Travelers traveling to Bhutan, have the option of entering Bhutan either overland or by Air.
Travelling by land.
After the closest Airport in Bagdogra (West Bengal), Phuntsholing in the South West, Gelephu in the South and Samdrup Jongkhar in South Eastern Bhutan are the only border towns that are opened to International Tourists.
Phuntsholing is a border town located approximately 170 km to the east of the Indian national airport at Bagdogra. Phuntsholing as the gateway to Bhutan has gained national recognition as the nerve centre of economic activities. Given its economic vibrancy, it also attracts traders and people from all parts of the country. It is home to the country's major industries and is also a major entry point to India, Bhutan's major trading partner. It is also the main entry-point for almost all the goods imported into Bhutan. After crossing Phuntsholing, you start your mountainous climb through endless turns and hair-pin bends till you enter Thimphu, the capital city. The travel time for the 176 km stretch can be more than 6 hours. Travel sickness tablets are recommended for young children and adults who are not accustomed to the winding roads along the Himalayan slopes mountain roads.
The town borders the Indian district of Darranga, Assam and is approximately 150 kms away from Guwahati, the capital city of Assam. The journey from Guwahati is about three hours. Tourists entering Bhutan through Samdrup Jongkhar will travel to Trashigang, the largest District in the country. From there they take a lateral route to Mongar, Bumthang, Trongsa, Wangde Phodrang and then finally reach, Thimphu. The distance is about 700 kms and will take you a minimum of three days to reach Thimphu.
Gelephu in south-central Bhutan is another entry point to Bhutan. It is approximately 250 kms from Thimphu and the journey will take you through the sub-tropical areas of Bhutan before entering the alpine zone and then finally into Thimphu. One will have to traverse across three districts and the travel time will be about ten hours.
Entering Bhutan by Air.
Paro situated at a height of 2225 meters above sea level, is the only International Airport is the in Bhutan.
Currently, two flight operates out of Bhutan - Druk Air (The Royal Bhutan Airlines) and Bhutan Airlines (Tashi Air Private Limited). The Druk Air, the national carrier is linked to Eight cities in five countries. During the festival season Druk Air arranges additional flights accordingly. The Bhutan Airlines flies to Bangkok. Both the Airlines also operates domestic flights.
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