the world. 

Since you are here, read a little of some of our engaging blogs we have for you. 

Have a good one. 

To learn more about Top places to visit in Bhutan please visit us; www.drukheritage.com

Are you struggling to plan an ideal holiday? Click the link to learn about step by step guides to planning your ideal holiday.

Comments are closed

bhutan country tourist places

  • Bhutan Bike Tour: Ultimate Bhutan Motorcycle Adventure On Royal Enfield Himalayan

Bhutan’s hidden luxuries

  • Bhutan’s Hidden Luxuries: A Journey Through Its Top Hotels

Travel To Bhutan: Immerse In Culture, Nature & Community

  • Travel To Bhutan: Immerse In Culture, Nature & Community

As featured on

bhutan country tourist places

28 Best Bhutan Travel Agencies For All-Inclusive Packages (2024)

Recent Posts

  • Unveiling Bhutan’s Hidden Gems: A Memorable Tour in Bhutan
  • Future Gelephu – The Mindfulness City
  • January 2024
  • November 2023
  • October 2023
  • August 2023
  • February 2023
  • December 2022
  • November 2022
  • October 2022
  • September 2022
  • August 2022
  • January 2022
  • December 2021
  • November 2021
  • October 2021
  • September 2021
  • August 2021
  • about bhutan
  • Adventure in Bhutan
  • best travel agency in bhutan
  • Bhutan Holiday
  • Business and health
  • Cultural Odyssey in Bhutan
  • Family Holiday in Bhutan
  • Festival in Bhutan
  • Festivals of Flight
  • Fishing in Bhutan
  • Happiness is a place
  • holiday in bhutan
  • Hotels in Bhutan
  • Reopen Tourism in Bhutan
  • The Famous Jomolhari Trek
  • Travel Guides to Bhutan
  • Trekking in Bhutan
  • Uncategorized
  • Visa to Bhutan
  • Visit Bhutan
  • What is Bhutan Famous For
  • Yoga Trip To Bhutan

QUICK links

Destinations.

Building 2A, First Floor

Thimphu, Bhutan.

Thimphu 11001

You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.

Heavenly Bhutan Travels

  • Top 10 Places to visit in Bhutan
  • Travel Blog

Top 10 Places to visit in Bhutan  | 10 Must See Places in Bhutan

Bhutan “The Land of Thunderbolt” is still one of the least heard or traveled destinations, even by the young travel enthusiasts of its neighboring country – India. But it’s a long list of forts, monasteries, and other Buddhist relics, trekking spots, and shopping areas are surely worth a visit. Known as the Last Shangri-La, the entire country comprises panoramic valleys, majestic Himalayas, and an abundance of rare fauna and flora. The rivers, arising from the Himalayas, meander through the valleys and mesmerize with their beauty. Offering a kaleidoscope of sceneries and experiences, the best  tourist places in Bhutan  must feature on your itinerary while visiting the Land of the Thunder Dragon. If not all, at least a few of the below-listed places to visit in Bhutan deserve a visit by you and your travel buddies. From wildlife sanctuaries to monasteries, a vacation to Bhutan is all about tranquility and serenity that is unmatchable. 

About Bhutan

Bhutan is a small country located in the southern foothills of the Himalaya mountains. The country is in between the Republic of China and the Republic of India. The elevation level is here 38,394 km² and the population is 735553. Southern Bhutan is respectively hot and has a humid atmosphere, but the climate always varies from 15 to 30 degrees. In the northern areas, the temperature is low and cold, as it is near the mountains. In this region the mountains tops usually stay covered in snow thus, the lower parts stay cool.

Bhutan is rich with precious culture and diversity. There are so many celebrations that are held here from time to time. Every single village in this country has their own celebration and one of the well-known is the annual Tshechu and it’s a very religious festival of this place. In Tshechu the people dress up in colorful clothes and join at the nearest monastery or temple. This celebration is usually done to pray to the second Buddha, the Guru Rimpoche. The people gather to have their traditional dance, they share meals which includes, red rice, spicy pork, ema datshi and momos which is generally made by pork or beef. They also drink the traditional rice wine known as Ara. This is the celebration where families gather and catch up with everyone.

♦ Rinpung Dzong – Admire Bhutanese Architecture ♦ Punakha Dzong – Second-Largest Dzong In Bhutan ♦ Dochula Pass – Ideal For A Picnic Day ♦ Tiger’s Nest – Must-Visit Place Of Bhutan ♦ Tashichho Dzong – Largest Landmark Of Thimpu ♦ Tashichho Dzong –  Largest Landmark Of Thimpu ♦ National Museum of Bhutan – Know More About Bhutan ♦ Motithang Takin Preserve – Explore Different Species Of Animals ♦ Drukgyel Dzong Ruins – Dig Into Bhutan’s History ♦ Simtokha Dzong –  Colossal & Alluring

1. Rinpung Dzong – Admire Bhutanese Architecture

Rinpung Dzong is a beautiful dzong  (fort), with towering walls, built in the 16th century. Known as the  Fortress on a Heap of Jewels , Rinpung Dzong is among the best tourist places to visit in Bhutan and a classic example of Bhutanese architecture and deep rooted traditions. You can look at the  Bhutan tourist places map  for its exact location.

The entire area is filled with various shrines and  temples in Bhutan . Some of the shrines are, Kungarwa, Monk’s assembly hall, Sandalwood stupa, protector’s shrine and so on. Every year there is an annual festival of tshechu and it is held in Rinpung Dzong and it starts from the eleventh day to the fifteenth day and the day is marked in Bhutan’s lunar calendar. If you want to know the months properly then it’s the months of March to April.

In this festival holy images are carried in a procession, and this very thing is followed by the mask dances which tells many stories and these are performed by the monks for many days. On the fifteenth day before dawn breaks a sacred banner which consists of eight manifestations of Padmasambhava is shown for the public in those early hours and the tradition is that there will be no sunlight to fall on the banner. Location:  Paro District, Bhutan Key attractions : Beautiful temple and wall paintings related to Buddhism Opening hours : 9 am – 5 pm How to reach : You can take a taxi or hire a bike from anywhere in Paro to get to this spot. Places To Stay:  Norwangs Villa, Nirvana Inn, The Village Lodge Paro, Hotel Ratna Vara

Banner Paro Rimpong Dzong

2. Punakha Dzong – Second-Largest Dzong In Bhutan

Punakha Dzong is the second largest dzong in Bhutan(The Land of Thunderbolt) and is known for its brilliant structure. Among the best tourist places in Bhutan , the dzong speaks volumes about the beautiful stories and traditions of the Buddhist culture. Do not miss this on your Bhutan sightseeing tour.

Punakha is the winter capital of this country and the head clergy of Bhutan spends the winter in this popular Dzong. The Punakha Dzong is situated on the 1,200 meters and on this height no one ever suffers from height sickness or oxygen shortage, so if you are thinking about  hiking in Bhutan , then you can aim for the higher place such as Paro Taktsang or tiger’s nest and it’s a very ideal place for beginners.

This dzong is considered the most beautiful one in the country and the very first national assembly was held here in 1953. This is the second-largest fortress in Bhutan and the most popular one as well. To finish the building of this dzong took a year and the most interesting fact is that this building has no usage of nails. Almost every national treasure of the country is kept here, and in here the king of Bhutan Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck got married to the Queen Jetsun Pema in 2011. Location:  Punakha, Bhutan Key attractions : The intricate paintings and the architecture of the fort, sacred relics of the southern Drukpa Lineage of Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism, and the sacred remains of Ngawang Namgyal and the tertön Pema Lingpa. Opening hours : 8 am – 5 pm How to reach : Take a bus or taxi from Paro or Thimphu to Punakha. Further, take a taxi or bike to this point in Punakha. Places To Stay:  Hotel Vara, The Four Boutique, Hotel Zangto Pelri, Damchen Resort, Chimi Lhakhang Village Homestay

3. Dochula Pass – Ideal For A Picnic Day

Dochula Pass is a beautiful pass consisting of 108 Chortens or Stupas, built in the memory of the Bhutanese soldiers who died in a war against the insurgents from India. The beautifully built temple and stupas, with the picturesque Gangkar Puensum peak in the background, makes the Dochula Pass one of the most  beautiful tourist places in Bhutan . Dochula pass is situated on the way to Punakha and Thimphu.

This very pass is a popular location for every tourist who visits the country. From the pass, you can have a panoramic view of the Himalayan mountain range, and you must know the view is very beautiful from the top. You will get to see the snow covered mountains and the amazing backdrop of the place. So many Bhutanese families enjoy their holidays in this area, they have small picnics, and some just come here to enjoy the view. You can have your lunch and tea in a flask and come here to enjoy the food and hot tea. Location:  East-West Road from Thimpu to Punakha Key attractions : Panoramic view that gives a glimpse of the peak of the sacred Himalayan mountain – Chomolhari, Druk Wangyal Lhakhang temple, and the fusion paintings on the temple walls How to reach : Take a taxi from Thimphu or Punakha to get to this point. Places To Stay:  Mendrelgang Homestay, Yangki Guest House, Thori Resort, Hotel Pundarika, Choni Apartment

4. Tiger’s Nest – Must-Visit Place Of Bhutan

Tiger’s Nest or Taktsang Monastery is one of the  must visit places in Bhutan . It is known for the beautiful and the sacred monastery of Guru Rinpoche. It is considered as a place of pilgrimage and is an easy half trek, which gives you the panoramic views of the Paro valleys. According to the legends, Guru Rinpoche also considered as the second Buddha rode to this place on a tigress’s back to suppress a local demon and thus he meditated here for 3 months. This place is Bhutan’s most religious site and it hangs on the cliff as it stands above the lush forest of thousands of species of rhododendrons and blue pine. Due to this, it is counted in the list of  places to visit in Bhutan .

Tourists can come to this monastery by standard permits which your guide will arrange for you. Also, you have to register your at the entrance deposit your cameras and bags because photography is prohibited inside of the temple. If you are  backpacking in Bhutan , then you must consider visiting this place. Location:  Taktsang trail BT, Taktsang trail, Bhutan Key attractions : The tiger’s nest, the cave temple inside the monastery, the majestic views, and the many small temples inside the premises of the monastery. How to reach : Take a shared cab to the starting point of the path leading to the monastery. Trek to the top. Places To Stay:  Norwangs Villa, Nirvana Inn, The Village Lodge Paro, Hotel Ratna Vara, The chhodens, Zhideychen Resort

5. Tashichho Dzong – Largest Landmark Of Thimpu

Located at the northern end of the city,  Tashichho Dzong  is one of the most  beautiful tourist places in Bhutan . A  popular fortress  set on the edge of the city’s border, this monastery is a delight to watch as it is set on the western banks of River Wang Chu.

This is one of the famous Dzong in the country and regarded as the largest landmark of Thimphu. The dzong is situated two kilometers away from the actual town and holds huge importance as it is the main secretariat and its houses are the office of the throne room and the King as well.

Some of the central monastic bodies and some people from the ministry live here and this is the summer residence of the monks too. If you have a plan to visit this place then try not to miss the 5 pm changing of the flag, as it’s very important to watch and it begins in the courtyard and ends outside in the front. Location:  Chhagchhen Lam, Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions:  It has not only served as the summer capital of the country but also as the royal seat of Druk Desi who is also called the Dharma Raja. Timings:  Monday to Friday – 9 AM to 5 PM, and 5:30 PM to 6 PM; Saturday & Sunday – 9 AM to 5 PM How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get here. Places To Stay:  Sambhav Service Apartments

6. Buddha Dordenma Statue – Gape At The Bronze Statue

The Buddha Dordenma Statue is a 169 feet tall statue of Buddha, built at the foot of the hills in Thimphu. This iconic gold and bronze statue is visible from almost anywhere in Thimphu and is among the  best tourist places in Bhutan .

This is a statue of Buddha and it’s a giant one at the top of the mountains in Thimpu and it’s also known as the Kunzang Phodrang. The presence of this giant statue of Buddha symbolizes the dominant religion of Bhutan. This very religion plays a solid part in this country and in the everyday life of the country’s people which is what makes it one of the best places in Bhutan for sightseeing. You will see the string of flags at the roadsides and the several praying wheels around the clock tower, which is in the midst of the town.

There are small temples and various paintings that adorn the walls that are made of cement and rock. Buddha dordenma is the largest statue and it’s 52.5 meters tall and made of bronze. Inside this figure, there are 125,000 small figurines of the same. There are 25,000 and 12 inches ones and 100,000 8 inches one. Location:  Kuenselphodrang, Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions : The 169 feet tall Buddha statue, thousands of smaller bronze and gold statues of Lord Buddha, and the surrounding Kuensel Phodrang nature park How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Thimphu to get to this statue. Places To Stay:  Hotel Oro Villa, Hotel River Valley

7. National Museum of Bhutan – Know More About Bhutan

The National Museum of Bhutan tops the list of  Bhutan tourist attractions . Built in the year of 1968 and set above the famous Rinpung Dzong, it was constructed to exhibit the famous Bhutanese art. From contemporary paintings to ancient statues, the museum today houses about  3000 masterpieces  and exhibits more than 1,500 years of cultural heritage of Bhutan. This place is also the photo gallery of the country and many Bhutanese hold their dance ceremonies in this place as well.

The building is currently under some temporary building but you can visit the other parts of it as the museum is divided into portions for wildlife, masks, and so on. In the evening, the museum lights up and you can visit the place to take amazing photos. Apart from masks and wildlife, you will get to experience the pretty flora and fauna in this place and get to view the brief history of Bhutan as well.

Key attractions:  Do not miss out on the bronze statues, galleries, and the ancient paintings. Timings:  Monday to Sunday – 9 AM to 5 PM How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get here. Places To Stay:  Norwangs Villa, Nirvana Inn, The Village Lodge Paro, Hotel Ratna Vara, Hotel Dorjee Ling

8. Motithang Takin Preserve – Explore Different Species Of Animals

Did you know about the national animal of Bhutan? Well if your answer is no, then you’re not alone in that. Located in the district of Motithang in Thimphu,  Motithang Takin Preserve  serves as the home of the famous species of takin. Many travelers consider visiting this zoo-converted-reserve as one of the best  tips while traveling to Bhutan . The Takin is a rare type of animal and falls under the goat species and their actual habitat is the eastern Himalayas. These animals live in the high altitudes of the country, also found in Northwest Myanmar, northwest India as well. These odd-looking animals according to the local legends were assembled by a 15th-century saint who agreed to create a miracle.

This saint joined the head of a goat at the top of a cow’s skeleton and brought this new type of animal to life. Apart from myths, this animal is the result of evolution and has a protracted nose, large head, and strong torso provides it a different look. The Takins live around 8.4 acres from the rainforest and the Bhutan government is taking good care of them by preserving the species and they do not keep the animals in a zoo because they believe in the non-confinement of animals in a Buddhist country. Location:  Motithang, Bhutan Timings:  Tuesday to Sunday – 9 AM to 4 PM; Closed on Mondays Entry Fee Locals:  INR 10 per person SAARC National:  INR 30 per person Foreigners:  INR 50 per person How to reach : Take a taxi or hike to Motithang Preserve from Thimphu.

Places To Stay:  Sambhav Service Apartments, Namseling Boutique Hotel, Hotel Golden Roots, The Pema

9. Drukgyel Dzong Ruins – Dig Into Bhutan’s History

Once a massive fortress that stood tall and served as one of  the greatest Buddhist monasteries , only ruins remain on the site of the famous Drukgyel Dzong. Located in the upper district of Paro, this monastery was established in 1649 by the famous Tenzin Drukdra after they were triumphant over Tibet’s invasion.

Some of the central monastic bodies and some people from the ministry live here and this is the summer residence of the monks too. If you have a plan to visit one of the best  tourist places in Bhutan , then try not to miss the 5 pm changing of the flag, as it’s very important to watch and it begins in the courtyard and ends outside in the front.

Location:  Paro District 11001, Bhutan Timings:  Monday to Sunday – 7 AM to 6 PM How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get here.

10. Simtokha Dzong –  Colossal & Alluring

Simtokha Dzong translates to Temple Fortress and it’s every bit colossal and alluring. Built in the year 1629, the temple has now been converted to a museum that lures a huge number of visitors every year and is among the most popular Bhutan tourist spots. If you are a lover of linguistics and wish to learn the local language of Dzongkha, then you can learn the language here. Do not miss this place during your  Bhutan sightseeing .

Location:  Simtokha, Bhutan Timings:  9 AM – 5 PM How to reach : Take a taxi or bus from Thimphu to get to Simtokha. Places To Stay:  Yangki Guest House, Thori Resort, Hotel Ugyen, Hotel Pundarika, Choni Apartment, Hotel River Valley

Frequently Asked Questions About Tourist Places In Bhutan

A.  October to December is one of the best time to visit Bhutan. The weather is sunny during this time with some snow at higher elevations. If you want to see the flowers blooming and the magic of spring months, then plan your visit from March to May.

Q. Do we need a visa for Bhutan?

A.  No, there is no need for Bhutan visa for Indian nationals to travel to the country. They only need to carry any one of the two documents:

1) Voter identity Card, issued by the Election Commission Of India; or 2) Indian Passport, with a validity of at least 6 months.

Q. What is Bhutan well known for?

A.  Bhutan is well known for its natural beauty, forts, monasteries, trekking spots, great culture and heritage and rich biodiversity.

Q. How can you reach Chele La Pass?

A.  Chele La Pass can be reached from Paro or Thimphu by taking a car or a motorbike. It takes approximately one and half hours from Paro and two and a half hours from Thimphu to reach Chele La Pass.

Q. How hard is the Tiger’s Nest hike?

A.  Tiger’s Nest hike difficulty level ranges from moderate to difficult. One can do it if they have an average level of fitness and can complete it between 3 to 5 hours depending upon the pace.

Q. What can you buy in Paro Bhutan?

A.  Paro is a major hub for shopping in Bhutan. One can check out the following popular things to buy: 1. Woven bags 2. Traditional jewelry 3. Carpets 4. Handmade paper 5. Thangkas 6. Yak-bone jewelry

Q. How many days do I need in Bhutan?

A.  Bhutan is a wonderful country to explore and it involves some within-the-country traveling too. So, at least 5 to 7 days are needed to experience Bhutan.

Q. How much does it cost to visit Bhutan?

A.  The cost for a minimum of 3 days and 2 nights in Bhutan starts from INR 12,500. This includes hotel charges, breakfast, and sightseeing.

Q. What are some top attractions in Bhutan?

A.  There is no dearth of tourist attractions in Bhutan with the top ones being Buddha Doredena Statue, National Museum of Bhutan, Haa Valley, Zuri Dzong Fort, Gasa Tshachu, Motithang Takin Preserve, Simply Bhutan, and Dochula Pass.

Q. How far is Rinpung Dzong from Paro airport?

A . Rinpung Dzong is located in the vicinity of the Paro airport. It is around 6 kilometers away and takes approximately 12 minutes to cover the distance between the two.

Looking To Book A Holiday Package in Bhutan?

Heavenly Bhutan Travels give best Holiday Packages that suits your choice and interest

Luxurious Holidays in Bhutan

  • Group Enquiry? NEW
  • 55 Places to Visit in Bhutan

Bhutan Tourist Places

Quick navigation.

 Tashichho Dzong

  • Thimphu City

Tiger's Nest Monastery Hike

Must Visit Tourist Places in Bhutan

Buddha dordenma, thimphu.

Buddha Dordenma, Thimphu

Taktsang Palphug Monastery, Paro

Taktsang Palphug Monastery, Paro

The Tashichho Dzong (Thimphu Dzong), Thimphu

The Tashichho Dzong (Thimphu Dzong), Thimphu

Chele La, Paro

Chele La, Paro

Punakha Dzong, Punakha

Punakha Dzong, Punakha

Rinpung Dzong, Paro

Rinpung Dzong, Paro

Rinpung Dzong , meaning 'Fortress on a Heap of Jewels', is an important religious site in Bhutan. Famous for its cultural and natural beauty it is one of the most important highlights of Bhutan’s tourist places. Hiking to this place offers a breathtaking view of the surrounding valleys as you arrive. Located on the hillside of Paro, this ancient monastery welcomes you with its rich history and amazing woodwork. This place provides you with the best panoramic views of the Paro Valley and Paro Chhu River. Additionally, you can enjoy the Dzong at night, when it is beautifully illuminated. 

Punakha Suspension Bridge, Punakha

Punakha Suspension Bridge, Punakha

National Museum, Paro

National Museum, Paro

Jigme Dorji National Park, Gasa

Jigme Dorji National Park, Gasa

Simtokha Dzong, Thimphu

Simtokha Dzong, Thimphu

Tango Buddhist Institute, Thimphu

Tango Buddhist Institute, Thimphu

Dochula Pass, Thimphu

Dochula Pass, Thimphu

Gangtey Monastery, Wangdue

Gangtey Monastery, Wangdue

The vibrant and unique culture of Bhutan is one of the major factors why the country shows a magnetic force towards tourists all across the world. The country is replete with numerous Buddhist monasteries displaying the brilliant architecture. A famous one among those is Gangtey Monastery located in Wangdue Phodrang district in central Bhutan. It belongs to Nyingmapa school of Buddhism and is a popular place among pilgrims and tourists alike due to its architecture and scenic location.

It is located at an elevation of 16,000 ft. Splendid views of the Phobjikha Valley below can be witnessed from the monastery. If you like trekking, you ought to know that a trekking route passes through here in case you are looking for some action around your visit to this monastery.

Location : Wangdue  Best Season : September to November

India

Best of India

100 Best Honeymoon Destinations in the World

Mo Chu River

Mo Chu River

Tourist Places to Visit in Thimphu

Dagala thousand lakes.

Dagala Thousand Lakes

Royal Manas National Park

Royal Manas National Park

Weekend Market

Weekend Market

The Folk Heritage Museum

The Folk Heritage Museum

Philatelic Bureau

Philatelic Bureau

Motithang Takin Preserve

Motithang Takin Preserve

Choki Traditional Art School

Choki Traditional Art School

Trashi Chhoe Dzong

Trashi Chhoe Dzong

National Library

National Library

Jungshi Handmade Paper Factory

Jungshi Handmade Paper Factory

Best of Sri Lanka

Camping in Sri Lanka: 8 Sites For A Quick Weekend Escape

Royal Textile Academy of Bhutan

Royal Textile Academy of Bhutan

Thimphu Chorten (Memorial Chorten)

Thimphu Chorten (Memorial Chorten)

National Folk Heritage Museum

National Folk Heritage Museum

Clock Tower Square

Clock Tower Square

National Institute for Zorig Chusum

National Institute for Zorig Chusum

Handicrafts Market

Handicrafts Market

Changangkha Lhakhang

Changangkha Lhakhang

Wangchu River

Wangchu River

Tourist Places to Visit in Paro

Soi yaktsa trek.

Soi Yaktsa Trek

Drukgyel Dzong

Drukgyel Dzong

Once serves as a fortress and a monastery, Drukgyel Dzong is now in ruins. It is located in the upper part of Paro. As per the popular belief, the fortress was built in 1649 by Tenzin Drukdra to memorialize victory over an invasion from Tibet. It was completely destroyed by fire in 1951. Though there are so many Dzongs in great shape in Bhutan, this one, despite being a ruined one, is an important site from nationalistic and historic relevance.

14 km north of Paro, this fortress is accessible by road, and must be accessed as, apart from an insight into the past, it also offers great views of the snow capped mountain peak of Jhomolari. If you can spare a few hours on your trip to Bhutan, visiting this place seems like a good idea.

Champaca Café

Nepal

Best of Nepal

25 Adventures in Nepal

Kila Nunnery

Kila Nunnery

Jangtsa Dumtseg Lhakhang

Jangtsa Dumtseg Lhakhang

Pilgrim’s Valley

Pilgrim’s Valley

Tachogang Lhakhang Bridge

Tachogang Lhakhang Bridge

Tourist Places to Visit in Punakha

Samtengang trek.

Samtengang Trek

If you have a fetish for exploring the serene village in the mountains then this is the perfect place for you. Arranged at a stature of 2,800m which is reached out along the slope inclines Talo Village is the ideal choice for the nature lovers. Talo Sangnacholing is built on a level and has brilliant sight of abutting villages.

The stunning farm and places of the town have its own bloom gardens and on the slope slant corns and sweet peas are developed bounty. The ladies of Talo are particularly known for their beauty. Talo Tsechu has held in the ground close Talo Dzong or Monastery. One can likewise visit the Talo Monastery situated on the slopes above Punakha, Bhutan.

Location: The Talo Village is situated at a height of 2,800m which is extended along the hill slopes.

Best time: The best time to visit is during the month of October to December.

Limbukha

Known for its love and peace, Limbukha villages has slowly becoming a hit among the tourist all over the globe. Legends say that amid medieval wars the general population of Limbukha dependably volunteered as peace moderators.

This is likewise portrayed amid the annual celebration when the Limbuk men are discovered conveying peace hails rather than swords and firecrackers.

The town of Limbukha can be achieved effectively by going through the Feeder Street from Punakha and Wangdue. Another interesting thing about Limbukha is the red rice produced here has medicinal qualities.

Location: The village is located near water source and is at a distance of 9km from Punakha.

Best Time: The best time to visit this place is during the month of March, April, and May.

Chimi L'hakhang Temple

Chimi L'hakhang Temple

Khansum Yulley Namgyal Chorten

Khansum Yulley Namgyal Chorten

Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup Nunnery

Sangchhen Dorji Lhuendrup Nunnery

Other Tourist Places in Bhutan

Phobjikha valley, wangdue.

Phobjikha Valley, Wangdue

Kurje Lhakhang, Bumthang

Kurje Lhakhang, Bumthang

Drametse Goemba

Drametse Goemba

Best of Paro

20 Things to Do in Paro {{year}} | What to Do in Paro

Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park, Trongsa

Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park, Trongsa

If visits to monasteries start to develop monotony on your trip to Bhutan, how about an escape into a great nature and wildlife space? If that sounds exciting to you, Jigme Singye Wangchuk National Park is the place you must choose. Encompassing wide variations in terms of altitude and vegetation, this park is full of scenic beauty and biodiversity. It is located at a distance of 81 km from the capital city, Thimphu.

Spread across an area of 1730 sq. km, this park boasts an excellent range of animal and bird species. Animals like Royal Bengal tiger, clouded leopard, golden langur, musk deer and many more can be sighted here. This park offers a bounty of great frames for photographers to capture including dense green forests and green meadows and mountain slopes blanketed with velvety green texture.

Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary

Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary

Phuentsholing

Phuentsholing

Get away from the hustle and bustle of daily life and head out for an amazing vacation to Phuentsholing, Bhutan. Phuentsholing is that one place for where all the people from various places like Kolkata and Siliguri.

The little, sweltering border town of Phuentsholing sits inverse the much bigger Indian bazaar town of Jaigaon, isolated by a feeble fence and the abundantly captured Bhutan Gate. This place has become one of the most visited places in Bhutan.

It is a captivating spot where distinctive ethnic gatherings blend conspicuously Indian, Bhutanese and Nepalese. Being the border town, Phuentsholing serves as the helpful passage for Bhutan furthermore the critical connection to visit the Indian condition of West Bengal, Sikkim, and Assam.

Location: Phuentsholing lies on the Indian border, next to the town of Jaigaon.

Best Time:   The best time to visit Phuentsholing is during the month of November to March and May-August.

Trashiyangtse

Trashiyangtse

While you are planning for a Bhutan trip then this is another place which is a must visit for you. Trashiyangtse also known as Tashi Yangtse is a small town in Yangtse Gewog. Situated near to Chorten Kora which misleads the west, a dzong was introduced in Trashiyangste in 1997.

The people of this region have developed excellent skills of traditional art work. The School of Traditional Arts, otherwise called Rigne School, which is a sister school of the School of Traditional Arts in Thimphu and shows six types of craftsmanship; painting, ceramics, wood mold, wood-turning, enamel work and weaving.

This rich cultural tapestry has resulted in an interesting blend of languages and cultural practices in the region.

Location: The Trashiyangtse is located in close proximity to Chorten Kora which lies to the west, a dzong.

Best Time: The best time to visit this place October to December.

Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary

Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary

Wangchuck Wildlife Sanctuary

Wangchuck Wildlife Sanctuary

The Tower of Trongsa Museum (Trongsa)

The Tower of Trongsa Museum (Trongsa)

  • Phuntsholing

Torsa Strict Nature Reserve

Torsa Strict Nature Reserve

Bumthang Hidden Valleys

Bumthang Hidden Valleys

TrumshingLa National Park

The gasa tshachu.

The Gasa Tshachu

Samdrup Jongkhar

Samdrup Jongkhar

Frequently alluded to as Phuentsholing's younger sibling because of the comparability in engineering style and the way that both towns are on the outskirt with India, Samdrup Jongkhar has, actually, little important to sightseers.

Indeed, even the dzong is new and does not have the appeal and masterful fortunes of the conventional dzongs. In any case, the town is a spotless and charming spot with a varied blend of Bhutanese and Indian shops, eateries and inns, so it is justified regardless of a glance around if going to the area.

The town is situated on the south-eastern piece of Bhutan and fringes the Indian condition of Assam .

Location: The town is located in the south-eastern part of Bhutan and borders the Indian state of Assam.

Best time: The best time to visit this place March to August.

Thimphu City

Best of Thimphu City

25 Things to Do in Thimphu {{year}} | Get Upto 25% Off

People Also Ask About Bhutan

Which are the best romantic places to visit in bhutan, what are the best places to visit in bhutan with family, which are the best places to stay in bhutan, how much will a trip to bhutan cost, which is the best time to visit bhutan, do indian need a visa for bhutan, is inr accepted in bhutan, how many days do you need in bhutan.

Tashichho Dzong

Trending in Bhutan

Adventure in bhutan.

9 Days Bhutan Sightseeing Tour from India

Sightseeing in Bhutan

Gyj232218bqs545t33587krbykj5 jhvq1wsn3wk6rduss3gtybpgms63 66y3q1wrfzyqye59bmq69ijpk59z 1530784295 tashi dzong

Camping in Bhutan

Jomolhari Trek, Bhutan @ Flat 15% off

Trekking in Bhutan

5 Days Excursion in Bhutan

Rafting in Bhutan

Rafting in Mo Chu River in Bhutan

Pilgrimage in Bhutan

Sightseeing Experience in Bhutan

Bhutan Top Attractions

Bhutan

One of the largest Buddha statues in the world, Buddha Dordenma is a masterpiece of architectural wonder. The massive bronze statue is more than 50 meters in height and is gilded in gold. Apart from this it also houses 125,000 other Buddha statues that are placed surrounding the Buddha Dordenma statue. Sitting royally atop a great meditation hall, this Buddha statue exudes peace and tranquillity, so make sure to include on your Bhutan trip.The project has been believed to be prophesized as early as eight century in a sacred treasure kept by Guru Padmasambhava. It is a representation of manifestation of human faith and everlasting peace and happiness for all human beings.

Taktsang Palphug Monastery

Taktsang Palphug Monastery or more popularly known as the Tiger’s Nest Monastery is one of the most revered pilgrimage place in the Himalayan province. It is also one of the most visited tourists destination in Bhutan and is a place that showcases the great traditional values of the country. Uniquely located on top of the mountain 1200 meters above the Paro Valley, this monastery is surrounded by the scenic beauty. This white building topped with the golden roof on the back drop of blue sky and lush green hills look stunning. The centuries old legend of this monastery makes it more mystical. The isolated location of Tiger’s Nest can only be reached by following the gruelling mountain paths. Location: The Tiger’s Nest Monastery is located in Paro, approximately 10 kilometres away from the city. Best time/season: March to May and September to November.Approx Price: N/A Difficulty Level: Moderately challenging.

Punakha Dzong

It is also the second oldest and second largest dzong in Bhutan. It is famous for showcasing the fine craftsmanship of Bhutanese artisans. The location of the dzong offers breathtaking views, especially in the spring season. This is when you can see the bloom of the jacaranda trees, adding a splash of bright purple to the landscape.The dzong also serves as a significant historical and religious centre. It houses many sacred relics of Tibetan Buddhism. It has also played a crucial role in Bhutan's history, serving as the main site of coronations and royal events. This is also where the royal wedding of King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Jetsun Pema took place in 2011. Punakha Dzong's architecture features intricate woodwork, stunning murals, and a series of vast courtyards. These features reveal the depth of Bhutan's spiritual and cultural heritage. Its strategic position and the serene beauty of the valley also make it a must-visit for those touring Bhutan.History Of Punakha DzongConstructed in 1637 by Ngawang Namgyal, Punakha Dzong, known as Pungtang Dechen Phodrang, holds significant historical importance in Bhutan. It served as the seat of government until 1955 and is still the winter residence of the central monastic body. The dzong played a pivotal role in Bhutanese history, hosting the coronation of the first King in 1907. Strategically located at the confluence of the Pho Chhu and Mo Chhu rivers, it facilitated defense against invasions. Despite natural disasters and reconstructions, the dzong retains its grandeur, serving as a cultural and spiritual symbol of Bhutan's rich heritage and tradition.

More Bhutan Attractions

Bhutan travel guides.

Bhutan in October | Weather, What To Pack, & Places to Visit!

Bhutan Reviews

bhutan country tourist places

Popular Nearby Places Around Bhutan

More things to do in bhutan, more on bhutan tourism, popular related destinations.

India

Best Domestic Packages

Best international packages, domestic honeymoon packages, international honeymoon packages, places to visit in india, international places to visit, things to do in india, international things to do, popular on thrillophilia.

  • We assure the privacy of your contact data.
  • This data will only be used by our team to contact you and no other purposes.

Your enquiry has been received successfully. Our destination expert will reach out to you soon!

23 essential things to know before visiting Bhutan

Erin  Levi

Feb 2, 2024 • 15 min read

Two buddhist monks at Punakha Dzong, Bhutan

You'll want to observe proper etiquette at Bhutan's Buddhist sites, such as Punakha Dzong Kateryna Mashkevych / Shutterstock

Perched in the Himalayas between India and China, tiny Bhutan , with cliff-hanging monasteries, golden-roof temples and colorful prayer flags strung along trails and peaks, stands as the last Buddhist kingdom on earth.

Its careful tourism policy has allowed it to slowly open to the outside world without compromising its culture and traditions or degrading its pristine natural environment – two pillars of  Gross National Happiness (GNH), a unique philosophy that guides the government of Bhutan. 

Having traveled extensively in Bhutan on assignment, I’ve come to embrace its diverse seasons and activities, from horse trekking in Bumthang to rafting down the purple-jacaranda-lined Punakha River to learning how to make hoentey (a specialty buckwheat dumpling eaten during Lomba, the New Year) in the semi-remote Haa Valley.

This quick guide navigates Bhutan's cultural landscape, highlighting its local customs and quirks, as you plan your journey to the country known locally as Druk Yul, the Land of the Thunder Dragon. 

1. Independent travel is finally possible, but a tour operator is still the way to go

Since reopening in 2022, Bhutan has scrapped its all-inclusive tour-package minimum, and initially raised the Sustainable Daily Fee (SDF) to US$200 before reducing it to US$100 , valid now through September 2027. There is a 50% discount for kids ages six to 11, with no SDF for those under six. A one-time US$40 visa-application fee  also applies.

Fees are significantly lower for travelers from India, who can visit with a special permit. Indian travelers need to have a passport or voter ID card. Indian Aadhar cards are not accepted. Meanwhile, Bangladeshi and Maldivian nationals are  eligible for visa upon arrival , but must pay the SDF.

The good news is that adventurous travelers planning a trip can now independently book accommodations, guides (mandatory for any journey beyond Thimphu and Paro) and transportation. You can also, for the first time ever, extend your visa while you’re there, and you can even drive your own car – for a fee. 

However, for activities like trekking, attending festivals or engaging in more specialized interests, such as birding, horse trekking or cycling, using a tour operator will undoubtedly enhance your overall experience – and is generally required. Lists of certified tour operators, guides and accommodations, including hotels and homestays, can be found on the official Bhutan Travel website .

A resting area by a pool in Thimphu, Bhutan, on a bright day, with the clouds overhead reflected in the water.

2. Book early for festivals and trekking in the high season

Since reopening, there are no longer incentives for offseason travel, except for occasional hotel deals. This means you may as well time your trip with autumn and spring, when the most famous tsechus (monastic festivals) take place and the leaves change or rhododendrons bloom, respectively. Book far ahead if you’re considering attending a celebration or going trekking.

That said, locals argue that anytime of year is wonderful to visit Bhutan – and that summer and winter are just as wonderful, with plenty of lesser-known festivals. But these seasons are not ideal if you’re planning a multiday trek, due to muddy trails and chilly camping.

Still, the winter holiday season is auspicious, offering crisp air, clear skies and perfect light for photography, with few travelers. Plus, if you go for the December 17 National Day celebrations at Changlimithang Stadium in Thimphu , you may even get the chance to meet the king! 

3. Travel insurance is mandatory 

Per Bhutan’s Tourism Rules and Regulations 2022 , you must have travel insurance that covers accidental death, permanent disability due to accidents, emergency medical evacuation and hospital charges in case of sickness. You’ll need your proof of insurance coverage – in English – in order to apply for your visa. 

If you do find yourself feeling unwell during your trip, consider a visit to Thimphu’s National Institute of Traditional Medicine . A doctor will assess your pulse, temperature and ask about your bowels. In turn, you’ll receive a prescription for ayurvedic medicine crafted from local plants, all at no cost. (A small donation is appreciated.) Another moniker for Bhutan is “Menjong,” which aptly means “Land of Medicinal Herbs.”

Alternatively, head to the nearest hospital or health clinic for treatment geared towards Western medicine. The Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital , also known as the National Referral Hospital, is the biggest in Bhutan and located in Thimphu. 

Close-up of an airplane wing with a full plane in the distance and people on the tarmac at Bhutan International Airport, seen during daytime in winter.

4. Only two airlines fly to Bhutan

Bhutan is served by two national airlines: Drukair and Bhutan Airlines . Because of the challenging landing conditions at Paro International Airport, surrounded by peaks as high as 5500m (18,000ft), only a select few pilots are authorized to fly there.

Direct flights to and from Paro connect you to various destinations, including Bangladesh (Dhaka), India (Bagdogra, Guwahati, Kolkata and New Delhi), Nepal (Kathmandu), Singapore, Thailand (Bangkok) and, from March 2024, the UAE (Sharjah). While Bangkok and Delhi are common entry points, Kathmandu promises the most epic route, with glimpses of Mt Everest on clear days. Request a window seat on the left-hand side when flying to Bhutan. 

Note that it’s not possible to check your luggage through to your final destination, so you’ll have to claim it before boarding your Bhutan connection. 

You can also reach Bhutan overland via India. (Bhutan has border disputes with China. Transit is not possible.) 

5. Bhutan is the world’s first carbon-negative country

Bhutan gained global attention for being the world's first carbon-negative country. Aside from its relatively underpopulated and underdeveloped status (being roughly the same size as Switzerland with only 10% of its population), a key factor in sustaining this achievement is a landmark constitutional mandate requiring the country to maintain a minimum of 60% forest coverage at all times. This is further supported by the environmental conservation pillar of GNH. 

Plastic has also been banned since 1999, though it's not regularly enforced. Nevertheless, do your part to keep the environment clean. There’s plenty of signage to remind you along the way: “Clean & beautiful environment is a feast to the soul,” says one placard en route to the Tiger’s Nest Monastery . 

6. Bhutan is exceptionally safe

Bhutan, a happy and devout Buddhist nation, maintains a low crime rate, with violent crime being scarce. One of the safest countries you’ll ever visit, it’s ranked the 25th-least-corrupt nation out of 180 countries by Transparency International. 

As a single woman, I never felt unsafe on any of my trips to Bhutan. I was also never truly “alone” since I was always under the watchful eye of my guide or local friends. In recent years, the number of female guides has increased, which is more good news for solo women travelers . 

7. Save the hike up to Tiger's Nest for the end

Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS) can occur when travelers are above 2500m (8202ft). Given that the most commonly visited cities Thimphu and Paro are just 200m to 300m below that threshold, and that several treks in the Bhutanese Himalayas traverse mountain passes reaching heights of 5000m, AMS is a risk in Bhutan.

Ascend slowly, take rest days when needed, and if you begin to feel ill, stop. If it's not managed carefully, AMS can develop into life-threatening forms of altitude sickness, so pay close attention to how you're feeling. If your symptoms don’t ease, descend right away. Helicopter rescue is always an option in case of emergency.

Note: Due to the altitude, acclimatization may be necessary. I recommend waiting a few days or until the end of your trip – saving the best for last! – before embarking on the iconic Tiger’s Nest Monastery trek , which ascends about 1000m (3000ft). Make sure to schedule a traditional hot-stone bath afterward as well.

8. Stay current on your vaccinations

No vaccines are required for entry into Bhutan. This includes the COVID-19 jab, although you may need proof of it if you’re traveling via India.

That said, you should stay up-to-date with your vaccines and consult a healthcare professional at least eight weeks before your departure in case you need any boosters. Standard recommendations include vaccinations for hepatitis A and B, diphtheria, tetanus, and typhoid, in addition to childhood vaccinations for measles-mumps-rubella and polio.  

For longer trips, including travelers who are moving to Bhutan, you may wish to consider vaccinations for Japanese encephalitis and rabies. Rabies is particularly noteworthy since friendly animals, like monkeys and dogs, can all transmit the virus, and untreated infection is fatal. If you are bitten by an animal, such as a stray dog, immediately go to the nearest health clinic and get a postexposure prophylaxis shot (you’ll need a total of four). 

9. Pack a few medical essentials

Be wary of mosquito-borne illnesses when visiting in the summer months and in the southern regions. Because of climate change, Bhutan had its first nation-wide dengue epidemic in 2019. Dengue is deadly, and there is no vaccine to protect against it. (Malaria, which can be prevented with drugs, is rare and – fingers crossed – anticipated to be eliminated by 2025 .)

You’ll need sunscreen too. Bhutan's average elevation is 3280m (10,760ft), making it one of the highest countries in the world. It also shares the same latitude as Texas, Egypt and the Bahamas, so the sun is strong. Protect your skin – and your eyes. 

There are no tunnels in Bhutan, which means the mountain roads are windy. You may want to consider bringing Dramamine for car sickness and Diamox for altitude sickness – consult your healthcare provider before you travel to discuss whether they're right for you. Pack your own diapers and tampons, if you use them; you can, however, find menstrual pads in stores and at select hotels and restaurants. And don’t forget earplugs – at night, howling dogs can be disruptive to sleep, especially in downtown Thimphu. 

A top-down view of pan of chilies and cheese, or ema datse, the national dish of Bhutan

10. Bhutanese food is surprisingly delicious – and spicy!

For decades, Bhutanese cuisine suffered in reputation because travelers were mostly exposed to mediocre buffets at their three-star hotels, featuring Indian, Chinese and continental dishes tailored precisely to their palates.

Thankfully, those buffets are slowly being phased out. The local cuisine, emphasizing fresh and seasonal ingredients, is on the up and up and proving to be extremely tasty, if you know where to go. Ask your tour operator or guide for recommendations. 

And while Bhutanese cuisine is defined by hot chili peppers, such as with ema datse (chilies with cheese) and kewa datse  (potatoes, chilies and cheese), dishes can be modified according to your taste if requested in advance. Still, you may need antacids. 

11. Don’t drink the tap water

Tap water isn’t safe to drink in Bhutan unless it has been boiled or purified. Ask your hotel or guesthouse for boiled water, or purchase bottled water to have on your person. 

Do, however, drink the local whiskey and lager (Bhutan has a flourishing craft-beer scene). 

12. Learn local etiquette

“ Kuzu zangpo la ” means “hello” in Dzongkha, a Sino-Tibetan language and the national language of Bhutan, most commonly spoken in the western part of the country. Recite this while bowing (shaking hands is less common). The deeper the bow, the greater the respect. 

Aside from Dzongkha (and the many other local languages and dialects), English is widely spoken because it is the language of instruction in schools. When Bhutanese converse in English, it is common to hear the word “la” at the end of a sentence or question as a sign of respect; for example, “Thank you, la.” Feel free to reciprocate. 

If you find yourself invited into someone’s home and offered food, tradition dictates that you say the words “ meshu meshu”  while covering your mouth with your hands. After two or three offers, it is customary to accept. Similarly, if you are the one making an offer, or even giving a gift or tip, expect similar resistance. (Do consider giving a small tip if someone has invited you into their home and served you food or arra, a local spirit distilled from rice.)

13. Tipping is appreciated (but not mandatory) 

Even if you’ve paid in advance for your all-inclusive trip, show appreciation to your guide and driver by tipping them at the end. On a trek, extend this gesture to the crew – ie the cook, any helpers and the horsemen. While 10–15% is normal, the amount and currency are up to you. 

Tipping is not necessary at restaurants and hotels. A 10% service charge is already added to your bill when you dine out. 

14. Bhutan has nightlife

While most people are drawn to Bhutan for its serene landscapes, peaceful Buddhist monasteries and imposing fortresses ( dzongs ) such as  Punakha Dzong , the country is hiding a buzzing nightlife and music scene that is equally worth exploring. 

Thimphu's nightlife centers around Chang Lam near the stadium, featuring diverse options like the Zone (a popular bar hangout), Mojo Park (a fantastic music venue, where the band Misty Terrace got its start), the Grey Area (Bhutan’s first gastropub) and nightclubs Space 34 and Viva City, which are open to the wee hours.

Note:  Bhutan has ended dry Tuesdays and bars ars are now open throughout the week. 

15. It is finally legal to smoke in Bhutan, but be discreet

Bhutan was long known for its drastic yet visionary health law that forbade smoking and the trade of tobacco products. While the law was recently reversed, smoking must be done “out of sight,” ie behind buildings. The same goes for vaping.

Despite cannabis growing prolifically throughout the country, it remains illegal. Possession can land you in jail for up to one year. The only “drugs” produced in the country are traditional medicines. 

Note: While vaping products are sold in a few places in Thimphu, they’re not widely available. It’s advisable to bring your own. 

16. Keep an open mind

Whether it’s migoi  (yeti) sightings in Bhutan’s wild east, the significance of phalluses as symbols of protection or the flying tiger bringing Guru Rinpoche to the cave where the gravity-defying Tiger’s Nest Monastery now stands, folktales, myths and legends are an integral part of Bhutan’s culture and national pride – and believed to be true.

Approach Bhutan with an open mind. Westerners may find it challenging to suspend logic and reason, but be kind when pushing back, and consider setting aside your own preconceptions. Do as the new tourism tagline says: Believe. 

17. Pack layers

You’ll want layers for fluctuating temperatures and varying terrains, and modest clothing for entering temples and monasteries, including socks for cold temple floors. Aside from a good pair of hiking boots, bring a nicer shoe to wear with a gho  or kira  (Bhutanese national dress for men and women, respectively), should you decide to buy an outfit  – highly recommended if you’re attending a festival or meeting with a dignitary. For inspiration, follow Bhutan Street Fashion on Instagram or Facebook.

18. Carry small change

Cash is necessary for buying souvenirs, leaving small donations at monasteries, nunneries and temples (particularly if you’d like a blessing from a monk), and giving tips to your guide, driver and trekking crew, as mentioned earlier. 

If you’re an independent traveler, you’ll want to have small bills on hand to pay for entrance fees to sites and museums. Few – as in almost zero – businesses accept credit cards.

19. Stay connected

SIM cards used to be challenging to obtain, but now you can easily get them upon arrival at Paro International Airport. You can also rent a pocket Wi-Fi device there – useful if you’re planning to visit remote regions and need to be online. 

20. Bring cash and download these apps

It’s easier to bring your own money (make sure the bills are crisp) rather than rely on and seek out ATM machines in the country. The official currency in Bhutan is the ngultrum, which is pegged 1:1 to the Indian rupee. Do exchange at a bank or hotel so that you can have some small ngultrum notes for butter-lamp offerings and such. 

Most Bhutanese businesses accept cash or payments through either goBoB or the  BNB MyPay app . Foreign visitors can activate the app by downloading it from Google Play or Apple's App Store, inserting a local SIM purchased at the airport and funding the digital wallet with their credit or debit card. While goBoB is more popular among locals, some tour operators argue MyPay is better for foreigners because it is linked to more international card networks and is powered by Stripe.

A woman and three young children spinning a prayer wheel at the Tibetan-style National Memorial Chorten, one of the most visible religious structures in Thimphu.

21. Spin prayer wheels clockwise, and other temple tips

When visiting Buddhist monasteries, nunneries and temples, observe proper etiquette: remove shoes and hats, wear clothing that covers your shoulders and knees, refrain from photography in altar rooms, avoid pointing, never lean against a stupa and consider leaving a small donation on the altar or with a monk. If seeking a blessing, it's customary to offer a small donation.

Be it in a car or on foot, circumambulation of a Buddhist temple or shrine, such as a stupa or chorten, must always be clockwise. To go counterclockwise, whether it’s out of ignorance or on purpose, is seen as offensive, culturally insensitive and unlucky. Similarly, prayer wheels, which help purify karma, should be spun in a clockwise direction. 

22. Don’t bargain hard

Unlike some other places in Asia, like India or Vietnam, where you’re expected to haggle, Bhutan’s market scene is a lot more straightforward. You typically pay the price that’s listed – aggressive negotiating tactics are a foreign concept. 

That said, be prepared to spend a pretty penny if you plan to shop. Your eyes will be undoubtedly drawn to abundantly colorful textiles crafted from natural fibers, like silk and cotton. These can take months to assemble, and the prices – which can top four figures – reflect the meticulous work and cultural richness woven into each piece, often done by women.

Note: Geometric yathras , textiles made of yak wool and commonly found in central Bhutan’s Bumthang region, are more budget-friendly.) 

23. Consult the lunar calendar

The Bhutanese calendar is based on Tibet's, which follows the lunar calendar. Buddhist festivals, like tsechus, follow the lunar calendar, meaning the dates change from year to year. There are other cultural festivals, like Bhutan National Day and the Black Necked Crane Festival in Phobjikha Valley, that follow the Gregorian calendar and therefore stay the same.

Explore related stories

bhutan country tourist places

Budget Travel

Jan 28, 2024 • 7 min read

These top tips along with a guide to daily costs can help you plan your budget for a visit to Bhutan.

bhutan country tourist places

Jan 17, 2024 • 6 min read

Young adult woman in black swimsuit walking into sea between rocks cliff in Croatia

Jan 17, 2024 • 8 min read

A person in traditional dress dancing at the Paro Tsechu festival, Bhutan

Jan 16, 2024 • 5 min read

bhutan country tourist places

Jan 2, 2024 • 8 min read

Tiger's Nest in Bhutan vs Katmandu

Dec 20, 2023 • 7 min read

bhutan country tourist places

Oct 15, 2023 • 3 min read

Tachog Lhakhang Iron Chain Bridge with colourful prayer flags on each side of bridge. River crossing. Himalaya mountains in the background.Between Paro and Thimphu Bhutan

Aug 31, 2023 • 11 min read

bhutan country tourist places

Feb 22, 2023 • 4 min read

A female tourist has taken a photo of an elderly Bhutanese woman and is now showing the woman that photo on the screen on the back of the camera near Dranjo Goemba - buddhist monastery and school in the uper Paro Valley

Sep 26, 2022 • 10 min read

The Boutique Adventurer: Luxury Adventure Travel Blog focussed on Emerging Destinations for those over 35

27 Best Tourist Places in Bhutan and Things to Do

By: Author Amanda OBrien

Posted on Last updated: 16/02/2024

Beautiful Bhutan was everything I hoped for and more. This small, landlocked Asian country only opened to tourists in 1974. Since then, it has become known for its gross national happiness ethos, its tourist tax and having had a King who allowed the country to become a democracy.

This is a very mountainous country, so most towns are located in valleys with temples and monasteries on the sides of the mountains around them. The country is covered in green (72% of Bhutan is forest) and home to some stunning views from those high mountains.

In addition to its spectacular natural beauty, there are also lots of fantastic tourist places in Bhutan that can be visited. Here are 27 of the most see places in Bhutan and things to do in Bhutan.

27 Tourist Places in Bhutan and Things to do

1. have a meal on a farm.

There is nothing like having a meal at a local’s home to give visitors a sense of a country’s culture and way of life. Our tour company, MyBhutan, organised a visit to Aum Deki’s farm just outside Paro. This allowed us to see the inside of a typical Bhutanese home and experience typical Bhutanese cooking.

Paro - Aum Deki Farm house tourist places in Bhutan

Aunty Deki served us a mix of local vegetables prepared in a typical Bhutanese style. The Bhutanese love their chili and use it liberally. It is considered to be a vegetable rather than a spice or flavouring.

Paro - Aum Deki Farm house chili cheese

The most popular dish in Bhutan is Ema Datshi or chili cheese. This simple dish consists of split chilies, onions, garlic, tomato and yak cheese. We also enjoyed more local vegetables, including spinach, potatoes, rice and meat, all washed down with local tea.

Paro - Aum Deki Farm house lunch

2. National Museum of Bhutan

This cultural museum opened in Paro in 1968. The museum is home to over 3,000 Bhutanese works of art and covers 1500 years of Bhutanese history. A “new” version of the museum is housed in Ta Dzong, a stunning round building. There are some great views over Paro.

National Museum of Bhutan

The “new” museum provides a great introduction to Buddhism for visitors. It covers the eight different incarnations of Buddha, the masks that are so critical to Bhutanese dancing and festivals and general beliefs of the religion. It is not possible to take photos inside the museum.

National Museum of Bhutan prayer wheels

Once you’ve explored this stunning building (don’t miss the beautiful prayer wheels out the front), head up to the “old” museum, which sits behind Ta Dzong. Here we learned about Bhutanese festivals through exhibitions and a great video.

National Museum of Bhutan

3. National Weaving Centre

The National Weaving Centre is a great place to begin learning about Bhutan’s weaving industry and its importance in the country’s national dress. Based on my trip, over half of the Bhutanese population choose to wear the national dress. I can see why, as they are very flattering and quite beautiful.

weaving centre.materials

The kira is the national dress for women and the gho is the same for men. Many of these outfits are made by hand and can take up to a year to create. The National Weaving Centre has several women working on the actual kilns creating these detailed fabrics.

weaving centre. woman working

This is also a great place to do some shopping. Of everywhere I visited in Bhutan, the National Weaving Centre had some of the most attractive scarves, fabrics, purses and all other weaving-based souvenirs. They also sell the rather fabulous Bhutanese boots.

weaving centre boots

4. National Memorial Chorten

Located in Thimpu and also known as the Thimpu Chorten this stupa was built in 1974. It is known as one of the most visible religious landmarks in Bhutan and it is busy! Visitors will see some beautiful golden prayer wheels as they pass through the entrance.

national memorial chorten view

Straight ahead is a Princess Diana at the Taj Mahal type bench, which is perfect for photos. Next up, join the people who are walking clockwise around the stupa. In Bhutan, walking around a stupa is often a kind of mindfulness activity. This stupa is quite popular with senior citizens.

national memorial chorten prayer wheel

It is possible to go inside the stupa, but no photos can be taken (photos cannot be taken inside temples in Bhutan). To the left of the stupa is a lovely traditional Bhutanese building that is home to many butter lamps. For a small offering, visitors can have one lit for them.

national memorial chorten lamps

5. The Golden Buddha

Just outside Thimpu city, the Golden Buddha can be seen from many points in the valley. He is a big buddha and sits atop a mountain. Enter this Bhutan tourist attraction either at the same level as the Golden Buddha to the side or head up the large flight of stairs.

golden buddha

The Golden Buddha sits on a golden temple that features some impressive animal decorations on each side. It is possible to go inside the temple, and visitors can meditate there. There are also some great views over Thimpu.

golden buddha stairs

6. Watch the traffic being directed

There are no traffic lights in Bhutan. Instead, in Bhutan’s only city Thimpu, one busy roundabout has a man at its centre literally directing traffic. He wears a very smart hat and coat and his gloved hands direct the traffic as if conducting an orchestra.

thimpu traffic

7. Plant a Tree in the World’s First Carbon Neutral country

Did you know that Bhutan was the world’s first carbon-neutral country? This is a country that lives and breathes sustainability. One of the activities planned and organized for us by our tour company MhBhutan was planting a tree near Thimpu. We had a short walk through a beautiful green valley dotted with prayer flags.

thimpu tree planting

When we reached a small river, our guides handed us our trees and we trowled the earth and planted our own trees. This was a lovely experience which I would highly recommend.

thimpu tree planting

8. Takin Preserve

A short walk further up the mountain from where we planted our trees was Takin Preserve. The takin is the national animal of Bhutan. It has a thick neck and short, muscular legs and is found in areas over 4000 metres in Bhutan.

takin preserve wild boar

The Takin Preserve is not at 4,000 metres but it is home to some takin, allowing visitors to see the national animal without heading up quite so high. The Preserve also has local deer and wild boar.

takin preserve takins

Alas, when we visited the takin seemed to be napping, so we only saw some from a distance. Luckily there was a large statue of the takin near the entrance, so we got a sense of what it is like.

9. Tiger’s Nest Monastery

Tiger’s Nest Monastery or Paro Taktsang is the most popular of the Bhutan tourist attractions and a UNESCO-listed site. It is believed that Padmasambhava (Guru  Rinpoche or the second Buddha) flew to this location from Tibet on the back of a tiger in the 8th century. He anointed the location as a site for a monastery. From the 11th century, Tibetan saints and other major figures visited Tiger’s Nest to meditate.

tigers nest

The first monastery was built at the location in 1692. In April 1998, it is believed that butter lamps in the monastery caused a major fire. The majority of the monastery was destroyed. Restorations took place between 1998 and 2005. Bhutanese people from all over the country traveled to help with the restoration. It reopened to the public in 2005.

tigers nest

Tiger’s Nest is located about ten miles south of Paro and can only be reached on foot (or partially on horseback). For a person of reasonable fitness without health issues, the trek takes about 4-5 hours including time spent inside the monastery and comfort stops.

tigers nest

I have written an entire article about Tiger’s Nest Monastery that contains lots of detail about the trek.

10. The Temple of Fertility/Chimi Lhakhang

The Temple of Fertility is the most famous temple in Bhutan. It also has one of the best stories of how it came into existence.

fertility temple

In the 14th century Lam Drukpa Kuenley, or the Divine Madman, brought his unconventional methods for teaching Buddhism from Tibet to Bhutan. He believed that he had a supernatural phallus and this was his way of “spreading” his word.

fertility temple

When he was in the Punakha Valley, locals were afraid of a demon that was said to sit on the top of the Dochula Pass at night. The demon would kill anyone who tried to pass at night. The Divine Madman went up to the pass one evening and used his supernatural phallus to emit fire, killing the demon.

fertility temple

The people of Punakha were so thrilled they decided to build a temple dedicated to the Divine Madman in 1499. Today, the temple still houses the wooden phallus he brought from Tibet. Couples who are trying to get pregnant come from all over the world to visit the temple and be blessed by the wooden phallus. Some couples even spend the night in the temple.

phalluses

Little Sopsokha Village is below the Temple of Fertility. It is home to a number of handicraft shops that sell an extensive range of phalluses in every size, shape and design you could imagine. This provides the opportunity for a unique souvenir from Bhutan.

phalluses

11. The Textile Museum

If I’m honest, normally, I would not be interested in visiting a textile museum or really textiles in any form or function. However, in Bhutan, textiles and particularly the clothing they produce tell visitors so much about the culture. Plus, the information is communicated interestingly and linked to understanding the culture better.

textile museum

The Textile Museum in Thimpu is a great example. Built in 2001, the museum showcases the many costumes of the different regions of Bhutan. The costumes tell visitors a lot about life in the different regions of Bhutan, particularly those that are far away.

textile museum

Photos are not allowed inside the museum but don’t miss the amazing floor-to-ceiling tapestry when you walk in.

12. Try Bhutanese espresso

I do enjoy reading an inflight magazine, particularly for a unique country like Bhutan. In the magazine, on my Druk air flight, I read about the Mountain Cafe. This small chain of coffee shops was opened by a Bhutanese man who visited the United States and researched the specialty coffee segment. I visited a Mountain Cafe in Thimpu and am pleased to report it is a good place to get specialty-style coffee.

mountain cafe

I also visited the Ambient Cafe in Thimpu, which had great coffee and a more Western-style brunch/lunch menu if you fancy a break from chili cheese. They also make some great juices.

ambient cafe

13. Watch the locals play archery

Archery was declared the national sport of Bhutan in 1971. As you drive around Bhutan it is possible to see many people (mostly men) in their Ghos playing the national support. On the Sunday I was in Bhutan we came across a group of men playing archery by the side of the road. It is great fun to watch as the sides cheer and jeer each other on. And don’t miss the wonderful dance that happens when someone hits the target!

archery

14. Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten

Said to be the most beautiful temple in Bhutan, Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten was built by the Queen Mother of Bhutan in 2004. Whilst it may be younger than many of the other temples in Bhutan, it was built in strict accordance with traditional styles over a nine-year period.

khamsum yulley namgyal chorten entrance

The temple is very beautiful and quite peaceful. Visitors can head inside and climb up quite a few stairs to get to the watchtower, which has extraordinary views over Punakha.

khamsum yulley namgyal chorten

Almost as lovely as the temple itself is the 30-minute trek needed to visit. After crossing the Mo Chhu river on a suspension bridge lined with prayer flags, the walk takes visitors through rice fields and very green paths. When I visited at the end of November the path was lined with red poinsettias.

punakha trek

15. River Rafting on Mo Chhu

Another surprise in Bhutan is that it is possible to go river rafting. The scale and danger level of the rafting will depend on what time of year you choose to visit. When I visited in November the Mo Chhu river was quite calm and we only had a few bumps (although I got quite wet!).

rafting

I enjoyed gaining a perspective of Punakha from the water and there were a couple of little beaches where we stopped on the way. Along the Mo Chhu river rafts can take visitors to just before Punakha Dzong. It is not possible to go all the way to the fortress.

rafting

16. Attend a Festival or see locals Dancing

Similar to my view on textiles, I tend to avoid local theatres and dancing. However, to do so in Bhutan would be a mistake as festivals and dances are so intrinsic to the Bhutanese culture. Bhutan loves festivals and there are many each year (May and October are the most popular months for festivals).

fertility temple

Festivals tend to run for several days and everyone comes out in their best and brightest outfits with a packed lunch. The dances all tell stories and act out the beliefs of the Buddhist religion. It is said that watching the dances will teach the audience lessons that will cleanse their spirits and could leave them feeling happier.

comfort camp dancing

Festivals are a key element of the Bhutanese Gross National Happiness philosophy. They are more than entertainment. They are almost like having a spiritual treatment, for lack of a better term. I wasn’t able to attend a festival when I visited Bhutan, but MyBhutan organized for local dancers to come to our comfort camp one evening and perform some traditional dances for us.

comfort camp dancing

17. Bhutanese Whiskey tasting

Who knew that the Bhutanese make good whiskey? Bhutan makes its own whiskey from grain spirit and also imports some malt from Scotland. The most famous whiskey in Bhutan is the K5. It was produced in 2008 to mark the coronation of the current king. I also tried some Bhutanese cognac which was my favourite.

Bhutanese whiskey tasting

18. Try Archery

I thought I would be very bad at archery. But it turned out to be much easier, and more fun, than I thought. MyBhutan was kind enough to set the target quite close to where I was standing so I could feel good about my efforts!

comfort camp archery

The instructions were brief and then I pulled back the bow and let the arrow fly. I didn’t hit the target but my arrows did carry quite far. Don’t leave Bhutan without trying the national sport at least once.

17. Get your own stamps

The post office in Thimpu has its own postal museum. In all honesty, the museum isn’t much, but at the museum, it is possible to get your own Bhutanese stamps produced. We borrowed a Bhutanese-style jacket from a nearby souvenir store and got a photo which was then turned it a stamp.

bhutan postal musem

This marked the first time I have purchased post cards in some time – I had to send something with my own stamps!

bhutan stamps

18. Learn how to make Bhutanese food

One of the highlights of my trip to Bhutan was a cooking class with the amazing Kesang Choeden. Kesang runs a restaurant at the Folk Heritage Museum in Thimpu and runs a popular cooking school. She has somewhat single handedly kept Bhutanese traditional cuisine alive.

cooking class 2

When Bhutan first opened to tourism in the 1970s, the government sent some of the country’s chefs to China and Italy to learn dishes that would be popular with foreigners. The first Lonely Planet Bhutan wasn’t positive about the results. This was when Kesang decided to start collecting Bhutanese recipes and change the perceptions of the quality of the food in Bhutan.

cooking class ingredients

Today she runs a popular restaurant that produces traditional Bhutanese meals (some of which are generally only served in people’s homes), a cooking school and a store in Thimpu.

thimpu food shop

Kesang explained the vegetables that are unique to Bhutan and those that came over when the roads opened in the 1960s. (All meat and fish in Bhutan are imported). Kesang even convinced farmers to start growing traditional foods like millet again.

chilis

I expected Bhutanese food to be similar to Indian or Chinese. However, if anything, it is more like southeast Asian food with an Indian-level passion for chili. In Bhutanese cooking, most items are first boiled and then flavors such as garlic and ginger are added.

cooking class lunch

Kesang made a huge delicious feast for us, which was very memorable. We also visited her store in Thimpu. If you are keen to take home some Bhutanese chili or anything else food related to Bhutan, this is the place to make your purchase.

cooking class eating

If you’re a foodie, this is a don’t miss it experience in Bhutan.

folk restaurant

19. Folk Heritage Museum

The Folk Heritage Museum in Thimpu is housed in a three-story 19th century house and is one of the last homes of its type in Thimpu. It aims to connect visitors with Bhutan’s folk heritage. The house is decorated as if it were 150 years old.

folk heritage museum

The entrance is flanked by a giant wooden phallus and dried chilis. The ground floor is where tools are kept and cows if owned by the family. The first floor is filled with utensils. The top floor is a big kitchen area and then there is a small separate room for an altar.

There were no bedrooms in homes in Bhutan at this time. The entire family would sleep in the kitchen area, which was typically quite warm.

20. Eat dumplings with the locals

After chili cheese, dumplings are one of the most popular meals in Bhutan. One of the best places to eat dumplings is the Zombala restaurant in Thimpu. You’ll be surrounded by locals as you dig into some delicious dumplings. Do bring some mints with you, as the dumpling flavors are strong.

thimpu dumplings

21. Go Shopping

Some of the best souvenirs to bring back from Bhutan are some of its stunning handicrafts. I already mentioned the National Weaving Centre. The second place where I bought souvenirs was Kelzang handicrafts in Thimpu.

Kelzang handicrafts have a great range of products and designs and their English is excellent. And when Princess Kate visited Bhutan, this is where she sourced her Bhutanese outfit!

22. Learn about Gross National Happiness

The concept or philosophy of Gross National Happiness is synonymous with Bhutan. But what does it actually mean? How is it enacted? I was keen to learn this while visiting Bhutan.

There are four elements to Gross National Happiness:

  • Good government
  • Preservation and sustainable environment
  • Cultural Preservation
  • Economic Development

The GNH policy department of the government does a survey of the Bhutanese population every three years to monitor their happiness levels. Festivals are a critical part of Gross National Happiness. Not only do they offer a spiritual cleanse and learning for the population, but the King has also set up festivals in less visited areas like the Highlands to bring them tourism and exposure.

GNH NGO

We met with an NGO in Bhutan that runs GNH programs in Bhutan’s schools. They bring the concept of a GNH club into the school and help students get it up and running. The students can then choose which areas they would like to focus on and then develop their own programs eg, bullying or teen suicide.

If you’re keen to learn more about GNH when you’re in Bhutan, MyBhutan can organise a visit to an NGO.

23. Paro Fortress

Paro Fortress or Rinpung Dzong, sits on the banks of the Paro river. This fortress and monastery contains fourteen shrines and is considered one of the finest examples of Bhutanese architecture.

The fortress can trace its origins to a small temple in the 15th century. In 1646 the dzong was reconsecrated and established as the monastic and administrative center of Western Bhutan. It is still home to the government office of Paro and the monastic body. It is possible to visit some areas within the fortress but photography is prohibited.

paro fortress

Paro Fortress is one of several sites on Bhutan’s tentative list for UNESCO listing. Plus, some of the scenes in the 1993 film Little Buddha were filmed at the fortress.

24. Try out the National Dress

I love trying on the national dress in a country. Several souvenir stores in Bhutan allow visitors to rent a kira or a gho and be photographed against a major tourist attraction. I rented mine across the road from Paro fortress.

paro fortress

25. Punakha Fortress/Dzong

Punakha Fortress/Dzong is the second oldest and second largest Dzong in Bhutan. It is one of the most impressive buildings in Bhutan. It was constructed by Ngawang Namgyal in 1637-8. It contains Namgyal’s sacred remains and was the seat of government until Thimpu became the capital in 1955. It is also on Bhutan’s tentative list for UNESCO and is known as the Palace of Great Happiness.

punakha dzong entrance

The Dzong is huge and still very active today. Many monks decide to head for much warmer Punakha for the winter and it also has government offices. The fortress is used for many government activities and celebrations.

punakha dzong main temple

The temple at Punakha Fortress is said to be the most ornate and beautiful in Bhutan and it is extremely impressive. It contains 1000 paintings of the buddhas plus statues of the masters. As you exit the temple, there is a secret temple to your right that can only be entered by the head monk and the King himself. It is said to be where Namgyal’s remains are kept.

punakha dzong

26. Dochula Pass

Dochula Pass is home to perhaps the most jaw-dropping view in Bhutan. This mountain pass (3,100 metres) on the road between Thimpu and Punakha provides a view of all seven of Bhutan’s mountains on a clear day.

Dochula Pass view

It is also home to the 108 stupas. The stupas were built by Queen Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuk to honour the Bhutanese soldiers who were killed in the December 2003 battle against Assamese insurgents from India.

Dochula Pass stupas

27. Paro airport and the flight in and out

Did you know that only ten pilots worldwide are licensed to fly in and out of Paro airport? Bhutan is a very mountainous country, so it isn’t easy to find flat land long enough to land a plane near one of its major cities.

bhutan airport

The landing strip at Paro airport sits at the bottom of a valley and is surrounded by mountains on all sides. This means the plane needs to come down very steeply and then flatten out to land on a relatively short airstrip.

bhutan airport plane

The airport itself is extremely cute. It has been painted in the traditional Bhutanese decorative style and feels like it should be a tourist attraction. Even the luggage carousel is cute.

bhutan airport luggage

And as if that isn’t enough, if you fly in or out of Delhi, you will be treated to some amazing views of the Himalayas, including Mount Everest, on your journey. Make sure you sit towards the front of the plane on the left from Delhi to Paro and then on the right when flying out of Paro for the best views.

himalayas

Where to Stay in Bhutan

Bhutan spirit sanctuary hotel – paro.

Bhutan Spirit Sanctuary Hotel is the first and only 5-star traditional spa resort in Bhutan. The hotel is laid out in a traditional Bhutanese style. Entering the hotel feels as much like arriving at a high-end monastery as it does a boutique hotel.

spirit sanctuary entrance

Get ready to drop your jaw when you enter the main building and see the two-story floor to ceiling windows of the Neyphu Valley. We were also invited to light butter lamps and choose our own locally-made soap for our stay.

spirit sanctuary windows

My terrace room was huge at 54 square meters plus an 8 square meter terrace. The rooms are simply designed with wooden floors, white walls, and wooden beams on the white ceilings. My massive bed was homed in a traditional Bhutanese structure, and I had a living area with a coach, coffee table, armchair, and table with two chairs. A small wardrobe to the side of the room took care of my case.

spirit sanctuary bedroom

The bathroom had two sinks, a deep tub, a walk-in shower and a walk-in toilet. The floors were heated, and bathrobes were provided. In addition to the usual toiletries, Bhutan Spirit Sanctuary provides a toothbrush and toothpaste pills (just add water) for guests.

spirit sanctuary bedroom

All rooms have coffee and tea facilities, including a large range of herbal teas. We also received some wonderful chocolates and a copy of the book, which was part of the inspiration for Bhutan Spirit Sanctuary, The Restful Mind by Gyalwa Dokhampa.

spirit sanctuary terrace

Dinner was a six-course farm-to-table in the lovely restaurant. We began with a quirky nachos amuse bouche followed by pumpkin soup. Grilled vegetables were next, and then a single ravioli. The dessert was a creamy custard tart. We washed all of this down with some Bhutanese wine, a cabernet sauvignon from Raven.

spirit sanctuary dessert

Breakfast the next morning was just as good. We received homemade pastries, bread, local cheeses and and fruit. A selection of “main” breakfast dishes are then available, from yogurt and granola to pancakes to porridge and more. I enjoyed a cheese and vegetable omelet.

spirit sanctuary pool

All hotel guests can make use of the spa. The heated indoor swimming pool is huge and has floor-to-ceiling windows. There are two saunas, one steam room, and two jacuzzis. Free yoga and meditation classes are available and there is a fitness center.

The spa has six treatment rooms. A consultation with an in-house traditional medicine doctor is included in the room rate for all guests. The doctor can then advise you on the best treatments to suit whatever is ailing you. I had two fantastic massages at Bhutan Spirit Sanctuary that worked miracles on my tight neck and shoulders.

spirit sanctuary treatment room

After trekking to Tiger’s Nest Monastery I tried out a traditional Bhutanese hot stone bath at Bhutan Spirit Sanctuary. These baths are regularly taken by Bhutanese people throughout the year but particularly in the winter. The stones are heated and then placed in a bath to heat them. It is believed that the stones contain valuable minerals that are transferred into the water and then into the guest!

spirit sanctuary hot stone bath

I needed to add some cold water to my hot stone bath before I was brave enough to immerse myself. But wow once I did, it felt amazing!!! I managed to stay in the hot stone bath for only 10 minutes (one hour is recommended). However, the combination of my post-trek hot stone bath and massage meant that my muscles were virtually pain-free the day after the trek to Tiger’s Nest.

Zhiwaling Ascent – Thimpu

Zhiwaling Ascent is located just outside Thimpu near the Royal Takin Preserve. Its design is very simple but beautiful. The hotel makes the most of its beautiful green location with floor-to-ceiling windows on the ground floor, large windows in the room and a stunning open-air attic with 360-degree views.

zhiwaling ascent entrance

The rooms are big, open, and airy, with polished wooden floorboards and lots of windows. The interior design is very simple, with lots of white with rich embroidered rugs. The room has been designed to focus your eye on the beautiful cypress trees outside with a small table and chairs and a lovely window seat.

zhiwaling ascent bedroom

The rooms also have coffee and tea-making facilities and a big-screen tv. The bathroom is big and lined with small pale grey tiles. There is a large bathtub with a shower.

zhiwaling ascent bedroom

Dinner consisted of four courses which included a choice of main. We began with lentil soup, followed by a melon salad with watercress, pomegranate, bacon and sherry vinegar. I had the grilled strip loin as my main course with beet puree, potatoes, steamed broccoli, carrots and beef jus.

zhiwaling ascent meat

The dessert was a banana cake with vanilla ice cream. Zhiwaling Ascent also has a nice wine list with some reasonably priced good international wines.

zhiwaling ascent outside

I enjoyed dinner at Zhiwaling Ascent, but I loved breakfast! We could sit outside and feel like we were eating in a forest. Breakfast began with banana bread, a muffin, and a croissant with a selection of preserves. We had the choice of four juice as well a coffee or tea. Multiple hot breakfast options were available. I chose the eggs florentine, which I very much enjoyed.

zhiwaling ascent breakfast

There is a second Zhiwaling Ascent hotel in Paro, which is supposed to be fantastic.

Dhumra Farm Resort – Punakha

Get ready for a very windy, very basic road that will make you extra glad you have a driver in Bhutan when you head to the lovely Dhumra Farm Resort. When you arrive, you will see that the road was worth it as the views over Punakha, particularly Punakha Dzong, are breathtaking.

dhumra farm resort entrance

This small resort is run by local people who also own Dhumra farm. Although the website says it is a 3-star hotel, it felt more like a 4-star. My room was very simply decorated but had a wonderful wooden floor and ceiling. There is a lot of wood at Dhumra resort which gives it a slight ski lodge feel. This is softened through colorful rugs.

dhumra farm resort

My room and its bathroom were both huge. I could have fitted two standard-sized rooms in. The room has many windows, and a window seat, as well as a chair and table, lined up next to one of the windows. Of everywhere I stayed in Bhutan this felt most like staying at someone’s home.

dhumra farm resort dinner

The property itself is beautiful, with small paths and lovely fauna. We had a tasty dinner at Dhumra, all sourced from the farm, and they had wine! A fire pit had been lit for us outside, and we were able to enjoy stunning night views of Punakha Dzong.

dhumra farm resort view

The highlight of my stay at Dhumra Farm Resort was breakfast. We couldn’t resist checking out the view first thing and oh my it was spectacular. Just the right amount of fog/cloud to create some ambiance against the beautiful Punakha Dzong. And Dhumra served us a delicious breakfast outside so we could enjoy the view. This was one of the highlights of my visit to Bhutan.

dhumra farm resort breakfast

MyBhutan Comfort Camp

MyBhutan offers a unique glamping experience with its Comfort Camp. The location regularly changes depending on the weather and the itinerary. We experienced our comfort camp not far from Thimpu. Each sleeping tent had its own proper bed and bedside table with electricity and a bedside table and lamp. I was able to stand in my tent which is always a key glamping test for me.

comfort camp tents

The comfort camp allowed us to experience some different elements of Bhutan. We were able to try out archery, and I am delighted to say that I was much better than I expected. This was followed by traditional dancing while we sat by the fire, followed by a Bhutanese whiskey tasting. Dinner was a tasty dish of vegetables and rice.

comfort camp dancing

The camp has toilet tents for your convenience but of course no further bathroom facilities. In the morning, we were taken from the comfort camp to Zhiwaling Ascent, where an early check-in had been organized so we could use the shower facilities.

comfort camp tent

How to Travel around Bhutan

There is quite a bit of conflicting information online regarding the “rules” around visiting Bhutan. The key reason is that major changes have happened to Bhutan’s tourism policy since Covid. I will try to break down the key points visitors need to know.

thimpu tree planting prayer flags

In the past, most visitors to Bhutan paid a $USD65 “tourism tax” for each day of their stay in Bhutan. This also covered basic services such as a 3-star hotel. To stay in, say a 5-star hotel, visitors would have to pay to upgrade. Neighboring countries tended to pay a lower tax or none at all. Independent travel was not allowed.

thimpu buildings

Since covid 19, the Bhutanese Government has introduced a new SDF or sustainable development fee of USD$200 a day. This must be paid by all visitors to Bhutan and does not cover any services eg visitors pay the SDF in addition to all of their other costs, such as accommodation, guides, food etc. The purpose of the new SDF is to fund local programs and prevent over-tourism.

weaving centre souvenirs

Independent travel to Bhutan is now allowed. However, if you want to visit tourist attractions, go trekking, or explore outside Paro and Thimpu, a guide will be required. Also, the roads in Bhutan are of varying quality and can be very tricky due to the country’s mountainous terrain. I would absolutely recommend having a driver rather than doing your own driving.

golden buddha

A visa and travel insurance are required to visit Bhutan.

I traveled to Bhutan with the wonderful MyBhutan. MyBhutan is run by an American, Matt, who spends a good deal of time in Bhutan and locals staff the company. We had a guide and a driver for our entire stay. As I have already mentioned, I would not want to drive in Bhutan.

fertility temple

MyBhutan put together our itinerary and booked everything. We were able to review the itinerary ahead of the trip and provide feedback for changes, as well as ask questions on everything from the quality of the accommodation to the difficulty of the hikes. I have an allergy to spicy food. MyBhutan ensured that everywhere we ate was aware of my allergy and nothing spicy appeared on my plate.

punakha dzong bodhi tree

MyBhutan did cover part of the cost of my trip to Bhutan. However, I only recommend organisations with whom I have worked that offer excellent services at fair prices and I highly recommend using MyBhutan for your trip to Bhutan.

When you book your trip with MyBhutan use the code BOUTIQUE and you’ll receive a free hot stone bath with your booking.

How to Travel to Bhutan

Fewer than ten pilots worldwide are licensed to fly in and out of Paro Airport. There are only two airlines that fly to Bhutan, Drukair and Bhutan Airlines . These airlines operate from Bangkok, Kathmandu and five cities in India (New Delhi, Kolkata, Guwahati, Gaya, and Bagdogra). However, if you fly in and out of India you will need a visa, even if you are only in transit.

himalayas

We flew into Paro with Druk Air and I was very impressed. It is a high-end professional airline operation with relatively new planes. We were served a full meal and they have recently introduced in flight entertainment.

MyBhutan can book flights to and from Bhutan for you as part of their service.

What are the top tourist attractions in Bhutan?

tigers nest me

Some of the top tourist attractions in Bhutan include the Tiger’s Nest Monastery, Punakha Dzong, Dochula Pass, the Fertility Temple, and the National Museum of Bhutan.

Is Bhutan a safe place to visit?

Paro view

Bhutan is generally considered a safe place to visit. The crime rate is low, and the country has a strong focus on preserving its cultural traditions and natural environment. However, as with any destination, it is always a good idea to exercise caution and be aware of your surroundings.

What is the best time to visit Bhutan?

golden buddha view

The best time to visit Bhutan depends on what you want to do and see. The weather can vary greatly depending on the region and altitude, so it is important to research the specific areas you plan to visit. In general, the best time to visit Bhutan is from November to February for cultural trips or from March to May for trekking, when the weather is mild and dry.

Do I need a visa to visit Bhutan?

fertility temple

Yes, all visitors to Bhutan must have a valid visa. Visas can be obtained through a Bhutanese tour operator or through a Bhutanese embassy or consulate. It is not possible to obtain a visa on arrival in Bhutan.

What is the currency used in Bhutan?

Paro

The currency used in Bhutan is the Bhutanese ngultrum (BTN). The ngultrum is pegged to the Indian rupee, and both currencies are accepted in Bhutan. It is also possible to use US dollars in Bhutan, but it is recommended to have small denominations as change can be an issue. There are many ATMs in Paro and Thimpu.

You might also enjoy the articles written by my travel buddy Laura on this trip. She has written about how to travel to Bhutan and the 21 top things to do in Bhutan.

IMG 2300 scaled

Amanda O’Brien is the creator and editor of The Boutique Adventurer. She has visited 80 countries and is a member of the British Guild of Travel Writers as well as the IFTWTA. She is passionate about wine had has just completed Level 3 of the WSET. Born in Australia, she lives in London.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed .

Like this post? Why Not Share It?

Thanks for Sharing!

You will be redirected to your dashboard shortly. We will also call you back in 24 hrs .

  • Visit These 53 Tourist Places In Bhutan In 2024 To Change Your Worldview

16 Mar 2023

Bhutan “The Land of Thunderbolt” is still one of the least heard or traveled destinations, even by the young travel enthusiasts of its neighboring country – India. But it’s a long list of forts, monasteries, and other Buddhist relics, trekking spots, and shopping areas are surely worth a visit. Known as the Last Shangri-La, the entire country comprises panoramic valleys, majestic Himalayas, and abundance of rare fauna and flora.

The rivers, arising from the Himalayas, meander through the valleys and mesmerize with their beauty. Offering a kaleidoscope of sceneries and experiences, the best tourist places in Bhutan must feature on your itinerary while visiting the Land of the Thunder Dragon. If not all, at least a few of the below-listed places to visit in Bhutan deserve a visit by you and your travel buddies. From wildlife sanctuaries to monasteries, a vacation to Bhutan is all about tranquility and serenity that is unmatchable. 

About Bhutan

Bhutan hill view

Image Source

Bhutan is a small country located in the southern foothills of the Himalaya mountains. The country is in between the Republic of China and the Republic of India. The elevation level is here 38,394 km² and the population is 735553. Southern Bhutan is respectively hot and has a humid atmosphere, but the climate always varies from 15 to 30 degrees. In the northern areas, the temperature is low and cold, as it is near the mountains. In this region the mountains tops usually stay covered in snow thus, the lower parts stay cool.

Bhutan is rich with precious culture and diversity. There are so many celebrations that are held here from time to time. Every single village in this country has their own celebration and one of the well-known is the annual Tshechu and it’s a very religious festival of this place. In Tshechu the people dress up in colorful clothes and join at the nearest monastery or temple. This celebration is usually done to pray to the second Buddha, the Guru Rimpoche. The people gather to have their traditional dance, they share meals which includes, red rice, spicy pork, ema datshi and momos which is generally made by pork or beef. They also drink the traditional rice wine known as Ara. This is the celebration where families gather and catch up with everyone.

Top 53 Tourist Places In Bhutan

Knowing about some of the tourist places in Bhutan that one should visit on their trip to Bhutan will surely benefit you on your next vacay. So, scroll down to know what all sightseeing places in Bhutan  you can cover with your friends and family. All of these places will simply leave your jaws dropped. Be it a natural or an architectural marvel, Bhutan is a destination that has it all! 

  • Rinpung Dzong – Admire Bhutanese Architecture
  • Chele La Pass – Get Views Of The Himalayas
  • Punakha Dzong – Second-Largest Dzong In Bhutan
  • Buddha Dordenma Statue – Gape At The Bronze Statue
  • Dochula Pass – Ideal For A Picnic Day
  • Tiger’s Nest – Must-Visit Place Of Bhutan
  • Phobjikha Valley – Haven For Bird Watchers
  • Chomolhari – Explore Untrodden Paths While Trekking
  • Norzin Lam Street – Ideal For Souvenir Shopping
  • Main Street – Time For Shelling Out Money
  • Tashichho Dzong – Largest Landmark Of Thimpu
  • Drukgyel Dzong Ruins – Dig Into Bhutan’s History
  • Motithang Takin Preserve – Explore Different Species Of Animals
  • National Museum of Bhutan – Know More About Bhutan
  • Simply Bhutan – Learn About Diverse Facets Of Bhutan
  • Punakha Suspension Bridge – Traverse The Lane Of Flags
  • Haa Valley – Explore The Villages Of Bhutan
  • Jangtsa Dumtseg Lhakhang Temple – Hear About Old Folk Tales
  • Namgay Artisanal Brewery – Tingle Your Taste Buds
  • Zuri Dzong Fort – Get Scenic Views Of Paro Valley
  • Drukgyel Dzong Monastery – Perfect For Folklore Freaks
  • Samdrup Jongkhar – Buy Bamboo & Silk Products
  • Lhuentse – Untouched By Industrialization
  • Gasa Tshachu – Relax In The Hot Springs
  • ThrumshingLa National Park – Perfect Nature Retreat
  • Gangtey Monastery – Explore The Vibrant Culture Of Bhutan
  • The Folk Heritage Museum – Oldest Mud & Wood Structure
  • Jigme Dorji National Park – 2nd Largest National Park In Bhutan
  • Simtokha Dzong – Colossal & Alluring
  • Tango Buddhist Institute – For Spiritual Awakening
  • Talo Village – Picturesque Landscapes
  • Dagala Thousand Lakes – Surreal & Enchanting
  • Royal Manas National Park – Haven For Wildlife Lovers
  • Choki Traditional Art School – Souvenir Shopping
  • Jungshi Handmade Paper Factory – One-of-a-kind Experience
  • Royal Textile Academy of Bhutan – Traditional Attire Exhibition
  • Trashi Chhoe Dzong – For Religious Celebrations
  • Tower Of Trongsa – The Cultural History Of Bhutan
  • Hidden Valleys Of Bumthang – Set Out On A Quest
  • Torsa Strict Nature Reserve – Untouched Natural Beauty
  • Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary – The Newest Addition
  • Mo Chhu River – A Beautiful Scenery Awaits
  • National Institute for Zorig Chusum – To Witness Art
  • Handicrafts Market – For Local Goods
  • Memorial Chorten – A Peace Statue
  • Druk Path – The Countryside Trek
  • Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary – UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Phuentsholing – Hidden Gem
  • Trashiyangtse – Reflecting Bhutan’s Traditional Art
  • Wangchuck Wildlife Sanctuary – Savour the Adventure

1. Rinpung Dzong – Admire Bhutanese Architecture

Rinpung Dzong

Image Credit: Bernard Gagnon for wikipedia

Rinpung Dzong is a beautiful dzong (fort), with towering walls, built in the 16th century. Known as the Fortress on a Heap of Jewels , Rinpung Dzong is among the best tourist places to visit in Bhutan and a classic example of Bhutanese architecture and deep rooted traditions. You can look at the Bhutan tourist places map for its exact location.

The entire area is filled with various shrines and temples in Bhutan . Some of the shrines are, Kungarwa, Monk’s assembly hall, Sandalwood stupa, protector’s shrine and so on. Every year there is an annual festival of tshechu and it is held in Rinpung Dzong and it starts from the eleventh day to the fifteenth day and the day is marked in Bhutan’s lunar calendar. If you want to know the months properly then it’s the months of March to April.

In this festival holy images are carried in a procession, and this very thing is followed by the mask dances which tells many stories and these are performed by the monks for many days. On the fifteenth day before dawn breaks a sacred banner which consists of eight manifestations of Padmasambhava is shown for the public in those early hours and the tradition is that there will be no sunlight to fall on the banner.

Location: Paro District, Bhutan Key attractions : Beautiful temple and wall paintings related to Buddhism Timings : 9 AM to 5 PM How to reach : You can take a taxi or hire a bike from anywhere in Paro to get to this spot. Places To Stay:  Norwangs Villa, Nirvana Inn, The Village Lodge Paro, Hotel Ratna Vara, 

Reasons Why You Lose A Lot If You Miss Out On Bhutan Travel Experience

Looking To Book A Holiday Package?

bhutan country tourist places

Spellbinding Cochin Family Tour 2D/1N Package @ Rs 2,750

Plan your trip today!

bhutan country tourist places

Himachal Family Tour Package 4D/3N @ Rs 8,750

Get quotes from multiple travel experts.

bhutan country tourist places

Exciting Andaman Family Trip 5D/4N @ Rs 10,250

Compare & customize quotes before booking.

bhutan country tourist places

Gangtok & Darjeeling Tour Package 5D/4N @ Rs 13,000

Have Questions? Talk to our travel experts today.

bhutan country tourist places

Wonderful Goa Family Package 3D/2N @ Rs 6,500

Best prices guaranteed.

bhutan country tourist places

Riveting Rajasthan Vacation 3D/2N Package @ Rs 6,499

EMI option available.

bhutan country tourist places

Enchanting Uttarakhand Tour 4D/3N Package @ Rs 7,199

Explore best destinations with our experts.

bhutan country tourist places

Delightful South Weekend Tour 3D/2N Package @ Rs 4,999

Thrilling weekend full of fun.

bhutan country tourist places

Marvelous Gujarat Tour 3D/2N Package @ Rs 4,999

Talk to our experts today.

bhutan country tourist places

See more at TRAVELTRIANGLE.COM

2. Chele La Pass – Get Views Of The Himalayas

Chele La Pass

Located at an altitude of about 3,989 meters, Chele La pass is among the popular tourist places in Bhutan . The magnificent pass is en-route the Haa Valley in Paro. On a nice and clear day, you can experience the Jomolhari mountain from here and the adjacent peaks from the northwest side and can view the valleys of Haa and Paro as well. Many hotels, resorts, and homestays in Paro also organise regular tours to Chele Le Pass in affordable rates.

This pass is located at the 13,000 feet above in the west from the Paro valley, it is the highest road pass of Bhutan and is surrounded with amazing views of the Himalayan range, and the Mount Jomolhari, which is this country’s most sacred mountain and it’s over 22,000 feet. To reach this Bhutan tourist attraction you have to take one and a half hour drive from the valley floor of Paro.

Another attraction of this place is the Haa summer festival, and this is the symbol of the rich culture of the nomadic heaps. You can have a small excursion, which will take only 2 and a half hours, as many tourists visit this place for the excursion here.

Location: Between the Haa and Paro valleys, Bhutan Key attractions : Magnificent panoramic view of the valleys, gushing waterfalls, alpine flowers, and clouds drifting above the hills Timings:  Throughout the day How to reach : Take a taxi from Paro to get to this point on the Bondey-Haa Highway Places to stay:  COMO Uma Paro, Le Meridien Paro

3. Punakha Dzong – Second-Largest Dzong In Bhutan

Punakha Dzong

Punakha Dzong is the second largest dzong in Bhutan(The Land of Thunderbolt) and is known for its brilliant structure. Among the best tourist places in Bhutan , the dzong speaks volumes about the beautiful stories and traditions of the Buddhist culture. Do not miss this on your Bhutan sightseeing tour.

Punakha is the winter capital of this country and the head clergy of Bhutan spends the winter in this popular Dzong. The Punakha Dzong is situated on the 1,200 meters and on this height no one ever suffers from height sickness or oxygen shortage, so if you are thinking about hiking in Bhutan , then you can aim for the higher place such as Paro Taktsang or tiger’s nest and it’s a very ideal place for beginners.

This dzong is considered the most beautiful one in the country and the very first national assembly was held here in 1953. This is the second largest fortress in Bhutan and the most popular one as well. To finish the building of this dzong took a year and the most interesting fact is that this building has no usage of nails. Almost every national treasure of the country is kept here, and in here the king of Bhutan Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck got married to the Queen Jetsun Pema in 2011.

Location: Punakha, Bhutan Key attractions : The intricate paintings and the architecture of the fort, sacred relics of the southern Drukpa Lineage of Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism, and the sacred remains of Ngawang Namgyal and the tertön Pema Lingpa. Timings : 8 AM to 5 PM How to reach : Take a bus or taxi from Paro or Thimphu to Punakha. Further, take a taxi or bike to this point in Punakha. Places To Stay:  Hotel Vara, The Four Boutique, Hotel Zangto Pelri, Damchen Resort, Chimi Lhakhang Village Homestay

6 Picturesque Destinations For Honeymoon In Bhutan

4. Buddha Dordenma Statue – Gape At The Bronze Statue

Buddha Dordenma Statue

Image Credit: Vertalm for pixabay

The Buddha Dordenma Statue is a 169 feet tall statue of Buddha, built at the foot of the hills in Thimphu. This iconic gold and bronze statue is visible from almost anywhere in Thimphu and is among the best tourist places in Bhutan .

This is a statue of Buddha and it’s a giant one at the top of the mountains in Thimpu and it’s also known as the Kunzang Phodrang. The presence of this giant statue of Buddha symbolizes the dominant religion of Bhutan. This very religion plays a solid part in this country and in the everyday life of the country’s people which is what makes it one of the best places in Bhutan for sightseeing. You will see the string of flags at the roadsides and the several praying wheels around the clock tower, which is in the midst of the town.

There are small temples and various paintings that adorn the walls that are made of cement and rock. Buddha dordenma is the largest statue and it’s 52.5 meters tall and made of bronze. Inside this figure, there are 125,000 small figurines of the same. There are 25,000 and 12 inches ones and 100,000 8 inches one.

Location: Kuenselphodrang, Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions : The 169 feet tall Buddha statue, thousands of smaller bronze and gold statues of Lord Buddha, and the surrounding Kuensel Phodrang nature park How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Thimphu to get to this statue. Places To Stay:  Hotel Oro Villa, Hotel River Valley Timings : 9 AM to 5 PM

Planning your holiday but confused about where to go? These travel stories help you find your best trip ever!

bhutan country tourist places

Ramya Narrates The Story Of 6 Girls On An Extraordinary Trip To Thailand

Bangkok. Phi Phi. Krabi. Why should guys have all the fun?

bhutan country tourist places

Sandeep Illustrates On The Best Activities For A Family Trip To Mauritius

Water sports. Cocktail parties. And unlimited fun at Casela.

bhutan country tourist places

Nisarg Can't Stop Praising His Honeymoon Trip To Maldives

There was snorkeling, sightseeing, luxury, comfort, & much more!

bhutan country tourist places

Sabyacsachi's Romantic Trip Proves Europe To Be The Mother Of All Vacations

For Art, Culture, Luxury, & more...

bhutan country tourist places

Srishti Talks Of Her Amazing Trip To Singapore With Her Mother & Niece

A fun-filled destination for ages indeed!

bhutan country tourist places

67-Year Old Sridhar Tells How He Beat The Odds & Took A Solo Trip To Dubai

Desert safari. Burj Khalifa. Welcoming locals. Tell me more!

bhutan country tourist places

Not Adventure Lovers? Saurabh's Family Trip Proves Hong Kong To Still Be Full Of Fun

Your kids will love Disney Land & Ocean Park!

bhutan country tourist places

Ravi's Tale Of A Sri Lanka Family Tour Is All You Need To Know About Ramayana Tour

For the love of Ramayana & Travel!

5. Dochula Pass – Ideal For A Picnic Day

Some of the Chortens at the Dochula Pass

Dochula Pass is a beautiful pass consisting of 108 Chortens or Stupas, built in the memory of the Bhutanese soldiers who died in a war against the insurgents from India. The beautifully built temple and stupas, with the picturesque Gangkar Puensum peak in the background, makes the Dochula Pass one of the best tourist spots in Bhutan. Dochula pass is situated on the way to Punakha and Thimphu.

This very pass is a popular location for every tourist who visits the country. From the pass, you can have a panoramic view of the Himalayan mountain range, and you must know the view is very beautiful from the top. You will get to see the snow covered mountains and the amazing backdrop of the place. So many Bhutanese families enjoy their holidays in this area, they have small picnics, and some just come here to enjoy the view. You can have your lunch and tea in a flask and come here to enjoy the food and hot tea.

Location: East-West Road from Thimpu to Punakha Key attractions : Panoramic view that gives a glimpse of the peak of the sacred Himalayan mountain – Chomolhari, Druk Wangyal Lhakhang temple, and the fusion paintings on the temple walls How to reach : Take a taxi from Thimphu or Punakha to get to this point. Places To Stay:  Mendrelgang Homestay, Yangki Guest House, Thori Resort, Hotel Pundarika, Choni Apartment

Our 5 Days In Bhutan Were All About Bliss, Adventure And Tranquility

6. Tiger’s Nest – Must-Visit Place Of Bhutan

A view of the Tiger’s nest monastery with the beautiful hills in backdrop

Tiger’s Nest or Taktsang Monastery is one of the must visit places in Bhutan . It is known for the beautiful and the sacred monastery of Guru Rinpoche. It is considered as a place of pilgrimage and is an easy half trek, which gives you the panoramic views of the Paro valleys. According to the legends, Guru Rinpoche also considered as the second Buddha rode to this place on a tigress’s back to suppress a local demon and thus he meditated here for 3 months. This place is Bhutan’s most religious site and it hangs on the cliff as it stands above the lush forest of thousands of species of rhododendrons and blue pine. Due to this, it is counted in the list of best places to visit in Bhutan in May.

Tourists can come to this monastery by standard permits which your guide will arrange for you. Also, you have to register your at the entrance deposit your cameras and bags because photography is prohibited inside of the temple. If you are backpacking in Bhutan , then you must consider visiting this place.

Location: Taktsang trail BT, Taktsang trail, Bhutan Key attractions : The tiger’s nest, the cave temple inside the monastery, the majestic views, and the many small temples inside the premises of the monastery. How to reach : Take a shared cab to the starting point of the path leading to the monastery. Trek to the top. Places To Stay:  Norwangs Villa, Nirvana Inn, The Village Lodge Paro, Hotel Ratna Vara, The chhodens, Zhideychen Resort Timings : Always open

7. Phobjikha Valley – Haven For Bird Watchers

Phobjikha Valley

Image Credit: Phuentsho for wikipedia

Phobjikha is a small town in the central part of Bhutan(The Land of Thunderbolt). Like many other beautiful places to see in Bhutan, Phobjikha is bestowed with valleys and is surrounded by mountains and lush greenery making it one of the top Bhutan attractions. The place is known for its beautiful landscapes and passes and a day’s hike will take you through the town and the woods.

Phobjikha valley is about 3000-meter elevation and the place is in the shape of a bowl, and it’s on the western slopes of the mountains. The place is at the border of the Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park. If you are visiting Bhutan then this is the most famous place and you must visit this place. One cannot afford to miss a visit to the best tourist place in Bhutan , that is, Phobjikha Valley.

Get to experience the big flock of black-necked cranes at the winter time and as it is at the side of the crucial wildlife sanctuary in the country, you might also see some barking deer nearby as well or hear their voice. To heighten your excitement you must know that there are leopards, wild boars, red foxes, Himalayan black bears and so many other species in the forest.

Location: Wangdue Phodrang, Bhutan Key attractions : Black-necked cranes migrate to Phobjikha from November, and the hike through the valleys to witness spectacular views of the birds and the amazing greenery. How to reach : Take a taxi to Wangdue from Thimphu or Phuentsholing. Then take a bus or shared cab from Wangdue to Phobjikha Valley. Places To Stay:  The Valley Camp, Dewachen Hotel and Spa, Phuntsho Chholing Lodge, Gangtey Gonpa, Yue-Lo-Ki Guest Houes Gangtey

Bhutan In December: A Quintessential Travel Guide For An Exquisite Vacation!

8. Chomolhari – Explore Untrodden Paths While Trekking

Chomolhari

Chomolhari is among the popular Bhutan tourist spots , most popular for its treks. Chomolhari trek, starting at Paro, is one of the most challenging treks of Bhutan. With the altitude going about 5,000 meters, it is enchanting and rewards the trekkers with blissful views after a difficult trek. The trek is truly for the adventure enthusiasts and spans between 7 – 15 days on average.

If you love small treks then this is one of the ideal ones for you. Chomolhari or Jomolhari is one of the well-known tourist spots here, and if you are here for the trip then you must be acclimatized in the Haa Valley first then begin the trek. This entire valley will offer you eye-searing beauty of the monasteries and the small villages. Get to see the beautiful alpine forests and experience the most untouched parts of the country. If you are a nature lover then make sure that you include this place in your list as it is one of the most amazing places to see in Bhutan .

The perfect time for the trek is from late March to the middle of June in Bhutan . September to November is a good time as well. However, the ideal time for the trek is April to May. Also, the entire trek is mildly strenuous but not tough.

Location: Near Punakha, Bhutan Key attractions : The glacial lakes, the snow capped mountains and splendid views of the landscapes are a treat to the eyes How to reach : Take a taxi from Thimphu or Punakha itself to the starting point of Chomolhari trek. Places to stay:  The Valley Camp, Dewachen Hotel and Spa, Phuntsho Chholing Lodge Timings:  Throughout the day

9. Norzin Lam Street – Ideal For Souvenir Shopping

A view of the market street at Norzin Lam in Thimphu

The capital city is probably the most beautiful tourist places in Bhutan . The main street of Norzin Lam is filled with shops selling various items – souvenirs, woolen clothes, crafts, and local wine. Although slightly expensive, some things are worth buying there if you’re not going further till Bumthang.

This is the artery of Thimpu and is a very popular place here as well. Although the place is always crowded you will get to see some artifacts and so many other shops which are perfect for shopping. If you live at a hotel near this street, you might get to see the football stadium from there and if lucky you can enjoy a match on the ground too!

You can find the beautiful wood items here and carpets, clothing anything that symbolizes Bhutan, you will get from the shops at the site of the street. Have the taste of local food from the restaurants here and you might not forget the taste of those tasty cuisines.

Location: Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions : Textile building and the textile shops in the middle lane of Norzin Lam for buying some of the best handmade textiles, including Gho and Kira – the traditional attire of Bhutan for men and women respectively How to reach : You can take a taxi or just walk to this point from anywhere in Thimphu Places to stay:  Hotel Oro Villa, Hotel River Valley Timings:  Throughout the day

Solo Bike Trip To Bhutan: A Journey Of A Lifetime That Helped Me Overcome Depression!

10. Main Street – Time For Shelling Out Money

A view of shopkeepers unloading from the trucks on the Main Street at Paro

The main street of Paro, stretching across two lanes, is known for its antique Buddhist souvenirs and prayer related materials. Some of the unique souvenirs can be shopped here. Have a walk on this Main street of Paro for admiring the numerous shops and the mountain ahead. If you are a tourist then you must buy something as a souvenir, then you will get every necessary thing for the same purpose only. Try visiting the market on this street on Sunday, and you will see how many delightful things the Bhutanese sell in their respective shops.

From Kiran which is the traditional dress of the country to Bhutanese stamps, all are available here. You can check the handcrafts here, handmade Bhutanese boots, dried Yak cheese, amazing embroidery, weaving at various shops. Take note of the expensive jewelry from the shops as well, as there are pricey silver amulets and other types of traditional wearable are sold. Make sure that you include this place in your list as it is one of the top Bhutan tourist places .

Location: Paro, Bhutan Key attractions : Scrumptious local food, wonderful bounty of nature, lots of tourist attractions in the vicinity, and the welcoming locals How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get here. Places to stay:  COMO Uma Paro, Le Meridien Paro Timings:  Throughout the day

11. Tashichho Dzong – Largest Landmark Of Thimpu

Tashichho Dzong, Thimphu

Located at the northern end of the city, Tashichho Dzong is one of the most beautiful tourist places in Bhutan . A popular fortress set on the edge of the city’s border, this monastery is a delight to watch as it is set on the western banks of River Wang Chu.

This is one of the famous Dzong in the country and regarded as the largest landmark of Thimphu. The dzong is situated 2 km away from the actual town and holds huge importance as it is the main secretariat and its houses are the office of the throne room and the King as well.

Some of the central monastic bodies and some people from the ministry live here and this is the summer residence of the monks too. If you have a plan to visit this place then try not to miss the 5 pm changing of the flag, as it’s very important to watch and it begins in the courtyard and ends outside in the front.

Location: Chhagchhen Lam, Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions: It has not only served as the summer capital of the country but also as the royal seat of Druk Desi who is also called the Dharma Raja. Timings: Monday to Friday – 9 AM to 5 PM, and 5:30 PM to 6 PM; Saturday and Sunday – 9 AM to 5 PM How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get here. Places To Stay: Sambhav Service Apartments

The Groovy Nightlife In Bhutan And 10 Popular Places To Taste It

12. Drukgyel Dzong Ruins – Dig Into Bhutan’s History

Drukgyel Dzong, Paro

Once a massive fortress that stood tall and served as one of the greatest Buddhist monasteries , only ruins remain on the site of the famous Drukgyel Dzong. Located in the upper district of Paro, this monastery was established in 1649 by the famous Tenzin Drukdra after they were triumphant over Tibet’s invasion.

This is one of the famous Dzong in the country and regarded as the largest landmark of Thimphu. The dzong is situated two kilometers away from the actual town and holds huge importance as it is the main secretariat and its houses are the office of the throne room and the King as well.

Some of the central monastic bodies and some people from the ministry live here and this is the summer residence of the monks too. If you have a plan to visit one of the best tourist places in Bhutan , then try not to miss the 5 pm changing of the flag, as it’s very important to watch and it begins in the courtyard and ends outside in the front.

Location: Paro District 11001, Bhutan Timings: Monday to Sunday – 7 AM to 6 PM How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get here Key Attractions: Massive fortress  Places to stay:  COMO Uma Paro, Le Meridien Paro

13. Motithang Takin Preserve – Explore Different Species Of Animals

Motithang Takin Preserve

Did you know about the national animal of Bhutan? Well if your answer is no, then you’re not alone in that. Located in the district of Motithang in Thimphu, Motithang Takin Preserve serves as the home of the famous species of takin. Many travelers consider visiting this zoo-converted-reserve as one of the best tips while traveling to Bhutan . The Takin is a rare type of animal and falls under the goat species and their actual habitat is the eastern Himalayas. These animals live in the high altitudes of the country, also found in Northwest Myanmar, northwest India as well. These odd-looking animals according to the local legends were assembled by a 15th-century saint who agreed to create a miracle.

This saint joined the head of a goat at the top of a cow’s skeleton and brought this new type of animal to life. Apart from myths, this animal is the result of evolution and has a protracted nose, large head, and strong torso provides it a different look. The Takins live around 8.4 acres from the rainforest and the Bhutan government is taking good care of them by preserving the species and they do not keep the animals in a zoo because they believe in the non-confinement of animals in a Buddhist country.

Location: Motithang, Bhutan Timings: Tuesday to Sunday – 9 AM to 4 PM; Closed on Mondays How to reach : Take a taxi or hike to Motithang Preserve from Thimphu Key Attractions:  Exquisite flora and fauna Places To Stay:  Sambhav Service Apartments, Namseling Boutique Hotel, Hotel Golden Roots, The Pema

Trekking In Bhutan: An Experience Like None Other At 15 Amazing Places!

14. National Museum Of Bhutan – Know More About Bhutan

National Museum Of Bhutan

The National Museum of Bhutan tops the list of Bhutan tourist attractions . Built in the year of 1968 and set above the famous Rinpung Dzong, it was constructed to exhibit the famous Bhutanese art. From contemporary paintings to ancient statues, the museum today houses about 3000 masterpieces and exhibits more than 1,500 years of cultural heritage of Bhutan. This place is also the photo gallery of the country and many Bhutanese hold their dance ceremonies in this place as well.

The building is currently under some temporary building but you can visit the other parts of it as the museum is divided into portions for wildlife, masks, and so on. In the evening, the museum lights up and you can visit the place to take amazing photos. Apart from masks and wildlife, you will get to experience the pretty flora and fauna in this place and get to view the brief history of Bhutan as well.

Location:  Paro, Bhutan Key attractions: Do not miss out on the bronze statues, galleries, and the ancient paintings. Timings: Monday to Sunday – 9 AM to 5 PM How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get here. Places To Stay:  Norwangs Villa, Nirvana Inn, The Village Lodge Paro, Hotel Ratna Vara, Hotel Dorjee Ling

15. Simply Bhutan – Learn About Diverse Facets Of Bhutan

Simply Bhutan

Based on the theme of the villages in Bhutan, Simply Bhutan is a beautiful museum that takes the travelers through the various facets of the country and thus it is one of the best tourist places in Bhutan . From the smiling people to the authentic cuisine, and from the age-old traditions to the live cultural performance, witness the best of Bhutan at this wonderful museum.

Experience the best of Bhutan culture under one roof in this museum. Get to know about the lives of the country people, their traditional clothes, food, mud huts, and so many things. If you like you can always buy some souvenirs from the shops here and have a snack at the little restaurants.

Location: Genyen Lam, Thimphu, Bhutan Timings: Monday to Sunday – 9 AM to 5 PM Key Attractions:  An enormous museum How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Thimphu to get here. Places To Stay:  The Postcard Dewa, Norkhil Boutique Hotel & Spa, Hotel Golden Roots, Khamsum Inn, Osel Thimphu Bhutan

Website | Reviews

My 7 Days Bhutan Cultural Tour With Family Was All That I Hoped For!

16. Punakha Suspension Bridge – Traverse The Lane Of Flags

About The Punakha Suspension Bridge

Apart from Punakha Dzong, what makes Punakha a popular tourist attraction is the Punakha suspension bridge. It is built over the Po Chhu river. It is one of the longest suspension bridges in Bhutan, spanning 160 m. It connects Punakha town with Punakha Dzong. Draped with prayer flags, it is a delight for photographers. Walking on it will by far be one of your most adventurous experiences. Make sure to stop by here.

Location:  Punakha, Bhutan Key Attractions: One of the longest suspension bridges in Bhutan Timings:  Throughout the day How to reach : Take a bus or taxi from Paro or Thimphu to get to Punakha. The bridge is at a walking distance from the bus stand or you can rent a bike to get there. Places To Stay:  Khuru Resort, Lingbub Apartment, Yak Herder’s Boutique Inn, The Four Boutique, Punakha Phuntshochoeling Heritage

17. Haa Valley – Explore The Villages Of Bhutan

Haa Valley

Haa Valley, which is situated only 13 miles away from the India-China border, connects major Bhutanese villages like Chhukha, Paro, and Samtse. It is counted among the top tourist places in Bhutan that you must visit. It stretches over an area of 1700 square kilometres. The valley was opened to the public in 2002. However, do not expect to find any luxury hotels in Haa Valley. You can expect to find basic homestays in the valley. The locals of Haa Valley are hospitably warm.

Location:  Haa District in Bhutan Key Attractions:  Mesmerizing beauty Timings:  Throughout the day How to reach : Nearest airport is Paro Airport. Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get to this valley Places to stay:  Haa Heritage Hotel, Lhayul Hotel, Risum Resort

Anupama’s Paro Travel Guide Will Give You Every Reason To Visit Bhutan!

18. Jangtsa Dumtseg Lhakhang Temple – Hear About Old Folk Tales

bhutan country tourist places

There are numerous folk tales attached to one of the most famous Buddhist temples in Bhutan. Some say that this temple in Bhutan was built on the land where a massive serpent was killed. Another legend is that it was constructed on the head of a demoness. These folk tales add to the rich heritage of the temple. It is one of the best places to visit in Bhutan on your spiritual retreat.

Location: Paro, Bhutan Key Attractions:  Famous Buddhist temples  How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get to this temple. Timings : Always open Places to stay:  Thrumshing la Home stay, RO-CHOG-JAA-DHEN HOTEL, Himalayan Tashi Phuntshok Hotel, Zambala Hotel River-View

19. Namgay Artisanal Brewery – Tingle Your Taste Buds

Namgay Artisanal Brewery paro bhutan

This microbrewery brews local flavours of Bhutan. The zany, rich flavours will tingle your tongue and send you in a coma. Some of the most famous beverages sold here include Bhutan Dark Ale and the Bhutan Red Rice Lager. The latter is brewed from red rice procured from the rice paddies of Paro. It is stronger than the Dark Ale.

Location: Dumsibu, Paro 11001, Bhutan Key Attractions:  Authentic flavours  Timings: 9:00 am – 10:00 pm How to reach: Can be easily reached by road Places To Stay:  Thrumshing la Home stay, RO-CHOG-JAA-DHEN HOTEL, Himalayan Tashi Phuntshok Hotel, Zambala Hotel River-View

Our Magical 7 Days In Bhutan Were All We Needed For A Perfect Honeymoon!

20. Zuri Dzong Fort – Get Scenic Views Of Paro Valley

Zuri Dzong TrekKing Trail

Zuri Dzong Fort is one of Bhutan’s oldest dzongs. It was built in the 14th century. The murals in the upper chapels reflect the rich history and heritage of this fort. Locals believe that there used to be a cave here where the fort now stands, and Buddha meditated inside the cave. From the top of the dzong, you can enjoy scenic views of Paro valley. Does it get any better than this?

Location: Paro, Bhutan Key Attractions:  One of the oldest dzongs How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get to this fort. Timings : Always open Places to stay:  Thrumshing la Home stay, RO-CHOG-JAA-DHEN HOTEL, Himalayan Tashi Phuntshok Hotel, Zambala Hotel River-View

21. Drukgyel Dzong Monastery – Perfect For Folklore Freaks

Marvel at the magnificent ruins of the Drukgyel Dzong

The Buddhist monastery and fortress has been ravaged over time. If you’re a fan of natural history and folklore enthusiast, we suggest you visit the ruins. You will learn a lot more about the history of Paro, and by extension Bhutan, here than you will learn anywhere else. Efforts are on to rebuild the monastery and restore it to its original prestige. You can see the Chomolhari mountains from the top of the monastery. No one would like to miss this monastery as it is counted among the list of must-see places in Bhutan .

Location: Paro, Bhutan Key Attractions:  Architectural ruins How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Paro to get to this monastery Timings:  7:00 am – 6:00 pm Places to stay:  Thrumshing la Home stay, RO-CHOG-JAA-DHEN HOTEL, Himalayan Tashi Phuntshok Hotel, Zambala Hotel River-View

Take A Bhutan City Tour With Ritika And Make Notes About The Beauty Of This Country!

22. Samdrup Jongkhar – Buy Bamboo & Silk Products

Samdrup Jongkhar in Bhutan

Located in Bhutan’s South-Eastern region, Samdrup Jongkhar is a town follig in the district with the same name. It shared the borders with the Indian state of Assam. This lush green mountain town is often addressed as the ‘salt route’. This place has historical significance and was a major trade centre of Bhutan. It was known for its silk production which was bartered for quality bamboo. Today, travelers can find a bit of every element from its history, including bamboo and silk products. Make sure that you include it in your list as it is one of the top places to visit in Bhutan .

Location: NA Key Attractions: How to reach : Fly to the airports in Bhutan or Guwahati. The nearest one is in Guwahati, followed by Paro Airport. You can take a taxi from these airports to reach Samdrup Jongkhar Timings:  9:00 am – 5:00 pm Places To Stay:  Tashi Gasel Lodge

23. Lhuentse – Untouched By Industrialization

Lhuentse in Bhutan

If you want to explore and experience the local and rural side of Bhutan, you must come to Lhuentse. This is one of those places to visit in Bhutan that has remained untouched by urban developments. Its natural beauty and old culture is still intact, especially if you’re visiting Bhutan in April . The place holds significance as the Royal family’s ancestral home. A highlight of this densely vegetated valley district is Lhuentse Dzong, which is located on the banks of River Kuri. A suspension bridge connects the Dzong to the Chortens.

Location: Lhuntse District in northeastern Bhutan Key Attractions:  Experience the local and rural side of Bhutan Timings:  Throughout the day How to reach : Take a taxi from Thimphu till Mongar and then a shared cab till Lhuentse. Or take a taxi from Thimphu or Paro all the way to Lhuentse. Places To Stay:  The Village Lodge Bumthang, Mountain Resort, Dekyil Guesthouse, Chumey Nature Resort

Street Food In Bhutan: 10 Tasty Delicacies To Relish

24. Gasa Tshachu – Relax In The Hot Springs

Gasa Tshachu

This is one of the most popular tourist places of Bhutan . Gasa Tshachu is located in the Gasa District of Bhutan, which is popular for the Jigme Dorji National Park. Gasa Tshachu is a collection of wonderful natural hot springs. Though the country offers you several refreshing experiences, this one will help you truly relax. This hot spring is one of the best in the country and is visited by large number of travelers.

Location: Gasa Key Attactions: Gasa Dzongkhag Administration Gasa, Bhutan Timings:  Throughout the day How to reach : Take a bus or taxi from Punakha to Gasa Places to stay:  Mendrelgang Homestay, Ludrong Hotel, The Pema by Realm 

25. ThrumshingLa National Park – Perfect Nature Retreat

ThrumshingLa National Park in Bhutan

Spanning an area of 768 square km of land ThrumshingLa National Park is a stretch of densely forested land. Surrounded by mountains, this place is home to over 341 different species of birds including the endangered Rufous-necked hornbill, ward’s trogon, brown wood owl and white-naped Yuhina. It is truly a birdwatcher’s paradise.  ThrumshingLa National Park also encloses meadows, lakes, waterfalls, and stunning trek sites including Bribdungla and Rhodungla. This is therefore, one of the famous tourist places in Bhutan .

Location: Mongar Best time to visit: March – May | September – December How to reach : Take a bus or taxi from Thimphu to Mongar Opening hours : 9 AM – 5 PM

10 Things To Buy In Bhutan On A Vacation

26. Gangtey Monastery – Explore The Vibrant Culture Of Bhutan

Gangtey Monastery

Gangtey Monastery is one of the best places to visit in Bhutan and it has attracted several tourists till now. The monasteries in Bhutan display brilliant architecture that no one can afford to miss on their trip. After visiting this monastery, you will know about the vibrant culture of Bhutan. Since this monastery is located at a height of 16,000 ft., it offers some spectacular views of the valley which is why many people trek to this place for the awesome experience of hiking and camping in Bhutan which is also what Gangtey is famous for other than its monastery.

Location: Bhutan How to reach : Take a cab from from Paro, Thimphu, Punakha, or Wangduephodrang to get to this point. Places To Stay:  The Village Lodge Bumthang, Mountain Resort, Dekyil Guesthouse, Chumey Nature Resort Timings : 9 AM – 5 PM 

27. The Folk Heritage Museum – Oldest Mud & Wood Structure

The Folk Heritage Museum

The Folk Heritage Museum displays a local way of life and culture in Bhutan. The most astonishing part about this museum is that it has been opened in a 150-year old wood and mud structure. It opened for the public in 2001 and since then it has been one of the famous places in Bhutan . The whole house is decorated with colorful banners which are pleasing to the eyes.

Location: Bhutan How to reach : Take a taxi or bike from anywhere in Thimphu to get to this museum located near the Clock Tower. Timings : 9 AM – 5 PM

Top 7 Reasons Why Bhutan In September Make A Solid Case For An Autumn Vacation!

28. Jigme Dorji National Park

golden langur

Jigme Dorji National Park is the second largest national park in Bhutan and also one of the best places to visit in Bhutan . Stretching to a vast area of 1316 square km, this place is a treat for wildlife enthusiasts. Spot animals like Bengal tiger, snow leopard, Himalayan blue sheep, and black bear. Keep your camera handy because you will get so many beautiful landscapes to capture in your lens.

Location: Bhutan Timings: 9 AM – 5 PM How to reach : Take a taxi or bus from Thimphu to get to this national park.

29. Simtokha Dzong

Simtokha dzong

Simtokha Dzong translates to Temple Fortress and it’s every bit colossal and alluring. Built in the year 1629, the temple has now been converted to a museum that lures a huge number of visitors every year and is among the most popular Bhutan tourist spots . If you are a lover of linguistics and wish to learn the local language of Dzongkha, then you can learn the language here. Do not miss this place during your Bhutan sightseeing .

Location: Simtokha, Bhutan Timings: 9 AM – 5 PM How to reach : Take a taxi or bus from Thimphu to get to Simtokha. Places To Stay:  Yangki Guest House, Thori Resort, Hotel Ugyen, Hotel Pundarika, Choni Apartment, Hotel River Valley

Phrumsengla National Park: Spot Rare Flora And Fauna As You Trek In Bhutan

30. Tango Buddhist Institute

Tango monastery

If you are in Bhutan visiting places that are holy and spiritual, then you should consider adding Tango Buddhist Institute to your list. What is interesting about this place is that it’s built on a cave now serving as an institution of knowledge and spirituality to Buddhist monks. There are more legends and interesting facts about this place that may pique your interest.

Location: Thimphu, Bhutan How to reach : Take a taxi or bike from anywhere in Thimphu to get here. Places To Stay:  Thimp,hu 180 view, Ludrong Hotel, Namseling Boutique Hotel, DORJI Elements – Boutique Hotel, The Pema Timings : 8 AM – 6 PM

31. Talo Village

talo village

Talo Village is one of the most beautiful places to see in Bhutan. You will agree once you visit. A perfect place for those who seek solace, Talo offers picturesque landscapes decorated with sweet corn and pea fields. At the very top, you will spot a Buddhist monastery. It is one of the top places to visit in Bhutan frequented by tourists. The landscape is complemented by snow-capped mountains. If you wish to explore Bhutan villages , then put this place on your itinerary.

Location: Punakha, Bhutan How to reach : The nearest airport is Paro Airport. From there you can take a bus or taxi to Talo in Punakha.

The Only Guide To Zhemgang In Bhutan You Need Before Your Nepal Trip

32. Dagala Thousand Lakes

lake

You may not have seen anything surreal and enchanting like Dagala Thousand Lakes. It is one of the best places in Bhutan that you should not miss visiting if you love nature and landscapes. Enjoy trekking to this place and quench your thirst for adventure and thrill. The views around will definitely put you in a good mood.

Location: Bhutan How to reach : Take a taxi from anywhere in Thimphu to get to the starting point of the trek in Geynizampa.

33. Royal Manas National Park

royal manas national park

One of the famous Bhutan tourist attractions , Royal Manas National Park is a haven for wildlife lovers. It is the oldest national park in Bhutan and is home to Royal Bengal Tiger, one-horned rhinoceros, clouded leopard, and gangetic dolphins. It gives you all the more reasons to visit this place as you won’t find these species anywhere else.

Location: Pemagatshel, Sarpang, Zhemgang, Bhutan How to reach : Take a train from Hasimara or Phuentsholing to Zhemgang and then a taxi or bike to the national park. Timings : 11 AM – 4 PM

34. Choki Traditional Art School

bhutanese art

Image Credit: sujay85 for pixabay

Bhutan is much more than its monasteries and rich flora-fauna. It is also rich in culture which you can learn at Choki Traditional Art School. Visiting this place during Bhutan sightseeing is a unique experience in itself. You can see disadvantaged students being taught painting and traditional arts. Learn so much about the colorful Bhutanese art and bring back a few souvenirs, if possible.

Location: Kabesa Lam, Thimphu, Bhutan Timings: 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM How to reach : Take a taxi or bike from anywhere in Thimphu to get here. Places To Stay:  Thimphu 180 view, Ludrong Hotel, DORJI Elements – Boutique Hotel, Namseling Boutique Hotel, Taj Tashi Bhutan, Bhutan Boutique Residency (BBR)

35. Jungshi Handmade Paper Factory

handmade paper

Image Credit: matuska for pixabay

Jungshi Handmade Paper factory may seem like an odd place to visit during sightseeing in Bhutan but it is not. Handmade paper is one of the famous things you can buy in Bhutan as a souvenir. Watch the art of manufacturing handmade paper in action at the factory and get insights about the industry. It can be one of the unique and interesting things to do in Bhutan.

Location: Thimphu, Bhutan How to reach : Take a taxi or bike from anywhere in Thimphu to get here. Places To Stay:  CityHotel, Lemon Tree Hotel, Kisa Villa, Hotel Glory, Tara Inn, Hotel Norbuling Timings : 8:00 AM – 5 PM

Chimi Lhakhang: Experience The Peace & Tranquility Of Bhutan’s Most Visited Temple

36. Royal Textile Academy Of Bhutan

textile academy bhutan

Not just a pedantic institution, Royal Textile Academy of Bhutan is where contemporary architecture meets Bhutanese art and heritage. It is one the most popular Bhutan places to visit and should definitely be on your itinerary. Attend the exhibitions of finest works of handwoven fabric and applique cloth. Also, learn the art of draping and wearing traditional outfits. It is one of the unique tourist places in Bhutan yet it is worth it.

Location: Thimphu, Bhutan T imings: 9 AM – 4 PM, Sunday closed How to reach : Take a taxi or bike from anywhere in Thimphu to get here. Places To Stay: DORJI Elements – Boutique Hotel, Taj Tashi Bhutan, Osel Thimphu Bhutan, Bhutan Boutique Residency

37. Trashi Chhoe Dzong – For Religious Celebrations

Trashi Chhoe Dzong

In the list of famous places in Bhutan, monasteries are plenty. Trashi Chhoe Dzong is where all the festivities and religious events in Thimphu take place. It is the largest monastery in the northern fringe of Thimphu. So, it is kind of hard to miss. Dzongs are anyway important structures and religious institutions in Bhutan. So, you must visit this place on your holiday.

Location: Chhagchhen Lam, Thimphu, Bhutan Timings: 9 AM – 5:00 PM, 5:30 PM – 6 PM How to reach : Take a taxi or bike from anywhere in Thimphu to get here. Places To Stay:  Ludrong Hotel, DORJI Elements – Boutique Hotel, Namseling Boutique Hotel, Taj Tashi Bhutan, Osel Thimphu Bhutan

Bhutan Trip In April: A Vacation With Friends Can Be Way More Fun Like This

38. Tower Of Trongsa – The Cultural History Of Bhutan

Tower Of Trongsa antique

One of the exciting visiting places in Bhutan, the Tower of Trongsa gives you a rar chance to step into the history and culture of Bhutan. Witness a great collection of Bhutanese artifacts kept at the Tower of Trongsa Museum, which itself is unique in its structure with its circular tower and five interesting storeys. Famous as one of the best Bhutan tourist places , this museum was a high watchtower a few centuries ago and the building still retains its age-old charm. You can find everything from Buddhist art, diverse treasures, items of religious importance, and even the 500-year-old jacket of Ngagi Wangchuk displayed here to catch the attention of visitors and teach them a thing or two about the unique culture and history of Bhutan.

Location: Paro-Samdrupjongkhar Road, Trongsa, Bhutan Timings: 9 AM – 4:30 PM (Sundays Closed) How to reach : Take a taxi from Thimphu to get to Trongsa

39. Hidden Valleys Of Bumthang – Set Out On A Quest

Bumthang hidden valley

Bumthang is surely one of the best valleys in Bhutan , but little do people know that it is more than what meets the eye! It is believed (and has been discovered by plenty of travelers) that the region of Bumthang is home to many hidden valleys in the Himalayas. These valleys remain concealed from the outside world in order to provide sanctuary and solace to the devoted who come here to seek refuge in times of need. From all that is known, the valleys of Bumthang are a paradise like no other and hunting them on your trip would surely be one of the most adventurous things to do in Bhutan with friends .

Location: Bumthang, Bhutan How to reach : Nearest airport is Bathpalathang Airport. From there, take a taxi or bike to get to Bumthang.

Why Is Bhutan Known As The Kingdom Of Happiness? Anuj’s Bhutan Trip Experience Is The Answer!

40. Torsa Strict Nature Reserve – Untouched Natural Beauty

Rufous Necked Hornbill torsa nature reserve

When in Bhutan, visiting places like the Torsa Strict Nature Reserve can be quite an refreshing experience for all kinds of travelers, especially nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts. Torsa is among the most famous tourist attractions in Bhutan not just because it’s the only nature reserve in the world that has not been tampered by human inhabitation but also because it is the home of a diverse range of flora and fauna. Jeweled with beautiful alpine vegetation and broad leaf tree forests, it is among the most preferred places for trekking in Bhutan. Don’t forget to look for and spot the Rufous Necked Hornbill when you’re here.

Location: Western Haa, Bhutan Timings: Open 24X7 How to reach : Hire a taxi or bike from anywhere in Phuentsholing to get here. Places To Stay:  Haa Heritage Hotel, Econest Home Stay, Zuluk Dil Maya, Seluja homestay, Soyangla Homestay

41. Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary – The Newest Addition

Wildlife Sanctuary

A new addition to the family of wildlife reserves in Bhutan, Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the captivating places to go in Bhutan . This Wildlife Sanctuary is not only home to some exotic wildlife but also the nomadic tribes. From Himalayan black bear, barking deer, red pandas, and snow leopards to some vibrant species of birds such as Assamese macaw, grey-backed shrike, blood pheasant, and common hoopoe, there’s plenty to see.

This Wildlife Sanctuary is spread over 650 sq. km and exhibits the beautiful Himalayan ecosystem at its best. For those who seek the get off the beaten path can consider heading to this Sanctuary. This sanctuary is a perfect getaway from the city life and soaking in the alluring beauty of the various marvels that mother nature has displayed.

Location: Easternmost Bhutan Key attractions: The beautiful snow leopards, the art of bird watching, trekking for every level of trekker, and the variety of plant species. How to reach: After reaching the Paro airport, hire the local taxi that is readily available to reach the Wildlife Sanctuary. Places To Stay:  Nuraneng Resort, Red Berry Riverview Homestay, VAMOOSETRAIL DIRANG, Hot Spring Homestay, Hotel Pemaling Timings : 11 AM – 4 PM

17 Spellbinding Places To Visit In Thimphu On Your Next Trip To Bhutan

42. Mo Chhu River – A Beautiful Scenery Awaits

Mo Chhu

The Mo Chhu is a major river in Bhutan and flows through Punakha in central Bhutan. It flows through the famous Dagana and Tsirang districts as well. Why it makes it to the list of Bhutan famous places is due to its ever beautiful scenic nature and being a natural abode for rafting. Punakha is the main town which offers rafting facilities from this river.

Location : Punakha, Bhutan Key attractions : Adventure activities, scenery, clean water Timings : Always open

43. National Institute for Zorig Chusum – To Witness Art

painting school offers various courses

The National Institute for Zorig Chusum is one of the finest places to visit in Bhutan which is otherwise known as ‘the painting school’. The school operates 4 to 6 year courses providing instruction in Bhutan’s 13 major traditional arts. The beautiful school has cherished generations of artists in the country. It has helped in gaining specialized skills including painting of furniture and thangkas, woodcarving, clay making. 

Location : Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions : Bhutanese art masterpieces Timings : 9 AM to 5 PM (Saturday and Sunday closed)

Bhutan In March: All That You Need To Do In The Land Of Thunder Dragons!

44. Handicrafts Market – For Local Goods

Market

One of the finest places to visit in Bhutan is the Handicrafts Market located in Thimpu. Across the Kundeyling Baazam, there is a cantilevered footbridge from where this market can be reached. Located on the east bank, it sells anything from mala beads and wooden bowls to amulets, yak tails and printing blocks.

Location : Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions : Traditional handicrafts, Amulets Timings : Always open

45. Memorial Chorten – A Peace Statue

National Memorial Chorten

A popular Buddhist temple or the Memorial Stupa is located in Thimphu and also popular as Thimphu Chorten. It is an iconic memorial  built in memory of Third Druk Gyalpo and more importantly dedicated to World Peace. The structure is particularly impressive and made of large white structure topped with a golden spire. It is one of the top places to visit in Bhutan to witness the calm and quiet culture.

Location : Chhoten Lam, Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions : The memorial, architecture Timings : 9 AM to 5 PM 

Paro Taktsang: An Ultimate Traveler’s Guide To Trek And Explore The Tiger’s Nest Temple Of Bhutan

46. Druk Path – The Countryside Trek

trekking in bhutan

As if you need more witnesses to confirm that Bhutan is beautiful, Druk Path stands as a constant reminder of the country’s pristine natural aura. Why it is placed in the top tourist places in Bhutan is due to the magnificent natural scenes and a popular trek route all across Bhutan. You witness the gorgeous natural landscapes, the blue pine forests, ridges and lakes that overpower the region. You can also visit some ancient dzongs, villages and lhakhangs.

Location : Paro and Thimphu valleys Key attractions : Natural beauty, villages, lakes Timings : Always open

47. Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary – UNESCO World Heritage Site

bhutan country tourist places

Image Credit: Christopher J. Fynn for Wikimedia Commons

Encompassing an array of diverse forests, including Alder forest, Conifer forests, Evergreen Oak forest, and Alpine scree slopes, Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the most exotic places to visit in Bhutan. The sanctuary comprises lush green terrains, providing an ideal habitat for various species of birds. It is one of the UNESCO world heritage sites and certainly one of the best places to see in Bhutan.

Location: Lhuntse, Mongar, Trashiyangtse, Bhutan Best Time To Visit: March to October Entry Fee: ₹5 per person Things To Do: Trekking, camping, birdwatching, photography How to reach: Take a rented cab/ taxi from Yonphula Airport.

Laya Gasa Trek: A Handy Guide For Planning The Most Scenic Adventure In Bhutan

48. Phuentsholing – Hidden Gem

bhutan country tourist places

Image Credit: Bernard Gagnon for Wikimedia Commons

Resting peacefully near the Indian border, adjacent to Jaigaon, Phuentsholing is one of the unexplored hidden gems of Bhutan. Capturing the essence of Bhutan and representing the perfect blend of Indian, Bhutanese and Nepalese ethnicities, this town is unique and surreal. As it is located on the border, it is a prominent connect link between the two countries.

Location: Chukha district, Bhutan Key Attractions: Torsa River Side, Zangto Pelri Lhakhang, Bhutan Gate How to reach: Take a bus from Paro or Siliguri. Places To Stay: Hotel Phuentsholing, Tropical Suites, Hotel Thuenpa Puenzhi

49. Trashiyangtse – Reflecting Bhutan’s Traditional Art

bhutan country tourist places

Image Credit: Vikramjit Kakati for Wikimedia Commons

Located in Yangtse Gewog, Trashiyangtse is a small town in Bhutan. Representing the fine traditional artistry of the people of Bhutan, Trashiyangtse encompasses The School of Traditional Arts, one of the most prominent art schools in Bhutan. One of the most iconic places in Bhutan, featuring traditional Bhutanese houses amid a tranquil environment, this town has a rustic appeal to it. The population of this town comprises merely 2735 people.

Location: Yangtse Gewog, Bhutan Key Attractions: The School of Traditional Arts, Chorten Kora, Zorig Chusum Things To Do: Camping, trekking, shopping How to reach: Take a bus or taxi from Thimpu.

Your All-Inclusive Travel Guide To Chelela Pass In Bhutan

50. Wangchuck Wildlife Sanctuary – Savour the Adventure

bhutan country tourist places

Image Credit: Nandini Velho for Wikimedia Commons

Nestled in the lush green terrains of the five districts of Bhutan, Wangchuck Wildlife Sanctuary encompasses a vast area of 4919 sq. km. Home to various animal species, including Himalayan red fox, snow leopard, and Royal Bengal tiger, this sanctuary is famous for its picturesque landscapes. An idyllic destination for adventure lovers and photography enthusiasts, this sanctuary is a top tourist attraction and one of the best places to visit in Bhutan.

Location: Gasa, Bhutan Timings: Monday – Friday: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Entry Fee: ₹150 How to reach: You can take a bus or a rented taxi.

51. Weekend Market

bhutan country tourist places

Market are the best places to capture the true vibe of a city. Grabbing a souvenir or checking out local products as a token of remembrance is surely not a bad idea on a vacation. Bhutan hosts numerous weekend markets in Thimphu. These interesting setups are for the entire day, and people start reaching on the night of Thursday and stay until Sunday late hours.

Location:  Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions:  Interesting items at an affordable price How to reach:  Can walk down the street or take a public transport Places To Stay: Le Meridian Thimphu, Taj Tashi  Timings: 9 AM to 10 PM

Budget Travel To Bhutan: Our Family Trip Will Find A Special Place In Your #TravelGoals List

52. Philatelic Bureau

bhutan country tourist places

Do you love collecting stamps or have a fascination to see them? If yes then Philatelic Bureau in Thimphu is one such post office that will amaze you! You can also buy personalized stamps from here with your picture on it. They even gift the entire sheet of those stamps to the visitors.

Location:  Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions:  Unique collection of stamps How to reach:  Can be easily reached by road Places To Stay:  Le Meridian Thimphu, Taj Tashi  Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM

53. National Library

bhutan country tourist places

National Library is a prominent centre of culture and religious side of Bhutanese and exhibits their exquisite way of living. The National library was established in 1967. The magnificent structure of the library is admirable and is located in the Kawajangsa area of Thimphu.

Location:  PO Box 185, Pedzoe Lam, Thimphu, Bhutan Key attractions:  Prominent centre of culture and religion How to reach:  Can be easily reached by road Places To Stay:  Le Meridian Thimphu, Taj Tashi, Hotel White Tara Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM

The Only Guide To Jakar Dzong In Bhutan You Need Before Embarking On Your Trip

Planning a trip to the happy neighboring country? Just book a trip to Bhutan , and enjoy a wonderful holiday in one of the most beautiful countries of the world. Let us know how was your experience navigating through these top tourist places in Bhutan. We assure you that you’ll have a blast and make the most of your time there. Are you ready for an adventure?

For our editorial codes of conduct and copyright disclaimer, please click here .

Frequently Asked Questions About Tourist Places In Bhutan

Which tourist places in Bhutan are open for tourists post the pandemic?

The picturesque country of Bhutan is home to some spectacular landmarks and awe-inspiring places. Some of the places that can be explored in Bhutan post the pandemic are: 1. Chele La Pass 2. Phobjikha Valley 3. Chomolhari 4. Haa Valley 5. Lhuentse 6. Gasa Tshachu

Which are some of the tourist places in Bhutan that are not over-crowded?

Oozing serenity, Bhutan encompasses some of the most majestic and tranquil places in the world. Here are a few places in Bhutan that are not over-crowded and are brimming with tranquillity: 1. Bumthang 2. Druk Path 3. Trashiyangtse 4. Phobjikha Valley 5. Lhuentse

Which are some of the best tourist places in Bhutan for families with kids?

If you wish to explore the spellbinding lands of Bhutan with family, then check out these kids friendly places in the country: 1. Rinpung Dzong 2. Punakha Dzong 3. Dochula Pass 4. Norzin Lam 5. Paro 6. National Museum of Bhutan

Which are some of the best tourist places in Bhutan for couples?

The picturesque valleys, captivating mountainscapes, and forested hills of Bhutan offer a perfect romantic getaway to couples. Some of the best tourist places in Bhutan for couples are: 1. Chele La Pass 2. Haa Valley 3. Lhuentse 4. Dagala Thousand Lakes 5. Valleys of Bumthang 6. Mo Chhu River 7. Chomolhari

Is it safe to visit Bhutan in the upcoming months?

The tourism industry in Bhutan is slowly reopening and there are safety precautions in place for travellers who are planning a trip late this year or early next year. Yes, it is safe to visit Bhutan if you take all the necessary precautions during travel as recommended by the government.

When is the best time to visit Bhutan?

October to December is one of the best times to visit Bhutan. The weather is sunny during this time with some snow at higher elevations. If you want to see the flowers blooming and the magic of spring months, then plan your visit from March to May.

Do we need a visa for Bhutan?

No, there is no need for Bhutan Visa For Indians.

Looking To Book An International Holiday?

bhutan country tourist places

Trip to Sri Lanka at Rs 13,500/-

Plan Your Vacation Today!

bhutan country tourist places

Trip to Singapore at Rs 20,499/-

Get Quotes From Local Experts

bhutan country tourist places

Mauritius Holiday Starting at Rs 65,000/-

Talk to Our Experts Today

bhutan country tourist places

Maldives Honeymoon Trip at Rs 39,800/-

Pay with easy EMI Option

bhutan country tourist places

Europe Trip at Rs 89,999/-

All Inclusive Deals

bhutan country tourist places

Vacation in Dubai at Rs 27,499/-

bhutan country tourist places

Hong Kong Holiday at Rs 24,999/-

Money Safe Guarantee

bhutan country tourist places

Thailand Holiday at Rs 7,999/-

Flights Excluded

People Also Read

Tourist Places In Assam Tourist Places In Nepal Tourist Places In India

Recent Posts

bhutan country tourist places

Sun, Sand And Vagator Beach – A Must Experience To Indulge In Goa 2024

bhutan country tourist places

The Most Comprehensive Guide To Explore Deer Park Yercaud In 2024

bhutan country tourist places

A Sacred Gem Shree Dodda Ganapathi Temple In Bangalore’s Spiritual Landscape To Visit In 2024

St. Cajetan Church

St Cajetan Church Is A Must Have Experience To Remember In 2024

patalpuri kila

A Complete Guide To The Holy Shrine Of Patalpuri Kila To Visit In 2024

Hathipaon

Unveiling Hathipaon Which Is A Serene Jewel In The Foothills Of Mussoorie To Explore In 2024

Trending Blogs

bhutan country tourist places

20 Mysterious Places In India To Visit In 2024 More Bizarre Than The Bermuda Triangle

bhutan country tourist places

10 Scariest Roads In India That Are A Driver’s Nightmare

bhutan country tourist places

101 Places To Visit In India Before You Turn 30 in 2024

Skiing In Krasnaya Polyana

35 Exotic Places To Visit In December In India 2024 To Enjoy A Surreal Vacation

a couple in front of taj mahal

60 Best Honeymoon Destinations In India In 2024

Best honeymoon destinations in the world

95 Best Honeymoon Destinations In The World In 2023 For A Romantic Escape!

Best Places To Visit In India By Month

Best places to visit outside india by month.

  • TravelTriangle
  • International
  • Bhutan »
  • Tour Packages
  • Honeymoon Packages
  • Family Packages
  • Budget Tour Packages
  • Luxury Tour Packages
  • Adventure Tour Packages
  • Group Tour Packages
  • Maldives Tour Packages
  • Bali Tour Packages
  • Dubai Tour Packages
  • Singapore Tour Packages
  • Thailand Tour Packages
  • Europe Tour Packages
  • Sri Lanka Tour Packages
  • Tour Packages From Delhi
  • Tour Packages From Mumbai
  • Tour Packages From Bangalore
  • Tour Packages From Chennai
  • Tour Packages From Kolkata
  • Tour Packages From Hyderabad
  • Tour Packages From Ahmedabad
  • Thailand Tourism
  • Bali Tourism
  • Singapore Tourism
  • Maldives Tourism
  • Mauritius Tourism
  • Dubai Tourism
  • Europe Tourism
  • Hotels in Thailand
  • Hotels in Maldives
  • Hotels in Mauritius
  • Hotels in Bali
  • Hotels in Dubai
  • Hotels in Singapore
  • Hotels in Sri Lanka
  • Ten Best Places to Visit in Bhutan

Thimphu, Bhutan's capital and most visited destination. Editorial credit: DeepakJoshi / Shutterstock.com.

The Kingdom of Bhutan is a small nation in South Asia , nestled in the heart of the Himalayas. The country is famous for its natural splendor, which features tall, ice-capped peaks, mountain rivers, massive glaciers, lush green forests, and rich biodiversity. There are several popular historical, cultural, and religious destinations for tourists. Here is a list of some of the best places to visit in Bhutan:

10. Phobjikha Valley And Gangtey Treks

bhutan country tourist places

The Phobjikha Valley is well known for its scenic beauty. The famous Gangteng Monastery of Bhutan is located here. Every winter, rare black-necked cranes from Tibet visit the valley to roost. Interestingly, these cranes are known to circle the Gangteng Monastery three times as they arrive in the valley near the last week of October. As they depart the valley, they perform the same act of circling the monastery three times. The Crane Festival is held each year at the monastery to welcome the cranes into the valley. The Phobjikha Valley is also rich in biodiversity, and hosts 13 globally threatened species. The Phobjikha Valley and Gangtey treks are popular activities for tourists visiting the region.

9. Royal Manas National Park

Stretching from the banks of the Manas River to the ice covered tops of the Himalayan mountains, the Royal Manas National Park is a treasure of Bhutan waiting to be explored. It is the country’s oldest national park and occupies an area of 1,057 square km. The park is home to the nation’s charismatic megafauna, such as Bengal tigers, elephants, wild water buffalo, and rhinoceroses. A large number of birds, including four species of hornbills and other rare species, also inhabit the park.

bhutan country tourist places

Punakha is a town and administrative center of the Punakha dzongkhag (district), and served as the capital of the Bhutanese government until 1955, when it was replaced by Thimphu. Punakha is located at an elevation of 1,200 meters and is most famous for the Punakha Dzong. Also known as the Palace of Great Happiness, construction of the Punakha Dzong began in 1637 and was completed within two years under the command of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal. It is the most beautiful Dzong of Bhutan and houses sacred Buddhist relics. The first king of Bhutan was coronated at this site in 1907. Located at the junction point of two mountain rivers, the Punakha Dzong is vulnerable to flash flooding when the glaciers melt during warm periods. Tourists to Punakha can also visit the tiny Ritsha village nearby, which features homes made from pounded mud with stone foundations. Rice fields and gardens surround these houses. The rice grown here is famous throughout Bhutan.

7. Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary

The Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary is a protected area spanning parts of Bhutan's Trashigang and Samdrup Jongkhar Districts. The sanctuary is home to several endemic species of flora and fauna, like the eastern blue pine and the black-rumped magpie. The origins of the sanctuary are associated with an interesting tale. Unlike most other protected areas of the world that are established to protect the wild flora and fauna of the region, the Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary was established to protect the migoi, a cryptid creature similar to a yeti. Although there is no scientific evidence to prove the creature's existence, locals strongly believe that the migoi lives in the region.

6. Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary

The Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary encompasses an area of 1,520.61 square km in northeastern Bhutan and is one of the top natural attractions in the country. The elevation of the sanctuary ranges between 1,500 meters and 6,000 meters. The Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary was established in 1998 and features a rich biodiversity, scenic landscapes, alpine lakes, and picturesque valleys. The sanctuary is a favorite destination of bird lovers around the world. In fact, it has been identified as an Important Bird Area (IBA). Black-necked cranes, grey-crowned prinias, and wood snipes are some of the notable birds of the sanctuary.

5. Lhuntse Dzong

The Lhuntse Dzong is a Buddhist monastery and dzong located in eastern Bhutan’s Lhuntse District. The Kuri Chhu river flows near the dzong along a scenic valley surrounded by high peaks. The monastery was built in 1543 and underwent a series of modifications since then to attain its present form. The dzong served as the ancestral home of the Wangchuck Dynasty in the past. The Lhuntse Dzong features five temples and an assembly hall for monks. The Khoma village is a nearby attraction, famous for the Kishu Thara, which is an intricate woven silk cloth.

bhutan country tourist places

Paro is a town that is home to several important sacred and historical sites in Bhutan. It is located in the Paro Valley and hosts the country's only international airport. One of the major attractions in Paro is the Rinpung Dzong, a Buddhist fortress and monastery, which has been included in Bhutan's Tentative List for inclusion as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The famous Taktsang Monastery is also accessible from Paro. The town also features examples of traditional architecture, boutique shops, and local restaurants.

3. Taktsang Monastery

bhutan country tourist places

Renowned for its beauty and uniqueness, the Taktsang Palphug Monastery, also known as the Paro Taktsang and the Tiger's Nest, is a Buddhist sacred site precariously located on a cliffside high on the Himalayas in Bhutan’s upper Paro valley. The monastery was established in 1692 and is believed to be the site where Guru Padmasambhava, the tutelary deity of the country, meditated for years. The monastery is visited by both ordinary tourists and renowned personalities from across the world. After trekking for three hours, Prince William and Kate Middleton visited the site on April 15, 2016.

2. Jigme Dorji National Park

bhutan country tourist places

The Jigme Dorji National Park is a picturesque wilderness area in Bhutan. The park was established in 1974 and now occupies an area of 4316 square km. The elevation of the park ranges between 1,400 and 7,000 meters and encompasses a wide variety of habitats that change with altitude. The Jigme Dorji National Park is a perfect destination for wildlife lovers, as it home to more than 37 species of mammals. These include fierce predators like the Bengal tiger, Himalayan black bear, clouded leopard, snow leopard, and the Indian leopard. The national park is also rich in herbivore fauna, like the takin, barking deer, goral, and sambar. Additionally, the park hosts several birds of vibrant colors that are a pleasure to watch. The Jigme Dorji National Park also offers a spiritual experience to the visitor and several sites of cultural importance.

bhutan country tourist places

Thimphu is the capital and only city of the Kingdom of Bhutan. Located in the heart of the country, it is the world’s third highest capital city by altitude. It stretches along the western bank of the Raidāk River Valley. Thimphu fully reflects the culture of Bhutan and therefore is the country's most visited destination. The most notable attraction in Thimphu is the Tashichho Dzong, a fortress and Buddhist monastery at the city’s northern edge that has traditionally served as the seat of the head of the Bhutan's civil government, known as Druk Desi. Other attractions in Thimphu include the Simtokha Dzong, Dechen Phodrang Monastery, Dechencholing Palace, Tango Monastery, Buddha Dordenma, and Memorial Chorten. The Motithang Takin Preserve is a top nature attraction in Thimphu. Originally founded as a mini-zoo, the attraction has been upgraded to a preserve and houses a significant population of the national animal of the country, the takin.

More in Travel

A white passenger jet plane flying high through the cumulus clouds in the blue sky, seen from the front view.

11 Most Turbulent Flight Routes In The World

Aerial view of the South Haven Lighthouse on Lake Michigan

Four Satiating Towns in Southwestern Michigan

Mackinac Island, Michigan

The 9 Best Towns Along Lake Michigan

One of the many colorful beachside murals in Grand Bend, Ontario

Lambton Shores, Ontario: Exploring Nature and Community

Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania. Alizada Studios - stock.adobe.com

11 Most Underrated Towns In Pennsylvania To Take A Trip To

The fresh blue waters of Lake Michigan meet the beaches and wild-grass-strewn dunes along its southeastern shore.

Indiana Dunes vs Warren Dunes: Comparing Two Lake Michigan Parks

Downtown Ithaca, New York.

13 Most Underrated Towns In New York To Take A Trip To

A traveler sits on a wooden bench, next to a backpack topped with a sun hat, inside of a long train station.

Tales in Transit: The Twists & Turns of World Travel

Bhutanese monks

Bhutan travel guide – Top 12 places to visit in Bhutan

There's so much to see and do in Bhutan. So what do you prioritise? We discuss our favourite places, which include towns, villages, temples and fortresses, national parks, museums, archery grounds, and more! We also talk when to go and rules for visitors.

Bhutan is a magical place. It’s rich in history and culture, spiritual and authentic, and tucked away in the Himalayas. It’s an enticingly far cry from all that is too Western and generic in our highly globalised world. Unsurprisingly, many people are nudging the Kingdom of the Thunder Dragon higher up on their bucket lists. So what many of us now need is a Bhutan travel guide. We want advice on where to visit, when, and to get there. We’re here to help.

We also touch on rules for travellers and the best time to visit Bhutan.

Where should I visit in Bhutan?

If you have limited time or don’t wish to travel too far once you’ve landed in Bhutan, we recommend you prioritise the following three northwestern districts:

  • Paro (home to Bhutan’s international airport)
  • Thimphu (the capital)

You can see them in the map below.

Bhutan_Map-1-1024x724.jpg

Map showing some key places in Bhutan

A little note: Most of Bhutan’s 20 districts have the same name as their capital city. We point this out so you don't get confused in your research!

Paro, Thimphu and Punakha are among the most popular districts with tourists. They don’t, however, only have easy accessibility on their side; the northwest of Bhutan is also full of gorgeous scenery, rich wildlife, fascinating history, wonderful architecture, and more.

For this reason, we introduce you to the highlights of these three districts first …

Top 12 places to visit in Bhutan

It’s time to deliver on the promised Bhutan travel guide. So here it is, our pick of the top 12 places to visit in the Land of the Thunder Dragon. We start with northwest Bhutan ...

1. Historic city of Paro

Paro is a small, valley city in a wide, lush valley. Colourful, low-rise buildings line the banks of Paro Chhu River, many built in traditional Bhutanese style.

 Paro Valley and city in summer

Paro Valley and city

Rinpung Dzong (Fortress) sits broodingly a little above the city, while rice paddies on either side of the river spread out to the base of the mountains. From here, alpine trees rise up the slopes towards often-clouded mountain peaks.

Fun fact: Paro was one of very few places in Bhutan that could be considered as a location for the country's international airport. This is because the landscape of Bhutan is so mountainous that finding a place for an international-length runway was rather difficult! Thimphu, the country's capital, wasn't a viable candidate, which is why the small town of Paro has the honour of receiving all international tourists flying into the country.

A Bhutanese Buddhist Monastery in Paro, Bhutan

A traditional monastery in Paro

Some of the must-see places in Paro include:

  • The large Buddhist prayer wheel in the central plaza of Paro city.
  • Ugyen Perli Palace, the gorgeous, gold-topped building that serves as the royal family's home when in Paro.
  • Jangtsa Dumtseg Lhakhang, a temple in the form of a chorten across the bridge from the city.
  • Zuri Dzong, built in 1352 and one of Bhutan’s oldest

A dzong is a monastery cum fortress. They're dotted all over Bhutan.

Rinpung Dzong

Also known as Paro Dzong, Rinpung Dzong is a seventeenth-century monastery that sits next to Paro Chhu River.

Rinpung Dzong (Monastery) in Paro is lit up beautifully at night

Rinpung Dzong (Monastery) is lit up beautifully at night

The dzong is a gorgeous showcase of traditional Bhutanese dzong architecture: imposing fortress walls encompass an interior complex of administration offices, monks’ accommodation, a temple and a courtyard. 

Inside the fortress you can see colourful wall paintings of religious scenes, highly decorated arches and intricate wood carvings, and also learn the story of the dzong's founding.

Courtyard of Rinpung Dzong, Paro District

Courtyard of Rinpung Dzong

As Rinpung Dzong was built on a low mountain spur, a small, round watchtower was built higher up the mountain. This now houses the National Museum of Bhutan . The galleries of the museum showcase, among other things:

  • Religious festival masks.
  • Delicate thangkas (Tibetan Buddhist religious paintings).
  • Statues of rare animals.
  • A model of Tiger’s Nest.

Colourful windows of Rinpung Dzong in Paro

Colourful windows of Rinpung Dzong

How to get there

Paro Airport is an international airport and so is the entry point for anyone flying into Bhutan.

Paro Airport, Bhutan

Paro Airport is the country's only international airport

2. Tiger’s Nest Monastery

Arguably the main – almost non-negotiable – activity to do in Paro District is hike to Tiger’s Nest.

This famously picturesque Buddhist temple complex is perched compellingly on a cliff ledge about 900 m above the Paro Valley floor. It’s properly known as Paro Taktasang, and was built in 1692 in honour of Guru Rinpoche. Rinpoche is the eighth-century Buddhist master credited with introducing Buddhism to what is today Bhutan.  

Tiger's Nest in winter

Tiger's Nest, or Paro Taktsang, as seen in winter, reminding you that Bhutan can get very cold!

The various buildings that make up the Tiger's Nest complex are connected via stone steps as well as rickety wooden bridges. Visitors are allowed to explore the complex as well as go inside some of the buildings to see the monastery's many treasures. These include historically important thangkas (religious paintings on silk) and wall paintings.

Tiger's Nest

Tiger's Nest is a C17th monastery that's a popular day hike among visitors to Bhutan

To reach Tiger’s Nest, we recommend you drive the short distance from Paro to the Tiger's Nest parking lot. From here, you must hike or take a horse ride along the Taktsang Trail.

Hike to Tiger's Nest

It requires some decent leg work to reach Tiger's Nest

The route to Tiger's Nest is 4.3 km (2.5 miles) each way. You should give yourself around three to five hours to hike up to Tiger’s Nest. The descent obviously goes a lot quicker. It’s an incredibly beautiful trail with the changing scenery keeping you nicely entertained along the way.

You can learn more in All you need to know to climb Tiger's Nest .

3. Capital city of Thimphu

Thimphu, the capital and most populous settlement in Thimphu, is a true must see. You get so much bang for your buck, as there are just so many world-class treasures on your doorstep here.

Tashichho Dzong in Thimphu

Tashichho Dzong is the capital fortress of Bhutan

We’ll limit ourselves to a brief description of each of the places we advise visiting:

  • Buddha Point. Here you can see Buddha Dordenma, a massive and iconic bronze Buddha statue, as well as several other religious statues. They all sit on a platform high above Thimphu, offering tourists a fantastic view of the valley and city.  

Buddha Point in Thimphu

Buddha Point in Thimphu

  • Folk Heritage Home Museum. As the name suggests, this museum offers insights into the traditional Bhutanese way of life. You can time your visit to see a demonstration of traditional rural tasks, skills and customs. 
  • Dochula Mountain Pass. Drive up to Docula Mountain Pass (3,150 m) just outside of town to see the beautiful Druk Wangyel Monastery and iconic Dochula Chorten. 

Dochula Pass

The iconic Dochula Chorten of Dochula Pass just outside of Thimphu

  • Gagyel Lhundrup Weaving Centre. Watch women weave beautifully patterned, high-quality, traditional Bhutanese fabrics and clothes on looms. Who knows, a gorgeous silk scarf or a kira (traditional Bhutanese dress) might find its way into your suitcase!
  • Centenary Farmers’ Market. If you love to explore the foods of different cultures, head to the weekend Farmers’ Market. A packet of spice or herbs could make the perfect souvenir of your Bhutan trip! You can also head across the river to visit the clothing, textiles and crafts market. 
  • Changlimithang Archery Ground. Archery is the national sport of Bhutan and, boy, are they good at it! Watch local archers hit impossibly far targets, and then give it a try yourself for a moment of humility!

Monks in training in Thimpu

Monks in training in Thimphu

Tashichho Dzong

Also known as Thimphu Dzong, this fortress is the administrative hub of the Kingdom of Bhutan. Its name means “fortress of the glorious religion”.

Tashichho Dzong in spring in Thimphu, Bhutan

The enormous Tashichho Dzong

The best time to visit is 100% during Tshechu, the annual religious festival held between the 11th to the 15th day of the eighth month of the Bhutanese calendar. (This usually falls in late September or early October.) Tashichho Dzong is at the heart of Thimphu Tshechu, and here you’ll see colourful and traditional masked dances, be able to shop local wares at the pop-up market, and much, much more.  

Tschechu Festival in Tashichho Dzong, Thimphu

Thimphu Tshechu (Festival) in Tashichho Dzong

It takes just 75 minutes to drive from Paro to Thimphu.

4. Old capital of Punakha

Punakha is a gorgeous valley city that was the capital of Bhutan up until 1955.

It’s a relatively warm valley with milder winters than Thimphu. Punakha is where the first king of a united Bhutan, Ugyen Wangchuck, was crowned in 1907.

Punakha should definitely be on your Bhutan travel itinerary, as it has a heady mix of history, culture, natural beauty and exciting outdoor activities to offer.

Punakha Dzong and river, explore Bhutan

White water rafting along the Po Chhu and Mo Chhu is a fun way to see more of the treasures of Punakha

Punakha Suspension Bridge

The Punakha Suspension Bridge is an iron-chain suspension bridge of about 160 m long that connects the town of Punakha with the rest of the valley. It’s the second-longest suspension bridge in all Bhutan. One of the reasons necessitating the bridge is the occasional flash flood in the valley caused by melt from glacial lakes up river.

Punakha suspension bridge

Punakha Suspension Bridge is 160 m long and one of the oldest suspension bridges in the world!

Punakha Suspension Bridge is extremely popular with visitors to Punakha. It offers fantastic views of the dzong and the valley. And it can get the adrenaline going when the wind picks up and the bridge starts to sway!

Punakha Dzong

Punakha Dzong is the largest and second oldest dzong in Bhutan. It’s official name is the lengthy Pungthang Dewachen Gi Phodrang, which means 'Palace of Great Happiness'.

Punakha Dzong, Bhutan travel guide

Punakha Dzong, built in the C17th, sits at the confluence of the Mo Chhu and Po Chhu

The dzong sits at the confluence of Po Chhu and Mo Chhu Rivers. For this reason, you’re able to raft past the dzong and see it from the water, which is popular with Bhutan tourists.

The dzong is especially attractive in spring when the purple blooms of the jacaranda trees around it are in flower.

Jacarandas in Punakha, Bhutan

Gorgeous jacaranda blooms show up all over Punakha in spring

Fertility Monastery of Bhutan

The Fertility MOnastery of Bhutan (more accurately known as Chimi Lhakhang) is a modest, traditional monastery that dates as far back as 1499.

The ornate facade of Chimi Lhakhang monastery, Fertility Monastery in Punakha, Bhutan

It sits a a little ways outside of Punakha, and you can hike there along a beautiful trail. The temple is known worldwide for its success in helping couples to fall pregnant. If you're looking to conceive, the temple welcomes visitors to partake in its fertility ritual.

It takes a little over three hours to drive from Paro to Punakha. You’ll be on a highway the whole time. If you're heading there from Thimphu, the drive is just two and a half hours.

5. Beautiful Haa Valley

The Haa Valley in Haa District is a gorgeous region that makes for a perfect day’s outing from Paro.

Part of the fun is the drive there, which is a two-hour jaunt meandering up zigzag mountain roads to reach the lookout point at Chele La Pass (3,988 m). The view from here over the lush Haa Valley and towards the snow-capped Himalayan peaks is glorious. 

Has Valley Bhutan travel guide

Haa Valley is a gorgeous traditional Bhutanese and Himalayan valley village

The Haa Valley consists of traditional buildings, terraced fields and thickly forested mountains on either sides of the Haa Chhu River. If you visit in summer, you’ll be treated to the Haa Summer Festival, which includes displays of archery and spear throwing.

Hike to Kila Nunnery

We also recommend making time to visit Kila Nunnery. This ninth-century nunnery – the oldest in Bhutan – is home to around 50 nuns.

Kila Nunnery, Haa Valley, Bhutan

Kila Nunnery

Similarly to Tiger’s Nest, the temple complex sits precariously on a mountainside ridge, offering dramatic views of the valley below.

You can reach Kila Nunnery via a one-hour hike from Chele La (Pass). On the hike you’ll walk through forest, encounter prayer flags and chortens (shrines), and get the chance to spot many gorgeous birds including Gould’s sunbird and the Himalayan bluebird.

Pur. Chele Pass Bhutan flags

A forest of prayer flags on Chele Pass

Has Valley is a 65 km drive from the town of Paro. As mentioned above, the drive is part of the appeal of the trip, as the scenery is spectacular.

Traditional buildings in Has Valley

Traditional architecture on display in Haa Valley

6. Jigme Dorji National Park

Jigme Dorji National Park covers a whopping 4,316 km² and is Bhutan’s second largest protected area. It extends into five districts and ranges in elevation from 1,400 to 7,000 m above sea level. The park was named after King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, who reigned from 1952 to 1972 and helped to modernise and stabilise Bhutan. 

Kang Bum peak in Jigme Dorji NP Bhutan travel guide

The mighty Kang Bum (6,494 m) in Jigme Dorji National Park

World Heritage Site

Bhutan has eight fantastic national parks, all with their own special offerings, so it can be hard to pick which to visit. That said, we feel Jigme Dorji National Park definitely deserves to be near the top of the list. For starters, its immensely rich ecology has earned it a spot as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

bird Bhutan travel guide

A little bird on a moss-covered rock in the park's Jangothang campsite

The scenery of Jigme Dorji NP is simply sublime, and naturally varies greatly across the park. It’s a fantastic place for day hikes as well as longer treks. You can find towering peaks, glaciers, alpine meadows, conifer forest, scrubland, broadleaved forests and fast-paced rivers. Many of the 300+ plant species are used in traditional medicines.

Close up of a delicate Himalayan blue poppy

Close up of a delicate Himalayan blue poppy

Keep your eyes open for the incomparably delicate and delightful Himalayan blue poppy, as well as edelweiss, orchids and rhododendrons. 

Bhutan's best trekking

Some of Bhutan's very best multiday treks take place inside of Jigme Dorji National Park.

One of our favourites is the Jomolhari trek , which lasts seven days and gives you great views of Mt Jomolhari, a sacred mountain to the Bhutanese and therefore not open to climbers.

Pur. Jomolhari peak from Chele La pass, Bhutan

Mt Jomolhari rises to 7,326 m (24,035 ft) above sea level

Another world-class trek is the Laya trek , which takes you far north into the park and lets you visit the very remote Layap community in the town of Laya.

The wildlife of the park includes a stellar roundup: Bengal tigers, snow leopards, Himalayan black bears, takins, red pandas, blue sheep, musk deers, marmots and pheasants.

Bengal tiger

A mighty Bengal tiger

Jigme Dorji National Park is the only place in the world where snow leopards and Bengal tigers have overlapping habitats.

It takes a little under five hours to drive from Paro to Jigme Dorji National Park. It’s only a three-hour drive if you’re heading there from Punakha.

We now head to the south of Bhutan …

7. Royal Manas National Park

Speak to any Bhutanese and they’ll tell you that the Royal Manas National Park is a special park. It’s the oldest in the country, a conservation showpiece, and has been dubbed Bhutan’s Crown Jewel.

Manas River flows from Bhutan into India

The Manas River flows from Bhutan into India where it join the Brahmaputra River

The park, which covers 1,057 km², is home to roughly 5,000 people, who live in remote, isolated villages.

The park is a true wildlife sanctuary , showcasing numerous animals not found in the north of the country.

Clouded leopard, Bhutan travel guide

A gorgeous clouded leopard – spotting one of these has to be nirvana

Some of the precious species you can look for on safari include endangered Bengal tigers, clouded leopards, Asian elephants, Himalayan black bears, gaurs (Indian bisons), greater one-horned rhinos, wild buffalos, golden langurs, pygmy hogs, pangolins, hispid hares (bristly rabbits), and Ganges river dolphins. Need we say more??

Asian elephant in Manas Royal National Park, Bhutan

An Asian elephant spotted in Manas

The quickest way to reach Royal Manas National Park from Paro is to fly to Gelephu Domestic Airport, then drive the remaining 80 km to reach the park. The flight is only 40 minutes. One of the drawbacks, however, is that there aren’t flights there every day.

To drive there from Paro along the Wangdue–Tsirang Highway takes nearly eight hours, but there are plenty of very worthy destinations along the way, including Thimphu, and the scenery is gorgeous!

one-horned rhino, Bhutan travel guide

A greater one-horned rhino, also called an Indian rhino

And now to central Bhutan ...

8. World Heritage Site of Gangteng Valley

If you visit Bhutan, a great place to include in your itinerary is Gangteng Valley, also known as Gangtey Valley or Phobjikha Valley. A World Heritage Site, Gangteng Valley in Wangdue Phodrang District is a great place for learning about local Bhutanese culture and traditions.

Wall decoration details of Ganteng (or Gangtey) Monastery, Phobjikha Valley, Wangdue Phodrang District

There are numerous traditional Buddhist temples in the valley to visit such as Gela Drechagling Lhakhang and Gangteng Monastery. 

Ganteng is also very popular with trekkers as it’s included in the Gangtey trek route. The relatively easy trail winds through beautiful forests of juniper, bamboo, magnolia and rhododendron.

Dancer at Wangdue Phodrang Dzong for Wangdue Phodran Tshechu, Bhuntan festival

A dancer performing in the Wangdue Phodran Tshechu (Festival)

It’s also a great birdwatching location. In November of every year, Ganteng Village and Monastery celebrate the Crane Festival in honour of the arrival of endangered black-necked cranes from Tibet, who come south for the winter.

Ganteng Monastery

Ganteng Monastery, established in 1613 and is also known as Gantey Gonpa, can be reached by hiking part of the popular Gangtey trek route from the valley floor up to the gonpa.

Gangtey Monastery, Phobjikha Valley in the Wangdue Phodrang District

The front of Gangteng Monastery, which was renovated in 2008

The monastery was renovated in 2008, so the colours, architectural details and statues are now visible in their full glory. Seriously, this is one very attractive monastery you don’t want to miss!

The best and most affordable way to reach Gangteng Valley from Paro is to drive there. It's 204 km away and the drive takes about three hours.

Phobjikha Valley, Bhutan travel guide

Gangteng Valley (or Phobjikha Valley) with prayer flags in the foreground

9. Mediaeval town of Trongsa

If we were to serve as your Bhutan travel guide, we’d encourage you to pair a visit to Gangteng Valley with one to the mediaeval town of Trongsa.

Trongsa-Dzong-Bhutan-1024x683.jpg

Chökhor Raptentse (or Trongsa) Dzong with the eastern Himalayas in the background

Trongsa, like Gangteng Valley, sits pretty much smack dab in the middle of Bhutan.

Moreover, the drive connecting the two is very scenic. You pass through traditional villages, forests and pasturelands, and also cross both Lawa Pass (3,360 m) and Pele Pass (3,420 m). These passes offer awesome views of the snow-capped peaks of Jomolhari (7,326 m) and Jitchu Drake (6,662 m), among others.

Chökhor Raptentse Dzong

Chökhor Raptentse Dzong – or simply Trongsa Dzong – is an imposing, sprawling and very striking dzong.

Aerial view of Trongsa Dzong, Bhutan

Chökhor Raptentse Dzong used to control the trade road between east and west Bhutan

The fortress sits on a spur high above the Mangde Chhu River.

It was built in 1644 to be the seat of power of the Wangchuck Dynasty. Together with its watchtower higher up on the mountain, the dzong helped the Wangchucks to control the trade route between east and west Bhutan.

In 1907, the House of Wangchuck became rulers of all Bhutan, and remain the country's royal family.

The best way to reach Trongsa from Paro is to drive there along the Bumthang–Ura Highway. The journey takes about six hours. Alternatively, if you’re planning a visit to Jakar as well (which we advocate!), you could fly to Bathpalathang Airport (this takes just 35 minutes) and then drive west to Trongsa. The journey lasts about two hours.

10. Historic city of Jakar

Jakar is the capital of Bumthang District in north-central Bhutan.

Bumthang boasts some of the oldest and most spiritually important sites in all Bhutan. This heritage, together with the quiet valleys, rivers, forests, pretty hiking trails, apple orchards and dairy farms, attract many tourists to the district.

Wangduechhoeling Palace ruins, Bumthang, Bhutan

The Wangduechhoeling Palace ruins in Bumthang

Three of the main attractions in Jakar that we’d recommend visitors to Bhutan make an effort to see are:

Jakar Dzong

Jambey lhakhang.

Jakar Dzong, built in 1667, is believed to be the largest dzong in Bhutan, having a circumference of 1.5 km.

Courtyard at the Jakar Dzong, Jakar, Bhutan

The courtyard of Jakar Dzong

The dzong sits on a ridge above Jakar town and you walk up a stone-paved path to reach it. Your efforts are rewarded with magnificent views of the valley. The dzong is unusual among Bhutanese dzongs as its central tower doesn’t sit in the middle of the complex, but rather is attached to the outer wall. 

Jakar Dzong in Bumthang, Bhutan travel guide

Jakar Dzong (fortress) shrouded in mist

Membartsho is an incredibly picturesque holy site that sits on the banks of the Tang Chhu River. It’s believed to be the spot where the treasure hunter Pema Lingpa found some of the hidden teachings of Guru Rinpoche in the fifteenth century.

Membartsho Bhutan travel guide

Some of the nuns of Pema Choling Nunnery stand on the bridge above Tang Chhu River in Membartsho | Image by Doctor 17

Guru Rinpoche (also known as Padmasambhava) was an eight-century Buddhist master who many in the Himalayas consider a kind of ‘second Buddha’.

Membartsho is cared for by the nuns of Pema Tekchok Choling Nunnery.  Devotees often leave offerings on the banks and rocks of Tang Chhu. It’s a fantastic site to explore for both its culture and religious significance and its natural beauty.

Jambey Lhakhang is a well-maintained temple in Bumthang that's steeped in legend. The temple was commissioned in the seventeenth century by Tibetan king Songtsen Gampo. But that said, legend says it was built in the seventh century along with over 100 others in a single day!

Prayer-wheels-at-Jambey-Lhakhang.jpg

Two enormous prayer wheels at Jambey Lhakhang

We recommend visiting the temple to appreciate its traditional architecture, detailed artwork, and learn of its legends. Perhaps it goes without saying, but you should hire a local guide if you want to learn the full story behind this temple.

Exterior woodwork of Jambay Lhakhang Temple, Bumhtang District, built C7th by King Songtsen Gampo of Tibet

Colourful exterior woodwork of Jambay Lhakhang

If you’re coming from Paro, you could choose between flying or driving to reach Jakar. There’s the option of hopping on a domestic flight to Bathpalathang Airport in Jakar. This takes 35 minutes.

Alternatively, you could drive there along the Bumthang–Ura Highway, but this is a long journey of nearly eight hours so we’d recommend you break it up by visiting other attractions along the way, like Trongsa.

A traditional home in Bumthang

A traditional home in Bumthang

And finally, let’s look at eastern Bhutan ...

11. Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary

Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary in northeastern Bhutan is a varied and breathtakingly beautiful park of 1,500 km². It ranges in elevation from 1,500 m and 6,400 m and contains floodplains, broadleaved forests, green valleys and deep gorges, scrubland, glacial lakes, alpine meadows and snowy mountain peaks.

Dzong roof from beneath, Bhutan travel guide

The unique architecture of Bhutan's dzongs are a major tourist attraction

The sanctuary is also home in the lower regions to many communities as well some important cultural and religious sites, including the Rigsum Gompa and Dechen Phrodrang (Palace of Great Bliss).

Here, as elsewhere in Bhutan, you can learn the skill of archery, the national sport.

The sanctuary is home to many endangered species, including the red panda.

Red panda, ilurus fulgens

Red pandas are an endangered species

Red pandas are fast and nimble carnivores who live in trees and spend much of the day sleeping. They’re also incredibly attractive animals with their fluffy, multi-coloured coats, short legs, whiskers, and striped tails.

Bumdeling Sanctuary also has 150 known butterfly species and is one of the country’s two wintering spots for the endangered black-necked crane.

Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary covers much of Trashiyangtse District in northeast Bhutan. The closest airport is Yonphula Airport in Trashigang District, 64 km to the south. The fastest way to reach it is therefore a short domestic flight from Paro Airport to Yonphula Airport, followed by a drive.

archery Bhutan travel guide

In 1971 archery was declared the national sport of the Kingdom of Bhutan

12. Ancient and remote Lhuentse

Lhuentse, or Lhuntse, in northeastern Bhutan is one of the most ancient, remote and untouched parts of Bhutan. It’s home to many sacred pilgrimage sites.

Windows of Lhuentse Dzong monastery in Eastern Bhutan

Some of the windows of Lhuentse Dzong

Weaving is a mainstay in Lhuentse, and the textiles produced are the best in Bhutan.

Much of the district is given over to environmentally protected land. For tourists wanting to leave the beaten track behind and experience ancient culture and isolated villages, this is your destination! 

Colourful painted wooden entrance door of Lhuentse Dzong Monastery in Bhutan

The entrance door to Lhuentse Dzong

The town of Lhuentse, though the HQ of the district, is more a small, mountain village than a town. Lhuentse Dzong sits on a spur above the village and the river, as is the way in Bhutan. Be sure to take time to walk to the suspension bridge for awesome views up and down the valley.

Take a drive

While in Lhuentse, be sure to take a leisurely drive both north and south out of town along the Monggar-Lhuntse Highway. The road snakes along the side of the Kuru Chhu River for miles, offering amazing views of the river valley and taking you through small, traditional villages and past forests and terraced fields.

800px-Archery_Tournament_Lhuentse_Bhutan.jpg

An archery tournament in Lhuentse – archery is the national sport of Bhutan | Image by muddum27

Just north of Lhuentse town is the incredibly attractive Gangzur Village, which is definitely worth a visit. Keep driving and you'll reach the unbelievably pretty temple of Dungkar Nagtshang at the road's end.

It takes some commitment to get to Lhuentse, as it really is very, very remote. The town is 175 km from Paro Airport. You’ll want to get your Bhutan tour guide to drive you there, or you can catch a bus there from Paro or Thimphu on some weekdays.

If you were to fly to Bathpalathang or Yonphula Airport and then drive, you’d still have a pretty long journey ahead of you.

15223612094_3f4b21beba_c.jpg

A blessing by the Buddhist religious leader Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche | Image by A. Zwegers

Best time to visit Bhutan

As we discuss in more detail in Best time to visit Bhutan , you can have a fantastic trip to Bhutan at any time of the year.

The best time to visit Bhutan is in spring or autumn.

Bhutan-monks-outside-1024x682.jpg

Spring and autumn are the best seasons for visiting Bhutan

As Bhutan is in the northern hemisphere, we’re talking late March to early June for spring, and September to November to autumn.

Here are a few notes about each season in Bhutan to help explain our reasoning …

Winter (December to February) in northern Bhutan can be very cold – even downright icy. Let’s not forget that Bhutan encompasses part of the eastern Himalayas!

Stone footpath with snow on Dochu La, mountain pass in western Bhutan

A stone footpath on Dochu La, a mountain pass connecting Thimphu and Punakha

There can be heavy snowfall in winter, which can mean certain roads get blocked, certain places and trails are closed, and some activities (like river rafting) become a no-go. 

Spring (March to May) is a fantastic time to visit Bhutan. The temperatures are gentler, snow melt gluts the rivers, and the countryside is covered in fresh greenery. Rhododendron, jacaranda, foxgloves, cosmos, Himalayan poppies, lilies and many other beautiful flowers emerge , painting the Bhutanese landscape with vivid colours. 

bhutan country tourist places

A beautiful spring-time tiger lily in Thimphu

Summer (June to August) isn’t a great time to visit Bhutan as the Indian monsoons bring rain and high humidity to much of the country. And if you’re wanting to hike in Bhutan, summer equals slippery trails.

Wreathed hornbills in trees

Wreathed hornbills can be found in Bhutan

Autumn (September to November) in Bhutan is a dream. The rains and humidity start to dissipate, and the temperatures are pleasant. It’s a perfect season for outdoor activities and exploration.

While the tshechu (religious festival) of each district varies year by year, the Black-necked Crane Festival is on 12 November every year. To witness this special occasion and its festivities is a cultural highlight of a visit to Bhutan.

A black necked crane standing on green grass, bird of Bhutan

A black-necked crane

Around 50 species of migratory birds from northern Tibet and Mongolia also come to Bhutan in September and October to roost there for the winter. These birds include the black-necked crane, of course, as well as ducks, waders, birds of prey, thrushes, finches and buntings.

Who should visit Bhutan?

If you love to explore cultures different from your own, taste new foods, hear new sound, and just basically experience something outside of your own 'normal', then you should definitely make the time to explore Bhutan!

At Follow Alice we love to bring together adventurous people from around the world who are young at heart and curate an exceptional holiday that will live in your memory for a lifetime. Our trips are great for groups and solo travellers alike. Want to know more, or have a burning question you need answered? Give us a shout and we'll be happy to talk Bhutan with you!

Discover Bhutan with Follow Alice!

bhutan country tourist places

23 Top Places to See and Things to Do in Bhutan

Published: 06 oct, 2022 by nidhi singh.

bhutan country tourist places

Bhutan Travel and Tourism Update, 2022: Bhutan finally reopened its border for international travellers on September 23rd, 2022 after two years of the pandemic. The country introduced new tourism policies to reinforce tourism with betterment. Most importantly, there are no Covid-19 rules to enter. So, if you were waiting for your dream trip to Bhutan for the past two years, it’s finally time to revise the plan. Read this blog to know all details of places to visit, things to do and the rules you need to know before planning a Bhutan trip.

Bhutan is the last Himalayan kingdom, shrouded in amazing snow Peak Mountains and shadowy forests that create picturesque landscape. But that’s not all; the unique and best thing about Bhutan is that it is the only country that is 72% covered in forests making it not only carbon-neutral but the world’s only carbon negative country. Apart from this, Bhutan is a place where traditional Buddhist culture meets majestic fortress like dzongs and monasteries, it is undoubtedly a magical and mystical place to be. Its unique monastic architecture and the graffiti on the walls that bear paintings of penises as a sign to drive away the evil make Bhutan a sui generis destination. Reputed to be the last Shangri La, this one of its kind country is certainly the best place to visit for family vacation, honeymoon tours and even for adventure holidays . And to be a part of this enthralling place you can have your own share of Bhutan experience through this guided list of the top tourist attractions that you must see and do.

Best Places to Explore While in Bhutan

Wangdue phodrang.

  • Jigme Dorji National Park
  • Mount Chomolhari

Phuentsholing

Recommended tours.

bhutan country tourist places

8 Days & 7 Night

Simply bhutan tour by land.

bhutan country tourist places

7 Days & 6 Night

Budget friendly bhutan.

bhutan country tourist places

3 Days & 2 Night

Bhutan short tour.

bhutan country tourist places

6 Days & 5 Night

Home of happiness tour.

bhutan country tourist places

Capture Western Bhutan Through Your Camera

bhutan country tourist places

Punakha Tshechu Festival Package 2021

bhutan country tourist places

Thimphu Tshechu Festival Package 2021

bhutan country tourist places

16 Days & 15 Night

Bhutan bird watching expedition.

bhutan country tourist places

14 Days & 13 Night

The owl trek bumthang valley.

bhutan country tourist places

Bhutan Cycling Tour Package

Memorial Chorten

Memorial Chorten, Photo: https://goo.gl/JVCqPx

Thimphu is an intriguing destinations and the capital of Bhutan. The city nestled in the higher ranges of the Himalayas offers astonishing sights of their emerald forests and beautiful view of the Raidak or Chuu River. Thimphu is culturally a must visit place graced with old world charms and modernity. You might just be amazed to witness their red light to be a traffic policeman. Interestingly, the red light lasted in the city for mere three days until the locals disliked and found the light to be rather negative, hence replaced with the human traffic controller. Today, the city is flooded with camera-wielding tourists exploring the unique treasures of Bhutanese culture, cuisine and lifestyle.

Basically, the top sightseeing places that are popularly explored in Thimphu are Buddha Dordenma , Memorial Chorten , Dechencholing Palace, Clock Tower Square, Motithang Takin Preserve . Other tourism places include Dzong such as Tashichho and Simtokha ; Monasteries such as Dechen Phodrang, Tango and Cheri. For an excursion breaker, Thimphu also offers charming cafes and bars as well as nightclubs and restaurants to socialise and meet like-minded people.

Paro Taktsang

Paro Taktsang, Photo: https://goo.gl/lnkmYG

Its peaceful serene beauty and clean air, surrounded by unlevelled mountains, lush green fields and historical buildings make Paro the foremost popular destination in Bhutan. It is here in the city, where the only international airport can be found. Thus, Paro receives maximum number of tourists year round. There are frequent visits to the attractive dzongs such as Paro and Zuri; monasteries and palaces like Paro Taktsang (Tiger’s Nest Monastery) , Pelri Goemba , Ugyen Pelri Palace.

Other best tourism places include temples, monuments and museums such as Bondey Lhakhang, Khangkhu Lhakhang, Tago Lhakhang, Druk Choeding and National Museum . Paro is a historic town with peaceful atmosphere and it is best explored on foot. It is worth a stroll witnessing the everyday life of the locals which ultimately makes it a must visit place in Bhutan.

Punakha Dzong

Punakha Dzong, Photo: https://goo.gl/nMSiFj

Another breathtaking destination in Bhutan is Punakha and this place is widely visited by adventure seekers. ‘The best place to be’ for those who enjoy the adrenaline rush of river rafting in the two rivers/chhus – Mo and Pho. However, Punakha is widely famous for the 17th-century fortress Punakha Dzong which sits majestically besides the Pho and Mo Chhu. This Himalayan town hosts masked dances and traditional music during Punakha Tshechu – a religious festival of Bhutan.

The feeling the place offers is surreal, and thus many people visit here mostly to understand the Bhutanese culture and history as well as to relish its divine natural beauty. Surrounding the town in the Punakha Valley, it has some must visit attractions like Chimi Lhakhang and Namgyal Chorten. From these points, one can get a grand view of rivers and mountains. Punakha Dzong and Limbhukha are also best places to see while in Punakha.

Trongsa Dzong

Trongsa Dzong, Photo: https://goo.gl/19Fky0

Trongsa sits in the central Bhutan and its lush flora creates a beautiful place to surround your senses and simply meditate. This must see place in Bhutan is conveniently placed in the centre with a strategic junction connecting roads to Bumthang, Gelephu and Punakha. A noteworthy attraction in Trongsa is the Trongsa Dzong . This is one of the best Buddhist monasteries beautifully topped with red roofs and white wash walls set down above a valley. Trongsa is a sleepy little town and apart from sightseeing the only thing one can do to pass the time is to take a stroll along the shops that are beautifully decorated with pot plants and crowded by gleeful locals.

Jakar Dzong

Jakar Dzong, Photo: https://goo.gl/b3JCWl

Nearing the foothills of Choekhor Valley lays Jakar, locally known as Chamkhar. This region is mainly known for its trading centre and the famous attraction in this place is the Jakar Dzong . Peacefully sited above the town in the Chamkhar Valley of Bumthang, this popular dzong is most probably the largest all over Bhutan. Jakar most likely may take several days for a complete tour of the surrounding valleys. Here, apart from the Jakar Dzong, other interesting and widely visited attractions are Wangdicholing Palace which was built in 1857, Bumthang Brewery, Lhodrak Kharchu Goemba founded in the year 1970s by Namkhai Nyingpo Rinpoche; Cheese Factory which is the only commercial cheese factory in Bhutan and the 14th-century Jakar Lhakhang. The domestic airport in Jakar is Bathpalathang Airport which is located on the east bank of the Chamkhar Chhu.

Phobjikha

Photo: https://goo.gl/6aXmtW

Phobjikha is an enormous U-shaped glacial valley bordering the Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park. This ever enchanting land is where the beautiful black-necked cranes are found during winters. Not just that, as picturesque and quiet this place may be Phobjikha witnesses thrilling festivals as well. Held every year in the confines of the Phobjikha Valley, Tsechu Festival and the Crane Festival that welcomes the black-neck cranes are vigorously celebrated in the Gangteng Monastery courtyard.

However, this abode on the western slopes of the Black Mountains offers spellbinding views of beautiful valleys, marshy land and grassy pastures. In addition to the cranes, since Phobjikha is close to Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park, you can sight muntjacs (barking deer), wild boars, sambars, serows, Himalayan black bears, leopards and red foxes in the surrounding hills. Apart from the wildlife in Bhutan , other attractions in Phobjikha are Gangte Goemba, Nyelung Dechenling, Khewang Lhakhang, Kumbu Lhakhang, Damchen Lhakhang, White Chorten and Wangmo Hand-Woven Carpet Factory.

Wangdue Phodrang Dzong

Wangdue Phodrang dzong,  Photo: https://goo.gl/r34aOi

Yet another place to visit in Bhutan is Wangdue Phodrang, it is a beautiful and calm town. This place is located in Central Bhutan located and is a border town near Punakha. Wangdue Phodrang is widely famous for its bamboo products, slate and stone carvings. Another noteworthy attraction here is the Wangdue Phodrang dzong which is opened for visitors only during Wangdue Phodrang Tshechu celebration held during autumn. With the confluence of Punakha Chhu and Tang Chhu, Wangdue Phodrang provides rich pastureland for cattle and offers attractive scenery. While here, the tourist interest places that are widely visited are Radak Neykhang, Archery Ground, Vegetable Market, Army Training Centre, Dzong Gate and Eight Chortens.

Jigme Dorji National Park

Jigme Dorji National Park, Photo: https://goo.gl/RZgTya

Jigme Dorji is a National Park located in Bhutan and is one of the top travel destinations in Asia for wildlife . This park is the second largest national park covering the districts such as Gasa District , Thimphu District, Paro District, Punakha, and Wangdue Phodrang Districts. Why Jigme Dorji National Park is famous because, it has the best of both worlds, including wildlife, there are cultural sites within the park as well. In fact, the park consists of about 6,500 people living within the park taking care of the agriculture and animal husbandry; it has been listed as a tentative site by the UNESCO. However, aforementioned national park is home to various flora and fauna.

Here, there are about 37 known species of mammals as well as endangered species such as clouded leopard, snow leopard, takin, Bengal tiger, Himalayan blue sheep, Himalayan black bear, black musk deer, red panda and Ussuri dhole. Nonetheless, this national park is also home to the sambar, serow, barking deer, marmot, goral, pika and more than 300 species of birds. Jigme Dorji National Park is the only park that has national animal – Takin, National Flower – Blue Poppy, National Bird – Raven and National Tree – Cypress existing together in the same premises. These features make the park one of the best places to visit in Bhutan .

Mount Chomolhari/Jomolhari

Mount Jumolhari View Bhutan

Around 50 kilometres away from Paro Airport, situated at 2,700 metres above sea level, Chomolhari or Jomolhari Mountain is one of the amazing places to visit in Bhutan. Spread along the border between Tibet, China and Bhutan, the mountain is often referred to as the ‘the bride of Kanchenjunga’ because of its proximity to the Kanchenjunga. Considered a sacred place among Tibetan Buddhists, Jomolhari is believed to be the residence of Goddess Jomo, who is the protector of Tibet and Bhutan.

The breathtaking views of this Himalayan Mountain attract throngs of trekkers and thrill seekers from all across the globe every year from March to June. While trekking through the stunning nature trails at the foothills of Jomolhari, you will also visit Jomolhari Temple, elevated at 4,150 metres. It is a popular place to stay among pilgrims. There is also a place called Tseringma Lhatso, within an hour’s walk from the temple. It is referred to as the ‘spirit lake’ of Tsheringma by the pilgrims.

Phuentsholing Bhutan

Phuentsholing or spelled as Phuntsholing, is the entry point of Bhutan for Indian travellers who enter the Happy Kingdom by road. It adjoins Jaigaon, the Indian town and the Kingdom of Bhutan. Also treated as the main business centre for Indians and Bhutanese, Phuentsholing is the second largest town in the country. Similar to all tourist places in Bhutan, it also showcases a pleasant, clean and safe environment to the tourists.

However, unlike other places in Bhutan, where you cannot go without a permit, Phuentsholing is the only place for Indians where they do not need any travel permit. The place has no Dzong, but needless to say, numerous tourist attractions make Phuentsholing one of the charming places in Bhutan. Places like Amo Chuu, Bhutan Gate, Karbandi Monastery and Zangthopelri Lhakhang are some of the popular attractions to visit for tourists.

Bumthang Bhutan

In the Bhutanese language, Bumthang, the word means ‘beautiful fields’ and it truly means what it says. Bumthang is a place where you can spend days in the lap of nature, breathe the fresh mountain air and visit awesome places. Named from Jambay Lhakhang, Bumthang is referred to as the spiritual heartland of the country. Fringed by several ancient monasteries and Buddhist temples, the place attracts flocks of history lovers and travellers who have a keen interest in spirituality and religion.

Bumthang comprises four picturesque valleys, Ura, Chumey, Tang and Choekhor. The valleys are flanked by glaciers, which are now transformed into green cascading fields of rice, potato and buckwheat. Bumthang is often called the ‘Switzerland of the East,’ because of its Switzerland-like landscapes of broad valleys, snow-clad mountains with streams falling down and the easy-paced lifestyle of people living here. If you are in Bumthang, do not forget to visit Kurjey and Tamshing Lhakhang, two of the main attractions here.

Top Things to Do in Bhutan

Rafting in paro chhu, trekking in mt. jomolhari, kayaking in paro chhu, mountain biking, rock climbing.

  • Angling & Fishing

Wildlife Safari

The tiger’s nest monastery trek, attend bhutanese festival, bird watching, hot spring therapy ‘gasa tshachus’.

Rafting in Paro Chhu

Photo: https://goo.gl/ZNlvQd

River Rafting is a thrilling water sport and it excites all adventure junkies to embark on a new current every time. However, rafting in Bhutan’s Paro Chhu will offer you a unique experience. Apart from racing against the rapids screaming with thrill and zest, you can glide down the gurgling river surrounded by beauty and exhilarating rapids. Along with enjoying the rafting, you will be surrounded by exquisiteness lush green valley where one can notice rare birds flocking around and the majestic Paro Dzong. Rafting in Paro Chhu is graded as moderate so now every adventure lover can try this famous water sport activity during their Bhutan tourism.

Trekking in Mt Jomolhari

Photo: https://goo.gl/CXl6Ru

Trekking is an ultimate adventure activity and the Mountain of Jomolhari will give the best travel experience for endurance travellers. This is the most popular trekking route in Bhutan and as you trek along the emerald forest you will be surrounded by a wide range of beautiful landscapes, fauna and flora. The highlights of this scenic Jomolhari trek are its virgin forest and soaring peaks, you will be passing high pastures where yaks graze and ancient dzongs stand and house red dressed monks that chant prayers. In fact, you can get a spectacular view of Mount Jomolhari from the base camp of the same name as well. Surrounded by splendid desolation, Jomolhari trek offers a unique experience traversing the spellbinding beauty of blue poppies and whispering winds, this trek has something or the other for all kind of trekkers.

Kayaking in Paro Chhu

Photo: https://goo.gl/2JpDCd

Kayaking is yet another adventure sport in Bhutan after rafting that catches the eyes of adrenaline junkies. The river tributaries in Bhutan provide a variety of courses for both, amateur as well as veteran kayakers. And the Paro River locally known as Paro Chhu offers a heady mix of rapids where one can enjoy the thrill of the river as well as enjoy the beautiful forest and the attractive Paro Dzong which makes a picturesque sight. Despite the tourism in water adventure sport being rather new in Bhutan, it is enjoyed by every tourist visiting this country. With the rivers’ currents slowly changing from slow to fast, it gives a perfect opportunity to traverse and encountering the fort, meandering forests, rare birds and finally savouring the adrenaline rush in the white water raft Paro Chhu offers.

Mountain biking

Photo: https://goo.gl/pWaZCK

Mountain biking is an adventurous eco-friendly sport and Bhutan has outstanding trails with vivid landscapes for every biking lovers. Being a culturally and naturally rich place, you can paddle through the rugged terrain, climb and descent through many villages while taking a peek into local lifestyle. You can enjoy this thrilling activity mainly in places such as Paro Valley, Phobjikha Valley, Punakha, Tongsa, Wamrong, Wangthang La and many other locations in Bhutan. However, it is not just the uneven roads you can embark on traversing the beautiful backdrops of Bhutan, in fact, through this expedition, one can also witness the Buddhist culture and visit the monasteries that pass the tracks. Mountain biking, undoubtedly is the best way to see, feel and enjoy the destination with fun and ease.

Rock Climbing

Photo: https://goo.gl/dgpRgT

Rock climbing is a thrilling activity that is full of adventure and ‘good feel’ ambience. Rock climbing in Bhutan is a must experience adventure sport that you can engage in the thick of the breathtaking view of the country. This exciting sport was first introduced in Bhutan by the Vertical Bhutan Climbing Club. And this club offers a full climbing session by training the climbers. The climbing rock, this club provides is called the Nose and it is located not far from the capital of Bhutan, Thimphu. This rock has several climbing routes and they all vary from moderate to difficult. You can test your skills in some of the climbing trails such as Dead Man Walking, Reach N Preach, Easy Peasy, Wedding Present and Half Moon.

Fishing

Photo: https://goo.gl/0ung4L

A recreational activity in Bhutan that can be enjoyed at ease is fishing. And in Bhutan you will find a number of glacier fed rivers and beautiful lakes that provide a great place for fishing. The Bhutanese rivers are full of fishes and one can find species such as brown trout, snow trout and also golden mahseers in the southern regions of Bhutan. However, there are special permissions that are to be taken before venturing on this activity. And also, there are few laws one needs to look at, for instance, fishing is allowed only on catch and release basis. Besides, fishing is a perfect activity for families who are looking to spend some quality time with each other. Bumthang Valley , Paro Valley , Thimphu Valley , Trongsa Region and Lhuentse Region are few places great for fishing.

Archery

Photo: https://goo.gl/Jb2LdY

While travelling in Bhutan, one must witness Archery competitions held during festivals. The national sport of Bhutan Archery is played with high spirit every year during tournaments and festivals. Even before the officials declare of Archery as the national sport in 1971, this activity gained popularity in the late 1920s. Today, archery is an important Bhutanese sport and tournaments are held every year in Bhutan as a sign of festivities and competition. In fact, you may notice that on celebration of any festival in Bhutan, archery is often kept as a competition for entertainment. There are two types of archers; the traditional archers are made of bamboo arrows and bows. However, during the competition the participants of the tournament use modern equipments which are made of laminated carbon-fibre fitted with a bowstring which is made from synthetic fibre.

Jungle Safari

Photo: https://goo.gl/9K3fJI

Holidays in Bhutan is incomplete without exploring the wildlife. And as beautiful the country is, Bhutan is blessed with rich emerald forests as well as various flora and fauna. In fact, it is the only country to have 72% of forested area, which evidently make it a perfect place for varied animals, birds and plants. Unarguably, Bhutan is a land of Himalayan kingdom and it is a paradise for nature lovers. Here, there are multiple national parks and reserves that take you to wildlife safaris, tiger safaris and bird watching tours as well. Some wildlife places to visit are Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary, Jigme Dorji National Park, Phibsoo Wildlife Sanctuary, Jigme Khesar Strict Nature Reserve etc. Here, you can find some enchanting animals like Asiatic elephants, black bear, golden langur and leopards. You also have the chance to see the majestic mighty beast, Tiger during the wildlife visits.

trekking to Taktsang monastery

Photo: https://goo.gl/3IdCGA

Clinging to a cliff, Taktsang Palphug Monastery or more suitably called as the Tiger’s Nest Monastery is one of the best places to see. This pilgrimage place is also one of the most visited tourist destinations in Bhutan . Sited on the Upper Paro Valley, this monastery is located 3120 meters above the sea level and it showcases great traditional values of the country by its architecture. This unique monastery is ringed by the scenic beauty of the emerald forest and soothing ambience. The structure itself gives goose bumps every time you see with white building topped with the red and golden roof and wooden bordering windows. A visit here will give an unforgettable experience with blue sky backdrop and lush green hills that make this century old structure look stunning and more mystical. The best part is, this isolated monastery can only be reached by trekking through gruelling and rugged mountain paths.

Thimpu Tsechu

Thimphu Tshechu Festival, Photo: https://goo.gl/zz4UyM

Festivals in Bhutan are quite unique filled with mask dance, gastronomic delights and of course archery contests. Bhutan has a number of traditions and festivals that are celebrated with much rigour and gusto throughout the country. And one must attend festival like Thimphu Tshechu, which is held during the month of September; and is said to be the biggest festival in Bhutan. This auspicious jubilee is a long three day celebration that offers one the opportunity to experience vibrant and traditions of the locals. In this eventful week, various temples, monasteries and dzongs are decorated throughout the country marked by blend of colours, dance, music and food. Other than that, there are other festivals that must be attended as well such as Paro Tshechu held during the month of March, Jambay Lhakhang Drup in October, Punakha Drubchen in February and Haa Summer Festival in July. It is recommended to attend at least one of the Bhutan beautiful and vibrant festivals in your lifetime.

Birding

Photo: https://goo.gl/HW4xdS

Birding is a popular and recreational activity enjoyed by everyone. And if you are in Bhutan you will get a chance to witness some rare and beautiful species. This mystic land is endowed with rich natural beauty and thus this land houses over six hundred bird species. During your birding tour in Bhutan, you may catch a glimpse of some endemic and endangered species such as Cuckoos, Swifts, Bee-eaters, Warblers, Flycatchers, Imperial Heron and Black-Necked Crane as well as Nuthatch and Blyth’s Kingfisher. Bhutan truly is a paradise for the bird watchers and it is an important place of biological significance in the world. The country boasts of rare bird species and flora and fauna in locations such as Phobjikha Valley, Bomdeling, Trongsa, Bumthang, Tingtibi, Punakha and Thimphu. These places are ideal for bird watching.

Hot Spring Therapy

Photo: https://goo.gl/guP0vp

It is always comfor ting to lay in the hot springs and gaze at the breathtaking sight of the surroundings. Luckily in Bhutan there are many such places where one can rejuvenate his tired body. Locally known as Tshachus in Bhutan, there are many hot springs across the country, and all require small treks through the surrounding beautiful forests to be reached. It so happens that, for centuries, the people of Bhutan visit the hot springs in order to seek or cure them from health problems. Evidently, these hotsprings are believed to have healing properties. The hot springs are best visited during the winter months and you can find them in places such as Dur Tshachu located in Bumthang, Gelephu located in Tshachu of southern Bhutan and Duenmang Tshachu located on the riverside of Mangde Chu. Amongst them all, Gasa Tshachu is a popular hot spring in Bhutan where one is required to do a ten hour trek from Punakha. Hot Spring Therapy is an interesting thing to experience in Bhutan and hence it must not be missed.

Whether you are spotting blue poppies or strolling alongside rhododendron field, Bhutan is a vibrant country that offers motley of sceneries and landscapes. Now, I am sure you are half packed for the ultimate Bhutan tour but if you need a hassle free travel experience, you can always book with us to have a trip to remember as we offer a wide range of tour packages depending on your budget and interest.

Other Interesting Blogs to Read

  • Latest Bhutan Tourism Update Information
  • How to Plan a Perfect Bhutan Tour from India?
  • Best Places to Visit in Thimphu

10 Family Attractions to Visit in Bhutan

  • Bhutan: The Ultimate Pilgrimage Destination in the Himalayas
  • Trans Bhutan Trail Information
  • 10 Fairs and Festivals You Must See in Bhutan
  • Top Reasons Making Bhutan the Happiest Country in the World

Quick Answers to Some Frequently Asked Questions:

What to know before going to bhutan for a vacation.

The things you need to know before going to Bhutan for a vacation are:

  • First of all, you can now travel in Bhutan on your own.
  • There are some codes of conduct or behaviours which you must avoid in the country.
  • The travel visa which is required to enter the country is different from visas in other countries.
  • Take all the precautions from AMS, Acute Mountain Sickness.
  • Bhutan does not offer micro-SIM cards, so you have to arrange beforehand.
  • The names of the places could be confusing for travellers. Try to remember the main points where you will get help for any reason.

What are the top five places that every traveller must visit in Bhutan?

Top five places to visit in Bhutan for every traveller:

How much fee will Indian tourists have to pay on visit to Bhutan?

After two years of the pandemic, Bhutan is reopened on September 23rd. Indians are now charged to pay a sum of Rs. 1,200 per day per head to travel in Bhutan.

What are the new entry rules for tourists in Bhutan?

Some of the new entry rules are:

  • There are no Covid-19 vaccination protocol requirements to enter Bhutan. However, there is a health declaration to fill up while getting a travel permit. You may be subjected to a random test at free of cost. If the results come negative, you have to quarantine at your own cost.
  • There is a SDF, Sustainable Development Fee you have to pay. A sum of USD 200 for foreign travellers and Rs. 1200 for Indians.
  • Indian passport holders do not need a visa but they need a permit to enter Bhutan.
  • You can travel Bhutan on your own, no need to go through the government-approved travel agents.
  • Bhutan accepts multiple currencies. Indian rupee is equivalent to Bhutanese ngultrum and the country also accepts US dollars.

How are the accommodation facilities for tourists in Bhutan in terms of Budget, Luxury, homestays and guest houses?

There are plenty of accommodation facilities for tourists in Bhutan.

Some of the popular Budget Hotels in Thimphu, Bhutan are:

  • Hotel Om Tara
  • Thimphu 180 View

Some of the popular Luxury Hotels in Thimphu, Bhutan are:

  • Le Meridien Thimphu
  • Terma Linca Resort & Spa
  • Six Senses Thimphu

Some of the popular homestays in Thimphu, Bhutan are:

  • Olakha Homestay
  • Little Village
  • Aum Om Homestay
  • Damchoe’s Homestay

Subscribe to our NEWSLETTER

Get the latest tour packages,news and promotions straight to you inbox!

About the author

Nidhi Singh

Nidhi Singh

From the Lake District, Nainital, Nidhi Singh is a travel writer whose love for mountains can be seen in her write ups. Talk about solo travelling, indulging in adventure activities, binging on good food, planning budget trips or the Aurora Borealis and you will get all her attention. It is the wanderlust that keeps her going and if at all she could get one wish granted she would love to live a life less ordinary. Follow her on Twitter , Facebook & Instagram .

Popular Post

bhutan country tourist places

23 Top Places to See and Thing...

bhutan country tourist places

25 Best Places to Visit and Fu...

bhutan country tourist places

Blend of Nature and Adventure:...

Category by destinations.

  • New Zealand

Travel Intel

  • MICE Tours 3
  • People & Planet 43
  • Tech & Gear 4
  • World Beyond the Ordinary 15
  • Know Your Flights 7
  • Inspirational Women 3
  • Visa Information 5

Category by Continent

  • North America
  • South America

India recent post

bhutan country tourist places

Autumn Tourism Season: 40 Best...

bhutan country tourist places

10 Top Places to Visit & ...

bhutan country tourist places

30 Amazing Places in India to ...

Enquiry form.

Get Customized Travel Quotes from Tour My India

RELATED STORIES

bhutan country tourist places

10 Best Beaches in Thailand

Thailand is renowned for its world-class beaches, each of which offers its ...

bhutan country tourist places

10 Fairs and Festivals You Must See in Bhutan to Imbibe the Happiness of the Country

A land of prosperity and happiness, Bhutan is a country of pristine beauty ...

bhutan country tourist places

There is a famous saying – don’t listen to what they say…...

bhutan country tourist places

  • About Bhutan
  • Tour Packages
  • Special Tours
  • Trekking Tours
  • Bhutan Festival Dates – Norbu Bhutan
  • General Information
  • Medical and Health Information – Norbu Bhutan
  • Standard Accommodation
  • Bhutanese Food and Drink – Norbu Bhutan
  • Clothing and accessories
  • Shopping in Bhutan with Norbu Bhutan
  • Photography in Bhutan – Norbu Bhutan
  • Accessibility
  • Customs and Immigration – Norbu Bhutan
  • VISA information for travelling to Bhutan – Norbu Bhutan
  • Tariff Information – Norbu Bhutan Travels
  • Get the best experienced Tour Guides – Norbu Bhutan
  • Government Holidays and Special Events
  • Monthly Drukair Flight Schedule for 2023 (in PDF)
  • Monthly Tashi airline Flight Schedule for 2023 (in PDF)

Top 10 Tourist Places to Visit In Bhutan

Top 10 Tourist Places to Visit In Bhutan

Bhutan, often called the last Himalayan Kingdom, is a paradise surrounded by scenic, magical and mystical Himalayan Mountains. 

Be it romantic getaways or adventurous holidays, Bhutan is a popular destination for all. The tremendous Himalayas and the rocky terrains will undoubtedly provide an adrenaline rush for adventure enthusiasts, and the breathtaking spots in Bhutan will not fail to please nature enthusiasts. 

So, if you are considering visiting the happiest kingdom on earth, here’s a list of the most beautiful  places to visit in Bhutan

1 . Thimphu: The Capital City 

Thimphu Taba

Located in the western-central region, Thimphu, the capital city is surrounded by lush and breathtaking mountains filled with trees.  

Thimphu is a magnificent exhibition of Bhutan’s distinct cultures and traditions. The city is also one of the commercial centers of the kingdom. 

The capital city has a plethora of luxurious accommodation options, tourist attractions, and modern amenities.

Tourist Attractions:   Tashichho Dzong, Buddha Point, Memorial Chorten, National Institute of Traditional Medicine, The Folk Heritage Museum, Takin Preserve, and Tango & Cheri Monasteries. 

2. Paro: The Last Shangri-La 

Tiger’s Nest, Paro

Paro is known as the ‘Last Shangri-La’ on Earth because of its rich history and countless religious sites. It is a vivid combination of natural beauty, rich cultures, a semi-modern lifestyle, and colorful traditions. 

From the junction of the Paro Chuu and Wang Chuu rivers to the majestic Mt Jomolhari, Paro is known for its immaculate charm. It is home to the Taktsang Monastery, often known as the Tiger’s Nest.

Tourist Attractions:   The Tiger’s Nest, Ugyen Pelri Palace, Taa Dzong, Drykgyel Dzong, Kyichu Lhakhang, and Chelela Pass. 

3. Punakha: The Old Capital 

Punakha dzong

Punakha, the old capital of Bhutan, is one of the famous trips to Bhutan tour . Punakha Dzong (fortress) is located between two prominent rivers (Pho Chu and Mo Chu) and proves as a serene tourist attraction. 

Punakha is a must-see destination because of its abundant natural beauty, friendly locals, and unique Buddhist culture and traditions.

The beautiful district of Punakha is popularly referred to as the rice bowl of Bhutan as the land is blessed with alluvial soil.  

Tourist Attractions:   Punakha Dzong, Jigme Dorji National Park, Rishta Village, Zomlingtahng, and Rafting. 

4. Bumthang: Little Switzerland 

Bumthang in winter

Bumthang is referred to as “Little Switzerland” because of its attractiveness and splendor of evergreen mountains. Although you won’t find the picturesque Swiss Alps here, you will be able to sample the delectable ‘Swiss Cheese’ while traveling the lovely Jakar Valley, which is how it acquired its name. 

With its abundant allure and natural wonders, Bumthang, located in the country’s central-eastern region, certainly surpasses any of the places to visit in Bhutan. Jakar’s rocky terrains and difficult trails have also earned it a reputation among adrenaline junkies.

T ourist Attraction s:  Jakar Dzong, Wangdicholing Palace, Kurjey and Jambay Lhakhang, and Taming Gompa. 

5. Phobjika: Land Of The Black-Necked Cranes 

Top 10 places to visit in Bhutan

Phobjikha is a visual delight for all tourists! This is a glacier valley where the rare black-necked cranes can be seen in large numbers. 

The beauty of Phobjikha, which is shaped like a bowl, is enhanced by the magnificent Black Mountains and infinite stretches of evergreen pastures. 

One can always expect a blissful and quiet experience in this valley, making it a popular destination in Bhutan.  

Tourist Attractions :  Bird watching, Gantey Gompa, Kumbhu Lhakhang, and Kuezang Choling Share.

6. Mt. Jhomolhari: The Second Highest Mountain 

Mt Jhomolhari

Mount Jhomolhari is part of the great Himalayas and is now a popular destination among thrill-seekers and trekkers. 

Fun fact: Mount Jhomolhari was unclimbed until 1924.

7. Trongsa: The Balcony Of Bhutan

Trongsa Dzong

Located on an elevated hilltop, Trongsa is known for its scenic beauty and panoramic views. Due to the topology, Tronsgsa is called the balcony of Bhutan. 

Tourist Attractions:   Trongsa Dzong, Taa Dzong, Thruepang Palace, and Trongsa Tower. 

8. Wangdue: The Unification Capital 

Wangdiphodrang Dzong

This second-largest district is one of the Bhutan best places to visit, offering a magnificent demonstration of how soulfully cultures meet nature’s pristine beauty.

Tourist Attractions:   Wangdue Phodrang Dzong, Nahee Village, and JSW National Park.

9. Jigme Dorji National Park: Wildlife 

Jigme Dorji National Park

Jigme Dorji National Park is home to many endangered and rare wildlife species, including Bengal Tigers, Snow Leopard, Himalayan Blue Sheep, etc. 

10. Phuentsholing: Gateway To Bhutan 

View of Phuentsholing

Adjacent to Jaigaon, Phuentsholing is a blend of Bhutanese, Indian, and Nepalese ethnicities. As it’s located on the border, it is known as the gateway to Bhutan. 

Tourist Attractions:   Torsa River, Zangto Pelri Lhakhang, and Kharpandi. 

These are the top 10 tourist places to visit in Bhutan. The Himalayan Kingdom has a lot to offer! 

Considering a trip to Bhutan? Get in touch with Norbu Bhutan and plan an extensive tour and visit the top places mentioned above. 

Click the link to learn about How to enjoy a vacation with little kids.

Categories:

Comments are closed

Recent Posts

  • Bhutan Travel: Capturing Bhutan Through Pictures
  • Trip To Bhutan: Discover 7 Must-Visit Temples
  • Travel to Bhutan: 5 Must Visit Family-Friendly Places
  • Explore Best Restaurants In Thimphu’s For Finest Flavors
  • Top 5 Must-Visit Destinations On Your Trip To Bhutan
  • February 2023
  • January 2023
  • December 2022
  • November 2022
  • October 2022
  • September 2022
  • August 2022
  • February 2022
  • January 2022
  • December 2021
  • November 2021
  • October 2021
  • September 2021
  • Best Restaurants in Bhutan
  • Best Time To Visit Bhutan
  • Bhutan Safari
  • Bhutan Travel
  • Bhutan Trip
  • Bhutanese Festivals
  • Bhutanese food
  • Bhutanese Monasteries
  • Bhutanese treks
  • Biking in Bhutan
  • Day in Thimphu, Bhutan
  • Guide to Bhutan
  • Hike Trails
  • Hot-spots in Bhutan
  • Hotels & Lodges in Bhutan
  • News & updates
  • Places to Visit
  • shop in Bhutan
  • The National Sport of Bhutan
  • Travel Bhutan
  • Uncategorized
  • Wildlife Sanctuaries in Bhutan

Lost your sparkle?

Come visit our mystical landscapes.

  • Travel Information

Bhutan Travel Information

Bhutan Travel Tips

Bhutan Tour Packages

Norbu Bhutan Travel pvt.ltd

Royal Textile Academy Office Suites P.O : Post Box 1213 Place: Thimphu: Bhutan Phone # +975-2-340151, 340152, 340153 FAX # +975-2-340150 Email : [email protected]

Subscribe to Quarterly Newsletter

Norbu bhutan subscription form.

Keep Yourself Up To Date!

This is a success preview text.

This is a error preview text.

WhatsApp us

Bhutan Travel Guide

Bhutan travel packages.

Compare quotes from upto 3 travel agents for free

Bhutan 7 Nights Itinerary- Dochu La Pass

Bhutan tour package from bagdogra - hike to tiger's nest, mesmerising cultural bhutan tour for 4 nights - phobjikha valley excursion, enchanting bhutan holiday package - excursion to chele le pass, bhutan itinerary for 8 days with trek to tiger's nest, amazing roadtrip to bhutan - hike to tango and cherry, bhutan travel essentials.

Ideal Duration: 7-10 days for a cultural tour or trekking; 2 weeks for a more immersive experience

Currency: Bhutanese Ngultrum (BTN)

Best Time: March - May, September - November Read More

Accommodation Cost (per night in USD): Government-regulated daily tariff (includes accommodation, food, guide, and transport)

Budget for Food & Drinks (per day in USD): Included in the daily tariff

Visa Policy for Indians: Visa not required, but must obtain an entry permit to visit Thimpu, Paro & Haa Valley.

Visa Policy for Other Nationals: Visa required, facilitated through a licensed Bhutanese tour operator

Getting In Bhutan: Paro International Airport (PBH) Read More

Getting Around Bhutan: Government-approved vehicles, limited public transport, trekking for some regions Read More

"The Happiest Country in the World"

Bhutan tourism.

The ‘Land of the Thunder Dragon’ – Bhutan nestles in the mountainous regions of the Eastern Himalayas and is one of the cleanest countries in the South Asian region. A remote kingdom that still clings to its Buddhist culture but embraces modernization, Bhutan is a land of beautiful valleys, snow-clad mountain views, and lush greenery. Bhutan's rich cultural heritage is reflected in its ancient monasteries, intricate temples, and colorful festivals.

Bhutan's main tourist hubs include the capital town of Thimphu and the beautiful city of Paro . Apart from these, Bhutan is known for its iconic Tiger's Nest Monastery, perched dramatically on a cliffside, and the Punakha Dzong , a majestic fortress with stunning architecture and many trekking routes.  Bhutan is a unique country as it's the only country in the world that measures success in terms of Gross National Happiness, prioritizing the well-being of its citizens over material wealth. Because of this, Bhutan has attracted tourists from around the globe due to its warm hospitality and ever-smiling approach to guests. The colorful clothing, festivals , and hearty food is a testament to their way of life in these misty mountains where resources are scarce, but enthusiasm is not. You can explore the magnificent dzongs (fortresses) that serve as religious and administrative centers throughout the country. The country also offers adventure activities such as trekking , hiking, rafting , and even archery competitions for those who enjoy them. The treks in Bhutan are of varying difficulty, but they all offer a fantastic experience coupled with their untouched vegetation and age-old attractions.

Tourist Places to Visit In Bhutan

67 Stay options

Packages from 16,600

80 Stay options

32 Stay options

Packages from 21,700

Phobjikha Valley (Gangtey)

4 Stay options

Packages from 32,568

Dochula Pass

Packages from 42,500

Must Know Before You Travel to Bhutan

  • The Pedestrian Terminal at Jaigaon-Phuentsholing border operates 24/7. Daily visitors to Phuentsholing don't need an entry permit; an online pre-registration system generates a QR code for presenting at immigration, but staying beyond 24 hours incurs SDF.
  • Other entry/exit points on the southern Indo-Bhutan border include Samtse, Samdrup Jongkhar, and Sarpang/Gelephu. 
  • Bhutan levies fees depending on the number of nights you plan to stay there and your nationality. In Bhutan, the Sustainable Development Fee (SDF) is a component of the Minimum Daily Package Rate (MDPR). The MDPR includes various costs such as accommodation, meals, transportation, guide services, and the SDF.  Read more about the SDF & MDPR charges
  • Read more about Bhutan Visa
  • It is now not mandatory to join an organized tour to visit Bhutan. However, it is still highly recommended. Only in case of sightseeing, guest is required to have guide and vehicle. Before the pandemic, this was mandatory for everyone except for travelers from India, Bangladesh, and Maldives. 
  • Indian vehicles enter zones free but face Nu 4,500/day Green Tax beyond Rinchending Check Post; must register on CPMS with original driving license, registration, insurance, and emission certificates.

Best time to visit Bhutan

The best times to visit Bhutan are March to May (Spring) and September to November (Autumn).  Spring features pleasant weather, blooming flowers, and lush landscapes. Autumn offers crisp air and stunning Himalayan views. Avoid the monsoon season (June to August) due to heavy rainfall and possib... (Read More)

Holidify's opinion on Travel to Bhutan

What's great about travelling to bhutan.

World's first carbon-negative country Picturesque surroundings Rich cultural history Peaceful and Safe Environment Not crowded

What's Not So Great about Travelling to Bhutan?

Daily Tariffs & Expensive Difficult to reach with limited connectivity Bad weather between December and February

Who should Travel to Bhutan?

Top stories about bhutan tourism.

27 Interesting Facts About Bhutan You NEED to Know!

27 Interesting Facts About Bhutan You NEED to Know!

Delhi to Bhutan : A Budget Friendly Way to Reach Bhutan from Delhi

Delhi to Bhutan : A Budget Friendly Way to Reach Bhutan from Delhi

Monasteries in Bhutan

Monasteries in Bhutan

Best Things to Do in Bhutan

Best Things to Do in Bhutan

Bhutan Visa for Indians - Entry Permit, Sustainable Development Fees & More

Bhutan Visa for Indians - Entry Permit, Sustainable Development Fees & More

Food Of Bhutan - 19 Bhutanese Dishes You Must Try

Food Of Bhutan - 19 Bhutanese Dishes You Must Try

Browse Package Collections

Bhutan package collections.

Bhutan Honeymoon Packages

Nepal Bhutan Tour Packages

Top Destinations for Packages

Wangdue Phodrang

Phuentsholing

Nearby Countries for Packages

Top listed packages.

Bhutan 5 Day Itinerary including Thimphu & Paro

Read More on Bhutan Travel

Exchanging money in bhutan, nightlife in bhutan, shopping in bhutan, festivals of bhutan, hygiene in bhutan, customs of bhutan.

  • The customary greeting is joining palms and bowing down.
  • Money is taken and given with both hands.
  • Display of affection between people of different sexes publicly is not well received, so if you are travelling with your partner, avoid getting intimate in public.
  • At monasteries or temples, it is customary to make a small donation to the monks as a sign of respect.
  • Do not smoke at monasteries and in public places, since all tobacco items are strictly banned in Bhutan.
  • In temples or religious places, remove shoes and headgear and wear clothing that expresses respect for the sacred nature of the site and the culture of the country.

Tips for visiting Bhutan

  • Milk should be boiled before consumption
  • Powdered or tinned milk is available
  • Only eat well-cooked meat and fish
  • Medical facilities are good but not always close at hand
  • Officials in Bhutan have reported repeated outbreaks of bird flu so it's advised to stay alert for any symptoms.
  • Products containing tobacco (cigarettes, chewing tobacco, etc.) are effectively banned throughout Bhutan (which remains the only country in the world to do so), and penalties for possession or use may be severe.
  • Give and take money with both hands.
  • One needs to be dressed up in fully covered clothes (legs and arms should be covered) while visiting monasteries and other attractions
  • Carry gloves and a jacket at all times.

Food of Bhutan

Facts about bhutan.

  • Tourists are blessed with elusive sightings of Blood Pheasant, Black-necked Crane, Golden Langur, Clouded Leopard, Red Panda, Tibetan Wolf and Takin (the national animal), to name a few.
  • The pristine Bhutan ese architecture featuring rammed earth, daub and wattle construction, intricate woodwork for roofs and windows and stone masonry are noteworthy. The castle fortresses of Dzongs have no iron bar or nail used in construction.
  • Another surprising thing in Bhutan is its roads devoid of traffic lights in the capital city of Thimphu as the white-gloved officers regulate the traffic.
  • Yak butter tea and meat curry with chilli are common Bhutanese food and beverage items to try.
  • The Gangkhar Puensum (24,840 feet) stands as the world’s highest unclimbed and sacred peak while Drangme Chhu valley is the lowest point in Bhutan.
  • The southern Shiwalik Hills covered in broadleaf forest, Mo Chhu river system in Black Mountains, Haa Valley , Bumdeling Wildlife Sanctuary, Royal Manas National Park and the Jigme Dorji National Park are the important sectors of biodiversity.
  • For trekking, Snowman Trek, Masagang Trek and Jhomolhari Base Camp Trek are popular.

Regions in Bhutan

Why visit bhutan.

  • Bhutan is shrouded in mysteries and a rich history which sometimes could be surprising. It is a land of chillies and red rice, where chillies aren't used for seasoning but as the main ingredient. 
  • Traditional attire  is an indispensable part of Bhutanese people as you will find women and men wearing Kira and Gho respectively to work, educational institutions and on festivals.
  • Bhutan has a number of highly detailed Dzongs and temples. Some of the dzongs have been UNESCO heritage since 2012.
  • It's hard to not notice giant penis paintings over the walls of many houses, which are a part of their tradition. The Drametse Mask Dance with colourful costumes depicting demons, heroes, gods and animals should not be missed as it is UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage.
  • Modern Rigsar played with traditional instruments like boedra and zhungdra as well as modern electronic keyboards is an auditory treat. Although a land that's slowly modernising, Bhutan still clings on to their Buddhist traditions which makes the country profound.

How to Get a Bhutan Permit?

  • a valid Indian Passport with a minimum of six months validity
  • or an Original Voter ID card.
  • For children below 18 years, a birth certificate (in English) or passport is required, accompanied by a legal guardian.
  • Additionally, two passport-size photographs are necessary.
  • It's advisable for tourists to have travel insurance for the duration of their stay, which can be purchased from Bhutanese insurance providers at the Pedestrian Terminal.

SDF & MDPR Charges

  • For citizens of India - you need to pay Rs. 1200 (approximately 15 USD) per night. Before the pandemic, Indians were exempted from this fee. 
  • For citizens of Bangladesh & Maldives, you need to pay USD 100 per person per night, but the process of applying for a visa is both online or in person at the time of arrival. Before the pandemic, these nationals were also exempted from this fee. 
  • For citizens of all other countries worldwide, you must pay the following amounts to get the visa. And you must apply for the visa beforehand, either online or through a local travel agency.
  • Organized groups: 375 to 475 USD per person per day Couples: around 475 to 500 USD per person per day Solo travelers: 450 to 600 USD per day

Top Hotel Collections for Bhutan

bhutan country tourist places

Luxury Hotels

Photos of Bhutan

Bhutan

+ 48 photos

FAQs on Bhutan

How to reach bhutan from india.

India to Bhutan by Road
Kolkata to Bhutan 
Delhi to Bhutan 

Have a Question on Bhutan?

bhutan country tourist places

Popular Questions And Answers on Bhutan

Q. How much does it cost a person to travel Bhutan in April for approximately 5 to 6 days? The total cost of stay, food, travel?

Abinash Saha

Nearby Countries

Bangladesh

Get the best offers on Travel Packages

Compare package quotes from top travel agents

Compare upto 3 quotes for free

  • India (+91)

*Final prices will be shared by our partner agents based on your requirements.

Log in to your account

Welcome to holidify.

Forget Password?

Share this page

Turuhi

Travel Through Stories

10 Secret Tourist Places in Bhutan

Bhutan is a small, isolated country located in the Himalayas. Beautiful natural scenery, a peaceful culture, and unique tourist attractions distinguish this country from others. While Bhutan is becoming more popular as a travel destination, it remains largely unexplored, and there are many secret places to visit. If you’re looking for an adventure and want to explore some of the lesser-known places of Bhutan, be sure to check out these secret spots!

Table of Content

(1) Phobjikha Valley

The Phobjikha Valley located in central Bhutan is truly a breathtaking sight to behold. This remote highland valley is surrounded by the Himalayan Mountains and situated at an altitude of 3,000 meters. It’s dotted with beautiful meadows, little settlements, and forests filled with many species of birds and animals. The Phobjikha Valley is also famous for being a winter home to Black-necked Cranes – an endangered species of crane which can easily be spotted between late October to early February. They migrate from their home in Tibet to the Phobjikha Valley to escape extreme cold weather during winter months.

There are many cultural and spiritual festivals celebrated here all year round that allow travelers to learn about the unique heritage and customs of the local people living in this stunning location. A trip to this little known treasure of Bhutan offers travelers many unforgettable experiences that will stay with them forever.

Black-necked crane in Phobjikha Valley of Bhutan

(2) Ura Valley

The Ura Valley is one of the most beautiful and unspoiled areas of central Bhutan. Situated in the heart of Bhutan, the Ura Valley is a picturesque valley dominated by traditional Bhutanese farmhouses with slate roofs and stone walls. The majority of the locals are farmers who grow paddy. It offers breathtaking alpine views of Himalayan peaks and natural green forests that provide a stunning backdrop to an adventure traveler’s outing in this region. The area’s serene atmosphere gives it an undeniable charm even when covered in a blanket of fog during the monsoon season.

Due to its uneven terrain, it is a popular destination for hikers and mountain bikers. The valley is home to some of the most stunning scenery in Bhutan, including pristine forests, gushing rivers and cascaded paddy fields. It’s also a cultural hotspot, with many traditional villages and monasteries located in the area.

Beautiful green landscape of Ura Valley in Bhutan

(3) Trongsa

Trongsa is a small town in central Bhutan in the valley of the Mangde River. Additionally, the town lies at the meeting point of two of Bhutan’s major rivers, the Mangde and the Drangme. Trongsa is the district capital and the home of Trongsa Dzong, the largest dzong in Bhutan. The dzong was built in 1644 and was the seat of power of the Wangchuck dynasty from 1644 to 1907.

Trongsa Dzong, located in the kingdom of Bhutan, is an ancient fortress with a storied history. Built by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, the “Father of Bhutan”, it served as a powerful administrative and religious center within the country’s monarchy. Nestled at a strategic point between east and west Bhutan, it defended Tibet from invading forces during the 19th century. This defensive fortress has played a key role for centuries in protecting the people of its region from potential enemies.

Trongsa Dzong in Bhutan

Nestled in the picturesque Punakha Valley, the small town of Lobesa hosts the incredibly unique Chimi Lhakhang fertility temple. Prized as an important pilgrimage destination by the Bhutanese people, this delightful old temple contains many secrets and legends stemming from its ancient history. It’s here that followers of Buddhism make offerings for a successful family, for a healthy baby, and good luck — all blessings that are attributed to Lama Drukpa Kuenley or ‘The Divine Madman.’ Known for his unconventional teaching methods combining humor and satire with spiritual insight, he is said to be responsible for establishing this sacred site centuries ago. Each year thousands of pilgrims travel from near and far to pay homage at Chimi Lhakhang – a testament to Lama Kunley’s impact even today.

The temple is famous for its phallic symbols, believed to bless couples with children. Many houses in the area display paintings of phalluses on their walls, because they believe it brings fertility and good fortune.

Fertility temple in Lobesa, Bhutan

(5) Trashigang

One of the hidden gems of eastern Bhutan , Trashigang is full of rich culture and heritage. This storied region will soon benefit from the National Handloom Development Project, which provides an excellent platform for reviving the handloom industry. Not only does this project provide jobs to skilled artisans and weavers who work with traditional Bhutanese designs, but it also helps keep cultural textile traditions alive. The initiative maintains traditional weaving styles while creating modern fabric compositions with a hint of time-honored designs. In addition, the materials must meet approved product standards, providing beautiful fabrics and pieces that will last for years.

Picturesque landscaope of Trashigang in Bhutan

Nestled in the eastern part of Bhutan, Mongar is an incredible destination. This charming town will awe you with its stunning landscapes, rushing waterfalls, and centuries worth of rich culture. Hence, it is one of the most picturesque and under-the-radar places to visit in Bhutan. One of the highlights is the Ri Daza Football Stadium. From its 5,200-foot altitude, visitors can admire the misty Himalayas beneath a backdrop of clouds and blue skies. Experience both nature’s wonders as well as a glimpse into Bhutan’s culture and history with a visit to Mongar.

Ri Daza Football Stadium in Mongar, Bhutan

(7) Chele La Pass

Chele La Pass in Bhutan is a stunning mountain pass that should be on everyone’s travel bucket list. Located at 13,000 feet above sea level between Paro and Haa, Chele La Pass offers pristine natural beauty framed by majestic mountains. Misty forests, wildflower fields, and a colourful array of birds await those who attempt this trek. The air up here is also really fresh, making it ideal for brisk morning hikes accompanied by the distant cries of exotic birds. A trip during sunrise or sunset offers stunning views of the valley below and the Tiger’s Nest in Paro.

Chele La Pass is one of the most popular trekking routes in Bhutan. It offers stunning views of the Himalayas and is a great way to experience the country’s incredible scenery. The trail is not too difficult, making it perfect for beginner hikers, and it takes around two days to complete. It is also a biker’s paradise due to the thrill that comes with driving so steeply on the mountainside.

Chele La Pass in Bhutan

(8) Lhuntse

The Guru Padmasambhava statue in Lhuntse Bhutan is a sight to behold. It is the largest statue of Guru Padmasambhava in the world. This sacred site is located on a mountaintop in Takila overlooking the town of Lhuntse.

Statue of Guru Padmasambhava in Lhuntse, Bhutan

(9) Mebar Tsho

Mebar Tsho is a sacred lake located in the district of Bumthang. Monk Lingapa emerged from the lake with an unextinguished lamp, which is why they call it a “Burning Lake”. Mebar Tsho is an important pilgrimage site for Buddhists.

Mebar Tsho or the burning lake in Bumthang, Bhutan

(10) Thimphu Philatelic Museum

There is no better place to discover Bhutan’s postal history and unusual stamps than the Thimphu Philatelic Bureau. It serves not just as an educational hub but also as an invaluable asset for preserving and teaching Bhutan’s cultural heritage. The facility remains open from Monday to Friday between 9 am to 5 pm and on Saturday between 9 am to 12 pm. Visitors can take a closer look at an interesting part of Bhutan’s cultural identity. Artifacts on display include rare sheets of mail, antique postcards, and vintage rubber cancellation stamps that have all become treasured mementos of the country’s vibrant postage history. This museum contains fascinating stamps made out of steel, silk, vinyl records, cardboard, plastic, 3D, etc. It is located inside the Thimphu Post Office.

Thimphu Philatelic Museum in Bhutan

Explore the unexplored…

There is a mysterious and magical aura surrounding Bhutan. While most people know about popular tourist destinations in Bhutan like Paro, Thimphu and Punakha, there are many secret spots in this tiny Himalayan kingdom that remain unexplored. So pack your bags and get ready for an unforgettable journey into the heart of the Himalayas – I promise you won’t be disappointed!

Read more – The Land of the Thunder Dragon

Disclaimer:

This blog may contain affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, we may get a small commission if you buy anything. All products and services we endorse have been personally used or come highly recommended to us. These incomes allow us to keep the community supported and ad-free.

Related Blogs

bhutan country tourist places

4 Responses

' src=

Planning a solo trip to Bhutan in April 2024.

' src=

Enjoy your trip.

' src=

Hi, For yoga, meditation from March until June is the best season to visit. there are several unexplored places across Bhutan but i would suggest Phobjika Valley is nestled in lush green mountains and green fields and one can explore it beautifully. you can do meditation, yoga etc.. as well as do beautiful photography and have a memorable trip. it depends on the days you select. in my view Punakha -> Phobjika valley is the best route and beyond that Trongsa is also worth visiting. 10 days would suffice to cover these destinations. Turuhi is the best platform to help you in making your trip memorable & fond memories by creating beautiful story. you can refer to my bhutan stories https://turuhi.com/destinations/bhutan so you will get fair idea.

' src=

What are the best non tourist destinations in bhutan to visit to help immerse a traveler into the local culture. Also whee should one go for qigong, yoga, and meditation in bhutan

Add a Comment Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Join our Newsletter!

Subscribe to my monthly newsletter for all of my travel updates and blogging/influence tips!

bhutan country tourist places

We bring together a diverse travel community through storytelling. With a treasure trove of travel stories, we share personalized travel experiences and start conversations that inspire fellow travelers.

Top Destinations

  • United States
  • Other Destinations

Travel Resources

  • Food & Drink
  • Story Glimpse
  • Travel Itinerary
  • Travel Plannig
  • Travel Tips
  • Travel Route
  • Things To Do
  • Things To Know
  • Travel Guide
  • Other Resources
  • About Turuhi
  • Contributors
  • Travel With Me
  • Collaborate with us
  • Privacy Policy
  • Terms Of Use

bhutan country tourist places

COMMENTS

  1. The 9 best places to visit in Bhutan

    5. Gangtey Valley. Best for outdoor activities. Drive past the mountainside yaks and into one of Bhutan's most sacred places. Tranquility and peace emanate from its main attraction, Gangtey Goemba, a 17th-century monastery overlooking the valley's farmland. But its Gangtey's natural beauty that really stands out.

  2. 12 best things to do in Bhutan

    Detour: After a visit to Changangkha head down to one of the Buddhist supply shops in Norzin Lam to stock up on prayer flags, protective amulets and juniper-scented incense. 5. Indulge in a traditional Bhutanese medical treatment. Bhutan has a complex system of medical diagnosis that blends Chinese, Tibetan and Indian systems with an ancient understanding of medicinal herbs.

  3. THE 30 BEST Places to Visit in Bhutan (UPDATED 2024)

    Places to visit in Bhutan. Top Things to Do in Bhutan. Places to Visit in Bhutan. Explore popular experiences. See what other travellers like to do, based on ratings and number of bookings. See All. Multi-day Tours (113) Private Sightseeing Tours (101) Historic Sites (7) Hiking Tours (45)

  4. THE 15 BEST Things to Do in Bhutan

    Set between two rivers, it presents a serene, traditional ambiance. See ways to experience (63) 2024. 3. Buddha Dordenma. 2,274. Monuments & Statues. Statue towering at 169 feet amidst Kuenselphodrang Nature Park with serene meditation spaces and panoramic valley views, surrounded by intricate smaller sculptures.

  5. 15 Best Places to Visit in Bhutan

    Above it is where travelers will find the National Museum of Bhutan, hidden in an old watchtower on a hill. 3. Trongsa. Source: flickr. Trongsa Dzong. When it comes to Bhutan's whitewashed dzong complexes, there are few that can live up to the sheer size and breathtaking beauty of the Trongsa Dzong.

  6. 10 Best Places to Visit in Bhutan

    1. Tiger's Nest: The Most Iconic Place in Bhutan. Bhutan's most iconic place to visit, the Tiger's Nest, majestically soars 3,120 (10,233 feet) meters above the Paro Valley. The Tiger's Nest, named after the legend of Guru Rinpoche flying to this location on a tigress, is a place of mystique.

  7. Top 40 Places to Visit and Things to Do In Bhutan

    Top 40 Places to Visit and Things to Do In Bhutan. Fill the thrill today, visit Bhutan. Monasteries from the past, vibrant Festivals, distinct culture & heritage, landscapes that take your breath away, food that is delicious, spirituality of the highest order - It's no surprise that Bhutan, a once-remote kingdom, has been named Lonely Planet's Top Country to Visit in 2020.

  8. Top 10 Places to visit in Bhutan

    Known as the Fortress on a Heap of Jewels, Rinpung Dzong is among the best tourist places to visit in Bhutan and a classic example of Bhutanese architecture and deep rooted traditions. You can look at the Bhutan tourist places map for its exact location. The entire area is filled with various shrines and temples in Bhutan. Some of the shrines ...

  9. Top Tourist Places In Bhutan: From Paro's Heights To Punakha's ...

    With its untouched beauty and cultural richness, Haa Valley is a must-visit tourist place in Bhutan for those seeking an authentic and peaceful Bhutanese experience. Best time to visit: October-November. How to reach: Flights to Paro from Kolkata, Mumbai or Delhi, followed by a 65-km car ride to Haa Valley.

  10. 55 Places to Visit in Bhutan 2024, Tourist Places & Attractions

    Most of Bhutan Tourist places are religious in nature, and that is what fills the entire country with an air of spirituality and positivity. And another of the amazing Buddhist temples here is the Jangtsa Dumtseg Lhakhang, which lies in western Bhutan. The temple situated at the base of a hill between the two amazing valleys of Paro and Dopchari.

  11. 23 things to know before going to Bhutan

    1. Independent travel is finally possible, but a tour operator is still the way to go. Since reopening in 2022, Bhutan has scrapped its all-inclusive tour-package minimum, and initially raised the Sustainable Daily Fee (SDF) to US$200 before reducing it to US$100, valid now through September 2027.There is a 50% discount for kids ages six to 11, with no SDF for those under six.

  12. 27 Best Tourist Places in Bhutan and Things to Do

    27 Tourist Places in Bhutan and Things to do. 1. Have a meal on a farm. There is nothing like having a meal at a local's home to give visitors a sense of a country's culture and way of life. Our tour company, MyBhutan, organised a visit to Aum Deki's farm just outside Paro.

  13. THE 10 BEST Bhutan Sights & Historical Landmarks to Visit (2024)

    beautiful place to visit and lovely vibe and excellent view !! 100% must visit place in BHUTAN. See tours. 2024. 5. Tashichho Dzong (Thimpu Dzong) 839. Religious Sites • Government Buildings. By Combit. A Dzong is a buddist place of worship and needs appropriate respect from all visitors.

  14. 26 Places To Visit In Bhutan

    3. Punakha. 5.0 /5. 3 out of 26. Places to visit in Bhutan 11. Tourist attractions. Punakha is one of the 20 districts (dzongkhags) of Bhutan bordered by the Gasa, Wangdue Phodrang and Thimphu districts. Located at the height of 1200m above sea level, Punakha offers a mesmerising view of the Himalayas.

  15. 12 Most Beautiful Places in Bhutan to Visit

    7. Rinpung Dzong. In the heart of the historic town of Paro lies Rinpung Dzong, an architectural masterpiece that showcases Bhutan's royal history and spiritual devotion. Adorned with towering walls and intricate woodwork, it's undeniably one of the most beautiful places to visit in Bhutan.

  16. 53 Best Tourist Places In Bhutan In 2023: Key Attractions & Sightseeing!

    3. Punakha Dzong - Second-Largest Dzong In Bhutan. Image Source. Punakha Dzong is the second largest dzong in Bhutan (The Land of Thunderbolt) and is known for its brilliant structure. Among the best tourist places in Bhutan, the dzong speaks volumes about the beautiful stories and traditions of the Buddhist culture.

  17. Top Tourist Spots in Bhutan 2024: Things to Do & Places to Go

    3. Buddha Dordenma. 2,274. Monuments & Statues. Great Buddha Dordenma is a gigantic Shakyamuni Buddha statue in the mountains of Bhutan celebrating the 60th anniversary of fourth king Jigme Singye Wangchuck. The statue houses over one hundred thousand…. See ways to experience (68) 2024. 4.

  18. Ten Best Places to Visit in Bhutan

    The country is famous for its natural splendor, which features tall, ice-capped peaks, mountain rivers, massive glaciers, lush green forests, and rich biodiversity. There are several popular historical, cultural, and religious destinations for tourists. Here is a list of some of the best places to visit in Bhutan: 10.

  19. Bhutan travel guide

    8. World Heritage Site of Gangteng Valley. If you visit Bhutan, a great place to include in your itinerary is Gangteng Valley, also known as Gangtey Valley or Phobjikha Valley. A World Heritage Site, Gangteng Valley in Wangdue Phodrang District is a great place for learning about local Bhutanese culture and traditions.

  20. 23 Top Places to See and Things to Do in Bhutan

    It adjoins Jaigaon, the Indian town and the Kingdom of Bhutan. Also treated as the main business centre for Indians and Bhutanese, Phuentsholing is the second largest town in the country. Similar to all tourist places in Bhutan, it also showcases a pleasant, clean and safe environment to the tourists.

  21. Top 10 Tourist Places to Visit In Bhutan

    Tourist Attractions: The Tiger's Nest, Ugyen Pelri Palace, Taa Dzong, Drykgyel Dzong, Kyichu Lhakhang, and Chelela Pass. 3. Punakha: The Old Capital. Punakha dzong. Punakha, the old capital of Bhutan, is one of the famous trips to Bhutan tour. Punakha Dzong (fortress) is located between two prominent rivers (Pho Chu and Mo Chu) and proves as ...

  22. Bhutan Travel Guide & Tourism (2024)

    Tourist Places to Visit In Bhutan . 4.9. Paro. 67 Stay options . Packages from $199. 4.7. Thimphu. 80 Stay options . Packages from $199. 5.0. ... the west of Bhutan is undeniably the most important one in terms of cultural tourism in the country. Central Bhutan: The central region of Bhutan is for those who wish to explore the ...

  23. 10 Secret Tourist Places in Bhutan

    Bhutan is a small, isolated country located in the Himalayas. Beautiful natural scenery, a peaceful culture, and unique tourist attractions distinguish this country from others. While Bhutan is becoming more popular as a travel destination, it remains largely unexplored, and there are many secret places to visit.

  24. This country has a national happiness index. But what is it ...

    Most foreigners who have heard of Bhutan know two things: the country charges international visitors a $100/day sustainable development fee (aka tourist tax), and that it is the birthplace of the ...