Bhutan tourism restrictions have many laws and rules which restrict tourist. Even tobacco is ban in Bhutan. Bhutan is only country in the world where tobacco is ban. Tourist is allowed to bring tobacco with limited quantity after declaring in customs counter. Why government restricts is due to religious conflict of interest and the law passes in the parliament with majority. Bhutanese government really concern of health because government provide free health care and education to children. We don’t care of Gross Domestic Product but we really do care of Gross National Happiness. Even there is no traffic light in Bhutan.
The Policy of Bhutan tourism restrictions is not real issue as observed by so many tourist coming to Bhutan but when tourist are out after visit they advice us to follow the same policy. We don’t want Bhutan to be like other countries who are suffering from mass tourism which will affect the environment, losing of rich culture, socio-cultural impacts on crime, fading of national language & dress code.
Bhutan started tourism in the year 1969 applying the policy of “high volume and low volume” which contradicts with notion of Bhutan tourism restrictions. Due to 70% forest coverage in Bhutan and Bhutan absorbs more carbon and recent figure the country emits around million tones of carbon annually and country forest absorbs 6 millions tones of carbon annually. Bhutan isn’t carbon neutral but carbon negative. You can’t compromise the total Bhutan tour cost $250 what you can from your Bhutan vacations with peaceful country, clean air, rich cultural heritage, dress code, friendliness atmosphere of each Bhutanese you speak and hospitality of Bhutanese farm house and many more.
Bhutan being Mahayana Buddhist state and we hold more attachment towards trees. Bodi tree is religious tree of Buddhist, where Lord Buddha got meditated under the tree. On 2nd June 2016 Bhutan recorded highest number of tree plantations with 100 volunteers to plant 4,672 trees within an hour. This set world record. Every year on 2nd June Bhutan is declared as social forest day and also day of 4th King of Bhutan crowning. Main objective is to protect environment. Environment protection is the core guiding principle of constitution of Bhutan which will not contradict Gross National Happiness.
When we get feedback from our clients coming to Bhutan always remarked on “Bhutan tourism restrictions”. But it was misinterpreted by the tourism policy of Bhutan with idea of “high value, low impact” tourism. This was serving high exclusivity and high yield in tourism. Bhutan tourism restrictions are not there in our Bhutan tourism policy. We provide Bhutan visa or entry permit to Bhutan for anyone who pays Bhutan tour cost to the tour operator. Government restricts to some areas due to some security reasons and infrastructure availability. Our tourism mission is to promote Bhutan as an exclusive travel destination based on Gross National Happiness (GNH) Values”. GNH values should not conflict with Bhutan tourism policy.