Bumthang – The Shangri La of Bhutan
Can seclusion bring you joy and happiness? Can you find peace of mind while being away from the world? Or would you wish to spend time in a locale that could make you travel back in time? Well, visit the Bumthang region in Bhutan; you will find all the answers!
Located in the central part of Bhutan at an elevation of 2,600-4,500m, the Bumthang Valley usher peace, serenity, and unmatched joy in the visitors’ minds. Dotted with numerous sacred Buddhist monasteries and temples, this valley comprises of four pictorial valleys: Choekhor, Ura, Chumey, and Tang. Among these four, Choekhor is the largest and is usually referred to as the main Bumthang Valley.
Owing to the valley’s pristine backdrop, natural abundance, laid-back ambience, warm-hearted locals, and pleasant climate, Bumthang can also be called as the ‘Shangri La of Bhutan’. The valley would surely make you feel as if time stands still in here, the warmth of this valley would make feel cheerful and young, and last but not the least, its warm-hearted locals would make you feel home every time you visit Bumthang in Bhutan.
Best Time to Visit Bumthang: Spring (March to May) and Fall (Late September to Late November)
How to Reach Bumthang
If you are yearning to reach Bumthang by air, you can book your flight tickets from some of the busiest Indian airports to Paro International Airport in Bhutan. Upon arriving at the Paro Airport, you should drive around 309km (9 Hours) along the Ura Highway to reach Bumthang by air. Here is a list of Indian airports that have both direct and connecting flights to Paro International Airport:
Bodhgaya Airport in Gaya (Bihar)
Bagdogra Airport in Siliguri (West Bengal)
Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi
Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport in Kolkata
Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport in Guwahati (Assam)
Neither Bumthang, nor Bhutan has any railway connectivity with India. Hence, if you are planning to reach Bumthang by train, you should plan for a break journey to some of the closest Indian railway stations to Bhutan. New Jalpaiguri, New Alipurduar, Siliguri Town, and Hasimara are some of the railway stations that could serve your purpose to reach Bumthang by train. From any of these stations, you can take a drive to Jaigaon town in Alipurduar district of West Bengal, and finally reach Bumthang via Phuentsholing town by driving around 409km (12 Hours) along the Bumthang-Ura Highway.
If you are already in Kolkata, and planning to reach Bumthang by road, you can board the Royal Bhutanese Government buses that plies regularly from the Esplanade Bus Stand in Kolkata to reach Thimphu by road. From Thimphu, you should board the local Bhutanese buses or hire private cabs to drive another 272km (11-12 Hours) to reach Bumthang by road. To note here, buses from Thimphu usually leaves at sharp 08:00AM daily.
Places to Visit in Bumthang
Lhodrak Kharchhu Monastery
Mebar Tso – The Burning Lake
Things to Do in Bumthang