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Old 19th August 2016, 09:32   #31
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

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Originally Posted by Samba View Post
A drive to the Himalaya's in monsoon & that too in a sedan did raise a few eyebrows! The typical statements and questions i had to face before the trip were like-

Its a bad decision.
- Yes i know!

There will be land slides and slush on the road. - That's fun!

You wont be able to cover all the parts of Bhutan. - True, am not into a drive to cover the whole of Bhutan, neither i am into a Bhutan expedition, i just want to enjoy a monsoon drive in the Himalaya's!

What if you get stuck on road? -
I have no idea. Will carry enough food and always keep enough reserve fuel in the tank!

Its useless to tell you something sensible, you will do what ever you feel like! - Yes!
Did you hear me talking to my wife?
Our dialogue was in SAME lines.
I am also planning to go to Bhutan, April'17.
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Old 19th August 2016, 14:06   #32
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

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I am also planning to go to Bhutan, April'17.
Apparently April is one of the beast seasons to go to Bhutan as previously mentioned "until April the climate remains dry and pleasant and in late spring the famous rhododendrons bloom spectacularly, flooding the valleys with colour".

With reference to the above you are opting to travel to Bhutan in the most desired season (peak season) indeed !! Have fun
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Old 19th August 2016, 15:53   #33
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

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Our dialogue was in SAME lines.
Show her this travelouge, that may work

Samba: Another superb travelouge with beautiful set of pics.
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Old 19th August 2016, 23:39   #34
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

Great informative travelogue . I have been to Bhutan last year in April when the clear sky was in bloom. The cloudy appearance of nature in this season is also appreciative. But you should have been to Phobjika because that place lured me the most among all places.

One more thing, the video of Paru Chu is really amazing ..

Last edited by PointZero : 19th August 2016 at 23:41. Reason: comment added
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Old 20th August 2016, 17:22   #35
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

You my friend are an inspiration. I have traveled with you many times but unfortunately we were not teambhp members. For people who wants to drive with family and feel safe about the route your blogs shall come in very handy. The intricate details that are captured and the useful data is enormous in all your blogs. As i said earlier you are really getting good at this mate keep them coming always a great read for all of us.
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Old 21st August 2016, 11:02   #36
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

Excellent travelogue Samba. Kudos to you and your parents for making this wonderful trip. With the risks involved many parents will not encourage their kids to travel via road during monsoon and here your parents are your biggest motivators and companions during this trip! Stay blessed! After reading your travelogue, Bhutan visit has become one of my to do list now in near future. All the very best for your future travels!
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Old 22nd August 2016, 07:04   #37
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

Once again, a superb travelogue with excellent photographs. As usual, the last post of your travelogue is going to be very helpful for anyone planning to visit Bhutan. Of all reasons, I think the most important reason why Bhutan feels so different from our country is the way people of Bhutan look at life and that reflects in everything. During my trip in 2014, I could do only Thimphu and Paro. There are so many things to see and do in Bhutan. Therefore, just like you, I feel I owe a few more trip to this beautiful little country.
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Old 22nd August 2016, 15:17   #38
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

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[/u] Soon we reached the landslide zone and to my horror half of the road was washed out and the other half was full of slush and undulations.
I am very glad that you had a good time here in Bhutan. However, i would like to request you all to please refrain from travelling to Bhutan in Summers. Just a few weeks back i had a narrow escape when a large boulder hit my car and shoved me towards a cliff. The visibility was near zero and it was raining. After a few days later, a merc GL was crushed by another boulder in the same route.
The best time to visit Bhutan is in the Autumn and Spring. There will be many festivals during those times and the weather and road conditions will be good as well.
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Old 22nd August 2016, 19:55   #39
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

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Originally Posted by TheStranger View Post
Awesome TL, Samba. Your travels bring back nostalgic memories for me ...the last time I had gone to Bhutan was waaay back in time. From your lens, it seems they have managed to keep the pristine beauty of Bhutan intact so far.

Looks like it needs a visit real soon !!
Thanks a lot.
My last visit to Bhutan was in 1993, that time i was a school kid. 23 years back i was impressed to see the cleanliness of this country and 23 years later it left the same impression in me yet again!

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Originally Posted by FORTified View Post
Did you hear me talking to my wife?
Our dialogue was in SAME lines.
I am also planning to go to Bhutan, April'17.


April will be a great time to visit Bhutan. I enjoyed a lush green Bhutan in monsoon, you can enjoy a colorful Bhutan in April with better roads.

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Originally Posted by AJ-got-BHP View Post
Apparently April is one of the beast seasons to go to Bhutan as previously mentioned "until April the climate remains dry and pleasant and in late spring the famous rhododendrons bloom spectacularly, flooding the valleys with colour".
+1

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Originally Posted by mpksuhas View Post
Samba: Another superb travelouge with beautiful set of pics.
Thanks a lot. Am a big fan of your travelogues too and follow them regularly.

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Originally Posted by PointZero View Post
Great informative travelogue . But you should have been to Phobjika because that place lured me the most among all places.

One more thing, the video of Paru Chu is really amazing ..
Thanks a ton. I have read your Bhutan travelogue before planning my trip. That's one great travelogue with very useful details. You do owe a thanks from me. For others who missed out reading your travelogue, here is the link - http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...ss-bhutan.html (In a Mahindra Bolero to the Land of Happiness - Bhutan!)

Regarding Phobjika valley, in monsoon i had to struggle to reach Punakha. Roads were bad and slushy in places. Locals told that even Innova's are refraining from visiting Phobjika valley at that time. Its best to venture when its dry. Bhutan East to West is in my cards.

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Originally Posted by ARAY View Post
You my friend are an inspiration. I have traveled with you many times but unfortunately we were not teambhp members.
Thanks a lot & hope to travel together soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ananthc View Post
Excellent travelogue Samba. Kudos to you and your parents for making this wonderful trip. With the risks involved many parents will not encourage their kids to travel via road during monsoon and here your parents are your biggest motivators and companions during this trip! Stay blessed! After reading your travelogue, Bhutan visit has become one of my to do list now in near future. All the very best for your future travels!
Thanks a ton. Its great to know after reading my travelogue you want to visit Bhutan. Its an amazing place and definitely worth a visit. My travelogue can express just 10% of the true beauty of Bhutan!

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Originally Posted by psurelia View Post
Once again, a superb travelogue with excellent photographs. Therefore, just like you, I feel I owe a few more trip to this beautiful little country.
Thanks a lot. Lets plan a Bhutan end to end trip together in the future! Your Storm 4x4 will definitely boost up some more confidence in my Etios!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagato710 View Post
I am very glad that you had a good time here in Bhutan. However, i would like to request you all to please refrain from travelling to Bhutan in Summers. Just a few weeks back i had a narrow escape when a large boulder hit my car and shoved me towards a cliff. The visibility was near zero and it was raining. After a few days later, a merc GL was crushed by another boulder in the same route.
The best time to visit Bhutan is in the Autumn and Spring. There will be many festivals during those times and the weather and road conditions will be good as well.
Thanks a ton and that's a very useful information you have shared. It will definitely help me and others to plan our future travels to Bhutan. Hope to meet you next time we visit your country! You do live in a beautiful country.

Last edited by Samba : 22nd August 2016 at 19:58.
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Old 23rd August 2016, 03:52   #40
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

Excellent travelogue! Superb flow of incidents in writing and beautifully supported by videos and exceptional photos. Your narration literally took me to the places in Bhutan.
I bookmarked this travelogue for my future Bhutan travel.

Thanks and rated the travelogue a well deserved 5*
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Old 23rd August 2016, 07:37   #41
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

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Thanks a lot. Lets plan a Bhutan end to end trip together in the future! Your Storm 4x4 will definitely boost up some more confidence in my Etios!
Sure thing Samba! Bhutan West to East + Arunachal or Bhutan Adventure (Nature Walk of Phobjikha, Village Stay in Bumthang or Chummy and 4x4 Excursion in Jigme Dorji National Park) is on my cards for a long time.
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Old 24th August 2016, 20:19   #42
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

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Originally Posted by gearhead_mait View Post
Excellent travelogue! Superb flow of incidents in writing and beautifully supported by videos and exceptional photos. Your narration literally took me to the places in Bhutan.
I bookmarked this travelogue for my future Bhutan travel.

Thanks and rated the travelogue a well deserved 5*
Thanks a ton. Hope to see pics of a white Hyundai Eon with Team Bhp stickers shortly on the roads of Bhutan followed by an awesome travelogue !

Quote:
Originally Posted by psurelia View Post
Sure thing Samba! Bhutan West to East + Arunachal or Bhutan Adventure (Nature Walk of Phobjikha, Village Stay in Bumthang or Chummy and 4x4 Excursion in Jigme Dorji National Park) is on my cards for a long time.
Awesome. This sounds like a superb plan! We will discuss it offline.

Today my mom took out the album from our first visit to Bhutan, way back in 1993! Cant resist myself from sharing this pic! This is the root cause for my love towards a green Kawasaki Ninja since childhood! This pic was taken at Thimpu!

Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios-me.jpg

Last edited by Samba : 24th August 2016 at 20:35.
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Old 24th August 2016, 21:02   #43
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

How appropriately has Bhutan been described by you - Ecstatic! A country that takes its Gross National Happiness Index very seriously, is bound to be an ecstatic place to visit. And the lush greenery is a great treat to city-sore eyes, though the plains of Bengal are equally green at this time of the year.

You surpass yourself each time you set out to write a travelogue. The information on these pages would certainly help many others take a driving holiday to the country - although, I would certainly hope that folks from this side of the border maintain road and traffic discipline inside Bhutan, unlike the usual behaviour while driving on Indian roads.

Rated 5 stars!
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Old 25th August 2016, 10:07   #44
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

Samba Da,

I am totally speechless here. Amazing, amazing writeup and fabulous frames. Was totally awestruck by the time I finished reading.

I loved it so very much that I decided to show it to my family. My family is going through some very tough times right now and the TL brought in a breeze of happiness and hope for us. My grandmother was really overjoyed by seeing these pictures. My Dad, who recently suffered from an accident, is raring to get fit again and hit the road (on two wheels, though). It really did wonders!

You Sir, are no less than a superhuman. The pictures, the terrains, the dense fog filled drive, a FWD sedan, and the cherry on the cake, such a greatly documented TL.

Amazing!

Neel
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Old 25th August 2016, 13:13   #45
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Default Re: Ecstatic Bhutan and lush green Dooars in a Toyota Etios

Dada,

I will refrain from adding any more superlatives to the ones already mentioned by others and aptly so. You should compile all your TLs, from Srinagar to West Sikkim and now Bhutan and publish a guide!

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Originally Posted by Samba View Post
Few small bits from the trip-

How to get the permits-

To save time at Phuntsholing we decided to get our permits in prior from Bhutan embassy in Kolkata. They issue only for people, for car one has to get it done from RSTA Phuntsholing.

For the people traveling-

We went to Tivoli Ballygaunge office and asked for the procedure.
For folks who are not residents of Calcutta, can the permits for tourists alone be done directly at Phuntsholing? Is there a risk it could be denied? I had traveled in a car to Bhutan more than two decades back and if memory serves me right, the permits were done at the checkpost.

Is the procedure at RSTA same for motorcycles as it is for cars? Does the documentation remain the same for 2 wheelers and also what is your take on how it would be on a motorcycle given the road conditions? May plan a motorcycle trip next month

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Originally Posted by AJ-got-BHP View Post
Though I believe the format has now changed and Samba can share the updated one if it is handy with him.
Question to both Samba and AJ, is the form available at the checkpost at Phuntsholing? Any additional paperwork needed if one is not applying for the permit through the Bhutanese embassy at Calcutta and getting it done at the time of entry instead?

TIA

Last edited by hothatchaway : 25th August 2016 at 13:16. Reason: added a question
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