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Transportation in Bhutan - Bhutan Transport for Travel 2020/2021

14 July 2020 Last updated at 11:46

Without railway systems in Bhutan, by flights and driving are the two main transportation way. Bhutan’s main attractions share a linear distribution from west to east. Because Paro International airport is located in west Bhutan, travelers always start a tour from Paro and then drive to east. Check the most convenient way to Get to Bhutan >>

Drving Journey in Bhutan

1.Paro – Thimphu / 50 km, about 1 hour 30 minutes’ driving

The road connecting Paro and Thimphu is in good condition, well-paved and much wider than roads in other districts. If you start your trip from Paro Airport, you will firstly reach the beautiful town - Bondey where you can see traditional dwellings. After 30 minutes later, you will get to Chhuzom, the juncture of Paro Chhu (Paro River) and Wang Chuu (Wang River). In Bhutanese tradition, the joining of revers is inauspicious. So there are three Buddhist stupas built here to drive away the evils from this area. Ascending along with the winding river, you will get to the barren hills. Then drive downward along the valley, you will get to Thimphu.

Useful Link: How to Get from Paro to Thimphu

ChhuzomChhuzom - Juncture of Two River

2. Thimphu – Punakha / 85 km, about 2.5 hours’ driving

The drive from Thimphu to Punakha along the National Highway leads from the cool height of Thimphu to the fascinating landscape of lush Punakha Valley. Driving about 45 minutes, you will climb to Dochu la Pass which is marked with colored prayer flags and an impressive collection of 108 white stupas. From Dochu la Pass, you can feel the dramatic changes of vegetation. Then there comes a long zigzagging decent road to Metshina, but it is great to see the outstanding monasteries on the road. Before reaching Punakha, you can see beautiful Chimi Lhakang first. It is located in the central valley below Metshina. Chimi Lhakang is a mysterious temple that many childless women will go to receive a blessing there.

Useful Link: How to Get from Thimphu to Punakha

3. Punakha – Wangdue Phodrang / 15 km, about 40 minutes’ driving

Wangdue Phodrang is only 15 km away from Punakha. Driving back to Meshina and then following the Punak Tsang Chhu, you will get to Wangdue Phodrang soon. The whole trip is around a half-hour drive.

Dochu La PassColored Prayer Flags in Dochu La Pass

4. Wangdue Phodrang – Trongsa / 125 km, less than 3.5 hours

It is a pleasant drive from west Bhutan (Paro, Thimphu, Punakha, Wangdue Phodrang etc.) to Central Bhutan (Trongsa, Bumthang etc.) because it offers incredible scenery along the road. It leads you from the windswept town to the heavily cultivated Mangde Chhu Valley. Driving from Wangdue Phodrang, the road traverses bare hillsides high above the river. You will soon get to the Pele La Pass in 30 minutes, and then lots of dwarf bamboos will come into view. These small bamboos are delicious food of yaks and horses, so you are able to see them feasting on the bamboos. Another 30 minutes later, you will pass a few farms. Further along the road, you can enjoy the wonderful rural sightseeing. You will make a big detour into the upper reaches of the Mangde Chhu Valley and cross the raging rivers to get to Trongsa.

Pelela La PassGreat View from Pele La Pass

5. Tongsa – Jakar / 65 km, 2 hours

The route between Trongsa and Jakar (main town of Bumthang District) is much easier and interesting. As the road winds through the Chhume Valley, it passes many villages and monasteries. You are suggested to take several stops to appreciate the picturesque views. Firstly winding up to the ridge above Tongsa, you will get to Yotong La Pass with an array of colorful prayer flags and a Tibetan stupa. Again driving down along the road, you can get a good view of various plants in the valley. In the next driving journey, your eyes will caught by some buildings, including Buli Lhakhang, Tharpaling Gobemba, Chumey Nature Resort, Domkhar Tahichhoing Dzong, Nimalung Goemba etc.

Pelela La PassPeaceful Bumthang Valley

With many off-beaten-track destinations, eastern Bhutan is always something for adventure tour. If you want to extend your tour to the wild Eastern Bhutan, it will take 7 hours from Jakar to Mongar (the ancient region of Khyeong), 3.5 hours from Mongar to Trashigang and 6 hours from Trashigang to Kanglung etc.

Useful Links: How to Get from Paro to Punakha / How to Get from Paro to Bumthang

Popular Bhutan Tour Packages:

✔ 5 Days Bhutan Classic Tour

✔ 6 Days Last Shangri-La Highlights Tour

✔ 9 Days Bhutan In-depth Tour

Flights among Bhutan Airports

Bhutan has four airports, including Paro International Airport (All International Flights to Bhutan), Bathpalathang Airport in Jakar, Yongphulla Airport in Trashigang and Gelephu Airport in Gelephu. There are flights flying from Paro to Gelephu, Bumthang and Yongphula, (apart from Gelephu Airport, the other three are interconnected) which makes the a easy journey to central Bhutan and estern Bhutan possible. Check the following detailed flights available in Bhutan:

Paro Domestic Flights Schedules

From -- To Frequency Duration Airline Plane
Paro -- Gelephu
(PBH -- GLU)
about 2~3 flights per week about 40 minutes Drukair KB020 ATR 42/ATR 72
Paro -- Bumthang
(PBH -- BUT)
about 4~5 flights per week about 35 minutes Drukair KB012 ATR 42/ATR 72
Paro -- Yongphula
(PBH -- YON)
about 2 flights per week about 45 minutes Drukair KB030 ATR 42/ATR 72

Tips: The above flight schedules are listed for reference only and are subject to change. You can contact us to get the newest timetable and flight information.

Warm Tips for Bhutan Transport

▷ Great Scenery in Paro Kathmandu Flights Journey

Kathmandu flights are really famous for offering a delightful view of Himalaya, including the world’s highest peaks – Mount Everest, Mount Lhotse, Mount Makalu and Mount Makalu. Choose a left seat by the window if you take a flight from Kathmandu to Paro, you can enjoy the peaks more clearly. If you fly from Paro to Kathmandu, choose a right seat instead. When you get close to the peaks, the captain will broadcast introductions to help you recognize these mountains.

▷ Road Condition in Bhutan

Thimphu and Paro is always fine in road condition, but some stretch of Punakha is a bit rough. In your tour to central Bhutan, the road frequently ascends the valleys. There is no need to worry about the bad road condition, because it always bring you splendid great sightseeing.

▷ Changes of Flights Frequency

All the flights frequency and schedule is just for your reference, and it will be adjusted in different time. During the peak seasons (March ~ June & September ~ October), the flights will be increased to supply the needs of more travelers. In the other seasons, there are fewer flights accessible.

Recommended Nepal Tibet Bhutan Tour Packages

Following are some of our most recommended Nepal Tibet Bhutan tour packages that you may be interested in. All of our tour packages are classic itineraries, and can be tailor-made to meet your personal requirements. You can get more Bhutan Nepal Tours, or contact us to customize a trip if you want.

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