Getting to Bhutan

Until 1960s, Bhutan by and large remained cut off from the rest of the world. The country was accessible only by foot. Considering the remoteness and low profile in todays global world, one would naturally assume it would be difficult getting there. However, with the planned economic development one can approach the country both by air and by road. Travelling to Bhutan is easy and convenient with modern, dependable transportation system. Today the main gateway to Bhutan are through Phuntsholing in the south that links Bhutan with the Indian plains of West Bengal, Gelephu and Samdrup Jongkhar that links with the Indian State of Assam and the air journey through Paro is possibly the most spectacular flight over mountainous terrain.


Bhutan has got so far only one international airport located in Paro, that caters to the requirements of visitors flying in and off the country. However, within the country, there are domestic flights to Yongphu La in eastern Bhutan, Central Bhutan and Southern Bhutan. The international airport at Paro lies at an elevation of 2280m, and the air journey to Paro is possibly the most spectacular flight over the mountainous terrains.

Currently, there are two airlines flying into Paro International Airport from the following sectors.




01. India: New Delhi and Kolkata 01. India: New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Guwahati, Bagodgra, Bodhgaya 01. Bumthang: Bathpalathang
02. Nepal: Kathmandu 02. Nepal: Kathmandu 02. Trashigang: Yonphula
03. Bangladesh: Dhaka 03. Bangladesh: Dhaka 03. Gelephu: Norbuling
04. Thailand: Bangkok 04. Thailand: Bangkok
05. Singapore 05. Singapore

Visitors can enter Bhutan via road from Phuntsholing, Gyelephu and Sandrup Jongkhar in the eastern Bhutan. These three areas are the land border area opened for tourist visiting Bhutan via road.

Phuntsholing is located approximately 170 kilometer east of the Indian national airport Bagdogra. After crossing Phuntsholing, your journey then begins its mountainous climb through numerous turns and hair-pin bends till you enter Thimphu, the capital city. The travel time for the 171 kilometers stretch can be about six hours.

Gelephu in the south-central Bhutan is another entry point to the country. It is approximately 250 kilometers 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 travel time will be about ten hours.

Samdrup Jongkhar is the only entry point in eastern Bhutan. The town borders the Indian district of Darranga, Assam and is approximately 150 kilometers away from Guwahati, the capital city of Assam. The journey from Guwahati is about three hours. Tourist entering