Monday, February 20, 2012

Bhutan Diaries- Day 1

Bhutan is every travel writer’s dream. Tucked in the Himalayas, this kingdom is like no other. With a population of only 700,000 people, visitors get nothing less than a cozy, intimate immersion into a unique highland community. 

I had just returned from a ten-day adventure to Bhutan.  It has been 10 days since I returned. I still have a trip-over, a lasting hangover from the trip.  I did not have time to blog from the place known for its Gross National Happiness.

Help me through my hangover, as I share photos and videos from the last Shangri-La. 

Day 1:
Weeks before my trip to Bhutan, I was filled with much anticipation for my trip. I was anxious to experience the frigid winter.  I am an island girl after all, most comfortable in sundresses and flip-flops, not wool coats, thermals and layers of clothing. But the excitement of going to a culture to different from my own was thrilling. 

Bhutan didn’t disappoint. Even before touchdown, I enjoyed the scenic landing of the pilot with fascinating aerial views of the Himalayas.  Ask for the left side window seat.  Even the airport is gorgeous, with the intricate detail of Bhutnese architecture. Despite being eep-deprived from my flights and waiting in airports and light-headed from the high altitude, I was wowed by the images in my first 24 hours in Bhutan. 

The airport...
Bhutan's gorgeous airport...

Giddy like a little child

Ornate paintings characteristic of Bhutan architecture

The first of many photos you will encounter of the King and Queen

You are looking at 50% of the international fleet, Druk Air only has 2 airplanes currently flying from Thailand and India.

another angle of the airport

mud houses seen from the drive from Paro to Thimphu
scenes from the drive from Paro to Thimphu

First meal.. at Bhutan Kitchen, of course!

organic potatoes with cheese

the Ema-datsi, a chili and cheese dish eaten with almost every lunch and dinner

red rice

Egg and Cheese

Look at this gorgeous vegetarian meal I plated 

Prayer wheels... at the National Memorial Choeten 

At the National Memorial Choeten

Sitting by the butter lamps

It's getting hot at Folk Heritage museum

Traditional Gho and Kira are worn by Bhutanese men and women for work
Dochula pass at over 3000 meters above sea level, still has snow on the ground 

Photogenic Dochula Pass

at Sangchen Dorji Lhundrup Lhak

A quiet nunnery in Punakah, the winter home of the monks and nuns

lovely detail to temple door

Extremely shy nuns...., but they taught me that happiness means living simply!

my video diary of my first 24 hours in Bhutan:

all photos, videos, and text copyright Maida Pineda 2012.  Follow me on twitter/ themaidastouch and facebook.  more Bhutan posts soon....

for more info about maida, go to my website


  1. Such an interesting article, you're so lucky to get to visit Bhutan

  2. That is great i felt to remember the entire tour it was exactly the way you had chosen and posted seems the glimpses have taken me back to the time when we were there. great job keep it up and stay connected.


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