Welcome to the Kindom of Bhutan.
Many Eastern classics and books of wisdom have referred to the Himalayas as the abode of the gods. These descriptions did not stem merely from the majesty and grandeur of the natural surroundings but alluded to a special environment where communion with the divine was possible trough contemplation and meditation. And since time immemorial, ascretics, mystics, scholars, philosophers and pilgrims have been drawn irresistibly to these remote and rugged mountains in their personal search for wisdom, insperation, solitude and happiness.
Tucked away in the Eastern Himalayas, Bhutan has been visited by a great many of these seekers, who blessed the land and its people with an invaluable spiritual and cultural legacy. Visitors will be surprised that the culture and the traditional lifestyle are still richly intact and at the degree to wich they permeate all strands of modern secular life. From the traditional woven garments to the prayer flags on high mountain slopes, from the architectural environment to the natural environment, from the religious mask dances to the folk dances, this heritage is proudly evident and offers a unique setting.
The Bhutanese have treasured their natural environment, as it is seen as a source of all life and the abode of the gods and spirits. Buddhism has been the predominant religion since the 7th century and has rooted deeply the value of all forms of sentient life, not just human life, are precious and sacred. Given this prevailing ethos, it is not surprising that the Bhutanese have lived in harmony with nature and that Bhutan's environment remains pristine and intact today. The country been identified as on of the ten biodiversity hot spots in the world and one of the 221 global endemic bird areas. Its ecosystems harbor some of the most exotic species of the eastern Himalayas, with an estimated 770 species of birds, over 50 species of rhododendron, and astonishing variety of medical plants and orchids. Bhutan is also rich in wildlife, with animals like the takin, snow leopard, golden langur, blue sheep, tiger, water buffalo and elephant.
To safeguard these treasures, the country has consciously adopted a controlled tourism and development policy. In the last year, approximately 116.224 tourists entered the country. and the numbers in the comming year are not expected to increase greatly. For the few who ddo travel to Bhutan, a wide variety of activities are available, from the Snowman trek to kayaking down the Mochhu, from witnessing the colorful festivals in the fortresses to the panoramic mountain flights.
We hope that visitors who make the journey to Bhutan enjoy their experience and return home with everlasting memories...