Kingdom of Bhutan is an intriguing country to visit. Visitors are often drawn to its unique culture, tradition and history. If you're curious about what Bhutan has in store for you, check out the 10 incredible facts about Bhutan and 15 reasons why you should visit Bhutan.
While Bhutan is a Vajrayana Buddhist country, it's a kingdom that welcomes people from all backgrounds and religions. Some said even the most non-spiritual person has a way of falling in love with Bhutan.
Below is a guide for Muslims around the world who are planning to travel to Bhutan.
Is there halal food in Bhutan?
There is currently no halal-certified eateries in Bhutan. However, Le Meridien hotels in Thimphu and Paro offer halal-certified meats. But fret not — you can easily find food with no pork or lards in Bhutan. In fact, a vast majority of Bhutanese are vegetarians or vegans. Hence, food will not be a major concern for you if you do not mind eating at places with no pork and lards.
"People might think that it was difficult for Muslims like me to find food in Bhutan, but it was not. Bhutan, being a predominantly Buddhist country, has so many vegetarian choices. I would say it's the best cuisine in Bhutan and you should try it. On top of that, everything is extra sweet and fresh." - Baki Zainal, Host and Malaysian Celebrity (Check out his Bhutan experience on Bhutan Travelog)
Is there a mosque in Bhutan?
There is no mosque in Bhutan. But there is a small prayer room for Muslims located at Bumthang, Ura Hwy. The building consists of four sections and each section is catered to Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs and Christians. You can consider praying in your hotel room should you wish to conduct any prayers. Inform your tour agency about it and they should be able to accommodate accordingly.
Can non-Buddhist visit the temples and monasteries in Bhutan?
Yes. Everyone regardless of background is welcome to visit the temples and monasteries in Bhutan. However, you are required to observe certain behaviours to respect the local culture.
Below are some things to note when entering a temple or monastery in Bhutan:
Remove your headgear and shoes at the entrance
Do not take any photographs
Do not point at any deity or statues
Do not speak loudly as there will be people who are meditating and praying
Do not make fun of any objects, paintings or statues as it's considered very disrespectful
Circumambulate in a clockwise direction when spinning prayer wheels
How can I travel to Bhutan?
All tourists entering Bhutan are required to book their trip with a licensed tour operator like Druk Asia. Your tour agency will take care of your ticketing, VISA application, hotel bookings and itinerary.
Check out why should you travel to Bhutan with Druk Asia.