Bhutan tourism to shine with launch of Trans Bhutan Trail

 Monday, February 27, 2023 


The launch of the Trans Bhutan Trail is projected to enhance the number of tourists in Bhutan, according to The Bhutan Live. The Trans Bhutan Trail runs for 4033 kilometres from Haa in the extreme west to Trashigang in the east, passing through 27 villages and nine districts of Bhutan.

With the building of Bhutan’s first national highway in 1962, the Trans Bhutan Trail was no longer used as the primary mode of transit. Its upkeep was completely ignored, resulting in the collapse of bridges, sidewalks, and stairways over time.

The Trans Bhutan Trail was reopened after 60 years, thanks to Bhutan’s King, whose ambition was to preserve the country’s unique history. The Trail dates back to the 16th century, when it was the only mode of transit for rulers, visitors, monks, traders, and those trail runners known as “garps,” whose job it was to relay political messages to the country’s dzongs.

The Trans Bhutan Trail organisation, a non-profit social enterprise, has played an important role in the trail’s popularity. The organisation facilitates connections with local guides and farmhouses, allowing travellers to experience rural life. The guides have begun developing a Trans Bhutan Trail Passport scheme in collaboration with the Trans Bhutan Trail organisation. According to the news report, more than 60 “Passport Ambassadors” who welcome visitors have spread around Bhutan, with the bulk of them being women.

According to The Bhutan Live, local farmers feed visitors a traditional lunch while sharing their culture and heritage with their guests, and some individuals offer culinary demos while others pamper tourists in traditional hot stone baths. The collaboration enables women to work in the tourism industry and make a living.

According to the news report, it also gives travellers a profound cultural knowledge and connection with some of Bhutan’s most isolated towns and people.

Zangmo, one of the women opening her house to the tourists, said, “I wanted to open the doors of my farmhouse to tourism in 2018 but then the pandemic hit and ruined my plans,” The Bhutan Live reported.

She added, “Then last year, a guide from the TBT knocked on my door and invited me to be an ambassador, which changed my life. Not only can I make some extra money for my family, but I also have the opportunity to interact with people from around the world and learn new things.”

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