As you walk across the border from India you enter a different world. Traffic chaos is left behind. You’re greeted by people in traditional dress. You are in no doubt that you are in a Buddhist kingdom. The architecture is different, so too the faces.
Stupas and prayer flags. Relaxed and friendly people … a policeman was happy to have his photo taken.
Bhutan is situated on the southern slopes of the eastern Himalayas. Tibet is to the north, India to the south. The capital is Thimphu. The population is in the order of three-quarters of a million people, mostly Buddhist. 80% of the population are engaged in agriculture. The most important crops are maize and rice.
It is governed as a constitutional monarchy placing a premium on the happiness of its people.
Steep sided valleys intersect mountains that reach to above 7000 metres. The highest is Gangkharensum Puat 7,570 metres (24,840 ft), the highest unclimbed mountain in the world. The countryside is extensively forested. It has an impressive array of mammals and more than 770 species of bird have been recorded.
For those not satisfied with mammals and birds there are forts (dzongs) and temples.