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Bhutan Overview

Overview

Bhutan is a peaceful country with strong traditional values based on religion, respect for the royal family and care for the environment. Located in the magnificent Himalayas, Bhutan is also named as 'The Land of Peaceful Thunder Dragon' due to the regular feature of storms in the Himalayan region. Bhutan offers breathtaking mountain views, incredible scenic beauty, exciting wildlife and a rich culture and lifestyle which Bhutanese people still strives to preserve in the face of modernity. Bhutan offers travelers unparalleled beauty, adventure, and the cultural experience of a lifetime!.

Capital
Thimpu

Geography
Bhutan is a landlocked country. It is about 47,000 kilometres - roughly the size of Switzerland. It is located between Tibet in the north, Indian states of West Bengal and Assam in the south, and Arunachal Pradesh in the east.

Language
Originally spoken only in western Bhutan, Dzongkha is now the national language. English is widely spoken in main towns and it is the medium of education in all schools. Local people are also familiar with Hindi and Nepali.

Religion
Bhutan is the only country in the world to have adopted Mahayana Buddhism in its Tantric form as its official religion. The Buddhist faith has played and continues to play a fundamental role in the cultural, ethical and sociological development of country and its people. Monks are held in great respect and play an active part in community life. Almost every home in Bhutan has a special area called a chosum, which is a small shrine, or a special room used for prayers.

Time
Bhutan standard time is six hours ahead of GMT, and there is only one zone throughout the country. Bhutan standard time is 30minutes ahead of Indian Standard Time.

Electricity
Electricity in Bhutan is reasonably reliable and runs 220/240 volts. An international converter kit with a set of adapter plugs may be required if travellers bring along electrical appliances.

Currency
Bhutan's unit of currency is the Ngultrum (Nu), which is at par to the Indian Rupee (100 Chetrums = 1 Ngultrum). One US dollar is equivalent to approximately 46 Ngultrums*. Most major foreign currencies are accepted. Travellers cheques, American Express cards and Visa cards are also accepted in certain establishments.

The Indian Rupee is also legal tender in Bhutan except for the denomination of 500 notes which are banned in Bhutan because of counterfeit.

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