The author speaks of an all girls trip to Bhutan, the land of happiness and beauty, easily accessible to Indian citizens.
I am glowing and how! Well, I know this sounds pompous but I am not referring to my newly acquired clear skin (devoid of any acne and signs of ageing) thanks to the pristine beauty, clear water, and the happy air that I have abundantly soaked in during my recent all-girls trip to Bhutan!
For the last couple of years, I have been highly intrigued by Bhutan and what it had to offer – it started primarily with the avid traveler in me taking keen interest in all the touristy attractions that the country has. There is also the fact that it is relatively easier to access Bhutan, thanks to the distance from India and no need of any visa for Indian nationals.
Also, as I read more about Bhutan I was keen to know specifically about this Kingdom of Thunder Dragon. It just seemed to be getting more interesting and then the highlight was of course the fact that Bhutan is also known as the ‘Land of Happiness’ and it places more importance on Gross National Happiness ( GNH) over GDP.
When I first read this, I thought it’s possibly some kind of a gimmick to promote travel and tourism and wasn’t sure of how an entire country could be happy, and prioritize the pursuit of happiness to be the highest goal. Isn’t that exactly what we all strive for? And that’s just the quest that enabled me to embark on this journey in the Happy Land.
I couldn’t have been happier to have my best friend accompany me on this trip. We decided to go along on our 1st mega scale girl’s trip with Byond Travel. We were initially skeptical aboutfitting in with an organized trip (since we love our sleep and our space), but the 5 days that the Forever 21 girls spent in Bhutan was filled with fun, new bonds of friendship, some amazing confessions and romantic revelations that could inspire the next genre of Yashraj movies, non-stop chatter, caring and sharing of medicines and remedies, great food, a great travel designer from Byond, a great travel guide (the only sole ‘male’ warrior) who entertained us with his stories and gimmicks, music , games, shopping and masti.
And, of course WINE! The best locally produced peach-wine, ZumZin, that has been curated with the happiest of ingredients. It now occupies a prime slot in my home-bar.
It was amazing to see how the girls, across varying age groups (I hate to admit I am officially ‘middle-aged’ now), backgrounds, professions, cities, aspirations bonded so beautifully over their common love for Bhutan and to have a blast! We covered 3 cities of Western Bhutan – Thimpu, Punakha and Paro, all 3 cities with the most serene landscapes, a beautiful river flowing right in the middle of the city and the high peaked, lush green mountains that give you a sense of protection and guard you at all times.
This trip also enabled most of us to conquer two important things – The first is fear, as all of us let down our inhibitions and heartily made our successful debut in river-rafting along the beautiful river in Punakha. And the next, was to conquer our dream to hike up all the way to Taktsang Monastery ( Tiger’s Nest). It’s a Buddhist temple complex which clings onto a cliff, 3120 metres above sea level in the upper Paro valley. The energy and vibe in that place has to be seen and experienced by one and all to be believed in! Feels blessed to have had an opportunity to do this!
Bhutan is truly mystical and magical – the land is beautiful, the air is clean, the water is pristine and most important, the people are Happy! They are happy because they have abundance of all the resources one needs to thrive on. Life is simple and basic, there is no clutter in their mind, no cut-throat competitive streak to size up people.
They have the time and interest to appreciate and enjoy their beautiful surroundings, they have a deep sense of gratitude and authentic pride in what they do and where they belong, and they smile more than they talk! I am truly mesmerized by Bhutan and its strong foundation in the concept of GNH .
I am highly inspired by this concept of happiness and earnestly wish we all can imbibe the happy secrets into our lives.
Published here earlier.
Image source: pixabay