Central Bhutan – a magical part of the Land of Thunder Dragons where the sky-touching mountains have a tryst with manicured valleys and ancient cultures lead the way of life! This is the part of Bhutan that resonates a unique sense of spirituality and devotion through the many different monasteries and ancient temples. Connecting the Eastern and Western Bhutan, Central Bhutan shares a proximity with India, and serves as an ideal entry point to step into the Bhutanese land.
Known to be the ‘Cultural Heart’ of Bhutan, Central Bhutan comprises of major Bhutan tourist destinations like Bumthang Valley, Trongsa, Sarpang, Zhemgang, and Tsirang. Inhabited by the locals as well as a number of ethnic groups like the Lhotshampas and others, this region is a true treasure trove for those who are inclined towards exploring indigenous traditions and ethnic cultures. While navigating around this part of Bhutan, visitors would come across ethnic groups that speaks different languages and dialects like Nepali and East Bodish Kheng.
A biodiversity hub in the Happiest Himalayan Kingdom, Central Bhutan is also an excellent destination for the nature and wildlife lovers. The region is a natural home to more than 20 different wildlife species that has been declared as endangered. Phibsoo Wildlife Sanctuary, Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park and Royal Manas National Park are three of the major wildlife reserves that serves as the shelter ground of these wildlife species. All these parks also have a striking range of floral species that have high medicinal and commercial value. The region also attracts a number of migratory as well as local birds during the migratory season.
Tourist Destinations in Central Bhutan: Bumthang Valley, Trongsa, Sarpang, Zhemgang, Tsirang
Best Time to Visit Central Bhutan
Since Central Bhutan comprises of a mix of terrains; valleys, elevated landscapes, and mountainous regions, it enjoys a varied climatic condition throughout the year. This also make Central Bhutan a year-round destination with all its tourist destinations having their unique or best time to visit. However, if you want to have the most pleasant experience in Central Bhutan, you should plan your trip during spring (March to May), Fall (Late September to Late November), and winter (December to February).
How to Reach Central Bhutan
The Paro International Airport is the only international in Bhutan. In case, you are planning for a flight journey to Central Bhutan, you should book your air tickets to Paro International airport. If you are planning to fly from India, you should book your Paro flight tickets from like Delhi, Kolkata, Bodh Gaya, Guwahati, and Bagdogra. In case, you are planning for air journey from outside India, you can book flights to Paro from Kathmandu (Nepal), Bangkok (Thailand), Singapore, and Dhaka (Bangladesh).
Following your arrival at the airport, you can take local buses or hire private vehicles to reach Central Bhutan.
Distance from Paro International Airport to Central Bhutan Destinations
Bumthang Valley – Paro International Airport: 309km (9 Hours)
Trongsa – Paro International Airport: 230km (6 Hours)
Sarpang – Paro International Airport: 250km (7 Hours)
Zhemgang – Paro International Airport: 321km (9 Hours)
Tsirang – Paro International Airport: 206km (6 Hours)
Bhutan doesn’t have any railway connectivity with India. Thus, to reach Central Bhutan by train, one should first take a train journey to the Bongaigaon town in Assam (India). Bongaigaon town has a well-sorted railway connectivity with the rest of India with regular trains from across the country.
Upon reaching Bongaigaon, one can enter Bhutan through Gelephu point in Central Bhutan’s Sarpang region.
Bongaigaon in Assam (India) is the most ideal place to embark on a roadway journey to reach Central Bhutan by road. From Bongaigaon, one should take an hours’ drive covering only 50km to reach Gelephu in Central Bhutan’s Sarpang region. From Gelephu, one can enter Bhutan without any hassles after acquiring a valid Bhutanese Visa and completing all the official formalities.