Ever been to a certified “happy place”? Bhutan is the most happy nation in Asia and eight happiest in the world. What makes it happy? Venture in and find out. Last Buddhist kingdom, it measures development not only in GDP but also Gross Domestic Happiness, focusing on holistic advancement and well-being. Full of striking natural scenery, it home to many tough trekking routes.
Taktsang Monastery is sacrosanct place in Bhutan and to Bhutanese Buddhist citizens. At the height of 3,120 meters, it takes a steep climb of 900 meters to reach the monastery. There is an interesting legend behind the name. Taktsang or “Tiger's Nest” in Bhutanese, was so named as it is believed that a former wife of Emperor, disciple of Padmasambhava, 8th century sage, changed into a winged tigress to transport him to Taktsang. Monastery was built in 1692 on the very place Padmasambhava meditated for more than three years. Monastery is visible from the valley below.
One of the greenest countries in the world, it places responsibility on its citizens to maintain the ecological balance. Constitution requires that at least sixty percent of land be under forest cover. Bhutan boasts of six national parks which constitute about 36% of the land locked country. Combined forested area is about 72percentage. It is also world's only carbon sink i. e. it takes in more CO2 that it gives off. Sale of hydro-electrical power makes Bhutan largest exporter of renewable energy.
Some amazing facts about Bhutan:
- Bhutanese popularly call their Himalayan Kingdom “Druk Yul, ” or “Land of Thunder Dragon” as frequent storms roll in from the mighty Himalayas
- International Airport is located at Paro, a lush green valley, home to more that 650 temples, monasteries and monuments!!!
- Origin of name “Bhutan” has been attributed to Sanskrit Bhotanta which meaning “the end of Earth”.
- Try your hand at Archery, Bhutan's national sport. Quite different from traditional versions across globe, dartboards are a lot smaller, with darts heavy and equally lethal, thrown from over 20 meters.
- Thimpu is does not have a single traffic light.
- Punishment of killing black-necked crane, a highly endangered and culturally sacred bird, can lead to life imprisonment.
- Anyone found guilty of killing a could be sentenced to life in prison.
- Electricity, telephone, automobile made appearance in Bhutan after 1960, when the country started preparing itself from self impose isolation.
- No television or internet till 1999, Bhutanese now have limited access.
- Buying, selling and possession of Tobacco is outlawed.
- An interesting artwork is found on most Bhutanese houses. Phalluses are depicted on outer walls as a symbol of fertility. It is considered to bring good luck.
GDA has two holiday package for Bhutan Travel focusing on capturing the best of Bhutan culture and ecodiversity. Tour of Paro city and Taktsang monastery along with trek of more than 50 kms spread over a period of 10 days is most sought after Bhutan Travel Packages . GDA also offer many other discounted travel and holiday packages deals for different countries in Asia such as Colombia, China, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, Nepal and Vietnam.