Bhutan often revered as the "Land of the Thunder Dragon" or 'Druk Yul', is still regarded as one of the last "Shangri-La's" in the Himalayan region because of its remoteness, its spectacular mountain terrain, varied flora and fauna and its unique ancient Buddhist monasteries.
This country of rolling hills and towering crags certainly exudes charm. The mountains are magnificent, the forest are dense, the people are delightful, the air is pure, the architecture inspiring, the religion exciting and the art superb.
Bhutan holds many surprises. This is a country where the rice is red and where chillies aren't just a seasoning but the main ingredient. It's also a deeply Buddhist land, where monasteries are part of the mainstream, and where giant protective penises are painted beside the entrance to many houses.
The country's landscape ranges from subtropical plains in the south to the sub-alpine Himalayan heights in the north, where some peaks exceed 7,000 metres.
The northern region of Bhutan consists of an arc of Eastern Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows reaching up to glaciated mountain peaks with an extremely cold climate at the highest elevations. Most peaks in the north are over 7,000 metres above sea level; the highest point in Bhutan is Gangkhar Puensum at 7,570 metres, which has the distinction of being the highest unclimbed mountain in the world. The lowest point, at 98 m, is in the valley of Drangme Chhu, where the river crosses the border with India.