If Thailand is the Land of Smiles, then Bhutan is definitely “the Land of Peace”.
Bhutan started opening its door to travelers 10 years ago and has been rated one of the top countries to visit. There is so much to explore in this charming country ~ October last year, I signed up for this magical trip through the tour guide of a good friend “Yu-chan” who visited Bhutan earlier in the year.
I flew into Paro via Druk Air with stop over at Kolkata India. Paro Airport is one of the world’s most difficult for landing and take-off that only very few pilots are certified to land there. As first-time visitor in Bhutan, Thimphu, Punakha and Paro must be included in the itinerary! To summarize my magical experience…
Stepping back in time ~ no high rises, no fast food or coffee chains
Religious ~ stunning architecture and colorful flags
High-risk but harmless ~ check out the run way vs the high way
Gentle and warm ~ the people
A rich culture ~ heritage, food and environment
The Royal family….Not only I get to meet Prince Jigme Dorji Wangchuk and his wife at Chimi Lakhang, I’ve also had a chance chatting with the both of them!
..and the late LKY ~ a very well regarded politician in Bhutan.
Of course, Taktsang Palphug.. the Tiger’s Nest!
The Land of the Thunder Dragon is no ordinary place, in addition to experiencing the must-see, I’ve requested a visit to local village and a school nearby. I left the village late afternoon and I saw the children walking back home. Not only it will take them 3 hours commuting by foot every day, they will stop at the roadside and bow to all visitors traveling in a car. I was touched by my guide’s family especially his cute little grand-niece. I will never forget you, Bhutan and the beautiful smile of Bhutanese ~
Contentment is an attitude ~ be content with what you have and let go of what you can’t control.