If there’s a role model for sustainability in the world, it’s probably Bhutan. Not only is it carbon neutral, but it’s carbon negative. Over 60% of its forests are protected for future generations, and it’s built around a core philosophy of low-impact tourism and Gross National Happiness. And on top of that, by 2020 it’s on track to become the first fully organic nation on the planet.
You may have heard of Bhutan’s now-famous compulsory tourist tariff, which sees foreign visitors paying a minimum of $250 per day just to visit. But what you may not know is this includes all accommodation, food, transport and a local guide – and it also grants you access to one of Southeast Asia’s most pristine corners.
Shut off from the world until 1974, Bhutan is almost like a time capsule. It’s a place where archery is the national pastime, the valleys ring with tinkling yak bells and locals wander the streets in colourful traditional dress. Visit its majestic dzongs and monasteries and you’ll find red-robed monks strolling between lilac jacaranda trees, against a backdrop of soaring Himalayan peaks. Trek up there, and it’s still possible to see snow leopards. Shangri-La may be fictional, but its real-world equivalent is right here. Discover more with our Tailor-Made Trips to Bhutan.