Overview about Bhutan
Bhutan, officially known as Kingdom of Bhutan is a landlocked country in South Asia. Located in the Eastern Himalayas, it is bordered by the Tibet Autonomous Region of China in the north, the Sikkim state of India and the Chumbi Valley of Tibet in the west, the Arunachal Pradesh state of India in the east, and the Indian states of Assam and West Bengal in the south.
Paro Taktsang Lhakhang (Tiger’s Nest Monastery). Photo credit: Lester V Ledesma
Bhutan also known as Druk Yul - Land of Thunder Dragon is listed as Best in Travel 2020 by Lonely Planet. This small Himalayan nation has much to offer to travellers, after all, it is the birthplace of the popular Gross National Happiness (GNH) philosophy. Spirituality and Buddhism is an integral part of the Bhutanese life, and even all the government policies and plans have to be aligned with the key tenets of Gross National Happiness.
There are plenty of things to see in Bhutan that caters to the different types of travellers. Whether you’re a cultural buff, a foodie, shopaholic, an avid trekker, nature lover or simply a city dweller looking for an escapade - there will definitely be something in Bhutan for you to indulge yourself in.
Just talk to our Druk Asia travel specialists about your preference and they will be able to provide the best recommendations in Bhutan for you!
Exploring and Transiting in Singapore
Singapore is one of the most visited destinations in the Asian region. This small city state is a melting pot of different cultures and famed for its cleanliness and convenience. Some of the popular tourist attractions in this Lion City includes Gardens By the Bay, Singapore Zoo, Orchard Road, Sentosa and Universal Studios Singapore. The merlion statue located near One Fullerton at the Central Business District area is a landmark of Singapore that is often frequented by tourists. Some travellers also like to visit the hawker centre for some delicious cheap local delicacy. Amongst the popular hawker centres are Chinatown Food Complex, Old Airport Road Food Centre, Chomp Chomp Food Centre and Newton Food Centre. There are also many nice rooftop bars in Singapore with beautiful views and great ambience. It is really easy to get around in Singapore through public transportation such as the public buses or the Mass Rapid Transport (MRT).
Fun fact: Singapore is 53 times smaller than Bhutan in land size but the population in Singapore is about 5.7 million people while the population in Bhutan is around 770,000 people.
Singapore Changi Airport Transit
If you only have a few hours to spare while transiting in Singapore, fret not! Afterall, you are transiting in the world’s best airport! Singapore’s Changi Airport is undoubtedly one of the world’s most awarded airports and has bagged the World’s Best Airport title for eight years consecutively under the Skytrax World Airport Awards. Changi Airport has four passenger terminals (T1, T2, T3, T4) and the latest retail complex (Changi Jewel). All the terminals are interconnected and can be easily accessible through skytrain, shuttle bus services or by foot. There is plenty of food and activities to keep you occupied at Changi Airport - just make sure not to miss your flight!
Top things to do in Singapore Changi Airport
Ever wondered how to make the most of your time while waiting for your flight to Bhutan at Singapore Changi Airport? Below are some fantastic things you can do:
Visiting the Rain Vortex in Changi Jewel. The 40-metre tall rain vortex is the world’s largest indoor waterfall that has been the centre of attraction since its opening in April 2019. Be sure to check it out for some insta-worthy shots. (Changi Jewel)
For nature lovers, you can check out the different gardens located at the different terminals. You can find five different gardens in the airport:- Cactus Garden (T1), Sunflower Garden (T2), Enchanted Garden (T2), Orchid Garden (T2), and the popular Butterfly Garden (T3).
If your legs are screaming for some rest, you can also check out the free movie screenings in either T2 or T3 theatres.The cinemas are open 24 hours daily. (T2 and T3)
Revel in Singapore’s Peranakan Culture at the Heritage Zone. You will find a carpeted lounge area with an interesting LED screen where a Peranakan Love Story is digitally projected on the wall. (T4)
Shop ‘til you drop! Changi Airport has over 300 shops ranging from daily necessities, souvenirs, duty free wine and spirits to luxury goods. It’s truly a shopping haven for all the shoppaholics.
Eat to your heart’s content - there are more than 100 dining options of international cuisines to be found at the airport.
Indulge in the free massage chairs along the corridors of the departure gates. Your feet will thank you for that.
How to Travel to Bhutan from Singapore
DrukAir, the Royal Bhutan Airlines, now offers convenient direct flights from Singapore to Paro International Airport, the gateway to Bhutan's enchanting landscapes and rich culture. These flights connect Bhutan with several key destinations in Southeast Asia and South Asia, including Singapore, Thailand, Bangladesh, Nepal, and India. This makes it easier for travellers from Singapore to immerse themselves in the unique tranquillity and heritage of Bhutan. Whether you are seeking a spiritual retreat or an adventure amidst the Himalayas, the direct flight from Singapore to Paro is your first step towards an unforgettable Bhutanese experience.
Drukair flies to Bhutan from Singapore twice a week. Flights from Singapore to Bhutan are on Thursdays and Sundays. Drukair (KB 541) departs Singapore Changi Airport (SIN) at 12:30 and arrives at Paro International Airport (PBH) at 16:45.
Check the latest Drukair Schedule here - www.Drukair.com.sg.
Return flights from Bhutan to Singapore are on Wednesdays & Saturdays. Drukair (KB 540) departs Paro International Airport (PBH) at 8:05 and arrives at Singapore Changi Airport (SIN) at 16:10.
Total flight duration from Singapore to Bhutan is 5 ½ hours. There will be a layover at Guwahati, India for 45 minutes. Passengers are not required to disembark from the aircraft.
A round trip from Singapore to Bhutan is approximately *SGD 1465 (USD 1050) per pax. However, airfare and taxes are subjected to change.
Check-in counter for Drukair is located in Changi Airport Terminal 1, Row 12. Check-in counters are open 2 ½ hours before departure and will be closed 45 minutes prior to departure. It is advisable for passengers to check in early as seats are allocated on a first-come-first-serve basis.
Direct Flights and Flight Costs
Travelling from Singapore to Bhutan is made easy with direct flights taking off on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. Operated by Drukair, these flights arrive at the Paro International Airport in a span of five and half hours – you can also enjoy spectacular views along the way, mountains like Mt. Kanchenjunga and Jomolhari are sights not to be missed!
Royal Bhutan Airlines offers competitive fares, simply contact their official sales agent, Druk Asia provides you assistance for ensuring a comfortable travel experience from start till end.
Overland Travel Options
For those looking for an exciting journey, there is the alternative of overland travel to Bhutan despite direct flights being much more convenient. To embark on this type of trip one could begin by flying from Singapore to India and then make their way across land up until they reach the main border crossing at Jaigaon-Phuentsholing into Bhutan. Obtaining visas and a Restricted Area Permit (RAP) are required before travelling along that route.
Druk Air Baggage allowance
Druk Air offers a standard baggage allowance of 30kg for passengers travelling in economy class and 40kg for those in business class. The carry-on bag allowance is set at 5kg.
Bhutan has one of the most stunning descents through the gorgeous Himalayan mountain ranges prior to landing at Paro International Airport. Only certified pilots are allowed to land at Paro International Airport.
Bhutan visa application process for Singaporeans
Getting a visa for Bhutan is a simple process for citizens of Singapore, as Druk Asia will take care of all necessary paperwork. You just need to send us an electronic version with a full color image from your passport that has at least 6 months validity. Bhutan visa application costs USD40 per person. We will email you a copy of your e-visa clearance upon approval and you are required to produce this at the check-in counter and to the immigration officer when you land in Bhutan. The actual visa will be stamped on your passport at the port of entry once you complete all the immigration formalities.
Sustainable Development Fee
Singaporean tourists are subject to a Sustainable Development Fee (SDF) of USD 100 per night. This fee aims to maintain the country's cultural and environmental integrity, preserving its unique beauty for generations to come. By embracing this commitment to sustainability through the SDF fee, visitors actively contribute to the conservation of Bhutan's natural wonders. Children under 5 years old are exempt from the SDF, while those aged 5 to 12 years are required to pay USD 50 per night. It's important to note that the SDF does not cover accommodation, meals, transportation, or guide services.
Regional tourists from India are required to apply for a permit and pay 1200 INR/night.
Permit (Indian Passports only)
0- 5 years old
1200 INR / night
5 – 12 years old
Adult above 12 years old
$100 USD / night
Restricted Area Permits
If your tour includes locations other than Paro and Thimphu, you must acquire a Restricted Area Permit (RAP) from the Department of Immigration in Bhutan. We will coordinate for this permit application process to guarantee that all appropriate documentation is included for your journey.
If you visit temples or monasteries while traveling, we will also arrange a Temple Permit with the Ministry of Culture on your behalf.
Overall travel cost to Bhutan
The total cost of travel to Bhutan from Singapore largely depends on the type of accommodation that you choose.
For a 7D6N trip to Bhutan, the average tour packages to Bhutan costs start from SGD3010 per person, excluding flights.
Thus, you can expect to pay approximately SGD4475 for an all-inclusive trip to Bhutan covering the SDF, flights, accommodation, 3 meals a day, entrance to attractions, driver and a licensed English speaking guide.
There will be additional fees should you wish to opt for a 4 to 5-star accommodation, kindly let your friendly consultant know.
Planning Your Bhutan Tours from Singapore
If you're in Singapore and dreaming of a Bhutan adventure, get ready for an incredible journey to unravel its captivating beauty and culture! To make the most of this experience, starting with an organised tour is the key. Spring and autumn provide the ideal weather for exploring renowned destinations such asThimphu and Paro, where nature's charm intertwines seamlessly with cultural richness.
In order to venture into Bhutan’s boundaries, it's important to plan your trip through a trusted local travel agency. These agencies handle visa formalities and craft personalised itineraries, ensuring your visit aligns perfectly with your interests and preferences. They turn your journey into an immersive cultural experience, providing insights and arrangements that make your trip truly unforgettable.
Preparing for your journey from Singapore involves more than just packing your bags. Considering airport restrictions, thoughtful packing is crucial. If you're unsure about what to pack for your Bhutan trip, here's a helpful checklist you might want to review. And don't overlook the value of connecting with your tour operator early on—they're the ones who can add that special touch by suggesting hidden gems and unique experiences, making your Bhutan adventure even more memorable.
Bhutan Tour Packages from Singapore
Experience the enchanting kingdom of Bhutan like never before with our exclusive Bhutan tour packages from Singapore. Our carefully crafted tour packages offer you the opportunity to explore this hidden gem, where ancient monasteries cling to dramatic cliffsides, colorful prayer flags flutter in the breeze, and the traditional way of life is preserved with utmost care. Whether you're an adventure seeker looking to trek through pristine forests or a culture enthusiast eager to witness Bhutan's unique festivals and customs, our Bhutan tour packages cater to every traveler's dream, ensuring an unforgettable journey into the Land of the Thunder Dragon.
Bhutan Cultural Tour Packages
Bhutan Festival Tour Packages
Bhutan Luxury Tour Packages
Bhutan Trekking Packages
Bhutan Adventure Tour Packages
Bhutan Bespoke Tour Packages
Making Your Bhutan Trips Memorable
When it comes to etiquette while exploring Bhutanese destinations, showing respect to the royal family is encouraged. Remember, public displays of affection aren't accepted, and dressing modestly is appreciated. To add an unforgettable touch to your trip, if your dates align, don't miss attending major festivals like the Paro Tsechu Festival. Also, consider adding a trek, perhaps the Jomolhari Trek or Druk Path Trek, renowned for their breathtaking sights along the journey!
Buddha Dordenma aka Buddha Point, Thimphu
Bhutan is an absolute paradise for shutterbugs! Taking photos in Bhutan is like capturing memories in a frame—a way to freeze the beauty and magic of your journey. The unique structures and mesmerising scenery serve as the perfect backdrop for creating unforgettable snapshots. So, while you're exploring this incredible land, don't forget your camera and remember to be respectful by asking before you start clicking! You are encouraged to check with your guide if photography is permitted especially when visiting dzongs, temples or monasteries.
Savouring the rich culinary heritage is integral to crafting an unforgettable trip. The Bhutanese diet is a flavorful fusion of meat, rice, vibrant veggies, and aromatic herbs, all infused with the kick of chili peppers. Don't miss iconic dishes like ema datshi (chilli cheese) and ezay, coupled with traditional drinks such as butter tea and Arra. In line with Bhutan's Buddhist heritage, a diverse selection of delicious vegetarian options pays homage to both cultural richness and culinary diversity.
Visiting Bhutan becomes memorable by selecting the right season, which not only influences the climate but also aligns with the festival schedule. Whether seeking spiritual enlightenment or thrilling adventures, Bhutan stands as an unparalleled destination that promises an incredible journey, inviting visitors to immerse themselves in local culture at every step - an experience that simply must be witnessed firsthand!
Bhutan Travel Packages Reviews from Singapore
But don't just take our word for it
Here are what our guests say about their Bhutan experience
We embarked on a remarkable 10-day journey in Bhutan with the invaluable assistance of Druk Asia, and our experience was elevated by the exceptional support provided by Sangay Dorji. Sangay's expertise and profound understanding of Bhutan surpassed our expectations as he diligently collaborated with us to craft a meticulously planned itinerary. His insights extended beyond the conventional, enlightening us on aspects we hadn't even considered prior to our adventure.
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I had a fantastic time! My guide Kinley was most knowledgeable and helpful whilst my driver Namgay was very careful. When I had motion sickness he drove over bumps ever so slowly. The atmosphere in Bhutan is very unlike other developing countries, likely due to limited number of tourists. I had many interesting exchanges with locals especially girls. It was fun to dress up for the Haa Summer Festival. The hotel in Paro was fantastic but the other two a bit lacking. Overall a very good job! Thank you.
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As Reviewed on Trip Advisor
Safely Arrived! Start Exploring More of Bhutan's Hidden Gems
We hope that these insights have been valuable for your upcoming trip to Bhutan from Singapore. To enhance your Bhutanese adventure further, we recommend exploring Druk Asia's comprehensive guide for in-depth travel tips and invaluable insights. This thorough resource is designed to ensure your trip is not only safe, but also aims to minimise travel hassles and maximise your joy-filled experiences.
If you require any guidance or assistance in organising your Bhutan tours from Singapore, our team of experienced professionals is available to provide support whenever you need it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which month is best for a Bhutan tour?
The ideal time for a visit to Bhutan is usually deemed the spring months of March through May and autumn from September till November. During these times, there will be mild temperatures as well as breathtaking views with flowers in full bloom and amazing Himalayan vistas.
Can Singaporeans go to Bhutan?
Yes, Singaporeans are eligible to visit Bhutan. However, travelling to Bhutan from Singapore typically requires planning through a licensed Bhutanese tour operator. Singaporean travellers must obtain a visa prior to entering Bhutan. Companies like Druk Asia and Soultrips.co offer comprehensive visa management services for Singaporean travellers planning a trip to Bhutan, ensuring a smooth visa application process.
Can I travel independently in Bhutan?
Yes, as of September 2022, tourists can travel without a tour guide (and driver) in Bhutan. You are not required to book your trip through a tour operator but it is still highly encouraged for you to book a guided tour in Bhutan as local guides are invaluable. Through a guided tour to Bhutan, you will benefit tremendously from the local expertise and knowledge on the unique Bhutanese culture. The local guides are also well-trained in handling any special requests or assistance that you may have along the trip to ensure that you have the best trip of your life.
Which tour operators are reputable for Bhutan tours?
Soultrips.co and Druk Asia, one of the pioneer travel agencies specialising in tours to Bhutan are renowned for its expertise in organising trips to Bhutan. It has served travellers from all over the world and catered to all types of travellers from solo to large group tours. Tour packages to Bhutan are highly customisable for the best experience.